With Marianne on Netflix opening a new chapter on television horror, I thought I’d go through the show and break down everything that you need to know about it and it’s ending.
Throughout this, I’ll be discussing the major plot elements of the French Horror Show as well as what we can take from the final scenes of the limited series.
There will be heavy spoilers here so if you haven’t had a chance to watch it yet then I highly recommend that you turn off now.
With that out the way I just wanna give a huge thank you for clicking this, now let’s get into my breakdown of Marianne.
Marianne Plot Recap
We follow Emma, a successful horror writer who has decided that it’s time to close the book on her biggest creation, Marianne. Emma’s books center around the character Lizzie Larck who is haunted by the demonic force, Marianne and due to their gripping narrative the stories have gone on to become big business.
However, Emma feels that she has finished with the character and the show opens with her pretty much announcing that her latest entry will be the last. This comes much to the behest of her fans, most notably her childhood friend Caro who claims that her mother is in fact possessed by Marianne and that if she doesn’t continue writing then bad things will happen to her and her family.
This seems to hold a lot of weight after Caro commits suicide and Emma journeys back to her childhood home to discover that Caro’s mother, who indeed possessed by the witch. She demands that Emma continues her stories and after her parents go missing, Emma begins to write once more.
We learn throughout the show that the stories of Lizzie Larck have been somewhat autobiographical and that Marianne has haunted Emma her entire life. We discover that fifteen years prior, Emma and her childhood friends known as ‘The Shipwreck Kids’ had summoned Marianne and now with the creature on the loose, Emma’s new stories seem to be coming to life.
Emma makes advanced to Seby, her childhood crush throughout the season though he rejects them due to loving his heavily pregnant wife and her child. He seemingly comes round and the two do sleep together, which plays into the end which I’ll get into later, but you have to be aware that Marianne is manipulative and plays on the emotions of the cast throughout, making them carry out its will.
It’s a truly gripping show that is laced with tonnes of terrifying moments that have genuine scares to them. Every character is played perfectly by the actor in the role most notably Mireille Herbstmeyer who completely embodies the demonic force. Every time she appears on screen you are genuinely scared over what she could do next and she quickly cements herself as one of Horror best new icons within the first episode.
Marianne’s Nursery Rhyme Meaning
Marianne is a show that’s steeped in atmosphere and darkness and from beginning to end it’s unnerving and feels like a timely horror rather than something that was filmed this year. It recaptures the feeling of dread from films like The Shining and is truly captivating throughout.
The show itself is built around a nursey rhyme in both structure and plot. Throughout the season we hear the tale of Marrianne who was born on a Tuesday, happy on a Wednesday, married on a Thursday, witch on Friday, caught on Saturday, judged on Sunday, executed on Monday, buried on Tuesday.
This instantly brought up visions of the Batman villain Solomon Grundy for me but it’s also how the show operates. There are 8 days in the nursery rhyme, the season takes place over 8 episodes which too, on the whole, take place over 8 days. The finale itself is called ‘Tuesday’ and similar to the Nursery rhyme it’s also the end of Marianne.
The group seemingly discover Marianne’s grave and using a piece of parchment that was there during her pact with the devil, she’s finally destroyed. It comes at a heavy cost with Priest sacrificing himself and Emma has to travel to a spirit like dimension in order to stop the creature’s possession.
Marianne Season One Ending Explained
The day is seemingly won and it looks like Emma is finally free of the torment of the character after waking up in the hospital. However, Camille, Emma’s assistant is seemingly mute over the whole ordeal and Emma vows to visit her father often having previously ignored her home.
In the end on her journey home together we see her beginning to vomit which is revealed to be caused by pregnancy. Emma seemingly slept with Seby during the season however, looking back at it things may not have been what they seemed. We know that Marianne was famous for never coming away empty-handed and it seems that in the end she did get something, a child.
Now there’s a lot of evidence that Seby was not, in fact, Seby but rather a manifestation of the character by Marianne. Firstly Seby uncharacteristically stated a lot of distaste for his wife and seemed more than open to sleeping with Emma when previously he had been completely against it. He is also completely gone in the morning and in their final farewell, he doesn’t even know what Emma is talking about when she brings up sleeping with him and he flat out denies ever sleeping with her.
He seems angered that Emma is once more trying to ruin his family life and I think it’s pretty safe to say that we don’t need to take him on The Jeremy Kyle show to do a lie detector test.
He’s not the father.
Camille finally breaks her silence and hints that she knows what’s been going on, even going to get a pregnancy test instinctively. In the final narration we learn that Lizzie kept a piece of the darkness with her and she will warm it up. Within her. In her lap, she’ll transform it.
This highlights that Marianne isn’t as gone as we were lead to believe and in the end it could be Emma’s child that carries on her legacy.
Emma’s creation in the book was easy enough to get rid of but her creation as a person, well that’s a completely different story and will probably be the major conflict that springs forth in a second season. As Marianne died due to the work and storyline dying out, she had to find a new method in order to live on and making Emma pregnant is probably as good as it can get in terms of contingency plans.
It ends the series on a bittersweet note and let’s us know that though we will be getting more of this binge worthy horror, things aren’t going to be so easy for Emma.
But what did I think of Marianne overall? Well, I thought that the show was incredible and it truly is one of the best horror television series that I’ve watched probably since the haunting of Hill House. This is incredibly creepy and all of the performances are spellbinding. The season is about returning to face your past and the things that you may have tried to bury and as far as skeletons in the closet go, Marianne certainly is one of the most terrifying.
I did watch the show with both Dubs and Subs and have to say that if you are planning on checking this out then it may be best going with the native language as there are a lot of elements to the performance that work better as opposed to the overlay.
In the end, though whichever version you watch of the show, you’re in for a real treat and Marianne is spellbinding throughout. I really wish I’d chosen to watch this over wasting my time with The I-land so if you missed this last weekend then there’s never been a better time to check it out.
Marianne is great and that’s why it gets an…
Obviously I’d love to hear your thoughts on the show and if you enjoyed it or not. Let me know your thoughts on the ending.