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Five Game Changing Episodes

Here are five episodes that drastically, and irreversibly, changed their shows forever.

ALIAS - 'Phase One'

J.J. Abrams pulled out all the stops for this post-Super Bowl episode that turned the entire series upside down by bringing Sydney's mission to take down SD-6 to a sudden, and unexpectedly early, conclusion. But that wasn't even the most shocking moment of the episode. No, that was the last minute reveal that Francie, Sydeny's best friend and roommate, had been murdered and replaced by a double.

LOST - 'There's No Place Like Home'

At first I was going to go with with flash-forward introducing season three finale, 'Through the Looking Glass', but really the biggest change to the series came in the season four finale which saw Ben Linus turn that wheel and make the entire island disappear. This is the point where Lost became a full blown time travel epic where you'd needed a degree in Moffatology to keep track of all the various timelines.

ANGEL - 'Home'

Season four of Angel had more than its fair share of WTF moments. But the writers saved the biggest for last when they had Team Angel accept an offer to take over demonic law firm Wolfram & Hart, the very institution they’d been fighting from the very beginning.

BABYLON 5 - 'Severed Dreams'

The shit finally hit the fan in season three when fascist President Clark put Earth under martial law. This forced Sheridan to take drastic action and break away from Earth and declare the station an independent nation, a change that would remain in place to the end of the series.

AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. - 'Turn, Turn, Turn'

Anyone who saw Captain America: The Winter Soldier knew what was coming. S.H.I.E.L.D. had been exposed as a front for HYDRA and the whole thing was about to come crashing down. But the writers of this show still had a few shocks in store for us, the biggest being that bland nice guy Grant Ward was actually a ruthless HYDRA mole.

Mark Greig has been writing for Doux Reviews since 2011 More Mark Greig


  1. Great picks!

    I would also like to add Surprise/Innocence from Buffy season 2. This two-parter, where Buffy and Angel had a moment, changed the show from good high school TV to excellent first class drama. Buffy really kicked up a gear after that.

  2. Great list. Alias' "Phase One" always come to mind when I think of game changing episodes.

    Also, the season finale of The Good Place.

  3. The *first season finale of The Good Place.

  4. Mark, great picks, and I'm not just saying that because four of those five shows are favorites of mine.

    TJ, good call with the addition of "Surprise/Innocence."

    They're probably not game changing episodes in the sense that they changed the series, but "Born Under a Bad Sign" and "Tall Tales" were the two episodes that made me fall hard for Supernatural. So I guess they were game changers for me.

    And "Dragonfly in Amber" was a huge game changer of an episode for Outlander.

  5. Great to see Babylon 5 on the list - so fond of that show (its strengths surpassed its faults and then some) and arguably it created a template that others followed

    I do love it when a show takes all my expectations, then turns them upside, without coming off as just random or phoney, leaving me on seat’s edge.

  6. Great call on Alias, that was a favorite episode of mine and one I would never forget! Being after the super bowl I remember my husband watching it w me for the first time and his comment, “THIS is the show you’ve been watching the last 2 years?!”


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