WARNING: This article contains spoilers about The Undoing series finale.
HBO’s latest grand-slam series, The Undoing, debuted its finale last night – a highly anticipated ending that was expected to finally solve the riddles circling in viewers’ minds since the show first aired six weeks ago.
The Undoing tells the story of an affluent Manhattan couple, Grace and Jonathan Fraser (Nicole Kidman and Hugh Grant), whose lives become unraveled when Jonathan is accused of killing young mother Elena Alves (Matilda De Angelis). Over the course of six episodes, the show presents several red herrings with plausible motives, all hinting at a lead-up to a glorious final plot-twist.
If you’ve been watching The Undoing, you might be feeling a little duped after last night’s grand reveal.
Last night’s finale points right to the novel from which the show was adapted, Jean Hanff Korelitz’s You Should Have Known … a title that makes a mockery of viewers who had placed bets on every character except the real killer, who stood accused since episode one.
Breaking the Internet
In the weeks leading up to last night’s big reveal, The Undoing fan theories took over the internet, and ultimately, broke the internet.
Could it have been Lily Rabe’s character, Sylvia? Was she the second affair that Jonathan had mentioned having?
Was it Franklin (Donald Sutherland), who admitted to Grace that he had cheated on her mother? Could Elena’s madness, obsession with Grace, and affair with Jonathan have been a reaction to a lifelong feeling of invisibility as Franklin’s disowned lovechild?
Or could it have been Grace all along, plunged so deeply into insanity that she could not fully recall the murder?
All the hype surrounding the show ultimately led to dysfunction on the HBO Max website last night, just as the finale was set to premiere.
Reports of the outage flooded Twitter, with many speculating that the website was not prepared to handle such a high number of viewers signing in at one time.
What People Are Saying
We cast blame on extras, on side characters, and even on Nicole Kidman. Who-actually-dunnit was an undeniable twist, but the show has received polarized reactions.
Dizzy from the twists and turns that led viewers to believe it could be any of the characters but Jonathan, many fans feel that the show went too far in distracting their audience from the obvious.
The Independent called it “nothing more than an absurd little game of cat and mouse, remarkable only because it cast two great actors as the leads.”
Time Magazine said, “The Undoing’s fatal flaw was its disrespect for its audience.”
Others are awestruck, arguing that viewers’ exclusive consideration of suspects other than Jonathan brilliantly places the audience in Grace’s shoes, unwilling until the very end to acknowledge that her husband is a murderer.
Pure Wow called the ending “Such a smart and surprising choice.”
Entertainment News called it “Absolutely satisfying.”
Whether you were disappointed or pleased with the series’ ending, the best may be yet to come.
Director of The Undoing, Susanne Bier, hasn’t ruled out a second season of the controversial series. She told Oprah Magazine, “I won’t rule it out. But it’s not in the concrete works.”
Although not confirmed, there are plenty of reasons to get our hopes up for another season.
The Undoing, while based on a sequelless novel, has unabashedly colored outside the lines of its predecessor already.
Believe it or not, the novel’s Jonathan was a minor character, and several other tweaks to the story even had the author on the edge of her seat when watching the series along with the rest of us. Korelitz even wrote that she wasn’t so sure that the killer would be the same in the series as in her novel.
If David E. Kelley, screenwriter of The Undoing, had to create a script with no sequel to work from, it wouldn’t be the first time. His previous HBO hit, Big Little Lies, was also adapted from a solo work. While many had speculated there could not be a second season for that limited series, Kelley made it happen.
Matilda De Angelis opinion on a second season?
“It would be great, I think. I’m dead anyway.”