Another springtime tradition draws near as my regular TV shows each race toward their season finales. I never know how any given show will end, but it’s fun to pretend I do. Here, then, are my incorrect predictions for what’s in store for me over the next month. If any of these are remotely accurate, I’d be grateful if someone in charge would PayPal me a fraction of the ad revenues.
Community: Chang becomes the dean of the all-new all-different (read: even more destabilized) Greendale College. A shattered ex-Dean Pelton seeks a new degree and joins the study group. Troy and Britta still don’t hook up, but we discover a good reason why. The climax will be the destruction of the air conditioning annex in some sort of wormhole-based implosion that fits whatever the episode’s satirical target is. R.I.P. John Goodman’s character for arc-closure purposes, along with Pierce Hawthorne in some hideous yet hilarious manner that Dan Harmon will reveal to Chevy Chase after the episode airs, in the form of a TwitPic of his pink slip.
The Office: James Spader’s imminent departure was previously announced. Mindy Kaling’s Fox deal is reportedly reaching fruition. A spinoff is allegedly being constructed for Rainn Wilson. Other exits aren’t unlikely if the show is renewed. All signs point toward one inevitability: a natural disaster wipes out Dunder Mifflin’s Scranton branch, taking out half the cast. Those left standing at the end — Andy, Erin, David Wallace, Kevin, Oscar, Creed, Cathy the annoying temp, Nate from the warehouse, and a hastily rehired Todd Packer — relocate for season 9 to the scenic Utica branch, where hilarity can hopefully ensue after they pick up the pieces. If for some reason Parks & Recreation isn’t renewed, Rashida Jones returns as their new boss, Karen.
Parks & Recreation: Leslie loses the election because moving her out of the department would compromise the show’s basic premise. Somehow her loss is all Jerry’s fault, but the team holds their pre-planned victory party anyway with a little help from Donna’s cousin Ginuwine. Meanwhile, Tom fails one last time to win Anne’s heart, which is fine by me. The final scene in four words: either “Ben proposes to Leslie” or “Chris has a coronary.”
Mad Men: Reply hazy; try again later. It doesn’t help that I’m currently two episodes behind.
Once Upon a Time: In the final flashback, the dwarfs and fairies locate Charming, free him, and escort him to the comatose Snow to snap her out of it in the usual fashion. As they reunite and make wedding plans, elsewhere a rebuked Evil Queen pulls the trigger on the whole “Curse” plan…which, of course, comes with a price.
Meanwhile in the present-day real world, Henry’s stunt finally convinces Emma to believe, and I finally lose the urge to throw things at my TV. When she attempts to leave town forever for her seventh or eighth time — this time with Mary Margaret, David, and still-comatose Henry all along for the ride — she pushes her li’l jalopy so hard that the engine explodes. Everyone else is scraped and bruised, but the impact leaves Emma dead…for one whole minute. In homage to the Buffy season 1 finale, momentary clinical death is good enough to fulfill the terms and conditions for breaking the curse, leading up to a final scene of everyone remembering everything, capped with a tearful reunion between Grumpy and Amy Acker.
In the long term, Season 2 has everyone coming to terms with life in the real world despite knowing what they know and who they were. In Season 3, Our Heroes — now teamed up with a remorseful Regina, who’s at long last aware that all her problems were entirely her super-evil mom’s fault — finally find a way back to the Fairytale World, which in their absence has become a smoking crater ruled by some new evil dictator. My vote is for Jafar.
The Simpsons: Absolutely nothing of consequence occurs, except maybe another great couch gag by outside artists. My vote is for Studio Ghibli.
This list fails to include the several shows I abandoned this season. I assume their finales will also involve wormhole implosions, or cameos by Charlie Sheen. Good luck with those.