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(io9)   The 20 best cliffhangers ever shown on science fiction or fantasy TV   (io9.com ) divider line
    More: Cool, fantasy television, Stargate SG-1, Mulder, abducted by aliens, Scorpius  
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10558 clicks; posted to Geek » on 22 Nov 2012 at 5:49 PM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



79 Comments   (+0 »)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

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2012-11-22 05:06:59 PM  
I'd say better Doctor Who cliffhangers include The Tenth Planet ep. 4 and Caves of Androzani ep. 4.

...and Best of Both Worlds is only #20?

And how could a shiatty Voyager episode make the list, while no DS9 episodes did? The finale of season 6 was great... Dax was dead, Sisko was gone... way better than anything on Voyager.
 
2012-11-22 05:14:40 PM  
Wow. Macross' The Messengers made it onto there? Talk about obscure, meaningful Anime episodes.

Adventure Time made number one? REALLY? Adventure time?
 
2012-11-22 05:20:42 PM  
Twin Peaks, "Beyond Life And Death".

Is what I immediately thought of when I saw the headline.
 
2012-11-22 05:29:40 PM  

BronyMedic: Wow. Macross' The Messengers made it onto there? Talk about obscure, meaningful Anime episodes.

Adventure Time made number one? REALLY? Adventure time?


If Adventure Time made the list, then either The Return of Harmony part 1 or A Canterlot Wedding part 1 should be on the list.

/leaning more toward Return of Harmony, because Q.

/Q was also responsible for Best of Both Worlds part 1, in a roundabout way.
 
2012-11-22 05:51:51 PM  

FirstNationalBastard: I'd say better Doctor Who cliffhangers include The Tenth Planet ep. 4 and Caves of Androzani ep. 4.

...and Best of Both Worlds is only #20?

And how could a shiatty Voyager episode make the list, while no DS9 episodes did? The finale of season 6 was great... Dax was dead, Sisko was gone... way better than anything on Voyager.


I think the list is reversed, so #20 is the #1 result, since it mentions that Best of Both Worlds was mentioned most and is probably the best.
 
2012-11-22 05:54:21 PM  
Z'ha'dum.

"Jump!"

/only thing Kosh ever said that made any goddamn sense
 
2012-11-22 06:00:44 PM  

Bondith: Z'ha'dum.

"Jump!"

/only thing Kosh ever said that made any goddamn sense


Yes.
 
2012-11-22 06:03:11 PM  

simplicimus: Bondith: Z'ha'dum.

"Jump!"

/only thing Kosh ever said that made any goddamn sense

Yes.


Good.
 
2012-11-22 06:04:08 PM  

simplicimus: Bondith: Z'ha'dum.

"Jump!"

/only thing Kosh ever said that made any goddamn sense

Yes.


OK, two things Kosh said made any goddamn sense.

/and ruthless efficiency
//The jellyfish Sinclair sees is not the jellyfish you are looking for.
 
2012-11-22 06:07:49 PM  
i.imgur.com
 
2012-11-22 06:23:15 PM  

Vacation Bible School: [i.imgur.com image 700x400]


The worst part was that you really had no idea at the time if the cliffhanger would ever be resolved.
 
2012-11-22 06:23:42 PM  
I'm still waiting to find out what happens to Jubal Early.
 
2012-11-22 06:27:25 PM  
Either they weren't in any particular order, #1 was the least awesome and #20 was the most.
Because, that would make sense.
 
2012-11-22 06:29:27 PM  

FirstNationalBastard: I'd say better Doctor Who cliffhangers include The Tenth Planet ep. 4 and Caves of Androzani ep. 4.

...and Best of Both Worlds is only #20?

And how could a shiatty Voyager episode make the list, while no DS9 episodes did? The finale of season 6 was great... Dax was dead, Sisko was gone... way better than anything on Voyager.


I can see the end of the Tenth Planet being a huge WTF for viewers at the time, but aside from it being a great story, what made the end of the Caves of Androzani such a big cliffhanger? At that time, regeneration was old hat to the Who fans, and Baker II didn't try to choke a biatch until the next episode.
 
2012-11-22 06:34:06 PM  
I'm going to assume that the list is in reverse order and that #20 is actually #1.

Actually, I only glanced over the rest of the list, I was just looking for Best of Both Worlds.
 
