- From NBC’s “This is Us” to Netflix’s “The Handmaid’s Tale,” 2018 was a big year in television.
- The series finale of “Orange is the New Black” brought hot-button issues to the small screen while the series finale of “The Americans” had viewers on the edge of their seats.
- “Saturday Night Live” had one of its funniest sketches and Paul McCartney appeared on “Carpool Karaoke.”
Television has long been regarded as an outlet to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Whether your vice is crying over the latest episode of “This is Us” or laughing hysterically to the newest “Saturday Night Live” skit, there are a plethora of shows for everyone.
Some shows pushed the envelope more than others this year capturing the audience’s attention with every minute that passed.
Here are 10 of the most shocking moments from your favorite television shows in 2018.
Warning: Ahead are spoilers for 10 popular TV shows.
Viewers said their final goodbye to Roseanne Conner this year.
- American Broadcasting Company
After a racist tweet landed Roseanne Barr in some hot water in May 2018, ABC’s revival of her hit show “Roseanne” was swiftly canceled.
The following month, the network announced they’d be bringing back “The Conners,” a spin-off following the family sans its matriarch.
ABC addressed Roseanne’s absence on the series premiere of “The Conners,” the family found out she had died of an opioid overdose, which isn’t a huge shift from her fictitious backstory since the Roseanne had struggled with a drug addiction in the past.
Paul McCartney and James Corden took a trip down memory lane.
- The Late Late Show with James Corden/YouTube
Late night host James Corden’s “Carpool Karaoke” segment is one of the most heartwarming things on TV. Singers “help” Corden catch a ride to work, all while sitting shotgun belting out their signature hits.
This summer, Corden tapped former Beatle Paul McCartney for his latest jaunt, and the broadcast could not have been more delightful. The two journeyed to Liverpool, UK, pointing out iconic spots in the quartet’s rise to global dominance, including McCartney’s childhood home where he and fellow bandmate John Lennon wrote “She Loves You.”
Teddy Perkins made his “Atlanta” debut.
FX’s “Atlanta” is one of the most critically acclaimed shows on air, it even earned creator Donald Glover a Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy TV Series. Glover penned the hour-long episode and subsequently wore whiteface to play the Perkins, an erratic homeowner and piano salesman with murderous tendencies who comes to haunt series regular Darius (Lakeith Stanfield).
Even in you’ve never sat down to watch an episode of this hit show, this particular installment showcases why Glover is regarded as one of the most creative minds on TV today.
BoJack Horseman delivered a powerful eulogy.
When it comes to animated shows, it’s rare that they take a more dramatic turn, most times it’s only reserved for when a real-life character departs the series or worse, passes away.
One of the more somber moments of the series comes in the episode “Free Churro,” where the camera focuses on the titular character for the bulk of the episode as he is delivering a eulogy for his deceased mother. It’s a remarkable moment, including both dark and funny sentiments in his monologue.
What makes the conclusion even better? When BoJack realizes at the end, after laying into his late mom, that he is speaking at the wrong funeral.
“Black Jeopardy” gave the internet a year’s worth of memes in this “Saturday Night Live” sketch.
- Saturday Night Live/YouTube
Arguably one of the best films of the year, “Black Panther” changed the narrative between how we view superhero movies. The cast went on a worldwide press tour for the film, with one stop involving a guest host stint for leading man Chadwick Boseman (King T’Challa in the blockbuster hit).
Boseman reprised his superhero alter ego in a “Saturday Night Live” skit named “Black Jeopardy,” answering questions while simultaneously attempting to understand American culture, particularly American cuisine. Potato salad will never be looked at the same again.
June and Hannah have a short reunion on “The Handmaid’s Tale.”
Handmaid June (Elisabeth Moss) has only ever relied on memories of her daughter Hannah (Jordana Blake) to get her through the horror of her capture while trying to escape across Gilead’s border into the “Little America” section of Canada.
Near the end of the show’s second season, she gets to see her child – now named Agnes – face-to-face again, but only for the shortest of reunions.
Jack finally dies in “This is Us.”
Since the show’s inception, fans of the NBC family drama “This is Us” have been dreading the moment when Jack (Milo Ventimiglia) meets his demise. The Pearson family patriarch finally died in the season two episode aptly titled “Super Bowl Sunday.” Ironically, it premiered following the airing of the real Super Bowl game between the New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles.
In the jaw-dropping chain of events, Jack rescues his family from a house fire caused by an old and faulty slow cooker. After he leads everyone to safety, he bravely runs back into the flames to save the family dog (at the request of daughter Kate). He emerges from the burning house with just enough time, but his lungs are poisoned with smoke. Later, while recovering at he is given a clean bill of health. As wife Rebecca leaves his post to get them a snack and check in on their children, Jack goes into cardiac arrest, dying alone.
“The Americans” gave us one of the best series finales to date.
Emmy-award winning drama “The Americans” left audiences full of emotions in their finale episode. Titled “START,” the episode leaves lead characters Phillip Jennings (Matthew Rhys) and wife Elizabeth (Keri Russell) with a serious dilemma.
The two are discovered as Russian spies, and face the tough choice of leaving their son Henry behind as they flee to the U.S.S.R. with daughter Paige. The Jennings, in full disguise, evade capture by marshals who are searching for them on a train.
Just as their train departs, however, Phillip and Elizabeth see Paige standing outside on the platform, electing to live on her own in the United States. As U2’s “With or Without You” plays in the background, the Jennings tearfully continue their journey back to Europe, without either child or any certainty of their well-being.
The season finale of “Orange is the New Black” drew eerie comparisons to real-life events.
On the season finale of Netflix’s “Orange Is the New Black,” viewers were left with a real cliffhanger after Piper (Taylor Schilling) and Blanca (Lauren Gomez) were awarded an early release bid from Litchfield’s maximum security prison.
Unfortunately for Blanca, her freedom was short-lived, and fear immediately ensued. She and other Latinx prisoners were shuffled into a separate line that led them outdoors to armed immigration agents who were waiting to take them to detention centers for deportation hearings.
Season seven, premiering next year, will be the final one for the popular show, so it will interesting to see how show creators unfold this seemingly real-life storyline.
“Barry” reminded audiences that even in the midst of change, someone can never escape their dark past.
HBO series “Barry” is filled with intensely funny moments, but some also make you question your moral compass.
The Emmy-award winning show tells the story of Barry, a hitman from the Midwest who decides to turn his life around by pursuing a theatrical career in Los Angeles. A feel-good Hollywood story – or, so we thought.
While the audience begins to believe in Barry’s transformation as the inaugural season continues, those hopes come crashing down in “Chapter 7: Loud, Fast, and Keep Going” when Barry murders his friend Chris in order to avoid having his past exposed. While grappling with his crime, it doesn’t stop Barry from returning to the theater to perform in a stage production of “Macbeth,” giving viewers any lost hope of redemption.
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