Baffled by the Chilling ‘Sharp Objects’ Finale? Here’s What to Read

Baffled by the Chilling ‘Sharp Objects’ Finale? Here’s What to Read

‘In “Sharp Objects,” the Answers Were There All Along’ [The Ringer]

Whether you found its final revelation too obvious, too opaque or chillingly perfect, The Ringer’s Miles Surrey argues that, “The murder mystery and the show’s unnerving tone weren’t mutually exclusive — they informed each other, while the dynamics among the three women and the trauma passed down through the family continued to evolve.” “In the end, ‘Sharp Objects’ was able to have its cake and eat it too: It could be a compelling treatise on a town stained by sin and complicity, a brooding character study, and a mystery with one heck of a twist.”

‘“Sharp Objects” Broke the Mystery Box’ [Vulture]

Kathryn VanArendonk spent the season following the many hidden words that kept popping up on the screen — a task that led her to conclude: “‘Sharp Objects’ is as full of hidden things as any TV show I’ve ever seen, but those things are not really clues. These hidden words don’t lead us to information the show was otherwise trying to keep from us; they’re words that make text out of subtext.”

‘“In Sharp Objects,” Love Is Poison’ [The Atlantic]

For Sophie Gilbert, the show resonated as an inquiry into a twisted form of love. “It isn’t coincidental that Adora and Amma’s names are both derived from words meaning ‘love,’ even though, as characters, they embody the opposite — not an outpouring of love but an unquenchable need to absorb and consume it,” Gilbert writes. “The paradox of ‘Sharp Objects’ is that for years, Camille has protected herself by shutting herself off from love, using her scars as armor and her emotional numbness as self-protection.”

‘In a Breathtaking Finale, “Sharp Objects” Takes Us to the Underworld and Back Again’ [A.V. Club]

Laura Bogart found profundity in Amma’s Persephone speech, early in the episode. “Camille is, of course, the series’s Persephone incarnate,” she explains: “Until now, she’s been defined by the path she took into hell; we know her by what was done to her. Yet this finale episode reimagines Persephone’s descent as something more potent than mere victimhood — it’s a heroine’s journey, where Hades isn’t just about torment, it’s about temptation, the chance to succumb to her desires for her mother’s love (or the approximation of that love) and for the release of death.”

‘HBO’s “Sharp Objects” Finale Twist Was Extremely Grisly. And Confusing. And Infuriating’ [The Washington Post]

But a mini-series this divisive was never going to please everyone with its resolution. Emily Yahr writes, “It’s a classic and frustrating TV trick to abruptly end a show and leave the audience to interpret what they just saw.” But, as she sees it, “in this case, it felt like there were simply too many big questions left. How did Amma involve her friends in the murders? How did she pry out the teeth, when the show made sure to emphasize that it would take a very strong person to do so? Is the assumption that Amma killed Mae, as well? Most importantly: Why did she kill them?!”

‘“Sharp Objects” Finale: Wait, What Just Happened?’ [Vanity Fair]

Sonia Saraiya found the finale similarly frustrating. “It’s hard to tell if ‘Sharp Objects’ concludes, or simply just stops,” she writes. “Its ending is interesting, but definitively unsatisfying. And considering all the subtext and trauma that this story has dredged up and dealt with, leaving this revelation unaddressed reads as if the show has given up on making sense of its own plot.”

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