- kimp at Yahoo TV4 hrs ago
Many series rode off into that big series-finale sunset in 2013, but some did it with far more imagination, better storytelling, and viewer-friendly surprises than others.
Here, we grade 10 of them, and we’re pretty generous with our A's. But there was one show that ended its run with a finale so disappointing, we couldn’t even justify a D-minus...
(Oh, and of course, since we’re discussing series endings, there are many, many spoilers ahead.)
“Breaking Bad” — Grade: A
Would Walter White live/die/get his comeuppance? Would his tortured cohort, Jesse? And what about Walt’s family, his wife, his kids, and his DEA agent brother-in-law, who’d finally discovered Walt was the ruthless drug lord known as Heisenberg? There were so many unanswered questions going into the final eight episodes of “Breaking Bad,” and even more expectations that creator Vince Gilligan and his writing staff would end Walt’s transformation from “Mr. Chips to Scarface” as brilliantly as they’d unfolded it for five seasons.
- Elizabeth Durand Streisand at Yahoo TV4 hrs ago
UPDATE: On Wednesday afternoon, A&E, the cable network which airs "Duck Dynasty," suspended Phil Robertson indefinitely from filming, issuing the following statement: "We are extremely disappointed to have read Phil Robertson’s comments in GQ, which are based on his own personal beliefs and are not reflected in the series 'Duck Dynasty .' His personal views in no way reflect those of A+E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community. The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely." GLAAD issued the following statement in response to A&E's decision, attributed to GLAAD spokesperson Wilson Cruz: "What’s clear is that such hateful anti-gay comments are unacceptable to fans, viewers, and networks alike. By taking quick action and removing Robertson from future filming, A&E has sent a strong message that discrimination is neither a Christian nor an American value."
- Lyndsey Parker at Yahoo TV7 hrs ago
On Tuesday's "Voice" finale, disco dollies Lady Gaga and Christina Aguilera joined forces for "Do What U Want," the most epic duet to hit the TV screen since...um, ever ? So much peroxide. So much shimmer. So much champagne. Today, my "The Day After" co-host Matt Whitfield and I can't resist cracking open some bubbly ourselves, to celebrate this Internet-winning/breaking moment in pop culture.
Of course, that's not all that happened last night. Tessanne Chin was crowned the winner of Season 5, and very deservedly so. And there were some other awesome performances, too. Watch us dish about everything that went down, in the final "The Day After" installment of this "Voice" season!
- ytvstaff at Yahoo TV8 hrs ago
We already named our top 20 TV shows for 2013, but even that doesn't begin to cover all the TV we loved this year. Here, we're focusing on the shows that didn't make the top-20 cut, and picking out 15 must-watch episodes from this calendar year that made all that time we spent on the couch worthwhile.
1. "The Good Wife," "Hitting the Fan"
The very apt title of the episode only begins to describe what an intense hour of television this was. Alicia and Cary’s plan to leave Lockhart/Gardner and take top clients with them was exposed, and led to explosive confrontations with Will and Diane. Then it was full-on war as the senior partners worked furiously to cut the new firm down. “Hitting the Fan” was a thrill ride from start to finish, and changed the course of “The Good Wife” forever. — Kelly Woo
2. “Justified," "Decoy”
- Lyndsey Parker at Yahoo TV9 hrs ago
When diva Tessanne Chin won "The Voice" Season 5 on Tuesday, her reaction was true reality TV: It doesn't get more real than falling to one's knees and sobbing for one's "mama!" For Tessanne, who'd been struggling to sustain a singing career in her native Jamaica for years, this victory was the U.S. breakthrough she'd been waiting for all her life, and she couldn't help but break down.
Later, backstage as she cradled her fist-shaped "Voice" trophy, a more composed Tessanne told Yahoo's Reality Rocks of her pre-"Voice" career: "I had definitely hit a wall, you know? I felt like I was just on a treadmill running and running and working, but not getting anywhere — a hamster wheel. And it just became a point where it was exhausting and I wasn't doing music, I wasn't being the artist I dreamed of being. I was just doing songs and music to get by so I could make a living at it…so I was at a point where I really knew I had to reevaluate. Was I going to do this, or not at all? But I made up my mind that no matter what happened, I'm always going be singing."
