Well, that was surprising.
In typical series finale fashion, some things fell right where you’d expect, while other developments came out of left field.
And if there’s one word to describe The Bold Type Season 5 Episode 6 it would be memorable because even if things didn’t play out how we expected, we’ll undoubtedly remember this series ender.
Out of all the characters, Jane had the most surprising sendoff.
Ever since she was a little girl, all Jane has wanted was to work at Scarlet, so it was a complete 180 that the young writer found herself leaving the magazine to travel the world by the hour’s end.
Kat: Oh no, I know that I look. I feel like she’s leaving Scarlet. Are you leaving?
Sutton: She’s not leaving. Are you leaving?
Jane: I found this photo of my mom, and she’s in Paris.
Kat: That’s sweet.
Jane: She loved to travel, and it just got me thinking that I should take what I’ve learned here and apply it to my life. I mean see the world, have adventures, write about failing feminists in different countries.
Kat: I mean I think that sounds amazing, but you can still do that Scarlet.
Jane: I know, but I think I have to let go of my safety net, however scary that may be. I just think this is my time to be in the moment, to take risks, and to embrace all the opportunities my mom never got to.
Sutton: I love that. you’re amazing.
Kat: And you always have a home here.
Jane: I know.
If you’d told me at the start of the episode that Jane would voluntarily leave Scarlet, I’d have had said you were still tripping from the not-so microdosing experiment, but weirdly, her departure worked.
The chain of events that led to her exit started when Jane, thankfully, realized that her dream job wasn’t to become the next Jacqueline.
Jane was so much happier when she was chasing down leads for stories and lowkey stalking celebrities than she ever would have been assuming the role of editor-in-chief.
However, she was hesitant to turn down Jacqueline’s offer because she felt that by rejecting that position, she was failing Jacqueline in some way.
In many ways, Jacqueline has been like a mother to Jane, and the last thing she wanted to do was disappoint Jacqueline.
Jacqueline being Jacqueline just wanted Jane to be happy, and it was nice to know that Jane would always have that support from her mentor and maternal figure.
And with the reminder in hand that it takes courage and conviction to change course, Jane decided to carpe the diem and live life to the fullest.
That meant no longer putting her life on hold and being afraid to take risks. It’s what led Jane to accept a date with Zach and then quit her job at Scarlet to embrace all the opportunities her mother never got to.
Jane: Jacqueline, I need to talk to you.
Jacqueline: Hmm, you don’t want to take over.
Jane: How did you know that?
Jacqueline: I didn’t know until right now.
Jane: Jacqueline, it has been a privilege to work for you, but this isn’t the next step for me. I’m a writer, not a manager. Leading people, board meetings, strategy decks, ad sales, it isn’t my passion.
Jacqueline: Wow, uh, this is a bit of a shocker.
Jane: Do you hate me?
Jacqueline: No, of course not. I’m proud of you.
Jane: I just feel like I failed you.
Jacqueline: Jane, you have not failed me. It takes courage and conviction to change course and to turn down an opportunity you know is not a right fit.
Jane: Thank you. So what now?
Leaving that security net behind and venturing out beyond Scarlet is one of the scariest things Jane may ever do, but if Tiny Jane has proved anything this season, it’s that she can handle more than we sometimes give her credit for.
She may not always get it right on the first try, and there will be some struggles along the way, but Jane is capable of whatever she sets her mind to.
She’ll be missed at Scarlet, but as Kat and Sutton reminded her, this isn’t the end.
And then there’s Kat, who ended up with Adena and crazily, as editor-in-chief of Scarlet.
On the Kadena front, there’s no other way it could have ended than with those two together.
Kat and Adena have been electric since they first laid eyes on each other, and their connection has been evident since day one.
They’re an amazing team, and when they’re together, the possibilities are endless.
So while it was a little convenient that Kat got over her fear of commitment at the exact right moment for them to reunite, it’s easy to overlook because of how perfectly they complement each other and bring out the best in the other.
Besides, what is commitment to another person when you’ve already committed to becoming editor-in-chief of a big magazine like Scarlet?
Adena: Your speech was really beautiful.
Kat: Thanks. I’m glad you liked it. It was for you.
Adena: Kat, we talked about this.
Kat: I know we did, but being up there made me realize you’re my person like you’re always gonna be my person. Yeah, maybe we’ll fight, and I’m sure we’ll have our disagreements, but we’ll work it out.
Adena: But you don’t know that.
Kat: But I do. I know that. I have never been more sure of anything in my entire life. You taught me that I can commit and make it my own, and we can do that too. We can make this our own. We don’t have to play by anyone’s rules. We make the rules together. Does that sound OK?
Adena: That’s perfect.
That was the single most ludicrous plot element of the entire season that Jacqueline and the Stafford board would entrust someone as young as Kat to run the entire magazine.
Yes, Kat has more managerial and leadership experience than Jane, so while Kat’s a better fit to replace Jacqueline, whatever happened with hiring someone with more seniority and years of experience in the industry?
Someone like Kat may be the right choice to succeed Jacqueline, but that doesn’t mean Kat herself is ready for such an undertaking.
Does Kat even know how hectic and crazy it is to be the editor-in-chief?
As inexperienced as Jane would have been, the young writer at least got to shadow Jacqueline and prove that she could handle some of the responsibilities that come with being editor-in-chief.
That doesn’t mean Kat isn’t up for the job, but Jacqueline’s decision seems to be based more on her heart than her head.
There’s the argument to be made that Jacqueline’s faith in Kat isn’t based purely on emotion.
