Happy Endings fans finally got the conclusion they've been waiting for this weekend — but it came with a twist that puts a new spin on the entire series.
The beloved ABC comedy ended its three-season run in 2013 with a — you guessed it — happy ending: all six members of its ensemble cast dancing at a wedding reception. But with its central romance left ambiguously unresolved, not to mention the loss of an alternative comedy network sitcom leaving a vacuum that's yet to be filled, the show's cult following of fans overwhelmingly felt cheated out of Season 4.
Netflix and USA considered but declined to put a fourth season into production, but on Saturday, fans finally got a glimpse at where the story was going when the entire cast reunited at Entertainment Weekly's Popfest to read a "lost" episode of the series, the premiere of the season that could have been.
Written by creator and showrunner David Caspe, the live performance picked up the story in real time, three years after the finale, with the premise that the tight-knit group of friends had drifted apart after a massive offscreen fight moments after the final episode and hadn't spoken since.
In the three-year interim, the habitually lovelorn Penny (Casey Wilson) had married several times and wound up in jail, married couple Jane (Eliza Coupe) and Brad (Damon Wayans, Jr.) were now estranged, Alex (Elisha Cuthbert) had become the head of a Fortune 500 company, Max (Adam Pally) found his way to a plushy career in D.C., and Dave (Zachary Knighton) took his iconic "Steak Me Home Tonight" food truck on the road.
With a few meta jokes about the seemingly arbitrary cancellation of the series, the newly-written script carefully reunited the characters, but then delivered a mischievous twist ending that subverted the entire premise: Dave waking up the morning of their wedding next to Alex, realizing she'd never left him at the altar and the entire series was just a "sweet, sweet dream."
So is Season 4 still just a dream for fans ?
"You never know," Caspe told EW. "The key is the people involved wanting to do it, and that we have."
What do you think about the Happy Endings lost episode?