'Pose' finale review: Season 2 could be the storm to the calm of Season 1 finale
The finale was predictable to some extent as Blanca scored 'Mother of the Year' trophy but no deaths make us dread Season 2 a little too much
Warning: Spoilers ahead
All wishes come true in the season finale of 'Pose,' and there's a collective sigh of relief as situations predictably unfold. The mighty Elektra, who in the last episode had signed up to dance in the Peep World, is rescued by the benevolent Blanca and is given refuge in the House of Evangelista.
It shouldn't be a surprise that the story set in the 1980s drag ballroom culture, battling the ugly AIDS epidemic, has an essence of a fairytale, an empowering kind, without any tragic deaths, yet (because season 2 has been renewed and we don't know what to expect).
But coming to this season finale, there's an ode to be addressed for the emotional journey 'Pose' has granted to its characters and the audience who have invested in them.
From Damon's hopelessness to aspirations, from Elektra's pride to her fall from Blanca's boldness to her grace, the eight episodes of an hour each offered a flavorsome taste of 1980s New York and its ground realities.
The emotional episode 8 titled 'Mother of the Year,' featured a knock out finale between the House of Evangelista and the newly formed House of Ferocity.
It was astounding to see the quick progress made by Lulu and Candy for their House and the number of members they gathered. However, as it turns out, the members were only there for the numbers since they were quick to give up their loyalty following Elektra's intervention.
Candy and Lulu, after breaking away from Elektra's shattered House of Abundance in the last episode, turned into an even more vicious version of their former mother and made Blanca cry.
But guess what? Blanca made it. As promised in the very first episode of 'Pose,' when Blanca leaves Elektra's House of Abundance, after being diagnised HIV positive. She had stated that she would become a mother who looked after her children and to mark her legacy -- the "proof that I was here." And, in episode eight we see that happen in the most tear-jerking manner.
The episode starts with Elektra, who in the previous 'Pink Slip' episode had been rendered homeless. We see the once-glorious Elektra sleep in restaurants and park benches until Blanca, like a fairy godmother, appears like Stan, to rescue Elektra.
They head to the diner, where all important conversations seem to take place, and Elektra despite her sharp tongue breaks down before Blanca. The bond completes a full circle as Blanca takes Elektra to her house, whilst Ricky and Damon get kicked out from their room.
Elektra orders around but soon realizes that Blanca is the house mother and she will have it her way. Elektra is made to quit working in a sex trade and Blanca helps Elektra find a decent job as a hostess in a restaurant. Elektra gets the job, gets her pay cheque, gains her dignity and becomes an Evangelista.
It is not just Elektra who is touched by Blanca's fairy dust. Pray Tell finds the magic of love as Blanca sets him up on a date with a bartender/sculptor, who is smitten by the charismatic ballroom host.
Tell, himself HIV positive, has witnessed so many of his loved ones succumb to the disease, that he tells Blanca that “life has become a wash of gray.” Blanca refuses to see Tell give up on life so she tells him to call the number she bagged from the bartender. Turns out, the man is ready to love Pray Tell despite his positive diagnosis.
Blanca serves to remind us of love and its humongous potential. She finally lets go of the secret she has been hiding since the very first episode. She tells Angel, that she is the next in line to be the mother of the House of Evangelista. “I need you to take care of this house,” she says. “It’s not tomorrow, but it’s sooner than you think. You are going to be a mother to all these children and more.”
With this Angel finds her salvation because when Stan shows up almost at the end of the episode, (after telling his wife he loves her), Angel lets go of Stan. He tells her he wants her back, says he will take care of her and treat her like a woman. But Angel hints thanks, but no thanks. She tells Stan that she has changed since the time they met and she now has a family to take care of.
At the drag ballroom, when the showdown is linen vs silk, House of Ferocity walks in with Candy and Lulu leading the pack. House of Evangelista challenges Ferocity, and as Elektra works her magic because she is after all the mightiest, Evangelista scores a win. Ferocity loses three members to Evangelista, including Lil Papi. Candy in a fit to bag a trophy goes all out to vogue but ends up making a fool of herself and also gets into an embarrassing duel with one of the judges.
After the categories are won by the Evangelistas, who stand for nothing but goodwill and home to the lost souls, an unanimous vote for the 'Mother of the Year' is awarded to Blanca. The hall full of people chants her name and she is hailed by everyone including Elektra and Pray Tell. The closing scene of the finale is of Evangelistas sitting around a dining table, enjoying a hearty Chinese meal, cheering and laughing in good spirits.
The satisfying ending makes you hope to see more happy times but a certain part of your heart wishes that this can be the final ending. Nobody wants to see Blanca die, nobody wants to see Pray Tell die. This was beautiful, like a calm before the storm.