‘Dead To Me’ Final Season: Did You Like the Ambiguous Ending? (POLL)

Linda Cardellini and Christina Applegate in 'Dead To Me' Season 3
Spoiler Alert
Netflix

[Warning: The following contains MAJOR spoilers for the Dead To Me series finale.]

Dead To Me‘s final season ends on an intentionally ambiguous note. Creator Liz Feldman said the uncertainty the COVID-19 pandemic made us feel informed the plot when writing the Netflix dramedy’s final episodes, explaining that life rarely gives us answers to its greatest questions. It’s part of what makes grief a lifelong experience with all of its ebbs and flows. Grief and ambiguity are at the forefront of the Dead To Me series finale, which sees Jen Harding (Christina Applegate) and Judy Hale’s (Linda Cardellini) story end on a heartbreaking but fitting note.

In Dead To Me Season 3, Judy is diagnosed with late-stage cervical cancer. She undergoes chemotherapy throughout the season as she and Jen try to tie up loose ends connecting them to Steve Wood’s (James Marsden) murder. Jen also learns she’s pregnant with Ben Wood’s (also Marsden) baby. By the end of season, the terminally ill Judy decides to selflessly confess to Steve’s murder, protecting Jen, who viewers know was the real culprit. In the series finale, the women set off on a beach vacation in Mexico, where Judy convinces Jen to finally tell Ben about her pregnancy.

While in Mexico, Judy reveals she won’t be returning home with Jen. The women share a devastatingly beautiful goodbye, saying in their final scene, “you filled the hole in my heart.” The next morning, Jen awakes in their room to find that Judy was not in the bed where they went to sleep. She goes down to the beach, following a trail of footprints in the sand, and finds a boat sailing away on the water. The moment is meant to symbolize Judy’s death.

Linda Cardellini and Christina Applegate in 'Dead To Me' Season 3

Saeed Adyani/Netflix

“Most of the time you’re not there when someone leaves you, so I wanted the audience to experience that too,” Feldman told Tudum of the moment. “So much of that final episode is about Jen coming to a form of acceptance of what is happening in her life and what is happening with Judy, and I’m trying to bring the audience to a place of acceptance as well. They may not get all the answers, but what they’re left with is this feeling and memory of this beautiful friendship that they got to be a part of.”

Cardellini told TV Insider that her character’s sendoff was an evocative metaphor. “I knew that whatever she thought of would be surprising and emotional and funny but what I didn’t realize was how it would remind me so much of what grief feels like,” she said. “And that whole thing of when you have to say goodbye to somebody or when you’re ill-prepared to say goodbye to somebody and what that feeling leaves you with.”

In the final moments of the series, Jen sits by the pool of her home with her and Ben’s new baby as Ben plays with Charlie and Henry in the yard. All this time, Ben was still in the dark about the truth of his twin brother’s death. When Jen sees the cat brought home from the Mexico trip paw at Judy’s pool house residence, she has a moment of clarity before saying, “Ben, I have to tell you something.” And then, the screen turns to black and the series is over.

“Of course, it’s just absolutely emotional and heart-wrenching, but also all that thread of humor woven in there so brilliantly,” Marsden told us. “It felt quintessential Dead To Me just amped up to 10, and the stakes are higher than they’ve ever been.”

What did you think of how Dead To Me handled its last interpretation of grief? Did you find the ambiguous ending as satisfying as the cast and creators? Let us know in the poll below.

Dead To Me, Streaming Now, Netflix