‘The Girl From Plainville’ Ending Explained: Is Michelle Carter Still In Prison?


The finale episode of “The Girl from Plainville,” titled “Blank Spaces,” is an emotional rollercoaster. The series reimagines how Conrad (Coco) might have spent the last day of his life, knowing that he was going to end it, how the world around him and the beauty of little things could have positively affected his mind. “The Girl from Plainville” also takes the liberty of pondering the emotional turmoil that Michelle might have encountered after realizing the effect she had on Coco. How her life could have been different had they not shared the kind of relationship that they did.

Episode 8: Recap Summary

While watching “Glee,” Michelle texted Natalie that Coco was still missing and she was worried about his life. It almost seemed as if Michelle’s chat world existed outside of reality. What she texted was not always the truth, and her texts to Natalie and Cassie indicated her dire need for attention from her friends. As she warns her friends of Coco’s absence, she continues to coax Coco to commit suicide. While he expressed doubts since he always found it difficult to make himself do it, Michelle advised him to do it and not to just think about it. She reassured him that it was only by taking his life that he would truly be happy and at peace. In his vulnerable state, Coco took Michelle’s advice and went ahead with it.

On his last day, he had guacamole for the first time, something that took his mother by surprise. He went to the beach with his mother and his sister and watched a kid build a sandcastle. On a busy day, he smiled at the little moments that one often does not take note of. Before leaving his house, he waited for his mother to stop him from having dinner outside, but that never happened. He loved and cared for his family, and it was them that he always thought about whenever he had suicidal thoughts. “The Girl from Plainville” imagines how Coco might have had the will to live; a part of him might have wanted to stay a little longer.

See More: ‘The Girl From Plainville’ Episode 7: Recap And Ending, Explained – Why Did Michelle Misinform Her Friends?

Was Michelle Carter Found Guilty Of The Charges?

The court found Michelle Carter guilty of involuntary manslaughter. According to the Judge, the commonwealth was able to establish the disregard Michelle had for Coco’s well-being. Her behavior was considered reckless by the court. The Judge mentioned that it was Coco who brought the pump from his father’s house; he found a vacant location, and it was he who started the pump. But his chain of self-causation was broken when he stepped outside his car. He sought Michelle’s guidance, and she instructed him to get back in the truck. It was her words that pushed Coco back into the vehicle. That instruction was considered to be involuntary manslaughter.

Later in “The Girl from Plainville” Episode 8, it is mentioned that, with the support of Lynn Roy, a “Conrad Law” is on the docket in Massachusetts. According to the law, it makes a person criminally liable for up to five years in prison if they coerce someone who they know is struggling mentally into committing suicide.

‘The Girl From Plainville’ Ending Explained: Is Michelle Carter Still In Prison?

The series reimagines how Michelle’s life could have been had she not been involved in the mess that she made. She could have gone to UC Davis and lived her dream of living in California. She could have returned home after graduation and celebrated with her parents and sister. Even though in her dreams she knew that her friends would not turn up at the bar where they were supposed to meet, she imagined that she would meet Conrad. In this dream, they had lost contact after their brief friendship in Florida, and they were reunited at a local bar in Massachusetts. She sat down with Coco and explained how she had always wanted this to be a reality. She would live away from her family, and he would own a boat, and they would meet suddenly at a bar, but it was too late. She blamed him for not wanting help and torturing her with his desire to kill himself. She added that she was not in the truck, but even she knew that the argument was not strong enough. She wished that her sensible, mature self would have chanced upon Conrad that night in the parking lot of KMart. She would have begged and stopped him from listening to her advice. She had regretted the incident, but now she was helpless.

After the sentence that was given in August 2017, Michelle Carter was taken into custody on February 11th, 2019. She was sentenced to serve fifteen months after being convicted of involuntary manslaughter. She served eleven months of her sentence and was released in January 2020 for good conduct. A particularly interesting shot was when Michelle’s phone was kept beside Conrad’s phone. Indicating their relationship that existed mostly over texts, and how it could have been avoided if they had looked at the world beyond their phones and sought help from the ones they loved. “The Girl from Plainville” is a reminder to look out for our friends and family members who might be suffering from issues related to mental health. It highlights the importance of always advising the ones we love to seek help from mental health professionals. In a world where mental health awareness and acceptance still need to be widespread, such cases indicate how a change is necessary and how it must not be taken lightly.

See More: ‘The Girl From Plainville’ Episode 6: Recap And Ending, Explained – How Did Coco Affect Michelle’s Life?

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Srijoni Rudra
Srijoni Rudra
Srijoni has worked as a film researcher on a government-sponsored project and is currently employed as a film studies teacher at a private institute. She holds a Master of Arts degree in Film Studies. Film History and feminist reading of cinema are her areas of interest.

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