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Knowing when to say goodbye

One of the hardest things to learn growing up is how to say goodbye.  It can be a painful process.  On the first day of school, there are often tears and anxiety about entering this new phase.  Sometimes teachers must step in to help.  Especially when those tearful parents won’t leave.

But we get over it because saying goodbye leaves room for growth.  For something new.

That said, it’s that time of year when viewers must start saying goodbye to certain TV shows or characters.  By now, The Good Wife fans know it’s signing off forever on Sunday, May 8.

Mike & Molly recently returned for its final season and will close with a one hour finale on June 21.  Meanwhile, NCIS viewers have been savoring their final moments with Very Special Agent Anthony DiNozzo before he leaves the Navy on May 17.

But the one that is particularly painful for me has been Castle.  I accept that after eight years, it’s hard to keep the momentum going.  So it’s no surprised that ABC hasn’t confirmed that the show will have a ninth season.  However, it did announce that regardless, the show’s co-star, Stana Katic, won’t be back.

Budget cuts were blamed for not renewing her contract.  However, how can Castle continue without Kate Beckett?

The series is based on the relationship between mystery writer, Richard Castle, and his muse, Detective – now Captain – Kate Beckett.  She wasn’t just one of the various supporting characters.  Their relationship was the point of the show.

Fans watched them work together symbiotically and fall in love.  They made plans.  They got married.  One self-proclaimed time traveller even told us that they would have multiple children and she’d become senator.  Promises have been made, people.

Continuing Castle without Beckett spells doom for the couple, not to mention a serious lack of wit and magic on which the show was built.  So perhaps it’s time to let Rick and Kate walk off into the sunset together with a dignified goodbye.  Or as dignified as one could expect from Richard Castle.

When the writers killed-off Will Gardner, one corner of The Good Wife triangle, I wasn’t sure I could continue watching.  But the show was about one woman and the people in her life.  People come and go, as did Will.  So the show continued to season 7 with the usual level of viewer decline until producers decided to bow out gracefully before it wilted and died.  Unfortunately, that’s the exception to the rule.

Hollywood likes to suck every last breath of life out of a hit series before dropping it into the Netflix abyss.  Even then, they’ll pick the carcass clean.  Breaking Bad ended with its anti-hero dying.  So they created the spin-off Better Call Saul to keep their fan-base.

ABC, too, has considered a Castle spin-off.  But that still means breaking up the band.  And isn’t it nicer to imagine our friends living happily ever after together once the final credits roll?

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