2012-11-22 06:34:06 PM  

Mad_Radhu: FirstNationalBastard: I'd say better Doctor Who cliffhangers include The Tenth Planet ep. 4 and Caves of Androzani ep. 4.

...and Best of Both Worlds is only #20?

And how could a shiatty Voyager episode make the list, while no DS9 episodes did? The finale of season 6 was great... Dax was dead, Sisko was gone... way better than anything on Voyager.

I can see the end of the Tenth Planet being a huge WTF for viewers at the time, but aside from it being a great story, what made the end of the Caves of Androzani such a big cliffhanger? At that time, regeneration was old hat to the Who fans, and Baker II didn't try to choke a biatch until the next episode.


I say because of the snarky ending.

However, Caves 3 might have been a better choice.
 
2012-11-22 06:49:57 PM  

Arn_Dee: I'm still waiting to find out what happens to Jubal Early.


Whedon says he survived.

speaking of unresolved series ending cliffhangers

img854.imageshack.us

"For a minute there, I thought I was in trouble."
 
2012-11-22 06:50:32 PM  
There were some pretty good episodes in that list. "The Incident" may be my favorite cliff-hanger. Say what you will about the rest of the show, but that ending had me dying to find out what was going to happen next.

Farscape had a bunch of good cliff-hangers. I was just thinking about popping those DVDs in again....
 
2012-11-22 06:53:15 PM  
25.media.tumblr.com
 
2012-11-22 06:53:57 PM  
Good list, the only other one that hasn't been mentioned in the thread I can think of is Knight Rider when Goliath took out KITT. My pre then mind was blown!
 
2012-11-22 06:54:29 PM  
The season 4 finale of Farscape -- "Bad Timing" was the most aggravating cliffhanger, if only because they cancelled the series immediately afterward.
www.johnaeryn.com

/Loved the series.
//And thankfully, The Peacekeeper Wars tied up some of the loose ends.
 
2012-11-22 06:58:33 PM  

Boudyro: Good list, the only other one that hasn't been mentioned in the thread I can think of is Knight Rider when Goliath took out KITT. My pre then mind was blown!


"Pre-teen."

/stupid auto correct.
 
2012-11-22 07:04:10 PM  

BronyMedic: Wow. Macross' The Messengers made it onto there? Talk about obscure, meaningful Anime episodes.


How is that obscure? Robotech was huge.

That Battlestar Galactica episode they reference was also about the point in the series that I started to wonder what I was watching. It seemed like a cop-out after everything leading up to it.
 
2012-11-22 07:08:47 PM  

JakeStone: simplicimus: Bondith: Z'ha'dum.

"Jump!"

/only thing Kosh ever said that made any goddamn sense

Yes.

Good.


Humanity is not ready for immortality.
 
2012-11-22 07:10:01 PM  
What are 17 shows I've never seen, Alex? Can no longer consider myself a geek even if I work in software.
 
2012-11-22 07:12:41 PM  

Bondith: Z'ha'dum.

"Jump!"

/only thing Kosh ever said that made any goddamn sense


"The avalanche has already started. It is too late for the pebbles to vote."
 
2012-11-22 07:16:13 PM  

swahnhennessy: How is that obscure? Robotech was huge.


Yes. Robotech is. The meaning of that Episode is TOTALLY different in the original Macross Saga than it is in the Robotech series. That's the episode which sets the stage for the only reason humanity isn;t annihilated when Boddole Zer's main fleet folds into Earth orbit at the end of it and in the movies. It's also the reason why the UN Spacy in the later series spreads out to every planet they can possibly colonize - to keep humanity from being glassed on Earth again

/nerdout.

Snarfangel: The season 4 finale of Farscape -- "Bad Timing" was the most aggravating cliffhanger, if only because they cancelled the series immediately afterward.
[www.johnaeryn.com image 572x354]

/Loved the series.
//And thankfully, The Peacekeeper Wars tied up some of the loose ends.


They've actually continued it past the Peacekeeper wars through the comics using the actual likenesses of the original characters. I've heard it's pretty good. Turns Scorpio into a pretty interesting anti-hero at times.
 
2012-11-22 07:16:23 PM  

FarkerSnow: What are 17 shows I've never seen, Alex? Can no longer consider myself a geek even if I work in software.


So which three shows have you seen? I'll wager a guess and say TNG, Voyager, and...X-files?
 
