The final season of The Affair ended on August 25, but still reminiscing about it is natural. The show was emotionally loaded with extramarital affairs, questioned morality, and even the murder of one of the leads.
Clearly, the last season left us all wistful. And now Maura Tierney and creator Sarah Treem are discussing the last season.
In the end, Noah and Helen reunite despite all the difficulties through Noah’s affair with Alison affected not only Helen but everyone around them.
Treem did not want a sentimental ending!
Writer Sarah shared that not always had she thought of this ending. Since it was sentimental, she bid to avoid it. But she decided to keep her writing instincts aside and see what the characters are doing. Thus, it turned out Noah and Helen have a relationship that could not be broken simply. Apparently, they would clearly come to each other in the end.
Character Development is important!
Maura was involved in every script discussion. Thus, her views matter. The actress explained that initially, her character’s fate was yet to be decided. The 54-year-old felt that Helen was a support system for Noah. She was always there to share his grief, motivate him. Also, it might make her inferior to Noah, as she always went back to him. The actress thinks that Helen loved him even when he cheated on her.
The character development that Helen goes through is commendable, aside from being shocking. In episode 4 of season 5, it is revealed that she killed Cole, Alison’s husband, who was trying to assault his wife.
Specifically, Helen tells this to Noah in a motel via her statement that she is stronger now. But the woman has a habit of fixing everything for everyone. Then, she realizes that it is not possible but is still stuck with thinking about this.
Maura adds that the character changes like a real person who experiences a situation that changes them forever, even in small ways.
In a way, Helen is the protagonist of season 5. The development that she goes through resonates with the viewers. Her story pulls the viewers into the spiral of her past.
Maura said that Helen has selflessly sought out the welfare of others. Her magnanimous nature is due to her childhood. Bruce and Margaret, her parents, have raised Helen in a way that she prioritizes others’ needs over herself. This is due to her self indulgent parents who care only about themselves.
Therefore in the final season, she introspects all her life choices and priorities. And then decides to think for herself. We stan character developments such as these!
A relationship with communication cannot survive!
Treem shares that Noah and Helen sorted it out in the finale while running from the wildfires. Since Noah has always seen his perspective as paramount, it was fresh to see him acknowledge others and their struggles. He heard Alison’s tapes, and instead of loathing her, understood her struggle to overcome her child’s death.
Thus he realizes he was equally blamable for the affair. Then he hears Helen’s side.
Communication is important for forgiveness, and thus, Helen’s confrontation with Noah. This was a catalyst for mending their marriage.
All’s Well That the End is Well:
The finale episode features Noah dancing on the edge of the cliff, literally. Since Treem wanted him to behave like this. The island Montauk is the main element that ends it all as it started it.
The significance of this scene is shown the contentment he feels as all is set in his life. He has gone through much and come out of it a better man. Treem wanted to show the character departing with satisfaction.
Treem feels regret that she could not do certain things in the series. Though it comes with working on one thing for five years. But she also saw some obstacles as opportunities to improve the show. So losing some characters was also important for the story.
In the last season, Whitney playing Helen and Noah’s daughter shows her perspective about her mother. The main thing is that Helen would do anything to keep their family from falling apart. Still, Helen considers Noah’s behavior as her fault in Whitney’s view.
Further, Treem shares that Parent-Child dynamics is one of the important parts of the final season. Moreover, she would miss the company of all the stars as they sit and laugh about things. The actors have given so much to the show that impressed the Creator.
But now we have to move on (or not) from the show since it has ended.