I love the use of “dead end” as an adjective, as in “dead-end job” or “dead-end relationship.” I think it’s the word “dead” that adds such a morbid sound to a phrase that describes things that are actually quite ordinary. A street that stops. A job with no future. A relationship that will never make it to that next level.
I suppose I enjoy the melodrama of the phrase “dead end.” And I also enjoy a diamond-shaped, yellow street sign proclaiming DEAD END, lest anyone turn down that road expecting some kind of future.