[Warning: The next accommodates spoilers for The Haunting of Bly Manor. Learn at your personal threat!]
For the second season of his Netflix horror anthology collection The Haunting, Mike Flanagan dives into the realms of gothic romance. The Haunting of Bly Manor is a love story as a lot as it’s a ghost story, so it appears becoming that the ending is rife with heartbreak — notably relating to the destiny of its spirited protagonist, Dani Clayton (Victoria Pedretti).
When she realizes the oldest ghost at Bly, the Woman within the Lake, Viola (Kate Siegel), is about to drown Dani’s younger ward Flora (Amelie Smith) within the season finale, Dani says the one factor that can get Viola to launch the kid — she invitations Viola into herself, repeating the mantra the previous Woman of Bly first stated to her toddler daughter within the 1600s: “It is you. It is me. It is us.” Because of this, Dani is ready to save Flora, nevertheless it in the end comes at the price of her personal life, although it takes some time for Viola to say Dani absolutely.
Victoria Pedretti Sees Hope in Dani’s Ending
For years after that night time, Dani lives fortunately with Jamie (Amelia Eve), till she begins dropping herself to Viola piece by piece. And after Viola’s spirit virtually causes Dani to hurt Jamie, Dani realizes the state of affairs has turn into too harmful and secretly returns to Bly, the place she drowns herself. Because of this, Dani absolutely merges with Viola and turns into the brand new Woman within the Lake, trapping her soul on this watery limbo perpetually. Victoria Pedretti informed TV Information that this destiny, whereas tragic, does not imply Dani’s spirit won’t ever discover a sense of peace.
“I feel we are able to perhaps have hope that in her job as a caretaker and a protector of the manor, that it might truly be fairly a great factor, or a constructive place that she’s discovered herself dwelling in for eternity. As a result of she definitely discovered numerous success, I feel, in being a caretaker and a protector in her dwelling life,” Pedretti defined.
The season’s closing shot — of Dani’s hand resting on the shoulder of an older Jamie (now performed by Carla Gugino) in a flashforward to 2007 — additionally provides hope that even loss of life hasn’t been capable of maintain Dani from her nice love. However whether or not that hand belongs to Dani’s literal ghost or simply symbolizes Jamie’s perception that she all the time carries items of Dani together with her is open to interpretation.
Actress Amelia Eve, who performs the youthful Jamie, shared her personal tackle the center wrenching closing shot: “It is basically a manifestation of Jamie’s perception that Dani is together with her. But in addition, I feel there’s part of me that believes it is actually there and that it is Dani reaching out to Jamie now that she’s had this purge and has been capable of revisit the whole lot that is occurred. … Jamie’s revisiting of [what happened at Bly] permits Dani to return again to her in that second, and I feel that may be a bodily manifestation of that feeling of getting her again.”
The Younger Actors Are ‘Fairly Unhappy’ the Kids Forgot Bly
Whereas not as emotionally devastating as Dani’s destiny — or the fates of Hannah Grose (T’Nia Miller) or Rebecca Jessel (Tahirah Sharif), each of whom are killed by the ghost of Peter Quint (Oliver Jackson-Cohen) — we might be mendacity to say our hearts did not additionally ache somewhat after we realized that the Wingrave youngsters, Miles (Benjamin Ainsworth) and Flora, develop as much as neglect the whole lot that occurred at Bly. Whereas their paranormal reminiscence repression undoubtedly implies that the youngsters develop up with out the emotional baggage of their childhood trauma, Benjamin Ainsworth identified how unhappy it’s that, consequently, they neglect Hannah fully, in addition to the whole lot she and Dani did to guard Miles and Flora.
“I feel it is a good factor that they forgot the ghosts, the scary ones, however it’s fairly unhappy forgetting these very nice individuals who helped them alongside the best way,” Ainsworth stated.
His on-screen sister agreed. “I feel that it is good as a result of the life after they’re older can be very completely different in the event that they knew what occurred after they have been youthful,” Amelie Smith added. “But it surely’s fairly unhappy as a result of everybody was so good to them after they have been little.”
