Modern Love season 2, episode 1 recap – “On a Serpentine Road, With the Top Down” New season, new story, new city.

August 13, 2021
Dempsey Pillot 0
Amazon Prime, TV Recaps
4

Summary

“On a Serpentine Road, With the Top Down” offers arguably the most profound message of the series so far, but there is still some road left to be traveled.

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4

Summary

“On a Serpentine Road, With the Top Down” offers arguably the most profound message of the series so far, but there is still some road left to be traveled.

This recap of Amazon Original Modern Love season 2, episode 1, “On a Serpentine Road, With the Top Down,” contains spoilers. 

It’s very rare that love and cars go hand in hand. Yet in the very first episode of the second season of Modern Love, director John Carney finds a way.

Modern Love season 2, episode 1 recap

“On a Serpentine Road, With the Top Down,” might undoubtedly be one of the longest titles of any episode in the series (so far), but it sets the tone for the entire season beautifully. Not only with its vivid imagery, but with its physical setting. Unlike every episode in the first season, this is the first episode to take place in a totally different part of the world. While it might be challenging for some longtime fans of the New York Times column the series is based on, it was both an inevitable and necessary step. Love is boundless. You can find love at a park in New York, on a plane to Paris, or — in this episode’s case — inside of a car in Ireland.

The episode starts off with a woman (played by Minnie Driver) who, at first glance, seems to have it pretty good. She’s a doctor. She drives a fancy vintage car. It isn’t until two minutes in when the car breaks down and a handsome young mechanic swoops in to fix it that you begin to wonder where the episode might be headed. I initially thought the two would end up together and ultimately drive off into the sunset as the title hints. I couldn’t be further from the truth, though. 

The ending

We soon find out that the mechanic is just a friend and an annoyed one at that. This isn’t the first time he’s had to come and fix the car. It’s eventually revealed that Driver’s character will not let the car go no matter how close to dying it gets. Not because she’s in love with it though — that was my next guess at where the episode was headed — but because it actually belonged to her first love.

For years they created countless memories inside of it. When they have their first daughter, she shares in those memories too. But like the car, nothing lasts forever. After he succumbs to a sudden illness, the car is all she has left. With the cost of keeping it maintained putting a strain on her second marriage, she is inevitably put in a crunch. Does she get rid of the car? More importantly, how does she get rid of the car?

Although it’s short and it stands alone (like the rest), I thought this episode provided one of the most profound messages of the entire series to date. Aside from proving that people can fall in love anywhere, Carney explores the often forgotten fact that love can be found in anything. Yes, no one lives forever, but even though our loved ones can’t physically be with us doesn’t mean we can’t carry them with us in other ways. 

What did you think of Modern Love season 2, episode 1, “On a Serpentine Road, With the Top Down”? Comment below. 

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