Dear Edward (Season 1), Episode 9: Since the beginning of ‘Dear Edward,’ the most bothersome aspect has been its overt sappiness. It compensates for the lack of maturity in its writing by trying to make us cry with conventional tricks. While the conflicts are not easy to live with, the treatment dulls the show’s impact. Besides that, its reliance on emotional reasoning over logical ones bothers me quite a bit. Such a treatment feels absurdly utopic and also evidently dated.
In its latest episode, streaming on Apple TV+, its characters confront the unorthodox decisions they took in the previous episodes and attempt to face the resulting challenges. If you are reading further, be aware that there are spoilers ahead.
Dear Edward (Season 1), Episode 9 Recap:
Episode 9: Paper Covers Rock
Earlier, we see Edward (Colin O’Brien) throwing a piano down the stairs. It happens right after Shay (Eva Ariel Binder) tells him that she does not want to hang out with him anymore. In that state of anger, he impulsively takes this action. So, he gets called into the school principal’s office and asked about the reason. He says he wanted to know what the piano sounded like when it fell. The principal feels like Edward is joking.
But Edward notes that his action did not hurt anyone. Instead, he threw it down after seeing that there was no one there. The principal empathizes with Edward’s trauma of being the only survivor of a plane crash incident. Still, he takes disciplinary action against Edward as his duty and rusticates him. Before leaving, Edward is told to have a word with the school psychologist. But the moment the principal leaves his office, Edward opens a window and runs out of the school.
He goes straight back to Lacey’s place and decides to play some classical music on tapes. That’s when he overhears some screams of pain. He realizes that pregnant Linda (Amy Forsyth) is in a lot of anguish. She asks him to call 911 for an ambulance. But he panics at that moment since the mention of an ambulance reminds him of being taken away from the plane crash scene with a wounded leg. Luckily, Linda calls the ambulance and gets taken to the hospital. Edward joins her.
On the other hand, Sam (Dario Ladani Sanchez) gets confronted by his wife about his chat with Vernon. She asks whether he is gay or bisexual. He gets confused about how to answer it and continues to deny accepting any such sexual identity. But he eventually confesses that Ben was the first love of his life. But neither of them acted upon it, and it ended right then in their childhood. Sam’s wife tells him to make a decision between a life with her or with someone else. She is not against him wanting to explore that side of him. But she does not want to be a part of an open relationship.
Adriana (Anna Uzele) continues with her election campaign, appeasing the constituents of that area to vote for her. She runs her campaign based on equitable change and makes the usual promises of progress. Meanwhile, Kojo (Idris Debrand) and Becks (Khloe Bruno) pack their bags to travel to Ghana. Since Adriana is busy with election work, she is not home. As a result, Becks sadly has to say goodbye by leaving just a pastel sketch of a plant. Kojo leaves with Becks, heavy-heartedly.
Meanwhile, Steve (Ivan Shaw) gets back with Amanda (Brittany S. Hall). Despite their earlier arguments related to Brent, they seem to have made peace with how Steve dealt with him in the past. Now they bake something together in Sam’s kitchen. She is confused about their relationship and asks him about it. He prefers to live in the moment and not dwell on it.
Dee Dee (Connie Britton) barges into their grief group counselor’s office to talk about their final session. Over the period, she grows fond of people from this group and became used to relying on them for her emotional needs. Now that it is ending, she wants to throw a small party. The counselor gives some money as his share for this gathering. While baking something herself, she asks Steve to bring something. He asks whether she wants him to bring something ‘oriental.’ She says that she only wants a diverse set of flavors for everyone. So, he offers to bring soup dumplings, which he was preparing with Amanda.
Dee Dee later barges into her daughter Zoe’s (Audrey Corsa) dorm room. Zoe was ignoring her texts after their recent talk about Charles. But Dee Dee wanted to have an honest conversation with her. She tells her all the details she kept hidden before out of guilt or embarrassment. Despite Zoe’s friends being in the room, Dee Dee reveals that Charles had a secret male lover. She apologizes for wanting a lavish lifestyle and for not being an ideal parent to her. Then, she apologizes for Charles’s mistakes, who could not properly fulfill his duties.
Meanwhile, Lacey (Taylor Schilling) gets a call from Edward’s school about his sudden disappearance. Upon reaching there, the principal tells her about all Edward did. She questions the principal why the school did not take care of him. At that moment, she suddenly gets a call from Edward’s phone, and a hospital staff member tells her that Linda has been admitted to the hospital. So, she rushes there to see her condition and then meets Edward. But she cannot come to terms with his reckless action in the school and his reason for it. So she tells John (Carter Hudson) to take care of him for the day.
John takes Edward out with him, and they get a chance to bond during their drive. Unlike Lacey or the principal, John does not mind his reasoning when he says that he wanted to hear what the piano sounds like when it falls down. He says he has done many stupid things like that as a kid. They have a word about the plane crash, where Edward confesses his survivor’s guilt. After winning, he played rock-paper-scissors with Jordan and took his window seat. So, he feels guilty for not being dead himself instead. John consoles him and tells him that he is alive because he is meant to be. Then they go together to John’s workplace.
Dear Edward (Season 1), Episode 9 Ending Explained:
Adriana is conflicted about how she should spend the day of Kojo’s return to Ghana. On one side, she wants to be with them when they leave. At the same time, she wants to do her duties for the election campaign. She eventually decides to go back home to meet him and Becks for the last time. But the two leave for the airport by then. Subsequently, security personnel stops them, and they get taken away to a room. Apparently, Adriana makes a meeting happen between them, whose childhood friend works in that airport staff.
Adriana asks Becks to make another drawing for her before leaving. Then she has an intimate conversation with Kojo about their future plans. She is still not ready to uproot her life in New York to move to Ghana. But there is still a desire to do so in the future. As a sweet gesture of making her connect with their place in Ghana, Kojo draws its map on her palms and tells her all the details. They use this to cope with their loss after falling in love for a short time.
On the other hand, Edward stays back in John’s room at his workplace while he goes out to work. While looking around, Edward stumbles upon a box of letters addressed to him (the ones that John had kept hidden from him). He opens it to find myriad reactions to him being alive by random strangers. Some of them were relatives of people who died in the plane crash. They said that god’s grace saved Edward. Some others got angry at him about why he was ‘the one’ who got to stay alive. All those reactions overwhelm Edward.
Through the ending, we see the overbearing impact of confronting what others think of him surviving the plane crash. Jordan’s guilt until then was associated with Jordan and with his parents. But now, seeing all these people sharing their thoughts, thinking they have the right to share them candidly, wrecks him.
With Adriana and Kojo, we witness another kind of loss and grief. They have to let go of their relationship’s possibilities while choosing between career and love or between emotions and reasoning. Since the writing leans to the side of ‘a woman should uproot her life for her male lover’ archetype, it does not feel satisfactory. However, the aspect of their broken hearts merits praise for being discussed, albeit ineptly, in the show.