The Twisted 'Cruel Summer' Ending, Explained

- Cruel Summer -
The Twisted 'Cruel Summer' Ending, Explained

Friends, when I say I wanted to throw my remote across the room during the finale of Cruel Summer, I mean it in the best way. The amount of whiplash I got from thinking I knew exactly how Cruel Summer Season 1 would end, to realizing I had absolutely no idea, was wild. After spending months analyzing and writing about nearly every frame of Cruel Summer, I somehow missed a twist that, to be honest, was right in front of us the entire time. And I have a feeling most of you did too.

But I digress: Let's unpack exactly what happened in the Cruel Summer finale, because I need to discuss!

First, the basics. Cruel Summer prompted fans to ask one major question. Did Jeanette see Kate when she was being held captive by Martin in order to protect her newfound popularity, or is Kate lying because Jeanette is now dating Kate's boyfriend and claiming her spot in the social hierarchy? As it turns out, it was never one or the other.

Kate believes that she saw Jeanette on Christmas Eve, 1993. Jeanette broke into Martin's house and stole a snow globe, simply because she was a secret teenage thrill seeker. Kate was in Martin's house at the time, however, she wasn't yet a "captive" in the traditional sense: Kate believed she was there willingly, and that she and Martin were in a loving and consensual relationship, but that they couldn't let anyone see her because Martin would get in trouble for "how it looked."

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