As the finale gets underway, Francis (Ciaran Hinds) tells us about a Christmas party from his childhood. Then, Rose (Hattie Morahan) heads to the overlook. She spots Captain Dreyfuss (Aaron Staton) in the distance. Rose doesn’t approach him and instead heads home. Sally (Fiona O’Shaughnessy) offers her tea, while the kids want to know where Rose went. Despite it being the last day, Rose forces Francis (Michael Nevin) and Kate (Mia Carlin) to head to school. She insists they’ll get a surprise later in the day. Michael (Owen McDonnell) heads to the jewelry shop and learns that a ring that fits Rose has been found. Michael runs into Kettie’s husband, Martin (Jonathan Harden). Martin bums money and immediately hits the pub.
Meanwhile, Francis and the other children are brought into Rose’s classroom. Then, they’re told about the upcoming Christmas party. They’re reminded to maintain their manners during the party. Back at home, Barney (Gavin Drea) speaks with Emma (Eileen O’Higgins) about her snobby boyfriend. Rose speaks with her work colleague about Ronald and Tillie (Kate Phillips). On the way home, Rose is stopped by the priest. She is encouraged to change the party’s music to something a little holier. Francis returns home with Seamie (Isaac Heslip). Seamie tells Kettie (Antonia Campbell-Hughes) that she was right about the surprise. During the visit, Francis makes a comment about Seamie’s father coming home for Christmas. Michael returns home and tells Rose about his encounter with Martin. Both seem to agree that he is no good. Michael heads to the pub and gets mail from Emma.
Michael opens a mysterious letter and learns his cousin is coming after his business. Michael discuss the letter with James. He explains that his business license is in his cousin’s name. Now, Vincent wants money for that license. Meanwhile, Emma complains about Andrew (Ruairi O’Connor) not being invited to the party. Rose doesn’t seem interested in making that change either. Michael is forced to call his cousin and schedule a meeting. James Harrington (Conor Grimes) agrees to pick Vincent up and transport him into town. At home, Rose gets a surprise visit from Ronald. She believes he has blown her off for the past few weeks. Therefore, she remains standoffish with him. Ronald is taken back by Rose’s behavior. He leaves something on the doorstep. Sally brings the box in seconds later and hands it to Rose. Emma gets a visit from Andrew.
Andrew tries to convince Emma that he isn’t a snob. Emma also makes it clear the Rose doesn’t approve of their relationship. They head inside with the intention of speaking with Rose. However, she remains hidden upstairs. At the pub that night, Ned (Des McAleer) and his family speak with the Americans about the Christmas party. Ned is told he probably won’t be able to get in. Meanwhile, Emma and Rose pack gifts. Rose asks her daughter whether or not Andrew brought anything. Emma doesn’t like the idea that Rose has been spying on her. Later, Rose begins writing a letter when Michael enters. Michael tells his wife about Vincent and his demands. In the morning, Seamie and Francis scout out the base. Inside, Steiger (Cosmo Jarvis), Tillie, and the others prepare for the party. James visits Michael. He learns that Michael will close the shop for an hour to speak with his cousin.
Michael admits he feels guilty about bringing Rose to this place. However, he insists he won’t let it fall down around her. Emma gets another visit from Andrew. This time, Andrew and Barney get into a small spat. Andrew calls Barney a peasant and this ticks Emma off. She gives him a piece of her mind and sends him away. Then, the family gets ready for the party. Michael stays behind and gets drunk, while waiting for Vincent’s arrival. Ned leaves his boys and insists he is going to the party. Martin meets with Kettie. She becomes upset that he is drunk. Martin doesn’t care. He drinks more. Michael shuts down the pub, but promises to reopen it in an hour. Ned stumbles across Martin as he heads to the base. During this time, the kids are allowed to the party zone. Tillie speaks with Ronald in private. It is clear the something is bothering Ronald. He asks Tillie, if she gave Rose his message. She pretends she did, but it is clear she probably didn’t.
Rose escapes to the bathroom. There, she runs into Kettie. Kettie tells Rose about Martin and also displays her battered face. Rose agrees to let Seamie sleep over, so he won’t find out about the black eye. Ned sneaks into the base, but winds up getting caught. Emma complains to her mother about the dull party and not being able to see Andrew. Rose runs into Ronald. He tells her that he returned to Connecticut. He also promises that the gift he left on the doorstep was meant for the entire family. Rose admits Tillie never told her. Rose apologizes for her recent behavior. Ronald is forced to rush away to deal with Ned. The two men come to an agreement. Ned gets a piece of cake, but is forced to leave shortly thereafter. James returns to Michael. Vincent is nowhere to be found. Michael admits they got into an argument and Vincent ran off. James belittles Michael, before going to hunt for Vincent.
Tillie and the girls sing on stage. Rose speaks with Ronald in private. She admits she loves him, but is stuck in a bad situation. Tillie interrupts seconds later. She escorts Ronald away, after confessing she forgot to tell Rose about Ronald’s leave. Rose leaves the party early. Ronald speaks to the crowd and thanks them for their help. Afterwards, Tillie admits she didn’t tell Rose in hopes of saving her from herself. Then, Ronald reveals he was on leave to visit his mentally ill wife, who attempted to commit suicide. Andrew finds Emma and the kids outside. He apologizes and gives them a lift home. Before they leave, Ronald rushes by and tells Emma to tell Rose goodbye. Rose makes it home, but she is soaking wet. Michael helps her change. The children enter alongside Andrew. Michael pulls Rose aside and gives her the engagement ring.
Harrington interrupts a good thing. Harrington reveals that Vincent is very mad and has decided to put the pub on the market. Francis watches as his mother flees the house. Michael follows, but she loses him. He jumps in the car to go after her, but it won’t start. Rose meets Ronald on the road. Ronald tells Rose he needs to go and that it would be best for both of them. Rose agrees, but quickly changes her mind. She pleads with him to never leave her. They begin to kiss as the episode comes to an end.
My Mother and Other Strangers Review
Now that the series has concluded, I can easily see why there is going to be a second season. The writers took a risk leaving the series with such a big cliffhanger. Nevertheless, it ultimately paid off. The series ending was very effective and left me wanting more. I want to see what happens now. Will Vincent send the family into poverty? Will Rose be able to break away from Michael and her family to experience true love with Ronald?
How will Rose react when she learns the truth about Ronald? My Mother and Other Strangers isn’t perfect, but it is alluring nonetheless. In fact, it has really grown on me and I’ve taken a strong liking to it and the lead characters. The finale was good and deserves an 8 out of 10. Catch up with past recaps of My Mother and Other Strangers right now!