The final season of Divorce premiered Monday night and here’s a quick review of the first episode. Frances (played by Sarah Jessica Parker) finds herself on a quest for employment. After the fire at her art gallery, it appears that her insurer isn’t going to find everyday paintings of any real monetary value. So that means Frances must go and get a normal job. After a couple of seasons of this show, something still feels a bit blah about Frances and her predictable outlook on life. One of the lower points of the writing with this series is that, well, she tends to never really activate any excitement. A show about divorce and there doesn’t ever seem to be any magical moments for its leading lady. She does land a job doing something with birds. This could be interesting, though I’m not really sold yet. The writers’ sub-par attempt of capturing a woman in desperation and selling herself as a bird aficionado just didn’t land for me.
Frances ex-husband, Robert (played by Thomas Haden Church), seems to be in a good space. He and his fiance, Jackie (Becki Newton), navigate the waters of their new life. In preparation for their wedding, we learn that she’s pregnant. As a result of a medical condition, she is required to be bedridden until further notice. To be a 54-year-old dad… I can only imagine! In the end, Frances does learn, and in traditional Frances fashion, she internalizes it, and goes off and sleeps with her latest love interest.
Her friend, Diane (Molly Shannon) tends to be the magic that keeps the show moving in a way that says, maybe I’ll tune in next week and see how this unfolds. Diane’s divorce story is the real shining moment. She is a bundle of chaos and feels like what a divorce would look like. Ok, well, a divorce we’d want to watch on TV. Diane has had it, and while she’s learning how to live life without money, it’s a hell of a journey to watch. She’s crashing with their other friend, Dallas (Talia Balsam), who will do anything to get her out. Diane feels fleshed out. She’s a woman who seems to be on a journey of self-actualization. Hopefully, she realizes that the one thing she had to lose wasn’t her money or her husband, but herself.
All in all, when I learned this series was ending I wasn’t surprised. There are some decent moments along the way, but nothing about this show seems like anything HBO would keep around longer than it had to. I’m a big SJP fan so I imagine that alone is one of the reasons I continue to watch the show. But, this season, it’s my hope that we see her live more, embrace her singleness in a way that doesn’t feel so predictable and rigid. Check out the trailer for the new season below.