There is a heavy focus on the romantic relationships in Sweet Magnolias S2 episode 9.
Sweet Magnolias Season 2 Episode 9 ‘Dear Heart’
Written by Shani Am. Moore
Directed by Mary Lou Belli
Episode 8 picks up after the passing of dearly loved Miss Frances. We learn that she has left behind specific instructions for her arrangements. Mary Vaughn threatens and schemes to try to stop the mayoral recall vote.
Meanwhile, most of characters find themselves pondering the status of their romantic relationships.
Let’s take a closer look at all the events of Sweet Magnolias season 2 episode 8.
Remembering Miss Frances
Two generations of Serenity women gather at the club to reminisce about Miss Frances. Grace, Paula, Helen, Dana Sue and Maddie are all on hand at Bluegrass Night and begin planning for Miss Frances’ Celebration of Life gathering. We learn that Miss Frances left a notebook behind with all the details of what she wanted for the event.
All the ladies have specified jobs for the occasion. Miss Frances’ book collection will be on hand at her Celebration of Life for friends and family to make selections to take home. Reading was so important to Frances. The dearly departed Frances also wants someone to build tiny libraries at different locations around town. Queue Ronnie. He can build them!
When Grace mentions that she reached out to Frances’ friends and family who do not live in Serenity, the three Sweet Magnolias glance at one another knowing Ryan must be on that list.
Time to file
Dana Sue, Helen and Maddie walk toward the courthouse to file the mayoral recall petition. Mary Vaughn greets the ladies outside the courthouse and implores them to change their minds about filing.
Mary Vaughn tells them they should not be doing this to Trent because he is “a good man”. She claims they are merely trying to get back at her. Maddie reminds Mary Vaughn that they are adults now, not higher schoolers plotting revenge. Maddie also points out that Mary Vaughn and Trent have both manipulated the system to benefit themselves.
Mary Vaughn makes one more attempt to stop them by threatening them with some unnamed consequences.
Kyle, Sophie, Willow and Nellie are gathered at the coffee shop to discuss the storyline and rules for the game they are creating. Nellie enthusiastically makes a suggestion for the game. But Willow reminds her that her idea does not fall within the rules of the game. Kyle comes up with an additional detail that will make Nellie’s idea work.
The group is pleased with the decision. Sophie congratulates Kyle on the idea, but he reminds her that it was really Nellie’s idea. Sophie visibly notices Kyle’s compliment of Nellie.
Dana Sue and Ronnie are at the church for their marriage counseling session with Pastor June. It’s not going very well with the two of them bickering and blaming each other. Pastor June urges them to pause and regroup. She tells them that focusing on the future, not the past, will be more productive.
Pastor June asks about their homework. They were supposed to bring their wedding vows to the session. Dana Sue pulls a copy from her purse. When Ronnie does not bring out a piece of paper, Dana Sue criticizes him assuming he did not bring his vows. Ronnie proceeds to say his vows from memory.
Dana Sue is visibly emotional with tears in her eyes. Now it’s Dana Sue’s turn. Instead of reading her vows, Dana Sue puts the paper back in her purse. The session comes to a close as Pastor June asks them to consider promises they made to God and to each other. Dana Sue stands up and leaves the room before Pastor June finishes talking.
Helen listens to Dr. Ringle at her latest reproductive appointment. She is disappointed when the doctor shares that four eggs were harvested from Helen. Helen clearly was hoping for more.
Helen describes all the things she has been doing to be a good patient and create the best opportunity for reproductive success. Dr. Ringle agrees that Helen has been doing all the right things.
Helen begins to question her timing. She wonders aloud if she waited too long to try to get pregnant. The doctor encourages Helen to use the experience for embracing the fact that she cannot entirely control everything. She reminds her that only one of the four eggs is needed for a pregnancy.
It’s a date
Jackson arrives to Annie’s house for their date with flowers in hand. Dana Sue takes the flowers for Annie and waves goodbye to the teenagers.
When they arrive home, they chat about their miniature golf competition and begin kissing on the porch. Dana Sue listens from inside. Annie says she is pleased she gave Jackson another chance. “You were willing to show me who you really are.” Dana Sue begins to cry.
Maddie and Cal exit his bathroom in towels. Cal asks Maddie to get him a t-shirt from his dresser. Maddie opens the top drawer to find a collection of memorabilia that Cal has saved over the years. He tells her that’s the wrong drawer, but she’s enjoying the mementos, that is until she stumbles upon a handmade card from Cal’s ex-wife Victoria.
Maddie wonders why he still has the card. He explains that he uses it as a reminder of how he and Victoria failed. Maddie reminds Cal of what he said about forgiving someone so you can truly move on. He says that is no longer an issue and rips up the card. Maddie smiles and the couple talks about a future together embracing in a kiss.
