Going into The Leftovers season 3, the assumption was already made that not everyone was going to make it to the finale alive. There was so much grief, so much suffering, and so many memories you could not walk back from.
This is why, at the end of Sunday night’s “Certified,” it was none other than Laurie who opted to take her own life. She’d determined that she’d had enough of this world, and knowing that the anniversary wasn’t going to bring anything that she found a relief, she just found a way to take control rather than embrace the unknown freely. She opted to take a dive into the ocean, but not before answering the phone and getting one final chance to say goodbye to her kids — remember when Jill was actually an important part of the show? Feels like forever ago. (The only quibble with the episode is that this phone call felt a tad unnecessary, and the dialogue a little too neat and befitting a farewell.)
Meanwhile, Laurie’s final scene with Kevin was beyond devastating, given that it touched on everything that the two have encompassed over the years: Lovers, allies, bitter rivals, exes, and the bizarre sort of therapist / client relationship they’ve had going on as of late. She did share some funny moments with Kevin, but also did reveal to him that she was pregnant prior to the Departure happening.
Nora also had her last moment with Laurie, one brought on by a mission for her to try and track down the doctors responsible for the experiment that turned her away. This is Nora continuing to refuse to accept the normal, but as she refuses to believe that her children are dead, she cannot envision herself diving to the deaths without hope of surfacing. These doctors and their odd experiment are the other way. She still wants to stop it, just as much as she still wants to debunk it. Effectively, she continues to struggle when it comes to making up her mind.
From start to finish, heartache was a theme of this episode, as well as what people will do in order to calm it. In the case of Laurie, it was end everything; for Kevin Senior and Grace, it’s preparing for a flood that may never happen. For Kevin, it is facing the unknown that is his potential death once more in preparation for said storm to come. “Certified” said a lot of things, but it also ended with one thing: Emptiness. Finality. The feeling that everyone may have when the clock stops ticking.
The Leftovers has always been an exploration of character more so than the circumstances in which they are found. It’s not a story meant to dive you information so much as it is one that makes you feel. Laurie’s end was a powerful one, and while unrelenting and sad, this was still fantastic television. Grade: A-.
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