The point in a series where the story takes a sudden dramatic turn. Things will never be quite the same again.
When advertisements tease you with words such as "The most shocking episode of the season!", they're probably referring to this (unless they're not). This is the episode meant to radically alter the status quo, and in doing so send a major shock through the viewership.
There is a city full of innocents. Men, women, children; civilians. But danger is coming, and because those civilians live in the city each and every one of them is grave danger. Maybe it's a Big Bad hoping to sack or massacre the city, maybe it's an impending natural disaster. Either way, it's too late to prevent what's coming and if people stay there they will die.
So they evacuate. They leave the city behind in order to escape with their lives. The local military or government might be organizing the evacuation (which would count as a
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