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A Milllion Little Things - Goodbye - Review - Moments I've Missed

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Now this is how you do a season finale. No one's physical life or job is left hanging off a cliff that you know is way smaller than the show wants you to think. However, the stakes are raised in big
ways. I have mixed feelings about the show deciding to give Jon an "inciting moment," because that choice seems to run contradictory to what the show has been saying the whole time: that it's not one thing that pushes a person up or down but a million little things that accumulate. By the end of the episode, through the voice of Maggie, the show was walking back leaning on that inciting moment anyway. It's ultimately Delilah who decides she needs to confront Barbara to try to get answers. But there's no answer that will ever take away the loss. There is a measure of incomplete understanding though. On that note, PJ is basically starting on episode one of this show after he finds Jon's recording.

What PJ's role will be in the show going forward is one of the questions the finale sets up for season two. He will most certainly think that Jon was his real father now, which doesn't seem to be true. His ongoing connection with Rome and his upcoming sessions with Maggie guarantee he won't stay on the fringes for long. Rome himself drops a bit of a bombshell on Regina when he says he wants kids. Romany Malco really lays it all out with the heartfelt argument that Rome makes. Having a child means raising a person, something he's realized he can see himself doing with Regina. He doesn't see that as her having a baby either, which is respectful of her wishes. Not only is Regina not on board with bringing a child into their busy lives, we should be concerned that Rome talks about how a child could help with putting things in perspective. Regina is right to not consider Rome out of the woods yet. At the same time, he clearly has love to give. This difference in their opinions sets up some tension for next season.
The finale gets a necessary injection of joy from Maggie and Gary moving in together. (My first selfish thought was that we won't get to see Maggie's cute apartment anymore, but Eddie is moving there.) She won't set up her dresser until they get the results from her doctor though. They learn she is in remission, which sends Gary into tears while Maggie breaks down laughing. She later talks to Gary about how he fought so hard for her in part because he couldn't help Jon. Maggie cautions him about leaning on Jon's memory too much. She takes him to the cemetery where Gary has a moment alone at Jon's grave. He tells Jon he wishes he could have saved him but also shares how his life is going now. There's a sense of closure as he walks away from Jon and towards Maggie.
When it comes to couples, Delilah and Eddie's separation was one of the best decisions the show made this season. Delilah has grown into an individual who is rebuilding her identity separate from the men she loved. This reconstruction has also brought her closer to her daughter and son. Lizzy Greene and Chance Hurstfield bring a very natural charm to their roles, which has resulted in Sophie and Danny being some of TV's most endearing children. The way they hover around Delilah in this episode is lovely. It's also a reminder about the baby elephant in the room. Her and Eddie's secret just seems to get worse by the minute. And when Sophie tenderly encourages her laboring mother that soon they will be a family of four again, there's no escaping the prick of guilt Delilah must feel.

Secrets never stay secret, and Eddie decides to reveal the truth to someone. It's almost unheard of for there to be a slow burn love story between people who are already married, but that's what has been happening with Eddie and Katherine. Their separation ultimately brought them together by making them confront everything they were leaving unspoken. They've seen the worst and best of each other. They've worked as a team to make decisions for Theo. Katherine was able to take a step back from her career and choose more time with her son over a promotion. (Side note: That ice cold scorch that she delivered to Hunter about him only having his position because she turned it down was perfect.) When Eddie shows up to help Katherine tell Theo about the divorce, she makes the leap and asks him to reconsider. Because of his betrayal, it had to be her asking. The air is loaded with tenderness and fireworks. It's the biggest cliffhanger of the season when Eddie calls her later and asks her to come outside. He tells her he wants to come home, and, in David Giuntoli's strongest performance yet on this show, you see how much Eddie wants this reconciliation. However, with Delilah going into labor, Eddie won't leave Katherine in the dark. And that's the heart clutching note season one concludes with.

A Million Little Things subverted my expectations by keeping its stories grounded in the well-developed characters and nuanced performances of its stellar cast. The points each character reaches by the season finale all feel earned. Other shows should take notes on how this one has meaningfully crafted the evolution of the friends not only as part of a group but as individuals. Everyone is left at an exciting moment in their lives, and though we are uncertain what lies next we can be confident that the next season will continue this sincere, bittersweet examination of the million little ways that people can be there for each other.

Bonus points for this show not trying to force me to buy Kleenex every episode. It really gives the audience a big space to feel all the things, instead of just funneling sorrowful cocktails of joy and loss down our gullets.

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