It’s Margarita Night at Maddie’s house. The friends talk about how the Celebration of Life plans are going well and how Miss Frances can still inspire them.
Maddie reflects on her new life without Bill and how much things have changed. Dana Sue is asked about the marriage counseling. She admits that repairing their relationship is more difficult than she thought it would be but confirms that they both want to.
Helen complains about the recent interaction with her doctor. She dreams of being with her baby next summer but also wonders if she will be “the next Miss Frances”, living alone. Her friends point out that she will never be alone.
Mary Vaughn again
Mary Vaughn enters the spa and says how disappointed she is that the Magnolias went ahead with filing the petition. She insists that they were exaggerating their claims against Trent. She also thinks there were fake names on the petition. Maddie assures her that the clerk with verify the names.
Mary Vaughn says that gives the ladies time to change their minds. Maddie refuses to back down. Mary Vaughn makes a threat about Cal’s future reminding Maddie that Mary Vaughn has him under her thumb.
A surprise visitor
Helen is talking on phone to Erik when Ryan arrives to her home. She is taken aback. She gives her condolences about his aunt, Miss Frances. Ryan asks for some time to talk, and Helen tells him she does not have long. He explains that he wants to talk about service. He also says he has to talk to Peggy and Helen does not understand why.
Helen promises she will follow up with Ryan later.
Maddie and Paula
Maddie and her mom are talking about the arrangements for Miss Frances. Paula gets upset. Maddie tries to comfort her. Paula misses Frances and talks about their friendship.
Paula mentions that she has recorded details for her own service one day. Maddie is taken off guard. Paula tells her location of the documents. But Paula also gave all details to Helen.
Maddie cannot imagine life without Paula and all the gifts of support she has given her. Paula reminds her that planning does not mean she is leaving anytime soon. Her mom assures that she will guide Maddie always, and they hug.
Howie has a favor to ask of Noreen. Noreen apologizes for making things problematic at the practice and thanks him for always being supportive. He assures her that he will always be her friend.
Howie talks about Collins Littlefield recovering from surgery. He wants Noreen to look in on him. Miss Frances used to check in on him and now she’s gone. He’s having a hard time with her passing. Howie thinks baby Rebecca will help, too.
Ryan talks to Peggy
Ryan arrives at Peggy’s office as requested. She asks if it is okay for the newspaper to do some coverage of Frances’ service and celebration. Ryan agrees to it and suggests the photo to use for the appreciation piece. Peggy gives Ryan her business card with contact information so he can send it to her. Before he leaves Peggy tells Ryan she would like to catch up and perhaps do an article on Ryan.
Annie asks permission
Annie is about to leave Sullivan’s and asks her mom about going to the lake with Lily. She describes how she is caught up on her summer schoolwork making her free to go. She’s not scheduled to work next weekend and even agrees to watch the church service online.
Dana Sue says no because she does not know Lily very well.
Annie takes vases for Miss Frances’ Celebration of Life to the Townsend house. Ty is singing and playing guitar on the porch. Annie compliments him. Kyle walks out in a crazy costume. He wants Annie to take pics. He is creating a visual for their next game planning session. Annie mentions how nice it is to see them both recovering. The boys are happy to see her.
Cal walks Maddie home
Cal walks Maddie home and they flirt pretending they are high school sweethearts. Maddie tells Cal about Mary Vaughn’s threats against Cal. Cal says it all revolves around Jackson and he will do whatever he needs to keep Mary Vaughn happy about Jackson.
Cal quotes Harriet Beecher Stowe, “Never give up, for that is just the place and time the tide will turn.”
Dana Sue’s heartache
Dana Sue is trying (and failing) to say her wedding vows from memory like Ronnie did in counseling. Ronnie arrives. She wonders aloud why he can quote his vows, but she can’t seem to do it. He points out that this is not a contest. Ronnie suggests they forget about memorizing old vows and start their new life.
Dana Sue claims her heart is still broken and she feels she must have meant nothing to him if he would just randomly cheat on her. She was never able to even tell Annie about the cheating aspect of their troubles. Dana Sue could not stand the thought of it in her mind. She doesn’t understand how Ronnie can say the rendezvous meant nothing when he gave the most intimate part of himself to the other woman.
Dana Sue accuses him of “trashing” his vows. She wants to know why Ronnie didn’t communicate to Dana Sue that he felt unhappy in their marriage. She wants him to leave.
Peggy talks to Trent
Peggy records some quotes from Trent about his memories of Miss Frances. She thanks him for sharing his thoughts for the appreciation post. Trent thinks they are done, but Peggy has something else to say.
Peggy announces that she is “not going to keep [his] secrets anymore” and leaves.
Ty comes home
Cal and Maddie are on porch waiting for Ty and it feels like they have some bad news.
