Plot twists are an ever present part of the TV world and by now most viewers are use to them. Starting back in the eighties with plot twists such as the dream on Dallas, and the snow globe at the end of St. Elsewhere, nowadays there is very little that can be done to surprise the TV audience. However, there are still some tricks that can be pulled to make your jaw drop as you are watching your favorite TV show. Here are a couple of the plot twists in my favorite show that, whether I liked them or not, really threw me for a loop.
Denny’s Return (Grey’s Anatomy)-this is a relatively new plot twists which is one of the reasons it is so fresh in my mind. But when Izzie Stevens started seeing ghostly apparitions of her dead fiancé Denny Duquette, I wondered where the hell the show was going with this. Had it just been a couple of brief shots with a few dream sequences where they talked I would have been all right with this. However there was a sexual relationship between Izzie and Denny while he was still dead and she was dating Alex Karev. Only she could see him and she would frequently have conversations with him while around other people. I hated this plot twist even when it was discovered the “real” reason she started seeing Denny (which is that he was there literally for Izzie to help her die as we found out she was very sick with cancer that had escalated to a fatal level); found it to be a very contrived plot twist to maybe lay the way for Katherine Heigl’s exit from the show. However, when I first saw him on the show I do admit my first thought was “What the hell?” so as far as throwing viewers for a loop it certainly did its job. This made the list because, not only did they bring a dead character back, but they prolonged his appearance over a series of episodes and one of the main characters even had what she thought was a tangible relationship with him.
Prue’s Death/Paige’s Introduction (Charmed)-every one knows the rumors that Shannen Doherty is really difficult to work with; hence the reason she was booted off the original Beverly Hills 90210. So when the rumors that she would be leaving Charmed started to circulate perhaps no one was surprised. However, the way she left threw people for a loop. Season 3 ended with both Prue and Piper getting blasted by Shax, the Source’s Assassin and his whirlwind slamming the doors to the Manor, shattering the glass. Everyone waited with baited breath over the summer to see how the writers would solve the dilemma of being down one Halliwell sister as the motto is “The Power of Three will set us free”. That in fact is the reason it has made the countdown is because for awhile it seemed they were going to somehow rewrite the prophecy of the Halliwells and make it so a cousin could be the third in the “Power of Three”. Enter Paige Matthews, the Halliwell’s half-sister, byproduct of the affair between their mother and her Whitelighter. This explanation was able to appease most fans but everyone must admit that, hard feelings against Doherty aside, her death was a very big twist and a very final way to sever the Doherty/Spelling relationship forever.
Darla’s Pregnancy (Angel)-Vampires can’t get pregnant; this has always been a consistent part of vampire lore. However in Season 3 after a session of angry sex with Angel, that’s exactly how Darla ends up. Even the way the announced this was in a twist because it showed Darla at the end of an episode that had nothing to do with her , showing her getting information on where to find a shaman in a bar from a man who she kills for his troubles. As she stands up we notice Darla’s condition and that is where the episode ends. When I saw this episode it was another one of those where my jaw dropped, especially because it was at the end of the show and I had to wait a week to figure out what the hell was going on. Everything is normal as far as the pregnancy goes because Darla is able to deliver a healthy baby (although she has to die as a result) and the baby is mortal. However this was a bold plot move to make especially since the show was so young, only in its third season and no one could foresee something so permanent as a result of a one night stand between Angel and Darla. The fact that the show had the guts to try such a thing when it was still so young earns it a spot on the list. A further turn to this twist is that Connor (Angel’s son) is later kidnapped by a man whom Angel tortured before he had a soul and has come back for revenge and raised to be a vampire killer and as result ends up hating his biological father. Way to pull the heart strings, Joss Whedon.
Dawn’s Arrival (Buffy the Vampire Slayer)-the arrival of Dawn, Buffy’s younger sister in the first episode of Season 5 threw everyone for a loop because for the last four years, Buffy had been an only child. There was many a references to his throughout the series, even including her mom saying to her at some point that it was a good thing she was an only child. Every picture you say in the first four seasons that showed the Summers family before Joyce and Hank divorced showed them holding one wonderful child. And the fact that they showed Dawn for five minutes at the end of the episode and prolonged the agony for a little bit more of an explanation made this twist even juicier. My sister and I (true blue Buffy fans) were watching this episode eagerly as we did all season openers and when the final chorus of “Mom!” from both Buffy and Dawn after Joyce had asked Buffy to take her little sister along caused us to look at each other and go “What?” Add to that that you had to wait half the season for the full explanation of why Dawn was there and how she was the Chosen One’s sister…and this is one of the best twists in the television, in my opinion which is why it is listed here.
There are many twists in TV writing; some to keep viewers loyal or some to keep wavering viewers from leaving or even to bring in new blood. Whatever the reason for one, plot twists are something that we as the television audience can continue to look forward to.