2012-11-22 07:24:26 PM  
Would have thought the last 5 minutes of the angel series would have been the best cliff hanger of the series
 
2012-11-22 07:33:44 PM  
Maybe you have to be a certain age to want these on the list, but there were some pretty good multi-part episodes on The Six Million Dollar Man and The Bionic Woman (notably "Kill Oscar", the Fembot arc that crossed between series) and also The Incredible Hulk ("Mystery Man", "Prometheus", "The First"). Also, the entire original "V" miniseries was left unresolved for "The Final Battle" and there were cliffhanger endings within each miniseries (such as the birth scene).
 
2012-11-22 07:39:05 PM  
Quantum Leap?

Dallas?
 
2012-11-22 07:43:02 PM  
who made it law that these articles have to be written by those born after 1980 that are unaware the world existed before 1960, and where can i go to slap that lawmaker upside the head?

thats why some children think rap, hip hop and dubstep is great music. no one ever bothered to expose them to recorded music from wayyyyyy back when. and they are too lazy to do for themselves. you choose to go through life ignorant as hell some people are going to point out you know little to nothing.
 
2012-11-22 07:49:30 PM  

hawcian: FarkerSnow: What are 17 shows I've never seen, Alex? Can no longer consider myself a geek even if I work in software.

So which three shows have you seen? I'll wager a guess and say TNG, Voyager, and...X-files?


Close, TNG, X-Files, and Twin Peaks. Still unsure how I feel about David Lynch, and Scully's wardrobe through the first few seasons.
 
2012-11-22 07:51:13 PM  

FarkerSnow: What are 17 shows I've never seen, Alex? Can no longer consider myself a geek even if I work in software.


No, you can. Most of those shows are watched by faux-geeks... you know the type...
 
2012-11-22 07:58:10 PM  
What? No "SeaQuest DSV: Splashdown?
 
2012-11-22 08:03:45 PM  

texdent: Dallas?


The only way that qualifies as sci-fi is that Bobby Ewing's apparent death created a dimensional rift between Dallas and Knots Landing. The entire season of Dallas in which Bobby Ewing was dead was revealed to have been a dream, but Knots Landing apparently stayed in the "dream" universe for seven more seasons and there were no further crossovers because of the discontinuity. Gary and Valene Ewing will appear in the next season of the TNT continuation of Dallas (with Bobby alive, obviously) and how the writers reconcile things is anyone's guess.
 
2012-11-22 08:11:22 PM  
The list fails and fails hard right from the get go.
 
2012-11-22 08:17:51 PM  
17. Farscape, "Die Me, Dichotomy"
19. Babylon 5, "Zha'dum"


Nice

This io9 flashback originally appeared back in September 2010.

Not nice.
 
2012-11-22 08:31:24 PM  
Dr Samuel Becket never returned home

/actually the worst
 
2012-11-22 08:43:05 PM  
We have to go back, Kate! We have to go back!
 
2012-11-22 08:54:23 PM  

FarkerSnow: hawcian: FarkerSnow: What are 17 shows I've never seen, Alex? Can no longer consider myself a geek even if I work in software.

So which three shows have you seen? I'll wager a guess and say TNG, Voyager, and...X-files?

Close, TNG, X-Files, and Twin Peaks. Still unsure how I feel about David Lynch, and Scully's wardrobe through the first few seasons.


Farscape is on Netflix. You should be able to devour the series before the new year. Go now.
 
2012-11-22 09:15:46 PM  
List fails for not having Knight Rider crash head-on into Goliath.

www.dvdactive.com
 
2012-11-22 09:50:17 PM  
"WE HAVE TO GO BACK!"
 
2012-11-22 09:50:22 PM  
The BSG 'Lay Down Your Burdens' cliffhanger should have been number one. After that the show kind of went off the rails. It was always good if sometimes slow or just flat out weird, but it never again hit that high point.
 
2012-11-22 09:52:35 PM  

Mid_mo_mad_man: Would have thought the last 5 minutes of the angel series would have been the best cliff hanger of the series


Pretty much this.

I'm as big of a Buffy/Angel fanboy as they come but I wouldn't have rated Angel's "Tomorrow" as #2 on this list. He's the main character of the series - it's not like they're going to leave him down there. I understand the Cordy bit too, but the fact she "knew" she was destined/bound or whatever for being on a higher plane and actually let it happen and abandoning Angel was, in my opinion, completely out of character and just had that "we need a nice way to get Cordy out of the picture for a while" feel to it. Thus the cliffhanger isn't as extreme as it seems.

