This piece was written during the 2023 WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes. Without the labor of the writers and actors currently on strike, Sweet Magnolias wouldn’t exist. We stand with the WGA and SAG-AFTRA.
Sweet Magnolias 3×09 “Somebody I’m Longing to See” takes us almost there, to the end of the season, to a place of peace for the Magnolias, to a good stopping point – at least for now, for both Maddie and Cal and Ronnie and Dana Sue, and perhaps, to another beginning for Helen, one where she can finally, truly let go of the past.
But the episode is also, in many ways, a fresh start for these women as individuals. For a Maddie who has found herself as a person in Season 3, for a Dana Sue who has found her strength as half of a couple, and for a Helen who has learned that she could crash and burn and still come out from that a woman worthy of being loved.
There are, perhaps, all things the Magnolias didn’t know about themselves, perhaps all lessons they needed to learn. Not the final lessons, there are always new ones, but that doesn’t make them any less important nonetheless.
WITH LOVE, FROM MADDIE
The Maddie of Season 3, the one who is going to write a book with her daughter and her mother, the one who stood up to Cal’s ex, not because she’s a petty jealous woman, but because Cal needed someone to stand up for him, is a Maddie I’m proud of. Who would have thought when she was throwing Bill’s things out of the house that we would ever be rooting for this Maddie Townsend, not because we felt sorry for her, but because we felt proud of her?
She’s no damsel in distress, this Maddie. And she’s not trying to fix the town, or her friends she’s just doing her best to be a good friend, a good mom and a good girlfriend. The rest just happens as she’s being who she is, and well, the people around her just reap the benefits.
CHANGE IS SCARY
The winds of change are blowing in Serenity, and though it is Helen that puts it to words, she is not the only one that’s feeling it. Ty’s future is starting to take shape, even if right now – that shape is pretty much undetermined. And that’s okay, really. The strangest thing about being young is how we have to decide what we want at an age when we don’t really know what we want.
But Ty has a good support system around him, so he can make his own decision, even if that decision is to put off the decision. And he isn’t the only one who is struggling with change, as everyone from CeCe to Annie and Kyle is, in some way, trying to figure out where they belong and how they fit in – in Serenity, and in the large world out there. Luckily for these kids, they have a very big supportive community around that, if and when they make mistakes, because that’s what being young is about, will be there to lend a hand.
And yes, change implies getting some things wrong. Not every decision we make will be the right one. And sometimes, as Helen said, the people who love us won’t always react the best way, but that’s not because they don’t support us, it’s because they don’t want to see us hurt. But those people, the ones who really, really care, will always be the first ones to have our back when we fall. Like Ty is there for Annie, like Maddie and Dana Sue are there for Helen. That’s what loving each other means.
Things I think I think:
- Right Kyle, now you’re asking the right questions?
- Oh, joy, Cal. Drama in the penultimate episode.
- Maddie and Helen offer to put together the ceremony, something small (ha, who believes them!)
- “Do you need a consigliere?” is a good question.
- The wedding is going to end up being huge, but everyone’s helping and it’s so beautiful.
- Maddie’s “this dinner could have been an email” HA
- “Those who truly love us are also the first to lift us to our feet when we fall.”
- Helen talking to Ty about Ryan kinda works, I’m gonna say.
- “The only permanent choice you ever need to make is to be a good person.”
- Why is everyone literally like call Erik?
Agree? Disagree? What did you think of Sweet Magnolias 3×09 “Somebody I’m Longing to See”? Share with us in the comments below!
Sweet Magnolias Season 3 is now available to stream on Netflix.