When it premiered in 2007, Gossip Girl became one of the must-watch TV shows of the era. The enduring love for the show has even recently spawned a reboot. But although fans still miss the original series, many of them agree: the ending was terrible. What happened to make them so upset? The writers just dropped the ball when it came to the finale. But it turns out that they weren’t alone. A lot of popular shows had finales that people hated.
How ‘Gossip Girl’ ended
For six seasons, Gossip Girl followed the lives of an elite group of ultra-rich teens. They made their way through scandal after scandal, and the whole time they were dogged by a mysterious person only known as Gossip Girl. This person spread rumors (sometimes true, sometimes not) and stirred up endless amounts of drama.
Looper explains that as the series progressed, viewers tried to figure out who this secretive busybody was. The unknown Gossip Girl knew too much about the characters’ lives to be a stranger, but could one of their inner group be betraying them? Many people suspected it was Eric Vander Woodson (played by Connor Paolo), but then he left the show.
When the finale arrived in 2012, fans were on the edge of their seats to find out Gossip Girl’s identity.
The reveal was satisfyingly shocking. Dan Humphrey (played by Penn Badgley), the quiet outsider from Brooklyn, was Gossip Girl.
Why fans hated the ending
But if the shock value of the reveal was satisfying, the ending itself didn’t sit well with fans. Looking back on the whole series, Dan as Gossip Girl just didn’t make sense.
For one thing, the rumors that he supposedly spread often shocked him, even when he read them alone. Why would he be surprised by something he wrote? The stories that were spread around also threatened and hurt people he loved.
As Cosmopolitan points out, Gossip Girl went after Serena, letting out the secret that she was possibly pregnant. But Dan was dating Serena at the time, so why would he hurt his girlfriend and jeopardize his own relationship?
It seems that the ending happened the way it did because the writers hadn’t intended for Dan to be Gossip Girl at the beginning of the series. The plan was for Eric to be revealed as the villain. However, over time, viewers picked up on clues that were pointing to Eric, so the writers switched the identity to Dan.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t easy to reconcile with some of the things that had already happened, so there were some important holes left in the story when it wrapped up.
It isn’t the only series to end badly
Gossip Girl isn’t alone in disappointing its fans at the finish line. Another well-known example is Game of Thrones, the super-popular series that had a finale that ruined the entire show for many fans. But according to The Independent, both series are in good company.
Just a few of the popular shows that went out on a sour note for viewers include Breaking Bad, The Undoing, True Blood, The X-Files, Lost, and How I Met Your Mother. Even Seinfeld, which was a huge success while it was on the air, ended with a finale that simply made viewers mad.
Many of these shows were well-loved by viewers and critics. And despite their obvious skill, the writers couldn’t seem to end such successful shows in a way that left fans happy.
It turns out that it really is hard to say goodbye.
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