'My Brilliant Friend': Now that Lenu is spending the summer without Lila, here's what awaits her
A summer of love, and a bond being put to test, Episode 6 will return as the two girls fight their war without each other.
Lila hogged the limelight in the fifth episode when she and Lenu, along with their neighborhood friends stepped out into the buzzing cosmopolitan town, an entirely different world from their tiny neighborhood in Naples. HBO's adaptation of the first book of Elena Ferrante's Neapolitan Novels, 'My Brilliant Friend', follows the plight of two young girls whose friendship is put to test not just by the feud in the neighborhood between the rich and the poor, but by also how the brilliance of one friend is perceived as a threat to the intellect by the other friend. Starring Margherita Mazzucco (as Elena/Lenu) and Gaia Girace (as Raffaella/Lila), the Saverio Costanzo-created show is set against the dangerous but fascinating Naples, Italy, in the 1950s.
The fifth episode was a clear depiction of the Cerullo sibling's urge to do away with the rags of poverty and embrace the glitters of the rich. Following the incidents of the fourth episode, which saw a massive transformation in the otherwise docile Rino (played by Gennaro De Stefano), Lila's brother, Episode 5 gave out every reason for Rino to behave the way he has been. When their father, Signor Cerullo, discovers the shoe that his children have been working on, he is immediately infuriated- not by the flaws in the craft but by his children's (especially Rino's) urge to do better than him in their lives. This man, who had thrown his daughter off the window in the second episode, managed to once again undermine the efforts of his son.
Rino, who was already on the brink of a violent breakdown in the last episode, took up the opportunity of going to town to showcase his spontaneity when it comes to dealing with worldly affairs. Clearly, Rino fails once again but this time his failure brought about a new set of dynamics in the neighborhood as the Solaras came to defend him and his friends. In the early part of the episode we had already witnessed Marcello (played by Elvis Esposito), the infamous Solaras son, declare his proposal to Lila who turned it down on the grounds that she loathed his wealth. However, Marcello has always got what he wanted and Lila's rejection did not stop him from going over to her family who is now perceiving him as a golden ticket at the cost of Lila's freedom.
While most of the fifth episode chiefly concentrated on Lila's plight in rejecting two men, Marcello, and the rustic intellectual Communist, Pasquale (played by Eduardo Scarpetta), the sixth episode will take a look at Lenu, who is about to set out on her journey- for the first time, without Lila. Before you tune in to the sixth episode which is set to release on December 3, here are three things that you need to look forward to:
1. A Bright Summer
In spite of being the narrator of her own story, Lenu has never been depicted as an individual but more like a shadow lurking underneath Lila's aura. For the first time, Lenu is about to set foot away from the neighborhood and all its feuds, and she will embark on a summer without Lila and all her concepts of freedom. Less than two hours by ferry, but almost a world apart from the dingy neighborhood of Naples, Ischia will serve as a moment of recluse for Lenu. Although her desire to visit the sea was instigated by Lila years back when they had bunked school to pay a visit to the sea, this summer Lenu will finally live her dream of touching the sea along with its endless possibilities.
2. Lost love
Nino Sarratore (played by Francesco Serpico) has been Lenu's childhood sweetheart but when he asked for her hand in their early days as kids, she had refused to accept the proposal but was secretly glad about it. However, with the sudden death of Don Achilles, the Sarratores were forced to leave the neighborhood. Lenu once again met Nino as a teenager but realized that he no longer recognizes her. In the sixth episode, the two will once again meet during their long summer break at Ischia, far away from the tormented life of their little neighborhood. Maybe finally they will able to spend time together, and probably Lenu will be able to confess her love for Nino.
3. The Rejection
In a small glimpse from the promo trailer of the sixth episode, we get to see Marcello forcing himself on Lila before pushing her head against the wall. Following the incidents of the fifth episode where Lila had clearly stated that she would never accept a Solaras because they are worse than animals, Marcello does not seem to yet give up on Lila. He is a boy who has got everything that he has asked for, and for the first time listening to rejection that too from someone as petty and poor as the Cerullos is insulting to him. The two might be in for some damning act, following which Lila will probably take up some drastic measures to put an end to Marcello's pursuit.
'My Brilliant Friend' episode 6 will air on December 3 on HBO. Watch the promo trailer below: