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Happy endings v Sad/Tragic endings Watch

  • View Poll Results: Happy endings v Sad/Tragic endings
    Happy endings
    58.33%
    Sad/Tragic endings
    41.67%

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    Which do you prefer?

    I've never been a huge fan of books that tend to end with everything being prefect. I don't mind the the odd book where you just know there's giong to be a happy ending but most of the time I'm rooting for something tragic to happen, am I weird? :confused:

    i.e. Harry Potter. I'll spoiler it even though I doubt there's anyone who hasn't read them.

    Spoiler:
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    Did anyone think Harry would die at the end? I think the books would have been better if he did, especially after revealing he was a Horcrux
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    Big no for tragic endings in books, movies, series or anything I like. Especially when I really like or relate to the protagonist. I will be depressed for days on end if it ends tragically. Although, it doesn't have to be a perfect happy ending. Bitter-sweet endings are fine sometimes.

    On the other hand, if I don't like the protagonist, then I welcome tragic endings, preferably the protagonist being utterly mutilated or dead. In a way, it's a happy ending for me
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    (Original post by MrJiggly)
    Big no for tragic endings in books, movies, series or anything I like. Especially when I really like or relate to the protagonist. I will be depressed for days on end if it ends tragically. Although, it doesn't have to be a perfect happy ending. Bitter-sweet endings are fine sometimes.

    On the other hand, if I don't like the protagonist, then I welcome tragic endings, preferably the protagonist being utterly mutilated or dead. In a way, it's a happy ending for me
    I'm the complete opposite

    I don't mind happy endings but most of the time they're just so predictable. I purposefully look for books that will surprise me and not leave me with some generic happy ending.
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    Good thread. I usually want to learn something from books that I read – the best books that I've read have done that. Most of the time they don't have happy endings; not because "life is like that" or anything, but happy endings are just a bit too reassuring and don't encourage you to think about what you've read, in my opinion. I know that this is a little off topic but this is like something Terry Gilliam said about the films of Steven Spielberg: almost all of them give the audience what they want, even on subject matter as depressing as the holocaust and as far-ranging as aliens, dinosaurs and robot kids. It means that the audience walks away happy but doesn't tend to try and extract a message from what they've seen. I suppose it depends on how you like your literature though; if you just want something fun and light to read then I can imagine that happy endings are usually a good thing.
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    Personally I prefer the happy endings for a bit of escapism and happiness
    However, my bf likes the sad endings - or as he calls them, "the realistic endings" :rolleyes:
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    I prefer whatever works. Moby-**** can't end with Ahab handily killing the whale and retiring to a life of unperturbed domestic bliss. Catch-22 can't end with Yossarian as another needless war casualty because it has to show that beating morally and logically bankrupt systems is possible, or fighting those systems isn't worth it in the first place.


    I guess overall you could say I like appropriate endings.

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    With regard to Harry Potter and with no judgement on its literary merits or whatever, the ending works. It's a series that pushes that whole 'power of love' thing to ludicrous extremes and while there might have been some mileage in having him sacrifice for that love (like his mother did) it doesn't do in that kind of story to destroy a group who basically accomplish everything together and therefore have 'The Power of Love, Togetherness, Friendship and Whatever' defeated by 'The Power of Being a Murdering ****'.
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    Anything with a happy ending is still waiting to end
    Loool but there are fantastic books with amazing endings



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    (Original post by Christien)
    I prefer whatever works. Moby-**** can't end with Ahab handily killing the whale and retiring to a life of unperturbed domestic bliss. Catch-22 can't end with Yossarian as another needless war casualty because it has to show that beating morally and logically bankrupt systems is possible, or fighting those systems isn't worth it in the first place.


    I guess overall you could say I like appropriate endings.
    Yeah I agree, I could have easily put an option on the poll saying 'Depends on the book' but then everyone would have picked it including me and it wouldn't have been much of a discussion.

    Spoiler:
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    With regard to Harry Potter and with no judgement on its literary merits or whatever, the ending works. It's a series that pushes that whole 'power of love' thing to ludicrous extremes and while there might have been some mileage in having him sacrifice for that love (like his mother did) it doesn't do in that kind of story to destroy a group who basically accomplish everything together and therefore have 'The Power of Love, Togetherness, Friendship and Whatever' defeated by 'The Power of Being a Murdering ****'.
    Yeah it does work but personally I think if the books didn't start out as a children's book, we might have had a different ending. I only read the series last year as well so maybe my age had something to me disliking the ending :p:
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    Yeah as others have said it depends on the story, if everything's going badly then the protagonist suddenly being saved and everything ending happily would leave me feeling a bit cheated.
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    (Original post by Deshi)
    Yeah I agree, I could have easily put an option on the poll saying 'Depends on the book' but then everyone would have picked it including me and it wouldn't have been much of a discussion.



    Yeah it does work but personally I think if the books didn't start out as a children's book, we might have had a different ending. I only read the series last year as well so maybe my age had something to me disliking the ending :p:

    Yeah 'whatever works' is a bit of a cop-out but if it's a discussion of endings and story structure it's also kind of the only answer. If it's a discussion of whether you prefer happy or sad stories in general, then for me it least it depends on whether or not it speaks to something real, and those stories are usually (but not always) at least bittersweet.
 
 
 
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