‘Palm Royale’ Ending Explained: Is Robert Dead Or Alive?


Set in Nixon’s world, Palm Royale’s Maxine Simmons often reminded me of Willy Loman from Miller’s famous play. Each of us, running after that American dream and ending up becoming the person we are not. Maxine wanted to be rich and respected so that she could one day proudly say that she belonged to Palm Beach. And I understand that. For me, Maxine isn’t selfish or ambitious. She is lonely. For those who are born without any roots, having a firm foundation later in life becomes so important that we are ready to sacrifice anything, even the things that matter to us. I know I am just blabbering about Maxine like she did on stage at the end of the series because I know how it feels when you lose that last log, that last ray of hope that kept you afloat in the world’s ocean. In Palm Royale’s ending, Maxine was left with nothing but a friend, Robert. This was the only relationship in Palm Beach that she hadn’t planned, bought, or inherited but had earned. [Spoiler Alert] And she definitely didn’t want to lose that friend.

Even though that’s all Palm Royale’s ending was all about for me, I will surely bore you with the important events of Palm Royale’s finale to speculate what we can expect in Season 2. And yes, there is going to be one, without a doubt.

How Did Agnes Become Norma Dellacorte?

I really took it personally when Norma shamed Evelyn Rollins for being an outsider in Palm Beach. It’s not rocket science to understand that the “rich” have always built huge walls around their lonely lives just to make themselves feel “important.” For many, Palm Beach was a dream that would never come true, yet every outsider (or dreamer) tried their luck. And, as they say famously, fortune favors the bold. At the end of the day, the question is always the same: What are you really willing to sacrifice to become rich and famous? Agnes gave up her entire identity and her entire existence and became Norma Dellacorte just in order to belong. But how? Let’s fill in the gaps if anyone missed the details.

Ann Holiday, the editor of the newspaper, had been one of my favorite characters throughout the series. And well, she was quite a journo. While trying to tell us about Norma’s background, she accidentally spilled a dark secret from her life. Born into royalty, Norma spent most of her childhood in a Swiss boarding school. The clue here is that no one in Palm Beach knew what a grown-up Norma looked like except for her own father. And while Norma was still studying at the boarding school, her father passed away, leaving the entire Dellacorte wealth to his single child.

At the boarding school, Norma shared a room with a girl named Agnes, who, too, was later found dead on the stairs. Now, according to real-Norma’s pen lover, Axel Rosenhips, Agnes was diabetic. This might not come as a big surprise to anyone except for the person who knows all about Norma’s medical records. Yes, Robert. The viewers can refer to the scene where fake Norma tried to kill Maxine by mixing huge doses of insulin in her drink. So, what exactly happened at the boarding school?

Agnes, being an outsider like Maxine, perhaps found out about the death of Norma’s father and, therefore, planned to murder her so she could swap places with her. Little things we do “to belong.” There is one confusion here, though. How did Axel not recognize Agnes when she came to Palm Beach and replaced Norma? Well, as Axel told Robert, he followed Norma to Palm Beach, but she cut him out of her life and most likely refused to meet him again, and we all know the reason why. It was only Axel who knew what the real Norma looked like, and he could have ruined everything for poor Agnes. It is also possible that in the strict boarding school, Axel and the real Norma never really talked to each other face-to-face and shared classes, which might be one of the reasons why Axel didn’t recognize the fake Norma sitting on the Dellacorte throne. I guess Agnes herself will make a confession in Palm Royale Season 2 and let us know the details. But as of now, the only person aware of her truth is struggling between life and death.

Will Robert survive?

With Douglas’ affair with Mitzi out in the open, Maxine had no real connection left in Palm Beach, except for Robert. At the end of episode 10, a wannabe communist named Mary Jones Davidsoul tried to assassinate President Nixon, but thankfully, Linda Shaw arrived in time and saved the day (not America, though). The bullet, however, hit Robert’s hip (please don’t kill me for not spotting the wound correctly). Now, the entire scene is quite ironic if you see it. A person from the LGBT community is bleeding to death, while Nixon and his bodyguards are only concerned about the President. Those agency officers didn’t even let Maxine and Douglas help Robert with the wound or call in an ambulance, and we cannot expect any help coming from Norma because she wouldn’t want Robert to survive, especially when he knows her secret. However, guessing from the tonality of the series, it would be safe to assume that Robert will survive. He will be in a coma or something for some time, or he will get paralyzed if the bullet has hit his spine. Whatever the case might be, I am certain we will see Robert again in Palm Royale Season 2.

Will Maxine and Douglas separate?

If you look at it, Maxine and Douglas’ marriage is based on a lie. Douglas married Maxine only because she got pregnant with his child. However, Maxine, due to some medical complications, lost the child long before the marriage, but she hid the truth from Douglas. The couple later tried for years, but Maxine couldn’t conceive. Douglas wanted to have a legacy of his own, but he had made peace with the fact that Maxine wouldn’t bear a child. So he just wanted to leave a more materialistic legacy in the world, like the East Palm Royale. The deal, however, won’t work out now that Norma is back on her feet.

The ending of Palm Royale season 1 left us guessing about the fate of Maxine and Douglas’ marriage. As much as I understand Maxine, she wouldn’t leave Douglas. She had tried it before, but she couldn’t. But I am open to other possibilities. My best guess is that, after a clash, the two would eventually get back together, and they would adopt Mitzi’s child so that she could fly away to New York and try her luck in modeling.

Will Linda get arrested?

Linda’s association with the radical feminist organization is no longer a secret. The secret agency had already suspected her of planning a coup against President Nixon and had arrested a few of Linda’s friends for the same reason. At the end of Palm Royale Season 1, when Tom Sanka came running to the catwalk area, he found Linda with a gun, which, most likely, Mary stole from Linda’s house. Mary, on the other hand, was nowhere to be found. Therefore, it wouldn’t be wrong to suggest that the law enforcement agencies will likely arrest Linda for Nixon’s assassination. I am sure this would make Evelyn the happiest person in the world. But Linda will eventually be saved. Her bookstore friend, Virginia, will be forced to reveal her true identity to the world and help Linda avoid punishment. Virginia has already established that she has contacts in high places, and I am just eager to find out exactly what that means. Is she really a spy? Well, let’s see. In the end, it is Mary who will pay the price for pulling the trigger, but how will we see that in season 2?

I guess I have answered most of the questions related to Palm Royale season 1’s ending, but if you have any queries, feel free to post them in the comments section.

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Shikhar Agrawal
Shikhar Agrawal
I am an Onstage Dramatist and a Screenwriter. I have been working in the Indian Film Industry for the past 12 years, writing dialogues for various films and television shows.

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