Worst: 'The Office' (U.S.)
Considered on its own, the U.S. version of The Office's finale qualifies as adequate, bringing all the main characters back — even the long-departed Michael Scott, played by Steve Carell — for one last bow. But as with the rest of the show's ninth season, the last episode is excessively mawkish, and not in the spirit of the "comedy of awkwardness" that had been its stock-in-trade. The original British version delivered a similarly sweet farewell, using more or less the same premise: catching up with the employees one year after the "documentary" about them aired. But the UK's Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant smartly held back the happier moments until the very end, and the result was a classic. By contrast, this finale spreads a thick layer of sugar on top of a season of schmaltz — and it was nowhere near as palatable.