‘Dickinson’ series finale review – AppleTV + Emily Dickinson Show pulled off a satisfying ending
Two years ago when Dickinson launched on Apple TV + as the flagship comedy of the newly created streamer, I spared no ink to make it scroll, call it’s “a din of dissonant elements, a show that demeans the real Emily Dickinson by forcing the fictional Dickinson to drag herself screaming on the floor after having her period.” A year later, I came back to this site here to reflect on how the series matured in its second season. And now, as the show wraps up with its third and final set of episodes, I reflect on the journey it took me on. I spent a lot of time thinking about how Dickinson has changed, but here at the end of its run I realize that it is I who am different.
When Dickinson debuted, I tried to shake it up fairly, at least that’s what I thought. “I tried not to be a surly literary purist,” I replied in the first season. Reader, I admit: I was a surly literary purist. When I first met Dickinson, I was intrigued by the challenge the series set for itself: to overshadow the relatively blank canvas of historical life, marked by the lingering mystery of nearly three decades of isolation. While the series only aspired to cover Dickinson’s teenage years, long before she retired from the outside world, I sensed there was a tantalizing character journey to be experienced: how a full girl did she become a cloistered woman who spoke to visitors through a door? At first I felt that DickinsonThe brooding teenage poet wasn’t a convincing antecedent for the sharp, weird adult we knew she would become. But now that the series is over, with its final moments hinting at the start of Dickinson’s fateful isolation, I see what Dickinson was up to the task from the start.
At the end of his poignant series finale, Dickinson Finally takes us inside the room that is said to contain so much of Dickinson’s adult life. In a serene and breathtaking montage, a year (maybe more) goes by, all seen from inside Dickinson’s bedroom. As the seasons change outside her windows, we see her working on poems at her desk, knitting by the fireside, watering an ever-larger indoor garden, and even putting on an alluring outfit suited to the streets of her native Amherst. , only to stay inside. But in the end, this room doesn’t contain Dickinson’s life, because no wall could.
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Looking at a painting of a ship hanging on the wall of his bedroom, as lines of poetry burst through his head, Dickinson whispers: poetry. We then moved on to an idyllic fantasy, where Dickinson frolic on the beach with his dog, dressed in his simple writer’s blouse. Then someone calls him from afar: it’s a group of sirens, basking on an outcrop of rocks, beckoning him to take to the sea. “The sirens from the basement have come out to look at me,” continues the poem. Climbing into a boat, Dickinson paddles to meet these magnificent creations of his own genius; then, we go black and the credits roll.
Dickinson’s legacy has always been complicated by the same impenetrable puzzle: How could a protected hermit write such visionary poems? How did someone who saw so little the world manage to introduce him to the world? For three seasons, Dickinson sought to solve the mystery. But he has never been more lucid or sure of himself than in this brilliant ending, a hymn to the inimitable power of the writer’s imagination. It’s a fitting farewell to a show that has always refused to be contained by the drab limits of reality.
There is something that I started to say, “I want more aliens in my literary fiction. Traditional literary realism is fine, but I want to live in a freer world, a world where “literary” and “genre” are not antonyms, where the unreal can coexist with the real. It took me a while to keep going, but eventually, Dickinson taught me that what I want from novels, I should also want from television. What i missed Dickinson from the start was the series’ purest truth: that it should be as imaginative and unfettered as Dickinson herself was.
At the beginning of Dickinson, I was appalled when the fictional Dickinson threw an opium party while her parents were away for the weekend, where she danced with a giant hallucinatory bee played by the deranged Jason Mantzoukas. But why should not Emily Dickinson dancing with a giant bee? Sounds like the kind of thing she would dream of, doesn’t it? In a landmark episode of season three, Dickinson and his sister Lavinia ascend a time-traveling gazebo to the mid-1960s, where they meet poet Sylvia Plath. Chatting together in her lifelong bedroom, now a museum exhibit hosted by undergraduates like Plath, Dickinson is dismayed to learn that history remembers her as a sad old maid who never left this room. Why should not Is Emily Dickinson a time traveler? No room could contain her, so why should a show about her be contained? We could use more shows with this bravery of vision.
Dickinson has never been a runaway success; It’s always been more of a hit, popular with literary jerks like myself, and writers and lovers who have seen their struggles and passions reflected in this radical reimagining of a legendary life. In the years to come I suspect Dickinson will become a cult classic, appearing time and time again on “Best Shows You Might Have Missed” lists. So whether you stream it today, tomorrow, or years from now, don’t be discouraged if you don’t get started right away. Give it a chance, give it time, and for goodness sake, don’t be a surly literary purist. If you free your mind, like Emily Dickinson, you might be surprised at how far you can go, all in one room.
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