Warning: This article contains spoilers.
Before you start judging me, everybody has their guilty pleasure shows, whether it be Duck Dynasty, The Bachelor, 16 and Pregnant, Ninja Warriors, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo (why anybody would watch this astounds me) or Ancient Aliens. Mine just happens to be Secret Life of the American Teenager.
Secret Life, as I will refer to it, originally aired on ABC Family on July 1, 2008. It lasted until June 3, 2013. The premise of the story follows Amy Juergens, a teen who becomes pregnant right before her freshman year. The rest of the seasons follow Amy, her family, and her friends throughout high school and the on-again-off-again relationships of the characters. The seasons were interesting enough, but after five years, the series finale, was one of the worst I have ever seen.
The fifth and final season seemed to be pulling teeth with new ideas and tired plot lines. Not only did we see so many couples switch around, all of us were finally happy with the pairings. Ricky and Amy were together, Grace and Jack, and Adrian with her latest boy toy, Omar. The show had people pairing off like it was a do-si-do and finally things were settled. Unfortunately, the writers wanted to give our hearts one last tug by instilling doubts into Amy about marriage and never ending Ben’s obsession with Amy.
I believed, in the last episode, questions would be answered. Would Jack and Grace get married, would Adrian go on her own as her own woman, would Amy and Ricky get married, what would happen to Ethan and Kathy’s relationship? Unfortunately, the writers put about 20 minutes of flashbacks in the episodes, carried out Amy’s goodbye seen far too long, and left so many things unanswered. While I didn’t want Amy and Ricky to end their marriage, a quick 1-minute scene showed them fighting intensely to abruptly showing Ricky’s acceptance in Amy’s end to the marriage. We did not see the graduation scene, which is the culmination of many characters throughout the series. Ben, Amy, Madison, Henry, Lauren, and Alice all graduated. The show left the status of Ben and Amy’s relationship questionable, just saying Ben’s still obsessed with Amy and Amy possibly loving Ben. The last scene shows Ricky reading to John stating “and she lived happily ever after,” obviously referring to Amy.
I could point out how the show is a horrible representation of the realities of teenage pregnancy, misrepresents sexuality throughout high school, instills unrealistic relationship ideals, and many other problems, but that is not for this article. Despite those reasons for not liking the show, I became invested in the characters and the awful plot lines, just like some of you are obsessed with seeing what shenanigans Honey Boo Boo is up to or what latest find Ancient Aliens reveals. After five years of watching this show, investing myself in the characters of this story, that was a major let down.
The writing was very dry, not that the writing of this show was on par with Seinfeld, very rushed and felt as if there were many loose ends. I went on the Facebook page on Tuesday and many fans expressed my sentiments. Obviously, not everything will happen to my specifications, but I seriously thought they would have focus on the independence of Adrian and Grace and how marriage after high school is a big step. I wish the show would have at least given us that, but no, Adrian went after Omar, and Grace will probably find some other boy in college to be obsessed with.
Thank you ABC Family for a huge letdown after 5 years of devotion to a guilty-pleasure show.