Darby Carter’s story is complete. HBO Max released the final four episodes of Love Life and with that we see the conclusion of Darby’s journey. It has been a wonderful experience seeing Darby go from the unsure girl to a self-empowered, working woman. It became very clear that even though the series was called ‘Love Life’ that it was less about finding romantic love and rather, it was about discovering self-love. Something that I did not expect and loved. Now, I want more Darby Carter and that simply shows how magnificent Anna Kendrick was in this role.
Episodes seven and eight take a break from Darby’s romantic life and showcase the most important relationships that were imperative to work on for her growth. One, being her mother. It was clear that Darby and her mother’s relationship had never been rock-solid after the meeting between Magnus and Darby’s mom. As someone who has a great relationship with her mom, even I know that sometimes the relationship needs work. In Darby’s case, a lot of work. Actually, a lot of communication. Something that, once it was done; certainly was a page-turner from that moment on. I loved seeing Darby and her mother finally have the bond they both needed. And while they mended their mother-daughter relationship, they also began seeing each other as human beings.
Episode eight focused on Sara. Darby’s best friend has been in the picture since day one. While it originally seemed like Sara was the one with her life together, the roles were reversed. When we first met Sara, she was the one in a long-term relationship that would give Darby meaningful life advice. Sara’s journey was teased in the first episode, though. Remember when Darby told Augie that even though Sara drank every night, she wasn’t an alcoholic because she was young. At that moment she was “just so fun”. But, as Darby and her friends shifted into adulthood, Sara was stuck in her party days. Not able to deal with losing Jim, her job, and her youth, Sara kept turning to alcohol. Moments between Darby and Sara were heartbreaking. Couples break up when their lives go in different directions, but what about best friends?
Side note: The “toast” in this episode started off with giving me vibes of Darby giving that toast in episode two.
This is literally the title of episode nine, so it’s not a spoiler. Augie is back! I think that it’s almost poetic that the show started with Augie and he pops back in Darby’s life, “like an old pair of jeans”. I adore Augie. Admittedly, I had really wanted Bradley to pop back up. Not to get back together, but for several reasons. One is that I adore Scoot McNairy and he was said to have a “recurring” role, but only appeared in the first two episodes. Another is that I thought it would make sense considering Darby is in the art world and works for Lola, whom Bradley introduced the two to each other. It’s the one thing I’m disappointed with, but such a small disappointment.
Anyway, Augie. Augie and Darby simply have this magnetic energy that makes it seem as if no time had gone by at all. If we remember, Darby and Augie didn’t break up for any other reason than location, location, location. Now that he’s back, they can pick up where they left off. Of course, this time, they have more time to actually see how different they are. And they have to contend with the idea of either dealing with those stark differences or realizing that their past relationship was so memorable and shiny because it is in the past.
Who is the father of Darby’s child? Who does Darby end up with? You’ll have to watch to find out! Seriously, one of the things I loved about this finale is that it not only pressed upon the issue that this story is much more of Darby loving herself, than anyone else. And the ending was ambiguous and didn’t feel the need to put Darby in a cookie-cutter relationship because, you know; she had to end up with the one. The person Darby is seeing is just casual and that’s perfectly fine, because life isn’t some love movie. I don’t want to spoil anything, but it was a great ending and I’m sad we won’t get to see any more of Darby’s story.
When I first started Love Life, I didn’t have much int he way of expectations. I simply thought it would be a mind-numbing show to put on in the background. I was so pleasantly surprised to find a story of substance where the main character went through such a magnificent transformation. Make sure you check out HBO Max’s Love Life. And please check out the interview I conducted with Love Life’s creator, Sam Boyd.