Undone: Season 1 (Full Season)
September 22, 2019 5:45 PM - All Seasons - Subscribe

Discussing content of all the episodes here.
posted by bitterkitten (8 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Pretty great stuff! I do have one question though; i realize the end is left ambiguous, though it does seem like Alma doesn't have the magics for real. However - she does know Mom was at the lab the night her Dad died, which she did not previously know as far as I can tell. ?
posted by bitterkitten at 5:48 PM on September 22, 2019

I came out leaning on the side by that Alma has magic but not to change, only to see.
posted by Karmakaze at 8:09 PM on September 22, 2019 [2 favorites]

Usually these narratives try to stick to the line of ambiguity between mental illness and magic. They made that pretty explicit with the guard, whose missing sister Alma "saw" but her boyfriend realized she could have inferred from the guard's pictures and screensaver. Similarly, guessing that her mother shared everyone else's suspicions about her dad having an affair seems like a small leap, particularly because Alma and her mother didn't actually corroborate the details of what happened. And indeed there's the mild suggestion that Alma's version assumes the conflict that night was about her, whereas her mother's version implied that there was likely some argument about her dad's own schizophrenia -- which doesn't come up at all in Alma's version even though her mother says it had been an issue for a year and is pretty apropos when her mother exclaims "do you listen to yourself?".

Often showrunners "know" for themselves what is true while trying to hold the line of ambiguity, and in this case I think they are on the side of schizophrenia which they want to represent as being indistinguishable from magic. But who can say for sure as long as they keep it properly ambiguous. I liked the show but found the last two episodes kind of clunky, especially if one has seen lots of what-is-real-and-what-is-madness narratives before. Like many such stories, it maintains that ambiguity a bit implausibly from the reality side, since it isn't very realistic that her intuitive guesses turn out always correct, and yet I think they want us to believe that it's plausibly nonmagical intuition. It's also a bit off-putting that the realities of mental illness are often distorted or buffed over in these kinds of stories in order to make a more engaging and ambiguous narrative. But in any case, it was certainly beautiful and entertaining, and I hope they can pull off another season, and don't fall into all the many waiting pitfalls that similar shows like Legion so well demonstrated.
posted by chortly at 10:43 PM on September 22, 2019

Such a beautiful and well-executed show. Such a shame they chose not to finish the story.

In the current age of binge-and-disappear, it's just bad form to end on an ambiguous note like that. For example, we won't be getting Season 3 of The Tick but at least Season 2 tied up its storylines.

Even so, that very final shot was a fine example of visual storytelling.
posted by whuppy at 6:19 AM on September 23, 2019

I was happy with it through about episode 6, but they whiffed the ending so badly I ended up feeling like the whol thing was a waste of my time. I'm 100% turned off by the hamfistedness of the ambiguity. I get they think they're doing something interesting but for me the narrative ended up feeling more like a seat-of-the-pants story told without actually knowing what the real answer was (see also: Lost). That's a giant pet peeve for me, because it's so disrespectful to the reader/watcher. I mean, do the work and tell the story.

(This kind of hackery is a common pitfall when non-genre people try to work in genre, because I guess lots of folks with no real experiencing reading or creating fantastic works don't understand that the worlds have to make sense internally, etc.; it's not just a game of crazy make-it-up.)

When the final credits came up, I felt immensely cheated. Honestly, I'd love to have those 4 hours back. I absolutely regret telling people about it, and I cannot imagine giving these showrunners more of my time in the future.
posted by uberchet at 11:16 AM on September 23, 2019 [1 favorite]

I thoroughly enjoyed it but was mildly disappointed at the end with the somewhat unresolved ending; I interpreted that she realized that she may be schizophrenic because she was able to see other things (and she may have some power by learning that her mother broke into the lab) but couldn't change things.....
posted by fizzix at 3:43 PM on September 24, 2019

Just finished watching it. I absolutely loved it and came away feeling like Rosa Salazar needs to be recognized as a major talent.

I felt like the experience of watching the show was thrown off by it being labeled “Season 1”—it led me to think of the ending as a cliffhanger, whereas after a brief amount of consideration the ending worked for me as a full-on ending. I loved the show but don’t necessarily think it would be improved by a second season.
posted by ejs at 9:05 PM on September 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

Just finished it, it's fantastic. Although it's weird that the only time I've seen Rosa Salazar without the masking effect of image processing (see also: Alita Battle Angel) is in a Short Treks episode.
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:06 PM on October 25, 2019

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