What are the biggest TV surprises of 2017? A surprise can be defined in a lot of different ways, whether it be a character getting killed off, someone being brought back to life, a romantic twist, a story shake-up, or even a decision by a showrunner that goes against the source material. The one big of common ground that all of these surprises share is rather simple: It keeps your hair standing on end for weeks to come.
We could’ve easily expanded this list, a part of our Year in Review series, to about 50 different twists. The following five are just the ones that stick with us the most for varying reasons — some make us happy, whereas others make us want to throw something at the TV. (We should note that there are obviously spoilers ahead from many popular shows — steer clear if you’re behind.)
1. The Carl Grimes crisis on The Walking Dead – There’s really not all that much that adaptations can typically do in order to surprise. Yet, the AMC drama made one of its biggest and most controversial moves to date by having Carl be bit by a walker in the midseason finale. His death appears to be imminent, and with that the series loses a character who remains alive and is an influential figure for a long time in the comics.
2. Sharon Raydor dies on Major Crimes – It’s one thing to kill off a main character because of contract negotiations or to make some sort of statement that nobody is safe. However, it’s another altogether to kill off your lead a handful of episodes before your series finale. Was it really so wrong to let Sharon and the characters around her have a happy ending? While this may be a storytelling ending to drive towards the series finale it’s still nonetheless sad.
3. Jon and Daenerys get together on Game of Thrones – After so many years of waiting, the fact that they even met each other remains shocking in some regard. Beyond that, you also of course have the fact that they slept together … even though they’re related. They don’t know that, but Daenerys getting to this point and realizing one of her worst fears (the Targeryan history of inbreeding) is likely going to be a shocking revelation in season 8 … provided that it ever comes out.
4. Murtagh lives on Outlander – We’ve spent a lot of time discussing some big reveals in terms of characters who’ve died. How about one in terms of someone living? In what is the one departure from the Diana Gabaldon source material the majority of fans can celebrate, the beloved character found a way to make it through the Battle of Culloden. While his future remains unclear (Murtagh would be rather old following the time jump), the knowledge that this character is still out there is incredibly exciting.
5. Reddington lies to Liz on The Blacklist – While Tom’s death was shocking when it was first teased in the season 5 premiere, perhaps the bigger mythology reveal with the NBC show is that one of Reddington’s central tenants to Liz seems to just be a construct. He may claim that his honesty is the one thing that she can hold onto, but that couldn’t be further from the truth now. This reveal basically puts the two characters adrift towards a very dangerous future for both parties.
What were some of the biggest TV surprises of 2017 in your mind? Be sure to share some of your thoughts below!
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