The Fosters is a show that hits home for so many of us. The 3-day series finale of Freeform’s groundbreaking drama just aired, and we have a lot of feelings about it. We’re going to miss the tears, the laughs, and most importantly, that feeling of knowing that we belonged.
If someone asked us to describe The Fosters to them, we would tell them that the show is silly, heartwarming, tear-jerking, funny, and real. Seriously, the show is incredibly addicting and for all the right reasons. As a whole, there are a lot of things we’re going to miss about this show. From the theme song (is there a catchier one? We think not!), to the show’s celebration of inclusion, same-sex love and the complexity of blended families, we’re positive that this show is a rare gem that we were just lucky enough to have been around to see.
Over the course of five seasons, we were introduced to a number of characters whom we’ve grown to love. From the core Adams-Fosters themselves: Lena (Sherri Saum) and Stef (Teri Polo), the kindest TV parents ever, Callie (Maia Mitchell), Mariana (Cierra Ramirez), Jesus (Noah Centineo), Jude (Hayden Byerly) and Brandon (David Lambert), and even the kids birth parents, significant others, and everyone in between – we’ve rooted for every character at some point during the show – even when it was hard to do.
The 3-day series finale of The Fosters didn’t hold back. Each episode was full of drama, flashbacks and emotional moments, all of which culminated to create a satisfying ending that left us hopeful for the future. Beginning right where the Spring finale left us, the series finale starts with the kids’ high school graduations and the announcement of Brandon and Eliza’s engagement. And boy, did we have a lot of questions as to what would happen next. Alright, there are spoilers ahead, so beware!
These are our thoughts on the end and our thank you to The Fosters.
It’s not where you come from: Despite the drama that ensues across the three episodes, the finale reminds us that although the future may be uncertain, a family’s love will get you through it all.
It wouldn’t have been a Foster’s finale without some drama. Set 5 years into the future, a few things have changed. Brandon is set to marry Eliza (Abigail Cowen), Callie has landed interviews with two judges and is stuck between choosing who to work for, while Jude struggles between school and understanding who he is, and Mariana and Jesus come to terms with letting go of their first loves and moving on. From a fan’s perspective, we were unsure if the writers could tie up all of these storylines, however, we were pleasantly surprised with how well-executed the finale was.
Despite the problems that arose between characters in these episodes, such as Brandon’s difficulty with standing up to his fiance’s parents, the Brallie baiting, and even Stef and Lena’s decision to sell the house amongst others, The Fosters managed to beautifully show that having your family by your side is all that really matters, no matter what you’re going through. In fact, the most emotional moments from these last episodes came from the flashbacks that kept playing during scenes. Seriously, the scene of Mariana and Mat singing “Outlaws,” the song Brandon wrote for Callie in Season 1? —- the TEARS are still flowing.
“I need a family.” – Callie
“This is your family and that’s all that matters.” – Brandon
Each episode carefully illustrates that everyone has flaws, including Mom and Mama, and that someone – even if they are not related to you, loves you and believes in you. We are so going to miss that message.
It’s where you belong: The show raises awareness for and opens up discussions about real and important issues until its very end.
The Fosters team have always been champions for those of us who don’t fit the mold, and the writers let the characters on the show and fans at home know that being different is nothing to be ashamed of and that you must fight for what you believe in. In the series finale, we saw just that.
The series finale tackled topics that we’ve seen the show touch upon before: the complexity of the foster system, the acceptance of one’s sexuality, and the criminal justice system. On the first night of the finale, we were introduced to Cory, a young boy whom Stef and Lena are hoping to adopt. While this storyline is short, their interaction sparked so many memories of the first time we met Callie and Jude in Season One! Let’s just say we got emotional! However, while Cory did not end up being adopted by the Fosters, this storyline felt like a real-life representation of the truths of the legal system. We were shown again that the system is tricky, and that families may not always get the results they’d planned.
On a brighter note – we loved seeing Stef and Lena’s evolution in being further involved in the foster and criminal justice worlds in the finale. I mean, Stef as the head of a non-profit helping homeless families and women and Lena’s choice to run for council? That’s our mama’s!
Moreover, we also saw these three episodes tackle the complexities of sexuality and gender identity. The Fosters has always been so delicate when it comes to depicting the LGBTQ+ community on-screen and we are so grateful for that. We can remember the first time watching Jude come out and seeing the positive reactions from fans online like it was yesterday. And of course, there were so many other iconic moments that touched upon the beauty of the Queer community that we haven’t mentioned, such as Lena and Stef’s official marriage ceremony, and Callie and Aaron’s love scene that changed the game for television fans.
This time around, we saw the writers break the stigma on same-sex relations when Callie finds Jude taking pills to prevent HIV, and even through the introduction of Eliza’s younger brother who realizes that he may not be straight after all. All in all, the writers emphasized once more that everyone’s identity is valid and worthy of showing to the world.
There’s nothing I would change: Each character’s development over the season was a joy to witness.
Watching each Foster grow into their own skin might be one of the most rewarding parts of this series. Each character had a lot of growing up, learning and discovering to do – and that is what made each of them so complex. A rarity on television, we’ve never seen more real characters than those in the Adams-Foster family.
“Why do you feel the need to mansplain what my job as a lawyer is?” – Callie
To us, Callie may have had the biggest transformation. From a scared foster kid who couldn’t trust a soul, to a law school graduate and advocate for disadvantaged families, her evolution was so beautiful. We seriously couldn’t believe how professional she was during the finale!?! Us Fosters fans know that Callie has been through a lot, and she has made plenty of mistakes along the way (We’re sure we’ll all miss yelling at Callie through our screens when she made the wrong moves), but that is what shaped her into the badass woman she is. She’s going to change the world and we can’t wait to see what she does in Good Trouble…
Alright, Judicorn! Like Callie, Jude accomplished so much across Season 5 alone. We’ve watched him struggle with accepting his sexuality, fitting in, getting into college and so much more. And after watching Jude take care of Eliza’s brother so kindly in the finale, we know that he’s going to be okay.
Jesus and Mariana, on the other hand, might be my favorite sibling duo on tv. Their chemistry together is so wonderful and these past three episodes reminded us that the two will always have each others back, even after a huge fight. Mariana and Jesus are now making waves in their own worlds and that makes us the happiest.
Lastly, there’s Brandon. Brandon’s evolution across this season was particularly special to see unfold. After Grace’s death, we weren’t sure if Brandon would ever find happiness again. And while his fiance’s introduction was abrupt, the finale proved that Brandon has grown into a confident and kind young man. The Brandon we’ve known used to act on impulse alone, and we saw that he has matured and now acts on his heart. One standout scene was between Brallie where they told each other that they’re each other’s best friends. Go off, Brandon!
Thank you to the entire Fosters cast and team. This is a story we have been proud to watch each week.
As Lena mentions in 5×22, “Love is work, but most of all, love is realizing that every hour, every minute of it, every second was worth it. Because [we] did it together.” Season 5 of The Fosters surpassed our expectations. We were unsure if each storyline would be finished by the finale, but we were proved wrong. Really, we couldn’t have imagined a better end to the series. We’re going to miss the house, the kids, *our* parents Lena and Stef, and everything in between. If you have never watched The Fosters before, you are in for one hell of a treat. And to the Foster’s fans who have been watching for the past seven years, we hope you remember that you can always call this show your home. Thank you.