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'Roswell' recap: Graduations and goodbyes

Season 3 | Episode 18 | “Graduation” | Aired May 14, 2002

Ah, series finales! It’s always a tricky subject with trying to please all the fans, but I think Roswell certainly delivers a great series finale to top off an uneven season.

In order to give the most hated character her proper send-off, Tess came back in the penultimate episode. She spewed more lies about her being connected to Zan (her and Max’s human baby), but ultimately she sacrificed herself for the good of everyone. By her voluntarily handing herself over to the Air Force officials, she thought she’d be getting everyone else off the hook. Of course, nothing is ever that easy, and Tess’ little show of exploding the Air Force base only adds more pressure to the ongoing alien investigation.

Following Tess’ death, Max was forced to make the tough decision to give his baby up for adoption. Since Zan is fully human, Max realized he deserves a normal life. The poor Evans parents finally got exposed to their kids’ secret lives in the midst of all this craziness, but they did come in handy when they handled the baby’s adoption at Max’s request.

That leads us up to this series finale. With graduation right around the corner, Liz toys with the idea of actually attending Northwestern when she receives her acceptance letter. That is, until she develops another alien power: clairvoyance. Her first vision occurs when she touches a customer in the cafe and foresees her being gunned down in an alley. When that turns out to be true, she rightfully gets fully freaked out when she starts getting visions of herself, Max, Michael, and Isabel all being shot to death. Cut to the government officials interviewing the woman Max saved in the alley, and we see that they really are closing in on the aliens.

pics

They can’t tell when their supposed deaths are supposed to happen, only that a certain sci-fi author will be present at the scene. Imagine everyone’s surprise when there’s a “surprise” speaker at their graduation ceremony. Max, Liz, Maria, and Kyle exchange nervous glances from the student section when Max stands up to make a move. He takes over the podium, fully aware that there are targets on himself and his friends. By his distractions, he allows Liz, Kyle, Maria, and Isabel the freedom to escape.

Max speech

Their initial plan was to leave Roswell one by one, with Michael being the first since he wasn’t graduating. He had said his complicated goodbye to Maria before jetting off on his motorcycle. Something a psychic told him makes him turn around, and luckily he is able to save Max with a blinding light just in the nick of time.

Unfortunately, though, this unexpected timing leads to rushed goodbyes. Isabel thanks her parents for everything before she has to leave the graduation ceremony. She also says goodbye to Jesse there, but he’s not letting his wife go that easily. He finds them all at their meeting place in the desert, bringing them a van with more than enough room for everyone, himself included. Isabel can’t let him come with them, but she also can’t promise that she’ll ever be able to see him again.

The goodbye scene that really got me tearing up was between Kyle and Valenti. I wish the finale was long enough to allow all the kids to have gotten one last scene with Valenti, but obviously the father/son dynamic is the most important. Kyle chooses to leave with the gang because he fears he’ll also be developing alien powers like Liz eventually. I definitely think he’s going for other reasons, though—the major one being he has no plans for his future other than continuing to work at a dead-end job as a mechanic’s assistant.

Valenti

Michael tries to protest when Maria says she’s going with them, but he has no say in the matter. She’s going of her own volition. Those two are so meant for each other; it’s perfect, really, that they’ll basically be living happily ever after together.

The series began when Max saved Liz’s life, so it’s only fitting that they get their own proper send-off. Before any of the graduation chaos even started, Max proposes to Liz on her roof, the setting for so many important scenes throughout the show.

proposal

Sometime after they all had to leave Roswell, Liz sends her diary back to her dad so he can finally learn the truth about everything. She asks him to share it with Maria’s mom, too, before destroying it and burying it in the desert. It’s in this diary that she lets him know that she and Max eventually got married.

Overall, it is a perfect ending to this underrated series. Sure, we all wonder what happened to everyone all these years later. Are they still on the run, or did they settle down somewhere? Will it ever be safe for them to contact their parents, let alone see them again? Does Max ever get to see his son again? It would be amazing if there ever were a onetime follow-up, or even a movie—but for now we have to be grateful for these three solid seasons.At least we can always go back for rewatches.

I had a blast rewatching it and being able to share in the experience with all of you this summer! Like the bumper sticker on their van reads: Thank you for (re)visiting Roswell!

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TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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