‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’ Season 5, Episode 1 Recap & Ending, Explained


“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” comes back with a bang; the creators say the fifth season will be the last one for the series. The season brings back all of the top favorite characters and introduces two timelines running parallel to each other. The series will be focussing on the decade after Miriam’s success, which is the 1980s, and the 1960s, which is the present timeline. This will be an interesting take on the newest season. 

Spoilers Ahead

Season 5 Features Two Timelines

In the very first episode, we witness Esther having a rather chaotic conversation with her therapist. It is the 1980s, and Esther shares intellectual capabilities similar to those of her grandfather, Abe Weissman. Her hair is a mess, and she excels and is immersed in her line of education, which is a far cry from the nitty-gritty, glitzy, and glamorous lifestyle of Miriam Maisel. The timeline jumps back in time to the 1960s while Esther talks about her mother to the therapist, right after Miriam had embarked on a solitary journey in the blizzard after Lenny’s show at Carnegie Hall. An alarmed Rose calls up Susie to understand what Miriam is mumbling about. Susie rushes to the apartment to check on her, only to find her sick and down with hypothermia, as one of her toes had become almost black and could be amputated anytime. Susie stays with Miriam while she comes to her senses, and Miriam promises to get her act straight and begin doing gigs again. The talk with Lenny had hit her hard, so Susie went right ahead looking for a gig for Miriam. She reaches out to Mike Carr, booker for The Gordon Show, to secure a gig for Miriam, only to be turned down.

Did Joel Get Around To Telling The Family About Mei?

The Maisel and Weissman clans gathered around to celebrate Thanksgiving. Noah and Astrid have also come down to enjoy the feast with their son Chaim. As they gather around the table to begin their feast, Joel finally comes around to tell everybody about Mei, that he is going to marry her, and that she is pregnant. Miriam stayed by Joel’s side to show her support for his decision, while Moishe already knew about it and hinted at it during the feast. Shirley had already met Mei at the hospital when Moishe was hospitalized due to his heart attack. However, Mei introduced herself as a Mahjong-playing nurse in a panic-stricken fumble. Joel clarified the fact that she was Mei. Joel had returned back to his apartment with Ethan and Esther because it had been his day to take the kids, but he came back to find Mei waiting for him. They have a discussion, and Mei tells him that she is leaving for her residency in Chicago, and she also implies that she had aborted her pregnancy to pursue her dream of becoming a doctor. It seems that she has been forced to choose between her career, her family, and her life with Joel. She leaves soon after as she dashes Joel’s hope of having a family with her. After dropping Ethan and Esther off at the Weissmans’ residence, Joel goes out to drink away his sadness. In a drunken stupor, he flirts with other women while Archie helps him get away from the situation and curses out the band playing while also trying his hand at comedy. He ends his night in a scuffle with the Chinese people, who were connected to Mei and the gambling downstairs.

Did Rose Figure Out Who The Miscreants Behind Her Persisting Bad Luck Were?

From the very beginning of the episode, Abe receives soiled clothes from the laundry, and at Thanksgiving, Rose receives dead flowers instead of the fresh flowers she had ordered. Rose and Abe had received tickets for an outing, and they had been excited about it. However, as they reached the airport to board the plane, they were informed that their tickets had been canceled. They met Miriam at the airport because she had gone to make sure Alfie, Susie’s second client, would board his plane bound for Las Vegas for his gig there. Rose and Abe had simply put out that their trip had been canceled and that Miriam had gone to help Susie but had not seen them off. Here, Rose realized that it could be the matchmakers who had threatened war if she did not back off from their designated territories. She tried to fish for information, but due to Abe constantly telling her to hurry, she had to abort the mission. However, she was sure of them behind their constant bad luck as Abe made an observation about it.

Where Did Susie Score Miriam A Gig?

Susie started stalking Mike Carr after his initial refusal to help land Miriam a gig. He had even blacklisted Susie from entering the building, thus cutting off all communication with her. Susie followed him on his outing with his children and had essentially bribed his kids to ensure she’d have time to talk to and approach him. Mike, put out due to his ruined holiday, had threatened to blacklist Miriam as well. As Lady Luck shone upon Miriam and Susie, Gordon had walked into the strip joint on his own two feet, and Susie had swooped in to secure an opportunity for her. She secured a writing job for Gordon’s Show for Miriam so that it would open up a slot at the show for them. Gordon had loved Miriam’s comedic set on stage and had agreed to Susie’s offer eventually. He met with Miriam then and there and told Mike to note the offer down and make it easy for them to approach the studio.

Final Thoughts

The first episode of “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” Season 5 was nothing short of exciting and confusing at the same time. At first glance, it felt as if I was in the wrong place watching some other show; however, it did clear out a lot of doubts once the name Esther was mentioned. If the creators were going for an angle to confuse the audience, then they sure did a good job with the timelines. They bounced back to the 1960s seamlessly, however, and it goes to show that Esther shared Abe’s brilliantly similar brain cells, accompanied by Miriam’s chaotic personality and Rose’s sharp use of words. A glimpse into the future: Esther is having a conversation with her therapist, which I suppose the entire Weisman and the Maisels clan should have gone for as well.

Meanwhile, the whole situation regarding Joel and Mei seems very suspicious, and I suspect foul play because Mei had been reluctant to leave Joel. It could also be that she was lying about the implications of abortion so that it would be easier for Joel to hate her and make her leave. Her Chinese family could be dead against Joel, and Mei got together and held her career and education hostage, while also threatening danger to Joel and his nightclub. This could be the reason for Mei’s decision to leave Joel.

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Alokananda Sen
Alokananda Sen
Alokananda Sen holds a bachelor's degree in Journalism and Mass Communication. She has a keen interest in graphic designing, reading, and photography. Her insatiable appetite for cinema and pop culture enticed her to work as a content writer. She is currently pursuing a Post Graduate Diploma focused in Animation & VFX to explore a new dimension in her career.

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