After all, Jacqueline did hear Kat’s pitch for Don’t Turn Away and was impressed enough to make Don’t Turn Away a vertical for Scarlet.
I feel really honored to be standing here on the ground you paved. We are going to take everything Jacqueline and those before her have built and continue to innovate. I’m gonna be honest with y’all, for a long time, I was so scared of the future, but I’m not afraid anymore. I promise you I will approach each and every day with an open heart and an open mind, and we are going to create our very own amazing future. But before we do that, we should take one last look at the past and our fearless leader who brought us here.
So it’s not a huge leap for Jacqueline to believe Kat can run Scarlet, but it’s still bothersome that more qualified candidates such as Oliver weren’t considered.
However, what’s done is done, and ready or not, Kat is Scarlet’s new editor-in-chief, so best of luck.
Lastly, there’s Sutton, who tried to do the mature thing and let Richard go, even though it would be hard, only for Richard to magically decide he wanted to be with Sutton more than he wanted to be a father.
Suttard ‘shippers are probably dancing right now, but for me, the happy ending didn’t feel earned.
This might be a controversial opinion, but Sutton and Richard getting divorced would have been more satisfying in a way.
Their brief reconciliation would have provided the closure that the couple needed and reminded them that no matter how much they loved each other and always would, they still wanted different things out of life.
As Sutton read her letter to Richard, it felt more like what happened next would be a new chapter for the pair — albeit separately — rather than an ending.
Yes, their marriage was over, but that didn’t take away from the love they shared.
Richard: What’s that?
Sutton: Read it.
Richard: I don’t want to whatever it is.
Sutton: OK, then I will. Richard Hunter is the love of my life. We were married for a brief but wonderful time. A time that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. Our marriage ended because of no fault of his or mine but because of the single reason that while I was not meant to be a mom, he was meant to be a dad.
Sutton: Please let me get this out. Walking away from an amazing husband is the hardest thing I ever had to do, but I also know it’s the right thing to do because letting go means giving a person that I love most in this world a chance at becoming what he was born to be: a father.
Richard: Sutton, I want to spend the rest of my life with you.
Sutton: Richard, I saw the way you looked at those kids in the park, and I know what you were thinking. You were thinking, ‘I wish I could have that.’
Richard: What I was thinking was there’s no place I would rather be than by your side. Yes, I always wanted kids, but the thing is I want you more. I mean maybe I could adopt a baby, but without you I wouldn’t be happy. Sure, I could meet someone and we could have a kid, but I don’t want to marry anyone else, Sutton.
Sutton: How do I know you’re not going to regret it?
Richard: What I regret is ever having left you in the first place.
Sutton: I really want to believe you.
Richard: Then believe me because I have never been more certain about anything in my entire life. Sutton Brady, will you not divorce me? I can’t imagine living my life without you.
Sutton: I can’t either.
Richard: So is that a yes?
Therefore, Sutton’s decision to let Richard go, though heartbreaking, felt mature and earned and the right thing for both of them.
However, all of that was undermined by Richard’s 11th-hour realization that he could stand not being a father, but he couldn’t stand being apart from Sutton.
It was what we all wanted to hear, but it came too late.
If Richard were being truthful — which he believes he is — then what the f*ck have the writers been doing for the past season besides dicking us around?
All of this reeks of unnecessary drama thrown in to create obstacles for the couple because, per the unwritten rules of television, no couple is ever allowed to be happy until the very end of a series.
It all feels needless and pointless and only serves to annoy me further when I remember all the work Sutton did on herself in therapy.
She finally got to a good place and made peace with her marriage ending only for none of it to matter because Richard decided he didn’t want to be without her.
Maybe if The Bold Type Season 5 had been longer, or the writers gave Sutton and Richard more time to work through their relationship issues, I’d feel differently, but it just doesn’t feel earned.
Everything was wrapped up too neatly in a bow, and the writers’ alternate ending of Richard professing his love but Sutton telling him to go have the family he’s supposed to have would have been a better fit.
Sutton: It’s not lost on me what an honor it is to have a chance to style you.
Jacqueline: Well, I wanted the best, and you are the best.
Sutton: I’m hardly the best, but thanks for saying that.
Jacqueline: Sutton, stop. It is time for you to own how great you are. Wow, I can’t believe this is really happening.
Sutton: I’ve never seen you nervous.
Jacqueline: Well, it’s never easy letting go even when it’s right.
As showrunner Wendy Straker Hauser told TVLine, the writers opted against it because it didn’t feel right, but Richard giving up something he desperately wants for Sutton yet again also doesn’t feel right.
Yes, that ending would have been heartbreaking, but as Hauser also mentioned, it would have been “inspiring because they were both in the places that they were potentially meant to be.”
Some stray thoughts:
I loved the callback to The Bold Type Season 1 Episode 1 when Jane, Kat, and Sutton yelled in front of a passing bus. It was such an iconic moment and set the tone for the series.
Ryan randomly showing up was unexpected, but it was still great to see him. He helped Jane realize that she was born to be a writer and not a manager, and it was nice to see them reach a cordial place after everything they’ve been through.
Even Oliver got his happy ending when he reunited with Jasper. It was short and sweet, but something tells me these two will make it.
So what did you think, Bold Type Fanatics?
Did Jane’s decision to leave Scarlet surprise you?
Do you buy Kat as Scarlet’s new editor-in-chief?
What’s your take on Sutton and Richard’s reunion?
Don’t forget to hit the comments below to let me know your thoughts. If you missed the series finale, remember you can watch The Bold Type online at TV Fanatic.
Jessica Lerner is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.
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