The Penultimate Day Thread!

Hello Avocados. Today I wanted to celebrate two things. Eh, two things…

The first is that today is the penultimate day of the year, so I wanted to celebrate a few of my favorite penultimate episodes of a season of a tv show. I’ll spoiler some of this just in case.

First off is the picture from the header, episode 9 of season 1 Game of Thrones, “Baelor,” and well, you know…

Next is Bojack Horseman’s season 2 penultimate episode “Escape from LA,” the episode that sold me on the show. 

Spoiler

Bojack does something totally unforgivable with Penny, and even though he doesn’t go through with the act, his actions clearly show he would have. The lead up to this was a heart-warming effort to portray Bojack as someone who could be a good person, whether it’s getting along with the family or Bojack taking Penny to the Prom. But oh boy does the episode pull the rug out from you, although what Bojack is capable of doing is perfectly clear after the fact.

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It’s this episode that I knew the show was going to a place few shows would go.

Next is the season 9 penultimate episode of Doctor Who, “Heaven Sent.” Capaldi provides a masterclass in acting in what is essentially a one-man show, and it’s perhaps the best script Steven Moffat ever wrote.

Spoiler

Capaldi’s Doctor spends eons trapped in a castle trying to contemplate his existence as he copes with the death of his companion, Clara Oswald.

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Capaldi gives his best performance in showcasing the Doctor’s inner turmoil, and I’d argue it’s the finest performance of any actor as the Doctor.

 

Lastly is the penultimate episode of the first season of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, “Duet.” Easily one of the best episodes of the series, “Duet” tells the story of a Cardassian officer during the Bajoran Occupation that is not what he appears to be. Yet it twists what you might expect, and it highlights a show that would push boundaries that hadn’t been pushed much in the previous series. It also showed that Major Kira was not just a one-note character, and the figurative “duet” between her and Harris Yulin, the aforementioned Cardassian, provided a nuanced approach to storytelling that DS9 would excel at.

So what are your favorite penultimate episodes?

And I did say two things. Well the other thing is that it’s my wife’s birthday! So happy birthday, Wife on the Edge-ish!