Haven1

Haven limps across the finish line

After five seasons, Haven finally came to an end. I’ve made no bones about either my love and support of this series in its first two seasons, or my derision for it over the last three, when story arcs went from head-scratching to downright ludicrous.

A science-fiction/fantasy series is always hard to keep on track, and the introduction of the barn went from being what I hoped was a minor wobble into a full-on shimmy with the addition of The Guard and a complete coming off the rails when the legend of Croatoan—itself an interesting real-life mystery—was turned into a being in human form in the shape of William Shatner. Listen, I love Shatner, but introducing him as Audrey’s father and an all-powerful being in control of the aether caused me to flap my hand at Haven in disgust more than once.

So while much of Sunday’s finale, “Forever,” cleaned up the messy tale that was Croatoan, it also offered a sweet goodbye to the key characters I’ve always liked. That meant giving Audrey, Nathan and Duke some major screen time. The seemingly endless back and forth between Audrey and Croatoan over whether she would join him and rule together forever was finally decided; she did team with him but not to cause pain, but rather to absorb all Troubles and then lock them and the pair (along with Vince) away forever in another barn. I must admit I expected Duke to return from the dead—via a Trouble—but that never happened. And perhaps that was for the best, story-wise. Always just outside of Audrey and Nathan’s relationship, having Duke sacrifice himself last week was a heroes’ way to go out and keep him looking good in everyone’s memory.

Most touching scene of the night goes to Lucas Bryant, who narrated Nathan’s final thoughts about Audrey in an articulate and loving way that was more expressive than any of the dialogue the writers gave him to utter on-screen. Juxtaposing Nathan’s speech over Audrey’s glowing exit and the dissipation of the Troubles (I giggled like crazy when Jason Priestley reprised his role of Chris Brody) was effective and I admit to welling up a couple of times. It was the perfect ending to their relationship—Audrey sacrificing herself for the Haven’s citizens (something I suspected would occur anyway)—and a natural jumping-off point for what happened next.

Audrey may be gone, but Croatoan and Vince wiping her memory and sending her back to Haven as Paige gave Nathan the happy ending (and sorta son in James) he deserved.

What did you think of Haven‘s series finale?

Greg David
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Greg David

Prior to becoming a television critic and partner at TV, Eh?, Greg David was a critic for TV Guide Canada, the country's most trusted source for TV news. He has interviewed television actors, actresses and behind-the-scenes folks from hundreds of television series from Canada, the U.S. and internationally. He is a podcaster, public speaker, weekly radio guest and educator, and past member of the Television Critics Association.
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4 thoughts on “Haven limps across the finish line”

  1. I enjoyed the finale, but I haven’t loved the last 2 seasons for the reasons you gave, so when it was time for the finale, a part of me was like “finally!”
    .
    And as much as I like the Shat, I wish they’d cast someone with more of a dangerous vibe. They had all that build-up of this dangerous, malevolent Croatoan, and it ends up being Capt. Kirk??
    .
    You mentioned Priestly’s cameo at the end, but I also enjoyed seeing Nicole deBoer popping up too, as well as that artist girl who gave Nathan that nice drawing at the end.
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    And as much as I loved the ending with Nathan’s lovely monologue, I almost groaned when he came across the car at the side of the road because I knew it was going or be the new edition of Audrey. On the one hand, it’s nice that he can start over with Paige, but that was almost too sweet an ending that came close to souring everything that just come before.

    1. Hey JeffDJ!

      Yeah, I did an internal groan when I saw Paige’s car too, but I was glad Nathan was being given that ending. I’ve liked that lug through thick and thin.

      All of the guest shots were lovely remembrances of characters from the past; I liked Chris Brody’s the best because he got slapped and then smiled because he’d lost that oh-so-awful Trouble.

      And yes, I agree with you re: Shatner. He WAS horribly miscast in the role.

      What are you planning to watch in the new year?

  2. Definitely looking forward to the new season of “19-2” and the revival of “The X-Files.” I was also intrigued by the first episode of “The Magicians,” so I’ll probably check that out in early Jan. when it starts. Not sure if that’s shot in Canada though.

  3. I liked the ending. also knew, it would be someone who resembled Audrey, pay off was James in the back seat. I also hated the show’s turn in the last couple of seasons, not the Audrey, Nathan romance, wanted that from the beginning, but too weird, even for SYFY, as they went into off the wall events, just loved the troubles they had in the early seasons, then the solutions.

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