Our charter here is to write about TV that we love, and I’m day-one loyal to Haven, but I’m going to be blunt that I didn’t love the season finale, and if it turns out that it’s the series finale, I’m putting the blame squarely on TPTB for squandering 13 episodes in which to tell a complete story. Let’s break it down.
We pick right back up at the moment that Audrey’s going to mark Duke, and when she does, she gets a flashback of swimming in the ocean with William. Not sure if it’s a special effect or me looking for it, but it certainly looks like her eyes change color a bit and then she’s back to Audrey, but not completely. And Duke tips Nathan to that (thankfully).
Nathan asks Audrey about it and she admits that she remembered her original self–Mara–and she felt her memories vs. just recalling them, and that person isn’t anybody she wants to be. Nathan is confident she won’t change, and he tells her that. Then Audrey proposes a plan to snag William so they can get him out of Haven pronto.
Duke kills Papa Harker after he’s said his goodbyes to his son and Gloria. Gloria forgives him and Jennifer comforts him and then it’s soon apparent that agreeing to be re-Troubled was a no bueno idea as he starts to feel flu-ish and have nosebleeds and turns an entire section of the park completely black by touching the ground. Jennifer hilariously, earnestly, suggests an aspirin might help (uh, no).
Duke also has a heart-to-heart with Dwight about “walking point” in defense of the town, but when they try to confront the Tweedles, they re-goo and fly off.
Separately, we learn that Dave absconded with his adoption records to hide the fact that he was another placement of Agent Howard, and is part of the Supernatural Orphan Club. Vince is devastated to hear it, but that doesn’t stop him from forcing Dave to participate in the magical door opening.
Audrey has enough wits about her that she tries to fakeout William about remembering Mara and wanting to be her again, while giving Nathan a shot at tranquing him. Instead, the Tweedles capture Nathan and William tries to force Audrey to double Trouble him. When Audrey gets close enough to Nathan, who’s pleading with her to remember herself, she tears up and tells him “now” and he headbutts her, knocking her and William out.
Once everybody’s gathered underneath the lighthouse around the magical Guard symbol, William tells Duke he’s a dead man because the re-Troubling activated every Trouble his family ever absorbed. Nathan also finally gets some satisfaction when he realizes there’s one place he can hurt William that won’t register on Audrey and knees him in the jewels.
Jennifer tells Duke the book’s not sharing instructions and he essentially tells her to fake it. She puts the SOC members on the four points (after Vince tries to shoot Dave and Dwight redirects the bullet to clip Dave) and aims the book at the symbol. The door opens into the ground and Dave is compelled toward the same cloudscape we saw Audrey come across earlier in the season.
While Vince, Dwight, and Duke pull him out of it, William panics and says he can save Duke. It’s too little, too late and Audrey claims the right to push him in. She shoves him and he grabs her arm and there’s a lightning crackle when he touches her. Her face changes from triumph to fear and William smiles that he knew she was in there somewhere. Nathan jerks William away from Audrey and he falls back into the abyss.
Everybody yells for Jennifer to close the door so she aims the book again and as soon as the door shuts, she collapses and tells Duke that Dave was right–something evil has come over. Then she passes out/dies, and Duke starts yelling that she’s not breathing. Audrey comes forward and coldly wants to know who’s going to help her get William back. Oh, hi, Mara.
If y’all recall, I didn’t want another Audrey reset, and if they somehow get a renewal, I’m not keen on another “get Audrey back” arc with a side of “save Duke.” The ratings are in, which is what I was waiting for to pull the trigger on posting this–and they’re the lowest ever for the show, so not a good omen. But stranger things have happened.
I have loved this show. I have laughed with it, wept with it, and been infuriated by it, and if it’s over, I will miss it. But I’ll also affix my own hard stop for when it ended in my head and heart, and that’s this moment, when Nathan and Audrey were happy and together and admittedly in love with each other:
I’m disheartened that so much of this season was hijacked by a quest to prevent some sort of Haven Armageddon, when that’s essentially what last season was, too, and at the end of the day, the town was always going to survive. There was plenty of time to go in another direction after we had Audrey back so early in the season. I feel like we got derailed somewhere with questions of identity, the (unnecessary) threat of a “true Audrey,” and a big bad in William when we could’ve spent some time watching these characters navigate a tentative peace in spite of the Troubles. I think they earned it.
There’s no rule that said we had to have another cliffhanger, or put our characters in peril (again). It would have been completely OK to tell a complete story and establish a new dilemma in next season’s premiere. In hindsight, maybe TPTB will look back and wish they’d done this differently, especially if they don’t come back.
I would love for the story of Nathan and Audrey and Duke to not be done, and for Lucas Bryant, Emily Rose, and Eric Balfour to continue playing them, but I’m not sure what the end game is anymore. The who of these characters keeps being redefined, and the little moments that made this show so special in the first place have fallen away and become fewer and farther between.
If there is a season five, I hope we round back to the show I fell in love with. I’d love to see TPTB have a chance to change course, do some sort of quick resolution in a season premiere, and get back to the basics that made Haven so addictive in the first place.
I thank you very much for reading my Haven rambling for the last four years. Once we hear on whether and when there will be a fifth season, I’ll report it here. Happy holidays!
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