[Header Image: Mae Whitman as Annie Marks, Christina Hendricks as Beth Boland, and Retta as Ruby Hill | NBC]
Unfortunately, in mid-late 2021, this blog had to be put on the back burner and I was unable to finish writing my reviews for Good Girls.
Considering it’s by far one of my favourite shows of all time and it was sadly cancelled after 4 seasons, I figured I would compose the reviews for the last 6 episodes into one post as mini-reviews so that I can still get some of my thoughts out there for a show I have a lot of love and appreciation for.
Season 4 Episode 11: Put It All on Two
In this episode, we see Beth, Annie, and Ruby take the money across the border into Canada only to believe that they’re being followed by some kind of law enforcement so they end up betting it all away (so as not to be caught with it). There’s some hilarity involved when they try to lose the car following them and also when they end up actually winning a lot of money whilst trying to lose it. In the end, they do manage to get rid of all of the money by betting on Beth and Dean’s wedding anniversary, a not-so-subtle hint at the impending (or continued) downfall of their marriage.
There are also examples of that downfall when Dean is dismissive about Danny needing her and when he decides to turn against her near the end of the episode. On top of that, Beth has to turn to Nick for help when she feels Rio closing in. A trio that was a ton of fun to watch this season but honestly, deserved a little more screen time.
Elsewhere, there’s continued heartache for Ruby in the Stan VS Beth drama and she finally discovers that Stan is only helping because he made a deal with Beth who agreed to stay out of Ruby’s life. The focus on Ruby’s face as she cries and the music plays makes the scene more heartbreaking than it already is and was so well done. That being said, prior to that scene, watching Krystal/Diane and the other girls (along with Stan) help with the border crossing was so fun!
Season 4 Episode 12: Family First
The major thing to happen in this episode was Annie’s kidnapping. It was definitely a lot friendlier than when it happened to Beth back at the end of season two but of course, she’s still scared and both Beth and Ruby work hard (and desperately) towards getting her back. It was a delight seeing them try to get ownership of Sweet P’s and it was topped by Emma Caulfield making an unexpected appearance!
That being said, Annie’s time with Mick was very entertaining to watch! They’re a duo that could have brought a lot more joy to the show if they’d had more scenes together. I particularly loved when she gave him an alibi instead of trying to escape like she was tyring to.
Also, this episode saw Beth and Ben interact for the first time and I feel that we were robbed of interactions between the girls and each other’s kids.
Season 4 Episode 13: You
The Secret Service have a bit more focus again and we see by the end of this episode that Beth appears to be working against Nick. We, as an audience, know that he has more power than Rio and is calling the shots more often than not but finally, it seems he’s not so safe anymore and he’s becoming the desired target instead of the continue Beth (and Annie and Ruby) VS Rio that often happens.
This episode is more of a transition than anything. Phoebe and Dave are trying to get back into their investigation and make steps forward, Annie’s relationship/home life is changing again, and Stan clearly regrets joining Dean’s men’s club. However, the biggest transition of all is the girls trying to get Sweet P’s up and running so that they can properly print/wash their counterfeit money. They do so by getting their permits but by far the best part of this whole thing was the montage of Krystal/Diane getting the other girls together and them taking back their power by ensuring they’re respected for what they bring to the club (and the fact it would be nothing without then, especially with the illegal side-business).
At a different point in the episode, it was hilarious to see Annie and Ruby using Rio’s closeness with Beth to negotiate with him. It could have blown up in their faces big time but it was a delight to watch unfold either way.
Season 4 Episode 14: Thank You For Your Support
The scene where Dave tries to explain the crime hierarchy of Nick/Rio’s business and relationship was a lot funnier than it had any right to be and the overall acting (but specifically the face acting) was so good.
While they are still clearly working towards getting Nick, this episode actually focuses more on Beth running for council. It was a delight to see her enlist Mick’s help for the graffiti but also to threaten her opponent. It was also really great when she came home to find Rio had (finally!) returned her things and it led to what was clearly a step forward in her relationship with him.
One other delightful thing to happen during this episode was Annie helping Nancy out. They have such a lovely and interesting dynamic that didn’t get enough screen time so it was wonderful to see them interact again.