Cal talks about the recruiting schedules for the college division Ty is interested in. It doesn’t sound like Ty will be 100% by recruiting time. Ty is losing his chance to play baseball for the colleges he was hoping for. His baseball dreams are over.
Cal and Maddie start to mention other options, but Ty interrupts, “I don’t want to talk about Team-Almost-Good enough! There was never a time where D1 baseball wasn’t my goal! Y’all are gonna have to give me a second to get over the fact that I lost my dream in one stupid night!”
Ty goes inside.
Building little libraries
Ronnie is busy working on the little libraries Miss Frances requested. Annie is there and says she likes seeing her dad in the workshop.
Annie talks about Lily and mentions the lake house invitation. She asks for his permission. He responds asking what her mom said. We remember that it was a “no”, but Annie was hoping he would say “yes”. Ronnie reminds her that he and Dana Sue haven’t always agreed on everything, but they do stand united on doing what’s best for Annie.
A thought-provoking walk
Kyle and Sophie talk about how their game will be better than others in regard to the ending. Kyle mentions Nellie’s opinion on the game’s “final twist”.
Sophie says nice things about Kyle but says he is missing the picture on Nellie. She points out that Kyle invited Nellie to the group, is always supporting her ideas and brings her name up all the time. Sophie says Kyle likes Nellie and she thinks they would be a great pair.
Talking first loves
Ty comes to Helen’s house with a flash drive of photos of the Sweet Magnolias with Miss Frances when they were young. Perhaps Helen can use them for the slide show.
Helen asks Ty what’s up and Ty asks about Cece. Helen shares that she is on a college visitation trip with her mom. She is surprised that Ty didn’t know about Cece’s college interests. He reveals their breakup and Helen lets him know she is available if he wants to talk.
Helen shares, “Love is hard. And first love is the worst.”
Ty is not sure he and Cece were in love.
Helen continues, “You let her into your heart to whatever degree. That leaves a mark. Forever. And . . . and I’m not judging or . . . or lecturing. I’m just . . . I’m just sharing. But the people we love first, maybe before we fully know what it means to be loved, they’re with us from that day forward. And even if you try not to, you . . . you . . . You measure every person who comes after them against them. Better or . . . or worse, not as funny, weirder taste in music . . . ”
Ty mentions “simpler coffee orders”.
Helen says, “So here’s what I try to do about that. I try to be grateful for what that person taught me about the world and about myself. But not let remembering the first keep me from seeing the next as the . . . completely unique and . . . utterly marvelous . . . even if slightly guarded person that they may be.”
Ty wonders if you can go back to a first love. Helen responds “Maybe. Maybe. As long as you’re not going there because you’re running from something else.”
Helen urges Ty to appreciate who he is first and then find a partner that “complements” him, even though it could take a while. They hug and Ty thanks her.
Dana Sue meets privately with Pastor June and shares some revelations. She realizes she can’t just forgive Ronnie, she has to forgive herself, too. Dana Sue says she doubted him and said he was at fault but admits she didn’t consider her own faults.
She declares her love for Ronnie. She wants to trust him but she’s afraid of falling apart. As Dana Sue breaks down in tears, Pastor June comforts her with the reminder, “Until you’ve fallen apart, we can’t put you back together.”
Maddie visits Mary Vaughn
Maddie goes to Mary Vaughn’s office to report that the petition names have been verified and that the recall is in motion.
Mary Vaughn counters saying she will call an emergency school board meeting because they need to consider concerns that could affect Cal’s employment. Maddie wants to know what she is talking about. Mary Vaughn says it would not be right to discuss these concerns outside of a meeting. She also feigns disbelief that Maddie would not be aware of secrets of the man she is involved with. Mary Vaughn makes a crack about Bill, suggesting Maddie has not learned from her mistakes.
Finally, Mary Vaughn declares that she will do whatever she needs to for her man.
Bill meets Peggy on the square, thinking it’s about Miss Frances’ memories. She says that is not why she is there. Peggy tells him that they share a child. She stops him from leaving. Bill ponders, “The Model UN Conference in Raleigh? Beginning of junior year?” Peggy nods.
She goes on to explain that their moms made the decision not to inform Bill. Bill asks why Peggy did not tell him. She explains that it took all these years to stand up to her mom.
Isaac sits on a bench nearby, then walks up to Bill. Bill thanks Peggy but asks her to leave. She says, “never again” and grabs Isaac’s hand.
- “I was hoping you would realize it on your own, but clearly, I have to give you a hint box.” Sophie has such clever ways to get her point across to Kyle using video game lingo.
Food for Thought
- Is it really fair for Maddie to be upset that Cal saved a card from his ex-wife? Was tearing up the card the only solution for the discomfort in the room?
Stay tuned for our ongoing coverage of Sweet Magnolias with recaps, trivia and interviews!
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