However whereas we’re despondent on behalf of the youngsters’s caretakers (notably Hannah), the devoted housekeeper would possible have most well-liked issues this fashion, since forgetting the ghastly occasions at Bly assist give Miles and Flora an unburdened future, and he or she was prepared to do something for his or her happiness and security. As T’Nia Miller defined, the principle purpose Hannah is ready to cling to her life and routine at Bly after her homicide is that she’s decided to proceed serving to the 2 younger souls below her safety.
“She promised their mom, Charlotte … that she would deal with them. And I feel once you make a promise to a baby it carries such weight. And that was very true for Hannah,” Miller defined. So when the youngsters’s uncle, Henry Wingrave (Henry Thomas), lastly overcomes his personal demons and returns to Bly in Episode 9, Miller stated Hannah can discover peace in understanding they’re going to be in excellent care as soon as she passes into the afterlife. “It is virtually like when Henry comes again, it is like, ‘I can go now. I can go now. They’re gonna be secure, their uncle’s now again at dwelling.’ … So she must be there for the youngsters and there is one thing actually stunning in that and in addition tragic within the sacrifice of self,” famous the actress.
Oliver Jackson-Cohen Appreciates the Honesty in Peter and Jessel’s ‘Brutal’ Love Story
When Flanagan first approached Oliver Jackson-Cohen about Bly Manor, the showrunner provided him both the function of the groundskeeper or the valet. The actor stated he discovered himself drawn towards Peter, the valet, however he did not need him to be a one-dimensional villain.
“I stated very early on, it is essential if we’re going to do the villain, that he not simply be that one notice. As a result of it is extremely type of boring and it has been performed earlier than,” Jackson-Cohen stated. “We’re all inherently sophisticated and we’re all flawed, some greater than others. And I really like the best way that they dealt with Peter within the present and Jessel, that love story. As a result of it is brutal however I really feel prefer it’s very trustworthy, which hopefully folks at dwelling really feel that method too.”
Although there’s little magnificence to be present in Peter and Rebecca’s poisonous romance, which sees Peter kill Rebecca after which make her work with him on grooming the youngsters to turn into their host our bodies, Pedretti stated it was vital that the present humanize Peter to mirror the nuanced realities of abusive relationships.
“Peter is Rebecca’s accomplice, however he is additionally abusing her. However she’s seeing the humanity,” stated Pedretti. “So to symbolize him as simply this villain, we’re probably not seeing absolutely what these type of folks current that permits this relationship to proceed.”
In fact, none of that is to say that Peter’s actions are in any method justified. Ainsworth stated he thought Peter’s apology earlier than his spirit passes on is “a bit too late” for Miles to simply accept. “I do not assume he ever forgave Peter for what he did as a result of he was principally taking his life away, in a way,” Ainsworth stated, including that Miles is not even positive whether or not he was nonetheless tucked away in a dream or again in actual life when Peter tells the boy “I am so sorry.”
Amelia Eve Says the Bittersweet Ending Is Open to Interpretation
By the point The Haunting of Bly Manor ends, the characters aren’t the one ones who’re unsure about what they’re seeing. The reveal in Episode 9 that Jamie is the narrator of this story — and, extra importantly, that she is an unreliable narrator, altering particulars to obscure the reality of the story from the grown-up Miles and Flora — places viewers in a equally unsure state of affairs. The viewers is now not capable of belief the reality of the story. How a lot is fabricated stays unknown, however the ambiguity opens up an entire new area of questions, together with whether or not the haunted manor Flora ultimately will get married in is similar one she as soon as lived in as a baby. This will seem to be a stretch, particularly provided that the marriage takes place in California, however it will clarify why the older Jamie is sleeping in a chair in entrance of the door — as a result of she is hoping to be within the path of the Woman of the Lake’s nightly stroll.
“I really like that as an concept. I had by no means thought of that,” Eve admitted. “I feel it is that she all the time leaves a door open within the metaphysical sense and within the literal sense as nicely. I feel she all the time tries to ensure there is a method for Dani to contact her, if ever she’s going to. Therefore the water that she leaves working. So that may be fairly cool if Bly Manor was there. However I do not assume it’s. I feel it is a manor within the U.Ok. someplace the place it truly occurred. However for my part! It’s very open to interpretation.”
The Haunting of Bly Manor is on the market on Netflix.