25 of the most heartbreaking TV finales that make us cry every time

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Mad Men

Mad Men was known for pushing boundaries in the sense of fan service. Meaning, there was none. The show’s creator, Matthew Weiner, didn’t care about what fans wanted to see. Instead, he wanted the story he was telling to be unique to the audience and never seem forced or predictable.

It’s an honorary task for a showrunner to take on, and that’s why the Mad Men finale was so shocking. It actually felt like a finale to a television show. With so many twists and turns in the series, it would have been easy for Weiner to make the show’s final episode feel like a normal hour of the show. Instead, plotlines were wrapped up, Don Draper was willing to give everyone a Coke while meditating, and the show ended on a note that no one could have foreseen.

Maybe that was the belief behind Mad Men from the beginning. A show documenting the corrupt advertising men of the 1950s, and it ends with the cool relaxation mode that took over the 1960s. Or maybe it was just Weiner’s way of sticking to the shock and awe that made Mad Men a classic. Either way, watching Don Draper meditate on a mountain was not how we thought the show would end.