From Charlotte to Blair, the 12 best TV wedding dresses ever

I won’t spoil the Downton Abbey series finale but based on social media alone we can agree there was a wedding. When ABC’s fledgling country music show Nashville returns after its mid-season break this month television promos would have us believe its star-crossed leads Rayna James (Connie Britton) and Deacon Claybourne (James Esten) are about to get married. At.Last. Please, don’t tell me this show is ending.

Television finales and weddings have a long and storied tradition because it’s the perfect way to wrap it all up with a bow on top. But how about today? The epic (though controversial) “Luke and Laura” wedding on General Hospital in 1981 might have drawn 30 million viewers at the time of its airing but today, the gruesome Game of Thrones (#redwedding anyone?) has taken the whole wedding trope and blown it apart at every opportunity.

“When Luke and Laura married on General Hospital in the early ’80s it was a television event,” says Alison McGill, editor-in-chief of Weddingbells magazine, who ranks Charlotte York’s second wedding dress in Sex and the City and Rhoda Morgenstern’s from the ’70s hit Rhoda as two of her TV favourites. “I think television and movie weddings have a little less impact than celebrity weddings.”

“Today we are so exposed to every moment of a celebrity life and given unprecedented access to their world,” says McGill. “Even if you try to tune out it’s unescapable. That said everyone loves a happily ever after on TV, at the movie, or in reality.”

Check out our picks for the most memorable TV wedding dresses.