Personally, I'd swap this with their #20.
 
2012-11-22 09:58:21 PM  
At some point we will understand that these lists are not, or should not be, considered a countdown list. They are an aggregation of some individual's world view or a poorly conceived opinion seeker "poll" run by an intern.
 
2012-11-22 10:09:00 PM  

AtlanticCoast63: The BSG 'Lay Down Your Burdens' cliffhanger should have been number one. After that the show kind of went off the rails. It was always good if sometimes slow or just flat out weird, but it never again hit that high point.


There were some truly epic beyond epic moments on that show. The scene where the raptors jump into the Cylon fleet in "Last Gleeming of Kobol", the heroic end of Pegasus, and most of the scenes with Helo surviving on a nuked Caprica were some of my favorites.
 
2012-11-22 10:33:05 PM  
I'd replace ST:VOY with something from DS9. Doctor Who cliffhangers never really register with me - must be the fact that there are as many Deus Ex Machinas and ass-pulls as there are cast members.

Adventure Time is a really dark and weird sci-fi fantasy disguised as a kid's show.
 
2012-11-22 11:02:44 PM  
TIme's Arrow from Next Generation 

upload.wikimedia.org
 
2012-11-22 11:03:26 PM  
The X-Files cliffhanger where Scully reported to the oversight board that Mulder had committed suicide was a better one. That was a looooong summer.
 
2012-11-22 11:57:20 PM  
A Better World Part I
Starcrossed Part I
The Time Superman got turned into a General of Apocalypse and conquered Earth
 
2012-11-23 12:06:41 AM  

Snapper Carr: Arn_Dee: I'm still waiting to find out what happens to Jubal Early.

Whedon says he survived.

speaking of unresolved series ending cliffhangers

[img854.imageshack.us image 477x344]

"For a minute there, I thought I was in trouble."


Blake's 7 had the harshest, HARSHEST ending I've ever experienced. Talk about being turned inside out.
 
2012-11-23 12:11:31 AM  
upload.wikimedia.org

Oh hai what's going on in this thread?
 
2012-11-23 12:15:06 AM  

BronyMedic: Wow. Macross' The Messengers made it onto there? Talk about obscure, meaningful Anime episodes.

Adventure Time made number one? REALLY? Adventure time?


If you have to watch Robotech instead of the original Macross, this is the way I suggest doing it:

3.bp.blogspot.com

I have it and it's LOADED... 21 discs of Robotech joy... 6 discs for the Macross saga, 4 for the Masters saga, 4 for the New Generation saga, and 7 discs of extras. It's what got me into Anime, helped me cross over from traditional cartoons and into the world of Anime... I remember watching it as a kid, along with Voltron...

Glad to see Jericho made the list, that was a very under appreciated show...
 
2012-11-23 12:20:24 AM  

Arn_Dee: I'm still waiting to find out what happens to Jubal Early.


Pretty sure he ends up head of the UNSN, and mounts a rescue mission to recover Nora Argamentine from the Kzin.
 
2012-11-23 12:37:00 AM  

NuttierThanEver: Dr Samuel Becket never returned home

/actually the worst


That wasn't a cliffhanger, that was a solid kick in the nuts.
 
2012-11-23 01:34:05 AM  
No contest: the series finale of the 90's show, Night Man, where Johnny Domino/Night Man, framed for the murder of billionaire Kerion Keyes (basically, Bill Gates but with the ability to teleport things--- get it? Gates? Keyes?) escapes police custody despite his claims to innocence. Keyes, who had faked his death, then teleports both Johnny and his sidekick, Raleigh, to a space station to confront them, and then replaces Raleigh on Earth with an evil robot duplicate bent on destroying the duo's reputation. On the space station, Night Man kills Keyes. The episode ends with Night Man staring smugly into the camera, content with a job well done. Except:

1) Johnny is still wanted for murder, and now it's actually a valid charge
2) Raleigh's robot duplicate, completely unchecked, is still actively sabotaging their lives back on Earth.
3) They have no way off the space station since they killed the guy who could have teleported them back.

