“Hella Perspective”: ‘Insecure’ Season Finale Recap
By Daren and Jenn
Sunday night’s season finale of Insecure took us through a range of emotions. It was probably the best-written episode of the series yet. But, we have a lot of unpacking to do.
Here’s our take on “Hella Perspective.”
Season Finale Recap
The episode opens with Issa (Issa Rae) bumping right up into gentrification in Inglewood. This has been subtlely hinted at all season. But we all knew it was a wrap the second Inglewood was referred to as “I-Wood”. And no, we’re not ever going to repeat that again. From there, the episode is broken up to show the same 30 days in the lives of each character.
Lawrence (played by Jay Ellis) and his coworkers are running in the Long Beach marathon that they’ve been training for. The mood is really light until Lawrence sees Molly (played by Yvonne Orji) and Issa on the sideline. He’s clearly pressed.
After the race, Aparna (played by Jasmine Kaur) and Lawrence are warming his new place, which is a huge step up from the apartment he shared with Issa. And as the month goes on, things seem to be going well for them outside of his growing jealousy toward Colin (played by Ahamed Weinberg), another coworker Aparna slept with. Once Chad (played by Neil Brown Jr.) and Derek (played by Wade Allain-Marcus) come over and give him the worst advice ever, he confronts Aparna and low-key calls her a liar. Just then, Issa calls. So, Aparna hops out the ride.
Molly is at the Long Beach Marathon with Issa. She is clearly developing feelings for Quentin (played by Lil Rel Howery) but is in denial because he “isn’t her type.” She has been scheduling interviews with other law firms and planning on using their job offers for leverage at her current firm. Just like Quentin suggested. Then after her therapist suggests that she consider a romantic relationship with him, she finally makes her move and sleeps with him.
At work, instead of giving her a promotion, her white male managers gave her a “Rising Star Award”. And back at her apartment, she’s in her bed talking a man we don’t see or hear (fingers crossed that it’s Quentin) after having sex when Issa calls her.
Back at the marathon, Kelli (played by Natasha Rothwell) is at the finish line under an emergency blanket since her period hit during the race. Tiffany (played by Amanda Seales) and Derek announce that they are with child. Though with Tiffany’s random disappearances and Derek himself saying that they had stopped trying, it seems like we might have a Maury situation on our hands.
Then Issa sees Lawrence and Aparna kissing, and after it is made clear that she is the only one in the clique without anything happening in her life, she lets everyone know that she is moving since she can’t afford the increased rent and the apartment is triggering.
At work, Issa tries to fix the situation at her school by having weekend sessions for the Latino students. But the whole thing backfires when her boss Joanne (played by Catherine Curtin) somehow thinks this could be grounds for a lawsuit (but we all know that’s not how the law is set up). And on top of all of that, Freida (played by Lisa Joyce) wins the promotion for Director of Outreach. This will probably backfire in season three.
Then as Issa comes back to her apartment to give the landlord the keys, Lawrence is waiting for her inside. They have an adult heart-to-heart conversation that ends with Issa fantasizing an ending with a marriage proposal, wedding, and child. But we know that only happens in white romantic comedies. In real life, he just collects his turtleneck situation, says “bye,” and leaves.
The episode joins up the timelines at this point. Issa and Molly have a Moroccan-themed dinner since Issa couldn’t afford to go on vacation. And their Waiting to Exhale moment shows that no matter how terrible things are going in their professional and romantic lives, their friendship will always persevere.
The episode ends with Lawrence sending a friend request to Issa, Molly inviting Dro (played by Sarunas J. Jackson) back over to restart their situationship (as she is clad in sexy lingerie), and Issa staying with Daniel (played by Y’lan Noel) … but sleeping on the couch.
Next season will, clearly, be hella lit.
Daren: Kudos to Issa Rae for putting together a truly artistic episode. I liked that the focus was put on each character for an extended period of time. It was the perfect way to bring things full circle. Issa went through all of that mess just to end up right back with Daniel. As far as we know, Molly is at the same bunk ass job being unappreciated and choosing good D over serious commitment. And Lawrence is alone with only his trust issues to keep him warm at night.
I’ve somewhat warmed to Lawrence through this season. We can finally see him for who he is: just a fuck boy with trust issues. But I found myself loathing Issa by the end. I felt for her not getting that fairytale dream, but I honestly can’t say that she did much to make it a reality either. She needs to finally close that chapter and move on.
Even still, I’m most upset with Molly. While I completely understand her workplace dilemma (Corporate America is a serious mindfuck), she has options. Same thing with her love life. She has plenty of options, but she somehow keeps choosing the worst one. She should just make it official with Quentin (and teach him what works for her sexually) and ditch the white law firm.
Jenn: I think the season finale was great in that it provided a lot of closure. Molly finally slept with Quentin, ending the sexual tension and awkwardness we have witnessed the entire season. Issa moved out of the apartment that constantly reminded her of Lawrence and what wasn’t going to be. Lawrence admitted that he was low-key (or high-key) depressed for the two years that Issa was supporting his “woot woot” app endeavors. And the friendships are all intact. Essentially, things have been level set.
I do wonder how Lawrence will remain on the show given that he has no significant role. Unless he and Issa agree to work on a relationship again or become friends, there is literally no point for him to be there.
What surprised me about this finale was how little attention was paid to characters like Ahmal (Issa’s queer brother) and Kelli (the group’s sex positive, curvy friend). I thought this episode was an opportunity to give them both more screen time and introduce new storylines. But, that doesn’t seem to be happening. Hopefully, season three will prove me wrong.
Jenn: Unlike season one, this season actually made me very sad. On the “Hella Blows” episode, I was hopeful because I thought maybe shit was looking up. I thought maybe Molly was getting the D from Dro but wasn’t catching feelings (wrong). I thought Issa was moving away from her fuck girl ways and taking some ownership of how she continues to passively self-sabotage and harm herself (wrong). And I thought maybe Lawrence was gone for good (also, wrong).
If nothing else, this season shows how difficult those twenty-something years are and how so many of us just stumble and bumble through them half-inebriated.
Daren: This season was so frustrating because it feels like no progress was made. Still, I feel like it was an accurate reflection on Millennial life. Issa, Molly, Lawrence, and the entire cast are fighting to feel secure. And every time something seems to be solidifying, it is either snatched away (like Issa’s job security) or they make dumb ass decisions that fuck it up (like Molly inviting Dro back over). As they do their best to figure out what being an adult means to each of them, they can’t help but learn things the hard way.
I expect that next season will find our 3 leads in even more complicated situations. I think Issa will try to make something real with Daniel only to struggle in seeing a future. Molly will find out that Candace didn’t really know about her and have to face that she is a mistress. And if they don’t loop Lawrence back in with everyone else, I won’t even care what happens to him.
Photo via HBO
Want More Convos Like This One?
Latest posts by Staff (see all)
- “Hella Perspective”: ‘Insecure’ Season Finale Recap - September 11, 2017
- ‘Insecure’ Season 2 Episode 7 Recap: “Hella Disrespectful” - September 5, 2017
- ‘Insecure’ Season 2 Episode 6 Recap: “Hella Blows” - August 31, 2017
- ‘Insecure’ Season 2 Episode 5 Recap: “Hella Shook” - August 21, 2017
- An Open Letter to LeBron “The Kang” James in Response to ‘Trainwreck’ - August 5, 2015