It just gets harder and harder to have newer opinions about this summery love triangle. We all have a friend who makes stupid decisions but justifies them with an emotional maze in their mind. In The Summer I Turned Pretty, Belly is that friend. She is on the path of course correction or understanding—whatever we want to call it, it is the same mess. Frankly, we have been snide about Belly’s motivations and actions before this, but to be honest, she has been no different from any other teenage girl. Jeremiah’s being such a good person is what has made others annoying for us. Now that we are on the penultimate episode of the second season, let us see what happens here through its recap.
Does Laurel Save The House?
Laurel is understandably furious when she gets the call from her daughter, telling her that she is not at home but has lied to her and been at the beach house for the last few days. When Belly wakes up from a drunken and bitter sleep, her mom is right there, ready to be more angry with her. Laurel gets the update from her daughter that the house is ready to be sold, but she feels that she can’t possibly interfere with the process, like the kids have deluded themselves into believing that they can. For Belly, she doesn’t even have the chance to fix her groggy hangover mood, and she is already fighting with her mother.
Laurel is rightfully angry at Belly and Steven’s irresponsibility, but Belly is more angry at her mother for closing herself off to the extent that she couldn’t talk to her at all. Just like Belly thought, Laurel had indeed been angry with Belly for the scene created at Susannah’s funeral. We cannot say this enough: it couldn’t have been Belly’s fault. Conrad was equally to blame. Even if Belly had misunderstood Conrad and rushed out of the room, it was he who had insisted on talking to her in front of everyone. He could have easily taken her aside or waited a while to clarify things with her, but we know that he stopped her and insisted on speaking right then and there. There is only so much one can control about their emotions, and Belly is really getting the rough end of the stick for not being more of a saint.
Surprisingly, neither Conrad nor Jeremiah blame her for that day, but Laurel does. We don’t think it is anger as much as it is grief. If a person does not work out their sadness by giving it an outlet, it is bound to manifest in unhealthy ways. When Belly points that out to Laurel, it is enough of a trigger for her to slap her daughter. Maybe this was the action that finally made Laurel see just how wrong she was. Belly runs out to the beach in anger and embarrassment, and back in the house, Conrad understands that his actions have been no different from Laurel’s, and by stubbornly sticking to the facade of strength, he has pushed away the people closest to him.
Belly and her mother make up when Laurel apologizes to her and promises to help her daughter with the one thing that matters the most to her right then: the house. When Julia comes back, she is shocked at the state of the house, which is a huge mess from the party the night before. But she is surprised to see Laurel there, and the grownups immediately step out to talk to each other. Laurel once again tells Julia what the house means to the kids, and she asks her to reconsider selling it away. This is when Julia proves just how much therapy she must have taken to become the person she is today. She points out to Laurel that she and Belly were always welcome there, but there had never been a place for her in the house. There is absolutely no emotional or spiritual attachment holding Julia to the beach house; however, Julia admits that she has no right to be bitter about it. After all, Susannah could have been more understanding, but she did not have an obligation to look after Julia’s hurt feelings when the letter had consciously stepped away from the family.
Does Belly Get Together With Jeremiah?
Julia agrees not to sell the house, but she is still not going to keep it with her. This is where Mr. Fisher steps in to finally discuss things. The two women hate Adam’s guts, especially Laurel, and it could have all gone south so easily, except that Jeremiah and Conrad ask their father, with complete sincerity and love, that they want the house. It could have been Adam’s guilt or just the fact that he knew he could do this for his children, but he agreed to buy the beach house from Julia with money from the sale of another house of his.
Now that the crisis of Season 2 of The Summer I Turned Pretty has been averted, Conrad decides to focus on the next most important thing. It is not Belly, but the biology exam that he has to take the next day. We don’t know why Belly was the obvious choice to help, but she organises a study schedule for Conrad, and everyone has to help. It was a given that Jeremiah wouldn’t let go of the progress he has made with her just because Conrad has also started paying attention. This time, however, Belly is getting clearer about what she wants. She has specifically said to Jeremiah that whatever was once there between her, and Conrad is now over. Jeremiah thinks differently, but Belly has the same conversation with Conrad as well, declaring her feelings officially.
The next day, when the three of them set off for Conrad’s college and he is studying in the car, Belly is just one step away from announcing her decision. What probably helps her make up her mind is when Conrad goes for his exam and Jeremiah gives her a tour of the college she is likely to go to next year. Belly starts seeing her future, which has been clouded by everything else this whole time, and she seems to understand who she wants in it.
At the end of episode 7 of season 2 of The Summer I Turned Pretty, when they get back to the parking lot, Belly tells Jeremiah that she wants to be with him. Whatever tension between them that Jeremiah may or may not have encouraged, he is clear with Belly that if they get together now, it will be an all-or-nothing case. There is no way he will be the guy she is with because Conrad isn’t there with her. Belly assures him that she wants to be with him, and as they finally kiss, the most awkward thing happens: Conrad arrives right in time to view this spectacle.
We had not expected to enjoy such detailed explorations of every single facet of an emotion as basic as “To be or not to be”. We are not quoting Hamlet, but talking about Belly’s ability to understand and commit to what her heart wants. Jenny Han has a way of making the nice guy win, even though he may not be the one the heroine pines for for the majority of the story. We are talking more about XO Kitty than To All The Boys, but going by Min Ho and Peter Kavinsky, our bets are on Jeremiah.