**Warning – Major spoilers ahead**

Hulu’s adaptation, Nine Perfect Strangers, has been a mind-bending, star-studded trip for viewers and one hell of a therapy session for the characters.

The show is based on the novel of the same name by Liane Moriarty and adapted for the small screen by David E. Kelley and Jonathan Levine – reuniting lead actor Nicole Kidman with her Big Little Lies showrunner.

With the series concluding recently, after its eight-episode run, fans of the show are seeking a much-needed recap and explanation of some areas in the conclusion. We explain the ending in full, how it differs from the novel, and if there is any possibility of a second season.

Everybody Has A Story | Nine Perfect Strangers | Hulu

Everybody Has A Story | Nine Perfect Strangers | Hulu

Nine Perfect Strangers season 1 ending explained

Episode 7 revealed Carmel (Regina Hall) as Masha’s (Nicole Kidman) shooter, made clear by the character’s foggy eye after removing her contact. Masha forgave Carmel for attempting to kill her but put her away in a sensory deprivation chamber.

Even though Masha took some LSD to prove it was safe for the Marconi family – Napoleon (Michael Shannon), Heather (Asher Keddie), and Zoe (Grace Van Patten) – Lars (Luke Evans) stated that the last family to be drugged by Masha ended up dying. Despite the risks, the family proceeded in order to see their deceased son, Zach (Hal Cumpston).

It was later revealed that Masha’s end goal to help families take drugs and reconnect with deceased loved ones was because she too lost a loved one: her daughter.

Frances (Melissa McCarthy), Tony (Bobby Cannavale), Jessica (Samara Weaving), and Ben (Melvin Gregg) all decided to leave Tranquillum House. While searching for their cars that had disappeared, the group stumbled upon Carmel.

Image from Hulu Press

Masha and Yao ended up opening Carmel’s room to the departing group but closed the door behind them to lock them in. Frances eventually realized that the door was unlocked the whole time they were in there, with the smell of a fire looming.

The smell of smoke and the illusion of being trapped in the room was Masha’s final test for the drug-induced group before she was arrested.

In the afterward of the season finale, we see that Frances and Tony are still dating, the Marconi’s are working towards happiness again, Lars has returned to have a child with his boyfriend, and Carmel has begun her own therapy group. We also learn that Jessica and Ben have used their lottery money to buy Tranquillum House.

How is the Hulu show different from the book?

While the adaptation is largely faithful to the novel, by including the drug-fuelled fire and Masha’s arrest, there are some slight differences.

In the novel, Carmel is not Masha’s shooter, but instead, a bitter woman going through a divorce. The shooter is just a random person in the novel, and Masha is also never threatened by calls or texts in the source material.

The novel states that Frances and Tony get married during the afterward, but the continuation of their relationship is only touched upon in the adaptation. Jessica and Ben split up instead of staying together and it is also suggested that Ben and Zoe begin a relationship.

Will there be a season 2?

First and foremost, Nine Perfect Strangers was ordered as a miniseries, meaning there was no plan for the show to continue past season 1.

The conclusion of the show also wrapped the narrative up in a neat bow, with Masha’s arrest and Jessica and Ben’s take over of the house.

Having said that, Liane Moriarty’s other book, Big Little Lies, was also billed as a miniseries and that ended up continuing into a second season. Therefore, there is a small chance that this feat will be repeated.

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