Season 4 Episode 15: We’re Even
The girls spend a good chunk of this episode working towards getting evidence against Nick. Thanks to an entertaining but rocky scheme — the best part of which was Annie practising her lock picking skills! — they do manage to get access into Nick’s office and find some evidence but not without him becoming suspicious. While they may have been successful in getting what they needed, they no longer have the strong element of surprise. Either way, by the end of the episode, we get that fantastic scene in which Rio — upon realising Beth isn’t working against him — goes to her and offers to help her out with taking Nick down.
Elsewhere, Dean’s “friend” from the men’s rights club tries to blackmail Beth after seeing Rio leave the house in a previous episode and it finally makes Dean see that maybe the group is just using him. It feels like a necessary step in the realisation that Beth might not be on his “team” anymore but she’s certainly not his enemy in the way his new group are suggesting. And while this is happening, Ruby and Stan continue to argue/disagree when it comes to Beth and crime but for the most part, is just seems like they’re tired and that Ruby, at least, is torn. You can really feel their exhaustion and it continues to be heartbreaking to witness them go through so many downs.
Season 4 Episode 16: Nevada
While this wasn’t the planned ending of the entire show, it works surprisingly well. Of course, things are left open-ended but it’s not as much of a cliffhanger as it could have been considering it was cancelled.
The Secret Service investigation gets the beginning of a conclusion when Nick is finally arrested. Based on what happened throughout this episode and the fact Good Girls loves twists and turns, there’s always a chance he could get out but for now, he’s out of the girls (and Rio’s) lives, giving them a chance to make some changes and new moves.
By the end, neither Annie nor Ruby are in the best situation. At one point, all three women considered leaving to start fresh and get away from crime. As the episode comes to a close, Ruby is faced with the decision to leave with her family or to stick around. The last we see of her, she’s packing suitcases. It seems likely that she has chosen to go away with Stan and the kids but considering the premise of the show, it’s unlikely she would have stayed gone for long especially when you take into account what happened to Annie who, by the end of the episode, gets arrested.
It seemed unlikely that her offer to put her fingerprints on the gun that was used to kill Lucy wouldn’t come back up again. For the drama of it all, it would probably get dragged out a little bit in season 5. Most likely, there’d be question marks over her shooting her own sister but there’s still the fact that Lucy is dead and there were no real leads there until now. Either way, it seems unlikely that the writers would have kept her in prison for too many episodes even if the whole “is she guilty?” aspect gets dragged out.
That being said, between that, Ruby’s (possible) decision to leave, and Beth taking steps forward in her working life (and dedication to crime), it does make me wonder if there would have been a time jump in the start of season 5.
Anyway, speaking of Beth getting shot, it brought about such a strange but entertaining vision/dream. It was so good to see both Fitzpatrick and Eddie again, even if only briefly, and also to see what Beth considers to be important and how she views things. Not only that but her vision/dream looked really bright and highly saturated, making for such a change from the usual visuals. In the end, it results in Beth fully accepting crime as a part of her life which appears to change her relationship with Rio for the better and lead to her and Dean finally calling quits on their marriage.
If the show continued — along with how Annie’s arrest might have gone and Ruby’s decision between her friends and her family — it would have been interesting to see what Matthew Lillard’s role on the show might look like now things have changed with his character, what Beth and Rio’s dynamic would go on to look like (especially with Nick in prison and what he might do), and how the girls’ involvement in crime might develop now that Beth is committing more of herself to it.
Unfortunately, unless another network or streaming service decides to pick it back up (something that sadly doesn’t seem likely right now), we won’t get answers to the open-ended conclusion of the finale/this season.
Even so, despite a cancellation, Good Girls still managed to get a decent ending. It had its limitations but with Beth, Annie, and Ruby’s storylines (together and separately), you can make some educated guesses as to where things might go. Considering they are the protagonists and often get some highs (after some serious lows), it’s more likely than not that things would work out for them eventually before the next hiccup in the road. While it would be more ideal to get at least one more season, I can’t help but think about the cliffhangers we could have ended up with, like Rio getting shot at the end of season two. This conclusion at the end of season four felt a lot more forgiving.