After five seasons of groundbreaking storytelling, Switched at Birth is coming to an end. On Friday, creator Lizzy Weiss broke the news on Twitter, saying, "We are ending the show after an amazing 103 episodes with pride, love, and gratitude." The 10-episode final season will include episode 100 for the series, and it will wrap up the journeys of Bay, Daphne, and the rest of the Kennish-Vasquez family. Fans have invested a lot of time in the show's dynamic characters, so these 10 episodes have a lot riding on them. If it is truly time to say goodbye to Daphne and Bay for good, it needs to be a proper farewell.
These characters have had their families rocked to the core by a hospital mistake; they've dealt with deaths, discrimination, heartbreak, unexpected pregnancy, and everything in between. Switched at Birth has always used issues as a starting point to weave amazing, relevant family drama, and in characters like Daphne and Emmett, the series showed an unparalleled commitment to showcasing American Sign Language and Deaf Culture. Now that there are just a handful of episodes left, it is time to think about the legacy the show will leave behind, and part of that will rest in the hands of the 90-minute series finale.
What would be the perfect ending for each of these characters? I have a few ideas.
No character has been knocked down more than Bay, but she always, always gets up again. Seeing that glimpse into her future as a tattoo artist in China in the Season 4 finale gave me hope things will work out for Bay. What I want most for her is to see her art continue to gain recognition as she moves into a phase of travel and exploration. Unpopular opinion alert: I don't want her to end up with Emmett, or anyone else. Bay is young, kind, and full of talent, she has too much ahead of her to be held back by her past.
Daphne has needed to learn how to take responsibility for her own choices for a long time. For her final hurrah, I hope she has found maturity and a sense of peace within herself. I want her to either continue to follow her dream of becoming a doctor, or continue to be an advocate for the Deaf community. Daphne is such a compassionate person that I can't imagine her being happy if she isn't helping someone. As for her love life, can Daphne and Mingo be endgame, please?
Toby has grown into such an amazing man, and now it's time to see how he handles being a father to his son. Toby and Lily's story has the potential to be a standout in the final season as fans get to watch these young parents balance raising their son, finding their path in life, and dealing with all the crazy their families throw at them. The key with Toby's story is consistency — nothing huge needs to happen, he just needs to try not to lose his way.
Emmett had a great ending in Season 4 — letting Bay go was the best possible thing he could do for her after his terrible behavior. In Season 5, I want him to stand by Daphne and Bay as their friend as they deal with whatever family crisis is waiting for them at home. Emmett's professional life seems to be on track, so if he can continue to follow his dreams and stay true to his promise to let Bay be free, then whatever ending the writers have in store for him will be a good one.
Kathryn is a pillar of strength for her family, but it is time for her to start thinking about her own happiness. Her children are all adults now, and her husband's treatment of her has been abhorrent. If John isn't going to change, Kathryn needs to leave him and start a new chapter in her life. If she decides to stay with John, then I want her to strike out on her own, taking control of financial decisions and putting her dreams first. After all these years, she deserves to live her life on her own terms.
If Regina can make it through the final season without getting her heart broken again, I will count that as a win. If she can finally find a little luck in the romance department, that would be amazing. Barring that, I just want Regina and Kathryn to continue to be the best mom team ever right until the final credits roll.
John needs to lose everything so he can understand just how much he has. The man has zero humility and his self awareness isn't much better. John needs to find some redemption and become a better man, husband, and father. Is it a tall order? Yes, but he has 10 episodes to get his life together, and that should be more than enough.
Here's hoping Switched at Birth's final season will serve up happy, or at least fitting, endings for the beautiful characters that have come to mean so much to the fans.
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