It’s the day after Rae lost her virginity to Liam, and everything is going wrong for her: she’s left college, the gang’s in pieces, she’s fallen out with her mother, and Chloe’s still missing. On top of that, she slept with Liam.
This season finale dealt with what has become a familiar theme for My Mad Fat Diary: how can you begin to enjoy being with others if you hate yourself? You are, after all, always with yourself. It’s particularly acute this time because Rae’s now isolated from everyone in her life: “Maybe I keep finding myself on my own because no-one wants me around”. She tries to get Kester to re-admit her to hospital, but he refuses on the basis that she’s not a danger to herself or others; last time round, she was admitted because she’d hurt herself. Which, of course, leaves Rae with a dilemma: if the only way to get back into hospital, the place where you feel safe, is to harm yourself…
But in an electrifying and pivotal scene Kester finally manages to get Rae to confront her self-loathing. And following that she realises that she can help to fix others, if she begins to fix herself: she mends her relationship with Chloe (another excellent week for Jodie Comer), then with her mother, and finally contrives to bring the gang back together, even – in a sweet coda – adding a new member to it. Which leaves, finally, the unfinished business between her and Finn, and having faced down her fears elsewhere she finally realises that she can deal with intimacy as well.
I have no idea whether a third season is planned; I’d be delighted to watch it, although it kind of felt as if this episode, and that ending, rounded everything off nicely. In which case it’s time for everyone connected with this wonderful show to take a well-earned bow, in particular writer Tom Bidwell and, of course, Sharon Rooney, fantastic from first to last, although all of the cast deserve praise. Original, charming, and funny throughout, My Mad Fat Diary has been a real treat.