This submit comprises spoilers for Huge Little Lies season two, episode six.
“The Dangerous Mom,” the title of this week’s Huge Little Lies, looks as if a reference to the fierce custody battle Celeste (Nicole Kidman) is waging in opposition to her mother-in-law from hell, Mary Louise (Meryl Streep). But it surely’s additionally a nod towards Elizabeth (Crystal Fox), Bonnie’s abusive mom. “The Dangerous Mom” provides parallel tales of abuse survivors taking management: Celeste chooses to query Mary Louise herself within the last moments of her courtroom face-off, whereas Bonnie (Zoë Kravitz) tearfully confronts her comatose mom in a closed hospital room, revealing that she’s seemingly planning on confessing to murdering Perry and insisting that it was her mom’s violent habits that prompted her response.
Each Kidman and Kravitz carry out these scenes with fascinating nuance; their feelings are palpable and uncooked. However solely one among these arcs appears like an actual triumph—as a result of whereas Huge Little Lies has at all times recognized the best way to inform Celeste’s story, Bonnie’s has at all times been a little bit of a battle.
Bonnie’s emotional confrontation together with her mom was brilliantly carried out, if overdue. “Properly, it seems prefer it’s time,” the yoga instructor says, hinting on the weeks she’s probably spent mulling her resolution. “I’ve to admit one thing that I’m not so happy with,” Bonnie continues. “And as I used to be writing, I noticed I wanted to admit to you first. So right here it goes.”
“I resent you,” she reveals. “For the childhood that I had. I resent you on your impatience. For being petrified of doing my homework with out being yelled at. For all of the kitchen cupboard doorways you slammed. For slapping me. For all of the bruises. I resent you for not feeling protected at dwelling. I resent you for being ashamed of me. I resent you for all of the intercourse I began to have once I was 13 to show to myself that I might be liked. I resent you for my eager to beat the shit out of everybody. I resent you for making me really feel so fucking nugatory that I settled for a person that I don’t…” She trails off.
“However primarily,” Bonnie concludes, “I resent you for killing a person. I killed Celeste’s husband. He didn’t slip. I pushed him. I snapped—and once I lunged at him, I used to be pushing you. And that push was a very long time coming. And I need to forgive you.” A tear streams down Elizabeth’s face as her daughter finishes, although it appears unclear whether or not she was really awake or lucid for her daughter’s confession.
It’s telling that this usually laconic character chooses to jot down out and browse aloud a message to her mom. One will get the impression that her journal is likely one of the few locations the place Bonnie feels genuinely protected to precise and work by means of her emotions—a actuality that speaks to how remoted her “pals” have left her, whilst they help each other by means of scandal after scandal with out judgment. Huge Little Lies has at all times stored Bonnie at a distance from the remainder of the group—although the collection has but to supply a legible purpose for the disconnect, past any lingering awkwardness between her and Madeline. (Bonnie married Madeline’s ex-husband, Nathan, which prompted some pressure of their relationship early on; although the 2 have typically made up, that pressure nonetheless resurfaces periodically.)
Maybe the reason is straightforward: As many critics have famous, Huge Little Lies has lengthy had a tenuous grasp of the best way to deal with race. In Liane Moriarty’s authentic novel, Bonnie was white, and the abuser who traumatized her was her white father, who routinely harm her mom (however not Bonnie instantly). As Bonnie defined towards the tip of the novel, she flashed again to her childhood whereas pushing Perry down the steps: “I remembered the final time I noticed my father hit my mom. I used to be 20. A grown-up. I’d gone dwelling for a go to, and it began. Mum did one thing. I don’t bear in mind what. She didn’t put sufficient tomato sauce on his plate. She laughed the unsuitable approach.”