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The best kids’ TV show endings

| Friday, November 1, 2019

If you’re like me, there were several shows you watched as a kid that you really enjoyed, but for some reason you stopped watching and never found out how they ended. Maybe you’ve gone back to see how some series concluded, but I’ve taken the liberty of summarizing some of the best kids show endings from the programs I loved as a child.

3. Codename: Kids Next Door—”Operation: I.N.T.E.R.V.I.E.W.S.”
The series finale is told intermittently between interviews with live-action adult-versions of “Numbuhs” 2-5, who were recommissioned to tell what happened to Numbuh 1 in their final mission as a team.
Numbuh 1, in a scavenger hunt for the birthday cake of the Delightful Children from Down the Lane, steals the ultimate item, Father’s pipe. In the process, he is introduced to and recruited by a mysterious splinter-cell that had been hinted at throughout the final season: the Galactic KND. They work to save alien kids, some of whom have “37 parents,” from adult tyranny. Before parting, Numbuh 1 says goodbye to his recommissioned parents and to his friends, giving a tearful Numbuh Five his sunglasses before parting.
At the end, the man conducting the interview is revealed to be Father, who only wanted to know Numbuh 1’s location. As Father takes off to hunt down the latter, Numbuh 5 pulls out a phone and says, “We told him everything he wanted to hear … Oh, and Numbuh 1, welcome back.”

2. Phineas and Ferb—”Act Your Age”
The series finale starts with the show creators answering viewer mail, addressing whether or not they will ever show Phineas and Ferb as teenagers. The episode follows Phineas, 10 years after the rest of the series takes place, as he narrows his college choices to Danville University and Tri-State State. The latter option is where his love interest, Isabella, whom he obliviously never realized had a crush on him, will be attending.
After singing a duet with Isabella about “What Might Have Been” if he had only realized his feeling sooner, Phineas catches her right before she leaves to move in early. He admits that he started liking her in high school, right when she gave up on them being together, although she never stopped liking him. He then makes his decision to attend Tri-State State with her. Isabella leaves, but while she’s stopped at a red light, Ferb drops Phineas off at her car and they finally share a kiss as the episode cuts back to the creators crying and consoling one another.

1. Ed, Edd n Eddy—”Ed, Edd n Eddy’s Big Picture Show”
In their first feature-length movie, one of Eddy’s notorious scams finally goes too far, resulting in him, Ed and Edd (a.k.a. Double D) fleeing the cul-de-sac to seek protection with Eddy’s older brother. The other cul-de-sac kids split into teams to hunt down the Eds, with Jonny 2×4 and Plank donning their alter-egos, “Captain Melonhead” and “Splinter the Wonderwood,” but getting stuck in traffic on a public bus.
After a tumultuous journey, the Eds finally find Eddy’s brother at a theme park where the Kanker sisters, having captured the other parties one-by-one to protect the Eds, arrive with their prisoners. Eddy’s brother is finally revealed and offers sanctuary, but only if Eddy plays “uncle” with him. He proceeds to torment Eddy and Double D physically until Ed pulls the bolts off a door which slams into Eddy’s brother’s face, knocking him out.
Eddy offers a tearful confession that he only wanted to be accepted by the other kids, to which they offer forgiveness and embrace the Eds as friends. Jonny and Plank arrive late, mistakenly attack the Eds and are promptly beaten by the cul-de-sac kids. The kids and Eds leave in song as the Kanker sisters drag an unconscious Eddy’s brother into his trailer.
In a post-credit scene, Jonny and Plank abandon their superhero personas to become the evil “Gourd” and “Timber the Dark Shard.” Jonny states his plan for revenge as Plank (silently) tells him that there’s no time left in the movie, to which Jonny responds, “What movie?”

I could go on about the endings of other memorable childhood shows, from iCarly and Ned’s Declassified School Survival Guide to Adventure Time and That 70’s Show. But these were the ones that really stuck with me, for the impact the shows had on me and the brilliant endings that were true-to-form in the culmination of each series.

Contact Hayden Adams at [email protected].

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

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About Hayden Adams

Hayden is the former sports editor of The Observer. When he's not working toward his four majors (physics and film, television & theatre) and three minors (journalism, ethics & democracy), you can probably find him hopelessly trying to save his beloved Zahm House from being wiped out. He plans to attend law school at a TBD location after graduation.

Contact Hayden