- Lyndsey Parker at Yahoo TV10 hrs ago
It's déjà vu all over again. Right around this time last year, just before the Season 2 finale, L.A. Reid announced that he was exiting "The X Factor." And now, during "The X Factor" Season 3's finale week, People is reporting that current judge Demi Lovato is leaving the fledgling show after this year.
Demi has not yet made an official announcement, and a source close to the show would not confirm People 's report, telling Yahoo's Reality Rocks: "No one from 'X Factor' has discussed next year with Demi." However, the source added, "There are a lot of other conversations happening about new ideas and what the show should be like. There are a lot of conversations happening at the moment with Fox and 'The X Factor' in how going forward would be new and different." (Insert déjà vu flashbacks to the series' massive, "The Hills"-style makeover in Season 2.)
- Joal Ryan at Yahoo TV1 day ago
On TV, it was a good year to be a bearded duck hunter. It was not the greatest year to be a leotard-clad bunhead.
Here's a rundown of 2013's ratings winners and losers:
1. "The Blacklist": In recent seasons, a solid success like Fox's "Sleepy Hollow" (averaging 10.1 million total viewers this fall, per the latest Nielsen stats) would be the freshman standout. But this NBC crime drama starring James Spader has been out-of-the-box big, building on its "Voice" lead-in, dominating DVR playlists, and amassing a Top 5-sized weekly audience of nearly 17 million.
2. "Scandal": One year ago at this time, this Kerry Washington ABC series was a good-sized guilty pleasure, averaging 8.4 million viewers. Now it's a full-blown hit, with 12.2 million viewers each week, not including those who intend to binge on its Shonda Rhimes plot twists at a later streaming date.
- Lyndsey Parker at Yahoo TV1 day ago
Jamaican diva Tessanne Chin had already experienced some success in her native land — first as a member of the reggae-rock band Mile High, later as a solo artist with the 2006 hit single "Hideaway." She even toured with Jimmy Cliff and collaborated with Shaggy. But it was actually her friend Shaggy's suggestion that she try out for "The Voice" that finally made Tessanne an American sensation, when she was crowned the Season 5 "Voice" champion on Tuesday night.
Upon hearing the good news, Tessanne broke into hysterical sobs, which only grew louder when her coach Adam Levine ran onstage, knelt at her feet, and presented her with a shiny new "Voice" trophy. She had just about composed herself, like a true professional, to perform her Ryan Tedder-penned coronation song "Tumbling Down"...when she broke down again as her mother walked onstage. "MAMA!" she screamed, as she ran into her mom's waiting embrace. Aw .
- jblacklow at Yahoo TV1 day ago
If you've read Kristen Johnston's 2012 memoir "Guts: The Endless Follies and Tiny Triumphs of a Giant Disaster," you know that she's an actress who knows a thing or two about perseverance.
But even her drive to keep working through illness (as she documented in "Guts") couldn't help in her current battle. Johnston, 46, will be taking an upcoming two-episode break from her hit TV Land show, "The Exes," as she continues recovering from her recent diagnosis with an auto-immune disorder, which she's only now speaking about for the first time.
"I was vacationing at the Mayo Clinic in November for two weeks," she explains. "I've finally been diagnosed with an auto-immune disorder, where your immune system starts attacking healthy tissue. This has been way worse than anything that happened in 'Guts.'" [In her amazingly candid first book, Kristen describes her painful recovery process from an addiction to painkillers and alcohol.]
- Lyndsey Parker at Yahoo TV1 day ago
On Monday, the "Voice" top three performed for the last time, and on tonight's big finale, either Tessanne Chin, Jacquie Lee, or Will Champlin will be crowned the Season 5 winner.
While all three are deserving of the title in their own ways, my "The Day After" co-host Matt Whitfield and I are rooting for Tessanne, based on her epic "I Have Nothing" performance. And judging from today's iTunes numbers — "I Have Nothing" went to number one, and Tessanne's "Let It Be" duet with her coach Adam Levine got to number four — much of America is rooting for her as well.
But don't count out Jacquie or Will just yet. Both have ardent fanbases and celebrity support (and loads of talent, of course)...which means tonight's finale may be the most suspenseful in "Voice" history. Any of them could take this.
Watch us discuss all this and more, and be sure to share your thoughts in the comments section below!