'Ugly Betty' finale: Farewell to first loves
"Ugly Betty" packed in many rather upsetting plots for this two-hour finale, and luckily it's coming back next season, so it won't all be for naught.
Spoilers, like your first love, re-entering your life.
Let's start with the (relatively) less upsetting story line, shall we?
Wilhelmina gets in good with Cal Hartley's ex-wife Victoria (by playing tennis, singing torch songs and drinking midday) and discovers Claire and Cal had a fling back in the day that produced an offspring that Claire supposedly put up for adoption in another state since she was married to Bradford at the time. Wil tries to use this info as blackmail, but it turns out that Cal knows about the pregnancy ... and the abortion, not adoption.
So with no Hartley/Meade lovechild out there and a suspicious boss, what does Willie have? Not much except for her fabulous style and burning sense of preservation. She hires someone to track down Connor (yes!) in order to get back the money he stole, thereby eliminating the need for Cal's pesky influence and apparent preference for Claire. Oh, and we learn at the very end that Claire has been lying to everyone: There was indeed a baby that came to term and was adopted. Dum, dum, dum!!!!
So, by now we know that Molly isn't dead, scaring the bejeebus out of me last episode when she collapsed in a pitiful heap after marrying Daniel. Every moment is precious now, and is it just me? We know how this is going to end. We know it will be this episode, and yet, I just had to watch it unfold:
Daniel becomes a minor celebrity since the former playboy has committed himself to marriage -- thus becoming a media darling and even landing an interview on "The View."(pointless cameos). Ugh. Molly's acting weird, always talking about who he'll hook up with after her death. It's awkward. It's heart-wrenching. And when Daniel's wedding issue, with Molly on the cover as a bride, wins a prestigious award, we know that the smiling Molly in the audience is a ghost. I knew, and as soon as he got home, he learned the truth. Bye-bye, Molly. You made Daniel a better person.
Betty is busted
And how about our girl Betty? Her story isn't as tragic, but it's still not full of puppies and rainbow. She has some pretty stressful times with her work, namely her attempts to move up. As the winner of the YETI final project, she gets a ton of interviews and even aces the one with the New York Review, until her mentor Jodie (that bitch!) snakes the job out from under her. Later, when an important Mode features editor dies (R.I.P.), she and Marc compete for the job, and eventually she emerges victorious. All smiles now, right? Wait for it ...
Betty is horribly conflicted since she's just agreed to move in with the wonderfully dedicated and sweet Matt, but what's this? Henry is in town -- cute, bespectacled and suddenly buff Henry! A double date at a Mets game has our girl's head whirling since she still has fluttery feelings for the accountant extraordinaire -- and the feeling's mutual. But in the end, they both acknowledge that it was a first love thing and part with a yearning goodbye kiss.
Unfortunately, sensitive, dedicated and oh so mercurial Matt witnesses the final exchange. He eventually confronts her with this, and even though she declares that she's moved on, he has doubts. Matt brings these feelings to his dad -- what?!? -- who plants even more doubt and worse, ruthlessness into his son's head. When Betty admits that she'll always harbor a bit of love for Henry, Matt becomes the monster that I never saw coming: He breaks off their relationship and declares he's going to be her new boss, since he accepted his dad's offer to work for Meade.
Miscellaneous musings and highlights:
- Holy wow. Those puffed sleeves on Betty's blouse at the MAMAs would have made Anne of Green Gables envious.
- Even though it was a tiny plot, I finally got a Justin-centric story, being disappointed that he wasn't accepted into a performing arts school. Even better was the fact that he was once again paired with Marc. I love that student-mentor, nurturing camaraderie.
- Suzuki quote: "Who will go home with a MAMA and who will go home to booze, pills and trans fats, or as I like to call it -- Thursdays."
- Yet another potential Meade heir? Really?!?
- Was Amanda just extra-wacky this episode or what? She drinks from the margarita pitcher with a straw and has so many odd non-sequiturs. My fave? Amanda: "Is that your family?" Betty: "No Amanda, they're birds." You don't even need context to enjoy that one.
- Matt has me stumped. I was so high on him at first, then came the few strange quirks. His selfishness and immaturity last episode was a huge turn-off as well. And I totally agree with his reasons to be upset this episode since obviously Betty isn't over Henry. But this complete 180 to become his ruthless father? Not only do I find that despicable, but cowardly as well.
- How horrible and yet touching was that whole Daniel mourning sequence with "Time After Time" playing and his text to Betty, "I need you" ? I'm glad that their relationship is as strong as ever, but this was just sad, sad, sad.
- Look, I don't mind a little adversity, but I hope things cheer up early next season.
Your thoughts? Should Betty just be single for a while?