“White Lotus” - Season 2 Finale Review

Story posted January 9, 2023 in CommRadio, Arts & Entertainment by Izzy Charboneau

After a season ripe with tension, writer and director Mike White has done something truly special with the finale of “The White Lotus.”

When the episode opens, Ethan is fuming, paranoid about Harper cheating on him with Cameron. Albie wakes up with Lucia again, and his dad is crying about missing his wife and daughter.

Back in Palermo, Tanya wakes up and leaves room for breakfast to see Quentin and all his friends hushedly arguing about something, which they quickly stop when they notice her. Portia and Jack wake up in their hotel, and Portia grows even more suspicious of Jack when she realizes that her phone is missing.

At the hotel, Valentina wakes up with Mia and rushes to work while the Spillers and Sullivans eat a really awkward breakfast. Albie also eats breakfast with his dad, and asks him for a huge favor, and the men strike a deal.

Ethan and Harpers get into another fight, where she reveals some more information about what really happened between her and Cameron. Ethan goes down to the beach, and gets into a fistfight with Cameron, which is eventually broken apart.

After this, Ethan finds Daphne on the beach and tells her what happened. In this scene, Meghann Fahy delivers an Emmy-worthy performance where she tells Ethan about how she copes with things, and the pair walks down to an island together, implying that something else happened after we saw them walk away. 

Portia steals Jack’s phone while he goes to the bathroom and calls Tanya, who is on the boat back to Taormina with Quentin. The two of them talk through what they suspect is really happening, and Tanya realizes that she thinks Quentin and his friends are planning on killing her.

Cameron finally pays Lucia on his way into what is quite possibly the most awkward dinner ever, and across the room the Di Grassos also have a dinner in which Bert really dives into what exactly is wrong with the men in their family. After dinner, Ethan and Harper have a conversation about the future of their relationship, and the couple finally sleeps together.

Portia is in the car with Jack, and she finally confronts him about his relationship with Quentin, which upsets him. Jack leaves her on the side of the road near the airport in Catania, warning her not to go back to Taormina or the hotel.

On the boat to Taormina, Tanya has gone into full panic mode and is trying to figure out how to foil the plan of her murder. She runs into the bedroom of the boat with a bag that contains the materials that were going to be used to carry out her murder, including a gun.

When Quentin and his cronies get inside the bedroom, Tanya opens fire, killing just about everyone on the boat, and the only thing she asks Quentin about was if Greg was having an affair or not. This is something so indicative of Tanya’s character, and was such an intentional choice by White.

Tanya thinks she’s getting away, and tries to jump into the small boat to go back to shore, but when she jumps, she appears to hit her head. The next day, Daphne goes for a swim, and we find out that the floating body that we saw in episode one was Tanya’s.

Tanya’s death was so crazy, and it’s so reflective of her personality and her life. White said that her narrowly escaping a murder plot and then dying from being clumsy was perfect for her character, even though he was sad to see both Tanya and Jennifer Coolidge go.

Jennifer Coolidge, who won an Emmy for the first season of the show, is likely to be at least nominated for another, and she could very well take it home again.

Season 1 had an outstanding cast, and the cast of this season is arguably even better. After the explosive ending, it is hard to imagine having to be the one who decides who is nominated or wins awards for this season.

White has said that the first season was about money, but the second was about sex. The overarching themes of these seasons are such important themes in everyone’s lives, and it is exciting to see what the theme of season 3 will be.

Rating: 5/5

Izzy Charboneau is a second-year student majoring in digital and print journalism. To contact her, email ijc5186@psu.edu.