Even had the series gone another season, I doubt any of these issues would have been addressed. That was just the kind of show it was. Heck, it guest starred Manimal, for cripes sakes.

Second place would go to the final episode of Alf, which has him seized by the FBI seconds before leaving Earth to rejoin the rest of his people.
 
2012-11-23 01:37:50 AM  
I′ll see your ‶Worf: fire!!" and raise you:

‶The Earth Kingdom has fallen."


Fano: A Better World Part I
Starcrossed Part I
The Time Superman got turned into a General of Apocalypse and conquered Earth


R.I.P., Dwayne McDuffie. You′re still very much missed.
 
2012-11-23 02:22:03 AM  
I somehow don't recall that episode of Red Dwarf, which means it's about time to start rewatching that series.
 
2012-11-23 04:42:07 AM  

tgambitg: I have it and it's LOADED... 21 discs of Robotech joy... 6 discs for the Macross saga, 4 for the Masters saga, 4 for the New Generation saga, and 7 discs of extras. It's what got me into Anime, helped me cross over from traditional cartoons and into the world of Anime.


I've got the Robotech series too. Great stuff. They're now available for streaming on Netflix.

Oh, and has anyone ever watched Adventure Time? Great show. Not necessarily worthy of being on the list, but still a fun show.
 
2012-11-23 05:55:03 AM  

Tax Boy: [upload.wikimedia.org image 250x224]

Oh hai what's going on in this thread?


No, that one was just silly - Denise Crosby needed the cash, because none those big roles she had lined up after quitting in season 1 ever panned out.
 
2012-11-23 06:09:46 AM  
Though they mention the new Battlestar Galactica episodes involving the Pegasus, they don't
give credit to the original cliffhanger with that plot line "The Living Legend".
 
2012-11-23 06:40:05 AM  

Mid_mo_mad_man: Would have thought the last 5 minutes of the angel series would have been the best cliff hanger of the series


I would.consider that more of a Bolivian army ending. The way it was set up nobody but possibly Iilarya should have been able to survive that situation without just running or a deus ex machina. Ruining defeats the entire message of the show and deus ex machine are just lame
 
2012-11-23 07:24:46 AM  

BronyMedic: Wow. Macross' The Messengers made it onto there? Talk about obscure, meaningful Anime episodes.

Adventure Time made number one? REALLY? Adventure time?


That was my first thought. I can't even bring myself to watch it and give it a chance after seeing the commercials.

Snapper Carr: Arn_Dee: I'm still waiting to find out what happens to Jubal Early.

Whedon says he survived.

speaking of unresolved series ending cliffhangers

[img854.imageshack.us image 477x344]

"For a minute there, I thought I was in trouble."


I was going to bring up Blake's 7, and afraid I'd have to use an obscure tag. One of the best SciFi series' from BBC ever next to Doctor Who.

From what I heard, they were planning on another season when they shot that last episode, and the show was cancelled between. What a waste.
 
2012-11-23 07:59:39 AM  
Glad to see that episode of Adventure Time on there. Great way to end a season, had everybody talking about up until it was leaked.
 
2012-11-23 09:32:58 AM  
I'm sorry but Blake's 7 "Star one"? The Andromeda war? It wasn't THAT much of a cliffhanger when you consider what the Liberator was (hint: an alien deep space war machine with god like short range firepower... Blake 'borrowed' it).
 
2012-11-23 09:35:26 AM  

tgambitg:

If you have to watch Robotech instead of the original Macross, this is the way I suggest doing it:


I'd rather toast marshmallows on my still attached and burning nad hair than watch Robotech.


Fark Harmony Gold. Now and Forever.
 
2012-11-23 09:52:31 AM  

Raw_fishFood: Glad to see that episode of Adventure Time on there. Great way to end a season, had everybody talking about up until it was leaked.


Wat? No.
 
2012-11-23 10:43:21 AM  

star_topology: "WE HAVE TO GO BACK!"


That one was better than a bomb going off. I kind of knew the possible outcomes of the bomb, but we have to go back was such a good turn
 
2012-11-23 10:44:10 AM  

tgambitg:

Glad to see Jericho made the list, that was a very under appreciated show...


Probably why it got cancelled.

Jim: I think we started a war today.
Jake: Good.
Me: You farkers.
 
