That Feeling of Finality

Ok…so I admit I am a TV junkie. I am fully addicted to Law and Order SVU, to Castle. I love reality cooking shows and a few of the reality talent shows. Glee makes me happy. But since I discovered In Plain Sight a few years ago, nothing else has come close. Tonight is the first Friday after the series finale…and I am sad. The finality of it really being over didn’t hit me until tonight at 9:00 when I couldn’t turn it on.

There is a desperate feeling about a series finale. Viewers expect it to be perfect like an iced cake or a mulled watermelon martini (my examples, of course). We want the loose ends to be tied up, the personal dramas to be neatly checked, and the characters you love to be on course for brilliance. We have a sense of the romantic solidly engrained in us. Sure some shows jump off the edge leaving us with the ultimate cliff hanger. Those are the ones people talk about forever, the ones they can’t get over. I don’t know if it is better to have a predictably pretty ending or one you didn’t see coming. But when you are in love with the characters, the story, the sense of finality almost tears your heart out. Mary and Marshall are now very simply characters in that one TV show (filmed and set in Albuquerque!) that I used to watch. Yes…I cried.

The feeling of finality is the overarching feeling of the week. My last week as an MA student at TTU has come…and gone. My last official English class was last week. My final novel has been read. I told a friend last week that it felt as though I were inside a closing box. So much that I love and care about is fading into memory. Fittingly, my final novel for class left me with this same sense of heart-wrenching finality.

The Mystery of Edwin Drood. Charles Dickens’s final novel…unfinished. Did I mention it’s a murder mystery? OH…THE PAIN! Finished, it would have been my favorite of his novels. Even the part that exists is some of the most daring of his work. Yet the finality of his life seems to bleed onto the pages. Take this, the first paragraph written by Dickens on the last day of his life:

“A brilliant morning shines on the old city. Its antiquities and ruins are surpassingly beautiful, with the lusty ivy gleaming in the sun, and the rich trees waving in the balmy air. Changes of glorious light from moving boughs, songs of birds, scents from gardens, woods, and fields—or rather, from the one great garden of the whole cultivated island in its yielding time—penetrate into the Cathedral, subdue its earthy odour, and preach the Resurrection and the Life. The cold stone tombs of centuries ago grow warm, and flecks of brightness dart into the sternest marble corners of the building, fluttering their like wings.” (Dickens 270)

Beautiful…And in only a few pages, the great author was gone, leaving behind one of the greatest cliff hangers of all time.

Finality…the end of things. But I am grateful because I know there will be new TV shows, new books, new doors to open…and memories of the past to cling to along the way.

 

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