best tv shows The Best Series Finales

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List Rules Finale episodes of TV shows

This list of the best series finales in television is a somber reminder that no matter how much you love a TV character or a show, in time, they all will end. Your favorite TV couple, your favorite villain, and even your favorite television businesses will all close up shop at some point, and these are the best final episodes of those series that are no longer on the air. And believe it or not, some of the best TV shows ever didn't make the list because they straight up had bad finales.

This list includes the greatest television series finales and the best TV show endings in the history of television, ranked by TV viewers who had a strong reaction - good or bad - to the final episodes of their favorite shows. Some of these TV shows had the highest ranked series finales of all time while others are on the list simply for resonating with their fans. Some series finales, like the final episode of Newhart, are still talked about because people can't believe the show actually ended that way. Others, like M*A*S*H, rank high because they were emotionally fulfilling to the fans who had turned on their TVs and opened their lives to those most loved TV characters week after week, right up until the end.

What show had the best series finale? That's what this list is here to decide. Remember, the top series finales both wrapped up the storylines AND left viewers wanting more. Go easy on the series finales that came as a result of a show being canceled, and make sure to add your favorite TV series finale/ending if it's not already on the list.

1
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Breaking Bad is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Series Finales
Breaking Bad Bryan Cranston, Aaron Paul, Anna Gunn

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2
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M*A*S*H is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Series Finales
M*A*S*H Alan Alda, Wayne Rogers, Loretta Swi

3
+ - 1,591 1,269
Friends is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Series Finales
Friends Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow

4
+ - 1,009 940
Newhart is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Series Finales
Newhart Bob Newhart, Mary Frann, Tom Poston

5
+ - 932 841
Cheers is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Series Finales
Cheers Ted Danson, Rhea Perlman, John Ratzenberger

6
+ - 702 762
The Tonight Show Starring John... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Series Finales
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson Johnny Carson, Ed McMahon, Skitch Henderson

7
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Star Trek: The Next Generation is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Series Finales
Star Trek: The Next Generation Patrick Stewart, Brent Spiner, Jonathan Frakes

8
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Six Feet Under is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Series Finales
Six Feet Under Peter Krause, Michael C. Hall, Frances Conroy

9
+ - 892 862
Buffy the Vampire Slayer is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Series Finales
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Sarah Michelle Gellar, Nicholas Brendon, Alyson Hannigan

10
+ - 846 1,025
The Sopranos is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Series Finales
The Sopranos James Gandolfini, Lorraine Bracco, Edie Falco

11
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The Office is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Series Finales
The Office Rainn Wilson, John Krasinski, Jenna Fischer - 2005

12
+ - 455 246
Parks and Recreation is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Series Finales
Parks and Recreation Amy Poehler, Jim O'Heir, Nick Offerman

13
+ - 559 686
Frasier is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Series Finales
Frasier Kelsey Grammer, Jane Leeves, David Hyde Pierce

14
+ - 725 1,077
Seinfeld is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Series Finales
Seinfeld Jerry Seinfeld, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Michael Richards

15
+ - 649 386
Sons of Anarchy is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Series Finales
Sons of Anarchy Charlie Hunnam, Katey Sagal, Mark Boone Junior

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16
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The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Series Finales
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Will Smith, James Avery, Alfonso Ribeiro

17
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Lost is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Series Finales
Lost Naveen Andrews, Matthew Fox, Jorge Garcia

18
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The Wire is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Series Finales
The Wire Dominic West, Lance Reddick, Sonja Sohn

19
+ - 642 450
House is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Series Finales
House Hugh Laurie, Omar Epps, Robert Sean Leonard

20
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The Mary Tyler Moore Show is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Series Finales
The Mary Tyler Moore Show Mary Tyler Moore, Edward Asner, Gavin MacLeod

21
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The Wonder Years is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Series Finales
The Wonder Years Fred Savage, Dan Lauria, Daniel Stern

22
+ - 456 670
ER is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Series Finales
ER Anthony Edwards, George Clooney, Julianna Margulies

23
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24 is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Series Finales
24 Kiefer Sutherland, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Carlos Bernard

24
+ - 450 585
Home Improvement is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Series Finales
Home Improvement Tim Allen, Patricia Richardson, Earl Hindman

25
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Scrubs is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Series Finales
Scrubs Zach Braff, Donald Faison, Sarah Chalke

26
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Battlestar Galactica is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Series Finales
Battlestar Galactica Edward James Olmos, Mary McDonnell, Jamie Bamber

27
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Angel is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Series Finales
Angel David Boreanaz, Charisma Carpenter, Alexis Denisof

28
+ - 499 418
Boy Meets World is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Series Finales
Boy Meets World Ben Savage, Rider Strong, William Daniels

29
+ - 340 557
Quantum Leap is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Series Finales
Quantum Leap Scott Bakula, Dean Stockwell, Deborah Pratt

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30
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The Golden Girls is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Series Finales
The Golden Girls Bea Arthur, Betty White, Rue McClanahan

31
+ - 360 498
Full House is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Series Finales
Full House Bob Saget, John Stamos, Dave Coulier

32
+ - 438 483
Charmed is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Series Finales
Charmed Holly Marie Combs, Alyssa Milano, Brian Krause

33
+ - 312 415
The X-Files is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Series Finales
The X-Files David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, Mitch Pileggi

34
+ - 272 609
The Cosby Show is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Series Finales
The Cosby Show Bill Cosby, Phylicia Rashad, Keshia Knight Pulliam

35
+ - 309 429
Everybody Loves Raymond is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Series Finales
Everybody Loves Raymond Ray Romano, Patricia Heaton, Brad Garrett

36
+ - 355 330
Married... with Children is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Series Finales
Married... with Children Ed O'Neill, Christina Applegate, Katey Sagal

37
+ - 217 122
That '70s Show is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Series Finales
That '70s Show Topher Grace, Laura Prepon, Mila Kunis

38
+ - 338 447
Smallville is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Series Finales
Smallville Tom Welling, Michael Rosenbaum, Allison Mack

39
+ - 315 430
The Shield is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Series Finales
The Shield Michael Chiklis, Catherine Dent, Walton Goggins

40
+ - 273 338
Happy Days is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Series Finales
Happy Days Ron Howard, Henry Winkler, Marion Ross

41
+ - 271 471
Friday Night Lights is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Series Finales
Friday Night Lights Kyle Chandler, Connie Britton, Aimee Teegarden

42
+ - 251 417
All in the Family is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Series Finales
All in the Family Carroll O'Connor, Jean Stapleton, Rob Reiner

43
+ - 145 198
30 Rock is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Series Finales
30 Rock Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, Tracy Morgan

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+ - 324 521
Will & Grace is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Series Finales
Will & Grace Eric McCormack, Debra Messing, Megan Mullally

45
+ - 334 562
Leverage is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Series Finales
Leverage Timothy Hutton, Gina Bellman, Christian Kane

46
+ - 235 502
Chuck is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Series Finales
Chuck Zachary Levi, Yvonne Strahovski, Joshua Gomez

47
+ - 240 368
Magnum, P.I. is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Series Finales
Magnum, P.I. Tom Selleck, John Hillerman, Roger E. Mosley

48
+ - 156 146
Justified is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Series Finales
Justified Timothy Olyphant, Nick Searcy, Joelle Carter

49
+ - 192 328
The King of Queens is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Series Finales
The King of Queens Kevin James, Leah Remini, Jerry Stiller

50
+ - 230 366
Family Ties is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Series Finales
Family Ties Michael J. Fox, Michael Gross, Meredith Baxter