Can’t Miss Episode of the Week: ‘A Million Little Things’ Cliffhanger-Filled Finale
Welcome to our weekly column Can’t Miss Episode of the Week! Every Saturday we’ll be spotlighting a different episode of television from that week that we thought was exceptional and a must-see. Check back to see if your favorite show got the nod — or to learn about a new one!
Holy cliffhanger Batman! We’re used to a finale having one major cliffhanger, but ABC’s ensemble drama A Million Little Things left so many storylines in flux in the third season’s two-part finale on Wednesday, June 9. There’s always some melodrama going on with the Boston-based group of friends — this is the series that used a character’s suicide to drive the pilot’s plot after all — but there are so many major bombshells this episode that we’re not even sure where to begin. The show is already confirmed to return in the fall, so we’ll just have to wait and see how it’s going to manage this many loose threads at once. For now, the finale remains a must-see.
The series has been taking big swings all season long with storylines about quarantine, Black Lives Matter protests, and addiction. Of these, the main feature in the finale, titled “Justice Part 1/Part 2,” is Sophie’s (Lizzy Greene) sexual assault arc. The entire season has treated this story with remarkable sensitivity and realness. This episode is no different. After Sophie goes to the police and hears what feels unfortunately inevitable, that there’s nothing they can do, she decides to go public with her story by being a guest on Maggie’s (Allison Miller) podcast. The interesting part comes next, because who knows just how big this will blow up in the media and what other survivors might come forward as a result. It calls back to many real-life #MeToo scandals, including the USA Gymnastics case.
Poor Gary (James Roday Rodriguez), though, doesn’t know that Sophie has decided to tell her story on the podcast. Gary is arguably the best character in the show. He tries to take care of everyone and is the beating heart of the entire group, but he seems to be in crisis. After the disappointment at the police station, hearing from his girlfriend Darcy (Floriana Lima) that she may not want any more kids, and a fight with Delilah (more on that later), Gary hits his breaking point and violently confronts Peter (Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist’s Andrew Leeds), Sophie’s attacker. We don’t know what Gary’s really planning here, but it doesn’t look great. We’re terrified that our favorite character is about to make a life-ruining mistake. To twist the knife in further, Darcy leaves Gary a voicemail while he’s doing this to say that she regrets what she said earlier, and would love to have a family with him. After this incident though, she might not want to. “He’s feeling like he has nothing to lose,” says series creator DJ Nash about Gary.
Meanwhile, Delilah (Stephanie Szostak) returns! …. And it’s not exactly a cheerful reunion. Delilah’s missed some big moments in her kids’ lives this season, and while viewers have been wondering exactly what she’s been doing in France all season long, it turns out she’s thinking of moving the family there for good. As she puts it, she wants a fresh start to not be the widow whose husband killed himself while she was having an affair. A fair point, but her kids are furious at her for possibly uprooting their lives to run away to another country. Gary and Delilah also have a blowout fight about this — Gary was the one who’s been taking care of her kids the whole time after all — and it’s one of the many reasons he does what he does. It’s doubtful the entire Dixon family is moving to France, but Delilah’s future is uncertain as she finally has a breakdown at the end of the episode.
Sophie, Delilah, and Gary’s fates remain up in the air with the end of the season, and it won’t be until the Season 4 premiere when we find out just how much damage has been done. This show has not held back at all, and it makes us all the more curious to see what they’ve got in store for us next.
Other observations that we thought made this episode stand out:
- Some things are, of course, resolved in this episode — Rome (Romany Malco) and Regina’s (Christina Moses) storylines are all at natural stopping points, and Eddie (David Giuntoli) and Katherine (Grace Park) figure out their joint custody issues, but don’t forget that phone call that Eddie gets this episode from the girl claiming to be the person who hit him with her car! That’s right, another cliffhanger.
- Something to note is that Delilah being so absent this season is actually because Szostak couldn’t be in Vancouver shooting the show while quarantining with her family in the States. So even though it feels like the show has been phasing her character out, we could get Delilah back full-time next season.
- Maggie has been Sophie’s rock this season, and it has not gone unnoticed. We love how supportive Maggie’s been, and that she seems to know what Sophie needs every step of the way.
- Gary’s anger issues have been building for a long time (remember when he punched that guy at the baseball game, or when he smashed his car window?), so while his escalation seems sudden, it’s been a long time coming.