Monday, April 25, 2022

What I’m Watching: Russian Doll (Season Finale)

Russian Doll: Season 2, Episode 7 “Matryoshka” (B+)

It’s not easy to find an end to a time loop or some other sort of time travel story, both when you’re in it and when you’re writing it. That set high expectations for this finale, which needed to find a way to resolve things that made sense and also left something to potentially be explored in the future. As Alan expressed his displeasure with Nadia bringing her baby self to the present, they ended up back at her birthday party from season one, but quickly ended up moving through illogical spaces as non-playable characters, including an encounter with a rabbi and many Ruths coming up the stairs to see Nadia as she was leaving the party. Nadia was so sure when they followed Horse to the stopped train in the middle of the tunnel that things must work out if she was still standing, but her attitude changed entirely when they got on the train and she realized that she had missed Ruth’s death. Getting separated and dropped into separate pools of water in some sort of timeless train station was a poignant representation of their re-acclimation to reality and their gradual acceptance of having to say goodbye to people that they failed in some way. Showing up arm in arm at the wake happy to celebrate Ruth’s life was a great way to say goodbye and to send off this season. It’s been quite a ride, one that only this show can offer and which I’d be happy to board again in whatever new form season three and beyond might take.

Season grade: B+
Season MVP: Natasha Lyonne

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