2012-11-23 12:14:20 PM  

BronyMedic: meaningful Anime episodes.


i0.kym-cdn.com

community.us.playstation.com
 
2012-11-23 03:24:14 PM  

Snapper Carr: Arn_Dee: I'm still waiting to find out what happens to Jubal Early.

Whedon says he survived.

speaking of unresolved series ending cliffhangers

[img854.imageshack.us image 477x344]

"For a minute there, I thought I was in trouble."


The very end of Blake's Seven, when everyone raised weapons and the screen went blank ...WHAT HAPPENED?

Also: X-Files, I thought the cliffhanger with the Japanese on the trains (Nisei) and its resolution (731) was the best. X was particularly good. Even though you only had to wait a week for the resolution.
 
2012-11-23 03:46:43 PM  

Jackpot777: Snapper Carr: Arn_Dee: I'm still waiting to find out what happens to Jubal Early.

Whedon says he survived.

speaking of unresolved series ending cliffhangers

[img854.imageshack.us image 477x344]

"For a minute there, I thought I was in trouble."

The very end of Blake's Seven, when everyone raised weapons and the screen went blank ...WHAT HAPPENED?


Technician at the TV station spilled beer on the console.

/in 900-odd years, Omicron Persei 8 is gonna be pissed off...
 
2012-11-23 04:00:37 PM  

Bondith: Jackpot777: Snapper Carr: Arn_Dee: I'm still waiting to find out what happens to Jubal Early.

Whedon says he survived.

speaking of unresolved series ending cliffhangers

[img854.imageshack.us image 477x344]

"For a minute there, I thought I was in trouble."

The very end of Blake's Seven, when everyone raised weapons and the screen went blank ...WHAT HAPPENED?

Technician at the TV station spilled beer on the console.

/in 900-odd years, Omicron Persei 8 is gonna be pissed off...


i.ebayimg.com

I just thought this would be a good opportunity to post Glynis Barber photos.

www.glynisbarber.com

Oh yes. She still has it.
 
2012-11-23 04:03:15 PM  

Vaneshi: tgambitg:

If you have to watch Robotech instead of the original Macross, this is the way I suggest doing it:

I'd rather toast marshmallows on my still attached and burning nad hair than watch Robotech.


Fark Harmony Gold. Now and Forever.


You go back in time right now, and you try to bring Macross to the states under the exact same conditions Carl Macek had to face, and let's see you do any better. Even though he rightfully gets the honor of being the source of the TV Tropes term Macekre, he did have to go through a whole lot of hoops for what became Robotech, besides striking a deal with Monogram to use the name.
 
2012-11-23 05:29:29 PM  
No final episode of Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future?

/haz sad
 
2012-11-23 07:46:05 PM  

Optimal_Illusion: You go back in time right now, and you try to bring Macross to the states under the exact same conditions Carl Macek had to face, and let's see you do any better. Even though he rightfully gets the honor of being the source of the TV Tropes term Macekre, he did have to go through a whole lot of hoops for what became Robotech, besides striking a deal with Monogram to use the name.


A) It's not Macross, it's three different shows welded together and one of them happens to be a series of Macross.
B) I actually LIKED my Warhammer BattleMech TYVM.
C) Even the creators of Macross don't like them very much after what they did to FASA.

Fark Harmony Gold. Now and Forever.
 
2012-11-24 01:23:45 AM  

swahnhennessy: BronyMedic: Wow. Macross' The Messengers made it onto there? Talk about obscure, meaningful Anime episodes.

How is that obscure? Robotech was huge.

That Battlestar Galactica episode they reference was also about the point in the series that I started to wonder what I was watching. It seemed like a cop-out after everything leading up to it.


Yeah, but then we got the exodus fromNew Caprica which is a candidate for most ambitious episode of tv ever.

Fano: A Better World Part I
Starcrossed Part I
The Time Superman got turned into a General of Apocalypse and conquered Earth


You can add the second season finale of Young Justice,bvecause however it ends in 2013 they won't be getting another year to resolve it.
 
2012-11-24 12:59:55 PM  
My own personal favorite...Ghost in the Shell: Solid State Society. Very nasty A.I. program manipulates Togusa into shooting himself; his little girl starts to run, the camera cuts to Batou dropping to his knees as you hear the shot.....

...and then occurs one of the best deus ex machina moments I've ever seen. If you rent out this movie someplace and watch the buildup to this moment, you'll be biting your nails the whole time.
 
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