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Review: Normal People Season 1 Episode 11

April 29, 2020
4 min read

No matter where they go and what they do, Marianne and Connell wind up with each other once again. She had been away in Sweden, and Connell had been in a healthy relationship with Helen. After Rob’s suicide, Connell broke down into depression, and Helen left him because she realized that he was still stuck on Marianne.

In the penultimate episode, ‘Normal People’ realigns their stars, and they are thrown back into each other’s lives. Though a lot of things have also changed since they last met and because they have a pattern of running away as easily as they end up together, it is only a matter of time before a reason to split up pops up one more time.

Normal People Episode 11 Recap

Connell reels from Rob’s sudden death and finds comfort in Marianne’s company. He sends his work for another consideration. Marianne comes back home from Sweden, and they start spending all their days together. With both of them single now, the attraction resurfaces, but Connell does not want to go down that road again. He doesn’t want to repeat the mistakes that they made the last time. He doesn’t want to lose her as a friend by messing up things romantically again. However, his intentions soon fall apart, and the cycle is repeated. Apart from struggling with the effect of the previous relationship on her psyche, Marianne finds the situation at home more hostile.

Normal People Episode 11 Review

Marianne and Connell act like magnets. They are attracted to each other and often come together with force. But they also have the sides which create a repulsion between them, and they resist one another’s company. While in Dublin, their relationship had been going very well, but at a minor inconvenience, which could have been resolved relatively easily, they part again. It is the miscommunication between them, which has persisted since the first time they fell for each other.

Both have made mistakes, and their personal struggles haven’t made it any easier on them. After recuperating from the torment that Rob’s suicide threw him into, Connell discovered that Marianne was the only one who got him out of it, and the reason that she could be there was that there was a distance between them. They were not too close to each other to enflame their insecurities or focus on the flaws. Understandably, he doesn’t want to repeat these things.

However, the heart often wins over the logic of the mind, and round they go again. Tackling the new grounds of their old love, the show focuses on how much they have grown owing to their individual experiences. If Connell had been struggling with depression, Marianne didn’t come out of Sweden unscathed either.

The sex between them, once again, puts their awkwardness and lack of understanding on display. Connell is appalled and discomforted by Marianne’s sudden demand to hit her. The way she approaches it is also different from the times they had been together before. It is a lot like seeing them together for the first time, back when they were in school, but of course, under different circumstances.

The episode also concludes another longstanding trouble for Marianne. Her brother, Alan, takes the mistreatment of his younger sister one step further. It infuriates Connell, but perhaps, also brings him closer to understanding the psychological storm that has been raging inside her all this while. It also brings them closer and prepares us for the finale. We know what’s going to happen next, but the events of this episode make us hopeful for what is otherwise a doomed love story.

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