‘Firefly Lane’: Trying to unpack the tragic season one finale
Thirty years, countless wigs, and highs & lows of friendship, Netflix’s Firefly Lane is a great character piece for Katherine Heigl & Sarah Chalke. The pair play lifelong besties Tully (Heigl) & Kate (Chalke), who are total opposites but remained close over the years, heartbreaks, and different career paths that their lives have taken. The drama may not be awards season bait, but it’s a cathartic cryfest that harkens to Steel Magnolias.
Firefly Lane’s first season ended on a cliffhanger, which would surprise anyone who read the original novel by Kristin Hannah, but it’s clear that they want a second season to tell the story of Tully & Kate. Will Netflix buy the hook? Or will it go out like so many other series gone too soon? Let’s unpack the season finale, and what a potential season 2 of Firefly Lane would look like.
Spoilers ahead for Firefly Lane.
Firefly Lane season 1 finale
The end of season 1 of Firefly Lane sees Kate sleeping with her ex-husband Johnny (Ben Lawson), who heads off to Iraq to cover the war. While cozying up with Tully, her phone rings out of sight. Why? Well, where Johnny was in Iraq was attacked and his survival is very much up in the air. With that question mark, Tully & Kate look to the future with blankets and wine.
As they affirm their friendship with Tully offering Kate a producing job on her next project, we cut to the future at a funeral for Kate’s dad. Tully shows up to pay her respects, and Kate is . . . well . . . angry. She’s really angry. The resulting confrontation shows that the pair’s thirty year friendship had ended. Kate tells Tully outright that she never, ever wants to see her again.
So what happened? Well, let’s look to Hannah’s book to figure out where we’re going from here.
What would Firefly Lane season 2 look like?
So how did Tully & Kate get to screaming at each other at a funeral? Well, we can look toward the book to get our answers about what the future of Firefly Lane could look like. Now, in the book, Tully has Kate and her teenage daughter Marah (Yael Yurman) onto her talk show so she can help improve the strained relationship between the mother and daughter.
Not a great move there because things go horribly wrong, and ends with Kate berating Tully on air. This brings their thirty year friendship to an explosive end. Now, this possibly could happen in season 2 of Firefly Lane, except Kate will be in a producing role on Tully’s show. And if that’s not bad enough, then, well . . . things get real bad in the book.
Tissues, get them.
In Firefly Lane, Kate gets diagnosed with terminal breast cancer. Desperate to talk with Tully and not leave any unfinished business, she tries to reach out to her friend. But Tully is doing a story in Antarctica. Following multiple treatments, Kate moves to the hospital before trying to reach Tully again. This time? She gets her and Tully drops everything to be there for her friend.
In Kate’s final months, Tully gives her the support that she needs. Kate asks Tully to not live with any regrets for the way that their lives turned out. And if you really want your day ruined, Hannah wrote a sequel called Fly Away about how Kate’s death still impacts Tully four years later. Now, it’s possible that things could get majorly switched up in a hypothetical season 2 of Firefly Lane.
Right now? It looks like the series is pretty faithful to the book. That doesn’t look great for Kate.
Firefly Lane is currently streaming on Netflix.