The Spillers & The Sullivans
Ethan lies in bed once again and imagines Harper and Cameron having sex at the start of The White Lotus episode 7. In the next room, Cameron gets gritty when Daphne calls out to her to talk with his kids. Does this confirm that he knows they aren’t his kids or is Cameron just a raging A-hole? You have your choice, viewers!
At breakfast, Ethan is surprised when Harper calls Cameron an “idiot” quite casually for something idiotic he said.
It intensifies his suspicions. Ethan gets paranoid and confronts Harper. She says the same lines Ethan said to her when she did not believe him. How the tables have turned!
This role reversal, though, does culminate in the truth. Harper admits they kissed in their room but that was it. She cut it off straight away (just like in the movie “Brothers”). Ethan has a reaction like Tobey Maguire’s character did. Harper tries to steer the conversation towards the real problem – their marriage – but he is relentless.
He goes to the Sullivans but Cameron isn’t there. Daphne points him toward the beach. Ethan confronts Cameron and they have a fight, with the latter almost drowning. A tourist breaks them up and Ethan walks away. Ethan finds Daphne on the beach, chilling on her own. He tells her the truth and for a minute, Daphne is broken. She regains calm and tries to dissuade Ethan. That change of emotion from Meghann Fahy was stunning. She has played the character beautifully!
“Do whatever you have to do not to feel a victim of life”, Daphne says and goes to Isola Bella with Ethan. What they do next is not shown but we pretty much know already. At dinner, they sit separately but Cameron and Daphne join the Spillers. Cameron gives a faux, pretentious toast. Ethan and Harper come back to the room. They have passionate sex when Harper asks him what is next, implying that Ethan does not want to become a victim.
Di Grassos and Lucia
Albie promises he will save Lucia, which brings a smile to her face. He even invites her to LA. Dom sits thinking about what he lost in the next room. He desperately wants a second chance and it comes at breakfast when Albie offers a deal. Albie asks for 50,000 euros from Dominic to give to Lucia. He calls out his naivety and says that Albie is a mark. Albie calls it the “karmic payments” for all the vices he has committed.
The deal is that Albie will convince his mother that Dominic has changed. Dominic accepts it. Lucia receives the money from Cameron. Bert is hugged by Mia and told merrily that she got the job. He admits later to the table that he got a little aroused when she hugged him and it is a palm-to-forehead moment for Albie and Dominic.
Lucia is happy when Albie tells her he transferred the money. Albie had talked to his mother even before Dominic told him that he had given Albie the money, showing that the son trusts his father and has made an honest attempt to change. Dominic was right. Lucia was playing with Albie and leaves the room before he can wake up.
Tanya, Portia, and the “gays”
Quentin informs Tanya that they’re leaving for Taormina. Matteo will be staying back at the palazzo, though but she couldn’t care less. She complains about the assistants she has had at breakfast. Portia wakes up next to jack and cannot find her phone. She suspects he has taken it (and she is right). The nervousness in both scenes is presented quite subtly, just like how the characters behave in the situation.
She reluctantly settles back into bed and says that Jack isn’t on Instagram or anywhere. Who is he, really? His face changes and a dread settles on Portia’s. Tanya recognizes Greg from the photo but believes Quentin when he says it is Steve.
Portia suspects Jack stole her phone and she calls Tanya from his phone. Tanya tells him the truth about that night and Portia is shocked. Portia also reveals to Tanya that “the gays” might be trying to do “something bad to her”. Tanya suddenly realizes it was Greg who insisted they come to Sicily and got annoyed when he saw Portia with her as it spoiled his plans to kill her.
Tanya says that because of the prenup, Greg will get nothing if they divorce but everything if she dies. Jack snatches the phone and says he will take Portia to Taormina. The boat anchors just some miles off the shore. Portia confronts Jack and asks him to tell the truth. He remains quiet and starts to drive away, only to yell “let me complete my job”.
Tanya drops her phone in a panic and spots the captain who does not speak English. The funny sequence sees her rightly guess the entire scheme and how she was set up but the Captain understands nothing. She spots Niccolo arriving on the dinghy. Tanya refuses to get on the dinghy and makes an excuse to take Niccolo’s black bag. She locks herself in and opens it.
Ropes, duct tape, and a gun are what she finds. She takes out the gun, crying, and shoots at anything she sees. When she comes out, she has killed almost everyone, except Quentin. In typical “Tanya style”, she asks him, “Is Greg having an affair?”, and all Quentin can do is vomit blood. Hugo runs away and jumps off; so does the captain. Tanya sees the dinghy and prepares to jump, saying “I can do this”, but quickly loses her footing and hits her head on the dinghy.
She drowns, and her body is discovered by Daphne on the beach. We come back to the present timeline from the first episode. Portia is dropped off by Jack in Catania near the airport. “They are powerful people and I do not advise you to go back to the hotel”, Jack says. He drops off her phone as well.
The Hotel and Valentina
Valentina wakes up in bed with Mia. She cannot find her underwear in the tension when a housemaid sees her in the bedroom. But she still makes the time to blush quite awkwardly when Mia compliments her for her “skills”. Valentina also brings back Rocco, visibly less angry at him after the previous night.
But when Giuseppe comes back, Valentina is caught in a situation. She fires him and explains that the audience like Mia better. The pianist is angry and the other staff is stunned but he has to walk away.
How does The White Lotus season 2 end?
So, we come back to the resort and wrap things up. The police discover the bodies on the boat. At the airport, the Di Grassos check in, and even though Dominic sees a beautiful woman pass him by, he is unperturbed, hinting he has changed. Ethan and Harper’s marriage has been refurbished but Cameron is still bitter from the other day.
Portia and Albie meet once again and he tells her about the “drowned guest”. She instantly makes the connection and exchanges numbers with him, not wanting to let the “nice guy” get away. Albie accepts Lucia played him and gladly exchanges numbers.
Lucia and Mia walk together in the streets of Sicily and greet Alessio, who was playing a part. He is a friend after all! “The best things in life are free!”
The Episode Review
So, Tanya does not survive the conspiracy after all. Mike White did have a “Survivor” like trick up his sleeve to bamboozle us. We all thought it will not happen but we have to bid Tanya goodbye for now. This finale might be one of the best wrap-ups we have seen recently in television due to the sheer balance that White struck between story and exposition.
Almost all characters got a great sendoff from a writing perspective. My personal favorite was Fahy’s Daphne. She is the pick of the lot and her character is the one that felt the most real. Think of it this way. You kind of knew all the other characters on the island. Daphne is the only one whose trauma from her life beyond the island you could see. Something wounded inside her screamed to come out on the surface and yet did not. Like that volcano, she convinced herself into believing an alternate truth. It is all about control.
She wanted to feel like she held the reins when truly, nothing in her life had any meaning whatsoever. It is all “fugazi”, as McCaughey proclaimed Wall Street in “The Wolf of the Wall Street”.
Mia had her own way to work her “marks”. Lucia and Mia were the big victors in the end. Mia also proved to Lucia that she could work the magic on her “marks” in her own way without any malice involved. She got the job in the end. Lucia just gave her the confidence to be herself and ask the world what she wants. Valentina got something in return as well. Perhaps the freedom to be herself? But by agreeing to be “set up” by Mia, did she abandon an old, honest part of her? Food for thought, readers.
Albie and Portia got what they deserved. They were perhaps the most unlikable characters and very misunderstood. Dominic redeemed himself and took away a happy ending from Sicily. A great end to a brilliant season and we now know there will be a season 3 as well! More to come in a detailed season review.