The fall finale frenzy was in full swing Wednesday night, with finales across the dial with ABC, Fox and The CW all saying farewell to their full lineups. They pulled out all the stops, too, with shocking deaths, major developments and a single kiss that broke the internet.
It's that special time of year when the networks pull out all the stops to try and make sure we'll remember them and come back in the New Year. It's not enough to just give us an enjoyable episode. They have to rip our heart out, leave it beating on the floor and maybe even do a little dance on it.
A good finale leaves us breathless, unable to even speak as we try and process what we just witnessed. A bad one can pull us right out of the narrative because we're groaning so loud at all the lameness. Below are the moments that stood out last night, for better or worse, and all the feels they left us with.
DAYUM: ("Empire," Fox) Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) wasn't playing around, calling out Diana DuBois (Phylicia Rashad) at her own party for her role in the kidnapping of the Lyon grandbaby. We were just as satisfied as Cookie when the cops showed up and took a stunned Diana into custody. Get it done!
WHOOPS: ("Empire," Fox) Jamal (Jussie Smollett) might have maybe just killed a dude, y'all! It was that classic scene where two characters scuffle and a gun goes off and they make you wait forever to find out which one got shot. We knew it was't gonna be Jamal, "Empire!" It was Angelo (Taye Diggs), so another blow to the DuBois family. This feud is either over, or about to get real ugly. Our money's on the latter.
UH-OH: ("Empire," Fox) Demi Moore ratcheted up the crazy for her triumphant return this week as Nurse Claudia, knocking Lucious (Terrence Howard) out seconds after he found out his son Andre (Trai Byers) was behind that car bomb that cost him his leg and memory. He awoke to see her looming over him like Kathy Bates out of "Misery," calling him Dwight and swearing she would never leave him. So, a lot of stuff for Lucious to ponder.
CRYING: ("Designated Survivor," ABC) As if he hasn't had enough to deal with during his surprise presidency, Tom Kirkman (Kiefer Sutherland) got one of the worst calls anyone could ever receive when he found out his wife, First Lady Alex (Natascha McElhone) had been killed in an automobile accident. The shocking moment came after a huge political victory for her. Was it random? Unknown. Tragic? When Tom dropped to his knees and wailed, we felt his pain from here!
STAAHP: ("Riverdale," The CW) What's with all the cheesy '90s horror movie tropes every time something related to the Black Hood happened. We got ominous music every time Betty (Lili Reinhart) thought something spooky might happen, and even a camera tilt when she and Archie (AJ Kapa) went to Svenson's home. Yeah, thanks for the heads up that we're supposed to be scared and worried. Want to poop our pants for us, too?
SAVAGE: ("Riverdale," The CW) Rose "Nana" Blossom (Barbara Wallace) is no joke, and may just be immortal. After Cheryl (Madelaine Petsch) gave some of her usual sass, Rose told her daughter she should have drowned the twins when they were infants. Ruthless!
YAWN: ("Riverdale," The CW) The big reveal of the identity of the Black Hood was about as big of a letdown as we could have asked for. It was the janitor the whole damned time ... but why did he do it? What was he trying to accomplish? We still don't know, but maybe Betty is going to take up the mantle and become the female Black Hood? Don't do it, it'll only make you lame, too!
CONFLICTED: ("Riverdale," The CW) Luckily, the Black Hood reveal wasn't the big moment of the episode, as Betty totally planted a kiss on Archie. Yeah, it was the worst possible time but he totally didn't resist -- what teenage boy would. Later, Veronica (Camila Mendes) kissed him under the mistletoe, and thus the love triangle is complete...ly driving us crazy! What should he do? What would we do? What about the girls' friendship? Aaaaaaaahhhhhhhhh!
AWWW: ("Speechless," ABC) JJ (Micah Fowler) finally got to speak his truth to his family, thanks to a camera gift from sister Dylan (Kyla Kennedy). He made a film where he had someone perform his inner dialogue so his family could "hear" his voice as he hears it inside his own head. It was filled with beautiful and touching sentiments for the family. Here's hoping the camera stays.
LAME: ("Dynasty," The CW) Really? Grandpa is a racist a--hole? That's the best you can do? When the new stepmother of your lead is Venezuelan, the laziest thing you can do is have Grandpa make a bunch of green card jokes, and mix up what kind of "Hispanic" they are. We get it. He's a dinosaur from another era. But it's been done a thousand times before. It doesn't add anything to his character for him to be a cliche. It takes away from the whole show!
FINALLY: ("Dynasty," The CW) Iris' (Elana Tovar) arrival worked out even better than Blake (Grant Show) could have wanted, ultimately exposing all of Cristal's ugly secrets. She killed Sam's (Rafael de la Fuente) father, doing it to save his mother, Iris. It's complicated, but it's "Dynasty." You knew what you signed up for... speaking of which, Sam's totally not dead. Soap operas!
OOOKAY?: ("Mr. Robot," USA) Um, so Phillip Price (Michael Cristofer) is Angela's (Portia Doubleday) biological father? That's why he cares about her well-being so much? Sure ... okay. He just kind of laid out the story of how he impregnated her mother while she was having a mental breakdown, maybe to try and reel her back in. She'd kind of gone off the deep end by this point with her revenge scheming. It might actually work, too!
EW: ("Mr. Robot," USA) A little gratuitous with the axe murder of FBI mole Santiago (Omar Metwally) there. Sure, it's been established that Irving (Bobby Cannavale) is a little murder-happy, but man that was a lot of blood and just nasty graphic violence. We felt like we were watching one of our favorite characters get bludgeoned to death with a baseball bat named Lucille (coughTheWalkingDeadcough). Don't be that!