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Network Finale

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The end of your network has arrived. Network Death is imminent. Some networks have just a brief or abrupt sign-off with little to no fanfare, but some do go the extra mile to pay tribute to their history before turning off the transmitter for good. This is the trope for when networks decide to go out with a real tribute to themselves, or at least a carefully-chosen final program.


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     Broadcast TV Channels 
  • British movie channel Carlton Cinema folded with the rest of the short-lived ITV Digital operation in 2003: its closedown included a montage of film scenes set to Alice Faye's "You'll Never Know".
  • During the transition to digital television in the UK, Northern Ireland was the final region to perform the analogue shutdown. BBC One Northern Ireland's final sign-off culminated with the blue and yellow mirror globe ident from the 70's, followed by a scene of a control room with a plush of Digit Al (the mascot used in campaigns informing viewers of the transition) on top of a screen with said mirror globe, and the monitors behind it showing a series of classic BBC One idents from each subsequent era (beginning with the Computer Originated World) and an obituary for Ceefax (which also shut down due to the transition). BBC Two Northern Ireland had a similar sign-off done over the classic BBC 2 animated stripes of the early 80's, which animated off-screen in reverse
  • Australia's Seven Network had some unique sign-offs for its analogue switchoffs too, with Sydney featuring a reprisal of the station's former sign-off sequence (including a music video to Tommy Leonetti's "My City of Sydney", followed by an animation of a kangaroo turning the "ATN Channel 7" logo into a bed for her joey before pulling down a shade, revealing the word "Goodbye"), Melbourne featuring a montage of the programs produced at the station (with the conclusion set to its classic "Hello Melbourne" jingle from the mid-1980's), and Brisbane featuring a quick montage of clips and classic Seven Network idents before ending on an old testcard.
  • Certain U.S. network stations pulled out the stops for their analog shutdowns. KDKA in Pittsburgh dusted off the old "High Flight" video they used to show when signing off for the night, followed by a unique national anthem montage showing their old in-house programming, moving backwards from the then-present to the station's early days. KADN in Lafayette did something similar, showing some old bumpers followed by their old national anthem video. Other stations also dusted off their old sign-offs one last time for the occasion.
    • This blog found video of seemingly every analog signoff in the US, as well as a few in Japan and Australia. Some went out with anchors counting down live, some used an old sign-off, some created a farewell montage, some botched it, and some simply cut to black.
  • The last night of The WB (before its merger with UPN to form The CW) featured a "Night of Favorites and Farewell" — with airings of the pilot episodes of Felicity, Angel, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Dawson's Creek, peppered with flashbacks of the network's history (and promos for the DVD sets and the cable channels showing off-network reruns of said series), concluding with a final montage which ended with a shadowed Michigan J. Frog (the network's former mascot, who had been retired a few years before) bowing to the audience as their curtain fell. WPIX, the network's New York City station, followed it up with a montage of their past logos (with music from that era accompanying each one) before officially rebranding as CW 11 for the 10 o'clock news.
  • When the Brazilian MTV shut down as a terrestrial broadcast channel in 2013 (before changing to satellite/cable channel), they aired O Ultimo Programa do Mundo ("The Last Program in the World"). The last two VJs who talked before a montage were also the first two in the initial broadcast in 1990.

     Cable/Satellite TV Channels 
  • G4TV ended its original run with a game of Pong that slowly shrunk and filled with a grey color, followed by a sound clip of Kevin Pereira shouting "I'M AT COMIC-CON!!!" (a possible allusion to G4 dying and going to "nerd heaven") as the dot shut off like an analog TV alongside Donkey Kong's death bloops from the Atari 2600 and the Game Boy start-up chime.
  • Fox Soccer shut down with a clip of soccer footage being interrupted by that one It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia scene where a couch gives birth to Frank, hailing the official launch of its replacement — the comedy-oriented FX spin-off FXX.
  • Likewise Speed Channel ended with former NASCAR play-by-play announcer Mike Joy making a statement marking the channel's end by saying it was "time to switch off the ignition and turn in the keys" and then reassuring the viewers that much of its live programming including NASCAR would still be seen on the channel's successor, Fox Sports 1.
  • Fine Living Network ended to make way for Cooking Channel on May 31, 2010. To mark the transition, the network played an indent where The Grim Reaper arrives at a house, presumably the address of Fine Living Network, and rings the doorbell, implying the network is literally dead.
  • The final day of UK Jetix's programming ended with a montage of some of the shows that had been displayed on the channel before cutting to Jetix's mascot, Jay, lying asleep in a lawnchair, finally able to retire and rest now that Jetix was finished. The channel then switched over to Disney XD.
  • Disney XD Australia ended with a back-to-back airing of the entire High School Musical trilogy.
  • Downplayed with Chiller ending it's final broadcast day with an airing of The Babadook and then a simple message of "Thank you for watching Chiller. Good night!"
  • The CBC's Newsworld International stopped broadcasting in 2005, ending with a special farewell message from their Toronto offices before switching to Current TV.
    • The final item to air on Current TV in before it's end in 2013 was a short documentary titled "Jumper," which was also the first thing to air upon Current's launch on August 1, 2005, thus "bookending" the network.
    • Current was replaced with Al Jazeera America, which itself ended on April 12, 2016 with a three-hour retrospective film named "Your Stories" that played twice on the final day. Antonio Mora and Richelle Carey, who were the first anchors on the air when the network launched, were the last two to appear when it went off the air.
  • Activism-oriented Pivot ended with *five* consecutive showings of the movie Good Night, and Good Luck..
  • CNN has had plans since the beginning to only go off the air if the world ends, and they have footage in their system ready to play in case that should ever happen. In another case of Book-Ends, it's footage of the mixed-military band that played the American National Anthem when they first signed on playing "Nearer My God to Thee." The copy of it linked here was leaked by a former intern in 2015.
    • Gremlins 2: The New Batch: In a reference to the rumored existence of this tape, when Clamp learns that he will have to shut down his automated skyscraper, which includes a cable network, he reveals that he had a tape prepared, one that would be a final farewell to their audience. He never thought it would ever be used.
  • On December 15, 2020, WarnerMedia shut down its premium movie channels in India, HBO India, HBO HD India, and Warner Brothers India. During the days leading up to the closure, all channels ran a notice celebrating the channels' 20 years on the air and rolling credits to thank the channels' staff. Both HBO and WB ran "Best Of" marathons, and shortly before the shutdown, HBO aired a montage of movie clips while thanking the viewer for loving the network.

     Radio Stations 
  • In 2019, New York City adult contemporary station WPLJ was sold to a Christian radio network, and ended a 71-year run as a commercial station. Their final days on-air in May 2019 were met with much fanfare, including a promotion in which the station would play through songs from 1971 (the station's first year under the WPLJ calls) to the present to "clean out" its music library, while there were also on-air reunions of past personalities, and a final toast to the station at around 7:00 p.m. on May 30, after which the station flipped to the K-Love network.
  • Format Change Archive is a site dedicated entirely to recordings of radio station format changes.


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