After Big Little Lies ended its second season with a fizzled out finale, plenty of fans took to Twitter to complain about it, starting with the simple premise of the season: What would have happened had the Monterey Five simply told the truth from the get-go? Vanity Fair deputy editor Katey Rich raised the question on the social media platform, sparking a discussion about the show.
Major spoilers for the Season 2 finale of Big Little Lies ahead.
Rich asked what would have happened had Bonnie, Madeline, Celeste, Jane and Renata not held in their secret for an entire year and instead all told the truth about what happened that night of the trivia night when Bonnie pushed Perry down the stairs and to his death.
"Extremely dumb Big Little Lies question: is this whole thing not just a clear case of [self-defense] and if they told the truth... nobody would go to jail?" Rich asked other fans prior to the Sunday night finale.
Some pointed out that the show "sort of acknowledged" the self-defense aspect in episode 1, but that because Reese Witherspoon's character Madeline convinced them to lie, it was too late to back out now. "But now they've lied and they're in deep," one fan wrote.
Others even went through real-life legal elements of justifiable homicide defense in California that might apply to the situation.
Some pointed out that "it's not like women who report domestic violence are taken seriously."
In what world do they exist that women dont go to jail for 20+ years for killing their abusers? And since its a WOC who actually shoved him, she would most likely get life or worse. Hellloo America!— incredibly fitting (@Thetaelizabeth) July 14, 2019
Others thought Bonnie's race had something to do with it.
nope. Bonnie is Black.— numa perrier (@missnuma) July 13, 2019
Plenty more reminded fans that the novel by Liane Moriarty which the first season was based off of ended with Bonnie telling police what happened and that the second season was constructed simply for more episodes of the HBO mini series.
which is what happens in the book— David Sims (@davidlsims) July 13, 2019
It’s almost like it was a self-contained book that didn’t need a sequel!— Eric "D as in Cats" Snider (@EricDSnider) July 13, 2019
This quote from the book kind of made me "get it" more:
" Maybe it was actually an unspoken instant agreement between the four women on the balcony: No woman should pay for the accidental death of this particular man. Maybe it was an involuntary, atavistic response to thousands— MegasaurusRex (@RexMegasaurus) July 14, 2019
Overall, most of the plot lines from the second season were tied up neatly, with Madeline and Ed (Adam Scott) renewing their vows at a beachside ceremony with their kids, Renata (Laura Der) finally losing it on her one-dimensional husband, Jane (Shailene Woodley) working things out with Corey (Douglas Smith), Bonnie (Zoe Kravitz) telling her mother she loved her before her death and finally telling Nathan (James Tupper) her true feelings for him — and a Nicole Kidman-Meryl Streep courtroom showdown for the ages which resulted in Celeste maintaining custody of her boys despite Mary Louise's best efforts.
However, when Bonnie gathered all five women together and they marched single-file into the police station before the episode faded to black, many fans were troubled by the fact that they were apparently going to confess what had happened at trivia night a year ago. The series did its best to set up a third season, but many fans aren't calling for one.