Monday, September 13, 2021

Emmy Catch-Up: I May Destroy You (Season Finale)

Every year, I watch the six submitted episodes of every series I don’t regularly watch that’s up for one of the Emmy series prizes. Last year, I started watching the entire season of each show to get a better idea of the quality I missed, and I’ve decided to continue that this year.

I May Destroy You: Season 1, Episode 12 “Ego Death” (B+)

I wasn’t sure how this show could end in a way that would feel both realistic and satisfying, but I think this was it. The sexual assault prompted Arabella to go on this journey, but part of what she has learned along the way is that there isn’t necessarily a moment of vindication or condemnation, and even those can be complicated by the relationships that develop, like with Zain. Seeing the man and remembering him made her head go to many possible places, and there was something a bit too simple about the paths she imagined. Having him drug Arabella in one scenario was reminiscent of “Promising Young Woman,” though in this case the road she took was considerably more violent and revenge-driven. Getting him to come home with her and then admit the different kinds of rape that he did all of the time was oddly therapeutic, in part because it would never happen like that, and Arabella even managed to find compassion for him as a result of their conversation and his openness. Having her not actually do any of those things and instead just decide to stay home with Ben was powerful, and apparently it did lead to a productive place where she was able to finish her book and then end at its launch. This show has been somewhat very different than I ever expected, and I wish I had kept watching through episode two to be on board at the very start when it first aired. I’d be thrilled if it took home a few trophies at the Emmys.

Series grade: A-
Series MVP: Michaela Coel

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