And thus the journey ends.
Of course HBO famously said there wouldn’t be a second season of Big Little Lies and that decision’s been reversed, but somehow with Sharp Objects, I believe that this is truly the end. And hey, I’m completely satisfied with what we got.
Camille’s finds the calm
Thanks to Amy Adams’ tremendous performance, Camille’s journey has been quite thought-provoking. I love the notion that her arc ends on: does she take care of Amma because she has Adora’s disease, or because of her innate kindness? It’s a powerful message to bookend the show with, particularly since we don’t get a clear answer and it really makes us question our heroine’s motives thus far. I’m also “leaning” towards kindness FYI.
It’s also satisfying to see Camille make the ultimate sacrifice: she fakes sickness so she can distract her mother from Amma. It’s harrowing to watch her suffer, but there’s also a little bit of death wish sprinkled in as she continuously asks for more and more “medicine”. Again, the show leaves it up to us to decide if putting herself in the line of fire was the best way to save Amma, but it all fits perfectly with everything we know about Camille’s self-destructive behavior.
Ultimately, ur heroine does finally find some semblance of peace. That is until…
Quite cleverly, this finale stunningly reveals that there are in fact two psychopaths taking lives in Wind Gap. Adora did indeed kill Marian long ago (thanks to her oh so twisted illness), but the finale’s end moments drop another bombshell: Amma brutally murdered Nathalie and Anne, not to mention her new friend Mae. The sequence with Camille uncovering the dollhouse floor made of teeth is such an unsettling moment, and yet it makes perfect sense in the grand scheme of things. We’ve seen bits and pieces of Amma craving Camille’s attention all season long, so the moment in which Mae says she wants to be a journalist (like Amma’s older sister) is a real turning point that basically seals the young girls’ fate. Eliza Scanlen is so so good a Amma, equal parts vulnerable and psychotic. If you want more proof of the latter, look no further than the end credit sequence which features footage of her murdering the girls, and culminates with a quick shot of her as the woman in white (effectively solving that mystery as well). Wow!
Will Camille turn her sister in? Will she suffer a worse fate? The show doesn’t give us any answers, but we don’t really need them. The effects of abuse and trauma know no bounds, and this theme is one that the show hammered into our minds with ruthless efficiency.
Bits & Booze
– What is the significance of the fan? It looked to me like Camille cut herself for the first time in her life through the fan. I could be wrong.
– Willis says we’re looking at the wrong half (since they always suspected the killer was a man). Well took you long enough!
– Adora shares the story of how her mother left her in the woods – like that excuses her behavior.
– Alan’s dig about Vickery always being at their house was priceless.
– Adora says she’s “helping nature evolve”. Wow, talk about a God Complex.
– I didn’t completely buy Curry saving Camille, but watching him hug his sobbing journalist was just heartbreaking.
– Great touch with the needle injecting Camille in the word “omen”.
– Willis apologizing to Camille was very satisfying. What an ass he turned out to be.
– I felt such a sense of dread as I watched Amma move in with Camille in St.Louis and the two acclimated to a new life. This not a happy ending kind of show.
– Super sweet touch with Camille and Amma listening to the iPod together.
– Can someone tell me what was the point of the bloody shed in the woods with the BDSM pornography? Did the show forget about that?
– Amma visits Adora in prison. She still loves her doesn’t she?
– Missed opportunity: Elizabeth Perkins’ Jackie. This character was a hoot and she deserved more screen-time.
– Camille notices the words “Call mom” written (not carved) on Mae’s hand. In fact, she’s written a bunch of things on her hand. Is she warning Camille? Or just trying to fit in since she looks up to her?
– The picture in Camille’s house falling is a terrific metaphor for the chaos about to befall her once she learns of Mae’s disappearance.
– We learn that Amma has built up a tolerance to Adora’s rat poison, but all those chemicals undoubtedly contributed to her twisted psyche right? Blame it on the meds.
– Seriously how perfect is the final line: “Don’t tell mama.” Eliza’s delivery is pitch-perfect. And hey, who else bets that Adora knows her daughter was the killer and was just covering for her?
– John Keene had told Camille that when Natalie was found dead, her nails had been painted on. The end credit sequence proves this as we see Mae’s freshly painted nails grasping the fence.
– The end credit massacre also reveals that Amma’s fellow roller-skating buddies are her accomplices. I feel like rewatching the whole season and catching the clues. Their comment to Vickery last week about the murderer potentially being a “she” takes on whole new meaning now.
Quotes & Camille
John: Sometimes you stay with somebody, and the only reason is because you don’t have the energy to go through ending it.
Camille: Men get to be warrior poets. What woman is described that way? Not Adora. Prosecution says my mother is a warrior martyr. If she was guilty, they argued, it was only of a very female sort of rage. Overcare. Killing through kindness. It shouldn’t have surprised me that Adora fell on that sword spectacularly. Of course, she never did explain the teeth or that kind of naked rage a person, man or woman, would need to do something like that. It didn’t fit. So, as with everything in my mother’s world, it didn’t exist, except perhaps in some dark place only she knows about. My mother has many years to consider what she’s done. As for me, I’ve forgiven myself for failing to save my sister and given myself over to raising the other. Am I good at caring for Amma because of kindness, or do I like caring for Amma because I have Adora’s sickness? I waver between the two. Especially at night, when my skin begins to pulse. Lately, I’ve been leaning toward kindness.
A fitting ending to one of the most unforgettable series of the year. What a fantastic show!