I tried to send this in response to an entry at Lee Goldberg's blog, but I kept getting an error, even after four tries and being acknowledged by the site that it remembered me.
So I took it as a sign.... I should be posting this on MY blog!!!!
I liked the finale for "Everybody Loves Raymond". Phil Rosenthal had said all along they weren't going to do anything special - no hour-long episode, no Sweeps stunts, no sense of finality at all.
It turned out to be an affirmation of the show's title and in that they were basically making the point that with this plotline, they pretty much said everything that needed to be said about these people. And we were left with the comfortable notion that their lives would continue even though we wouldn't be able to come along for the journey.
Actually, there was one sign that this was indeed a finale - the vanity card displayed for the production company. Usually it would be some kind of a food dish set down on a placemat. Instead, we were given the check with the message "No Charge, Thank You".
I think based on the events in the episode, maybe they should have shown a bowl of melted ice cream, made all "swirly" with the chocolate syrup. That way, there' no sense of any ending at all, only an Ouroboros loop of episodes in rerun heaven.