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Biggest Unanswered Questions In Sweet Magnolias Season 2

"Sweet Magnolias" Season 2 extensively improves upon the series' heart by bringing more substance and depth to the characters. It also expands on the relationships fans have been rooting for since Season 1, and it fleshes out the love stories by bringing forth challenges that feel organic. The crux of "Sweet Magnolias" is and will always be the ever-growing friendship between Dana Sue Sullivan (Brooke Elliott), Helen Decatur (Heather Headley), and Maddie Townsend (JoAnna Garcia Swisher). And the 2nd season not only allows the women to grow even stronger in their endeavors, but it also gives the audience opportunities to look deeper into their pasts.

"Sweet Magnolias" is based on a series of 11 novels by Sherryl Woods, and while some elements remain faithful to the text, the evident changes are enough to make us contemplate what else could differ in the TV show's future. The series isn't new to jaw-dropping cliffhangers –  its 1st season finale leaves us with a car crash and no answers as to who is in the passenger's seat, and the 2nd season follows this pattern with even more questions we're itching to have answers to. In the final few episodes of the 2nd season, there's a death, a considerable career change, arising scandals, a surprising return, and one too many queries that already have us counting down until the next batch of episodes.

The following article contains spoilers for the "Sweet Magnolias" books and Season 2 of the Netflix show.

How will Helen respond to Ryan's proposal?

In the books, Helen finds her true love match with Erik Whitley (Dion Johnstone), and perhaps that can keep people hopeful. As the couple fans have wanted to see together since the show's debut season, wishes finally come to life in Season 2 as we watch their friendship blossom into something more. Things go great for the pair from the start as Erik accompanies Helen to her doctor appointments and eventually opens up about the trauma that led him to Serenity. Their relationship proves to be a beacon of light and makes the wait worth every minute — but the final few moments of the episode leave audiences with the kind of bombshell no one wanted to see.

Earlier in the season, during a conversation with Ty (Carson Rowland), Helen states that while it's clear why some of her relationships didn't work out, she might be able to go back to her first. "Maybe" is the exact word she uses. This is something to note when Helen's ex Ryan (Michael Shenefelt) initially returns for Miss Frances' funeral but also tells Helen that he now wants children with her and proposes. And while their primary issue was Ryan not wanting to have children, it's hard to imagine that she'll drop Erik just because Ryan has a change of heart. It does, however, make us speculate if she'll take some time to think about it while being single for a bit. If nothing else, this could also lead to the kind of love triangle fans will likely disapprove of, but one there's a quick resolution for if the series returns for a 3rd season. Erik and Helen are great together, and with his losses, their future together feels more fitting. Ryan could surely find love elsewhere — perhaps with Peggy, who could give him a child through Isaac.

Will the scandal put a rift between Maddie and Cal?

"Sweet Magnolias" Season 2 adds tremendous depth to Maddie's and Cal's (Justin Bruening) relationship, but it concludes with the kind of scandal that doesn't look good for the couple. While we have more insight into the former baseball star's past, there's plenty to be said about whether or not he's in the right frame of mind to be in Maddie's life. And with him likely ending up in jail for a night or two after the fight at Sullivan's, we wonder if there will be a temporary rift between the pair. There's already plenty of scandal in the lives of the Magnolias', and though they often get through it, we can't help but wonder if it's too much for Maddie at this point.

Considering everything that erupts from learning that Bill is also Isaac's father and Bill having more crosses to carry because of how the town will react to Cal's behavior, it might be too much for one person. Something tells us that Maddie will need someone to talk to about how to move forward with all of this using the grace she tries to maintain. Maddie and Cal are good together, but sometimes, two people need to work individually to be even better as a couple. We're sure they'll make it through, but with a fight as public as the one at Sullivan's, the road looks more challenging than easy.

Has Cal really put aside his anger and change?

The fight at Sullivan's ultimately causes us to doubt how much of Cal's past is really behind him. We could sense his temper earlier in the series, but he often notes that he has a handle on it. And yet, the fight showcases the opposite. While Stu provokes Cal and essentially hits on Maddie, it's still not an excuse for the rage that pours out. We know Cal isn't dangerous by any means, but it's still necessary to question the hold his past has on him.

"Sweet Magnolias" Season 2 does an outstanding job of introducing therapy through Gary Weeks' Ashley Davenport, and we're hoping this means more characters will start to take a closer look into their mental health in Season 3. Indeed, Cal still juggles an abundance of issues, and some situations quickly press him. If he wants to be part of Maddie's life and set a better example for her boys, he's probably going to need a better handle on his past.

Who's the mystery woman slashing the tires?

As it turns out in the final few moments of the season finale, Mary Vaughn Lewis (Allison Gabriel) isn't the most significant threat to the Magnolias. A mystery woman credited as Kathy, played by Wynn Everett, returns to Serenity to wreak havoc on Sullivan's. She initially stops Annie to ask if she's Dana Sue's daughter before noting that she "looks like something she [Dana Sue] would spit out" and walks off pompously, leaving us all to question her identity. However, it isn't until Tyler shows a video of her slashing tires on the serenity_secrets415 Instagram account that we learn she has a vendetta against them all.

Since the show isn't necessarily following the books in a word-for-word adaption, it's hard to tell who Kathy could be. Whoever she is, she's undoubtedly a threat to the three women — maybe even a little more to Dana Sue — and judging by Helen's tone in the scene, there's very little they can do. Could she be the woman Ronnie had an affair with? Does she have something to do with Miss Frances, specifically since she shows up on the day of her funeral? She's no Southern Belle, that's for sure, and whatever is about to go down following her visit doesn't sound pleasant for anyone in Serenity.

Why does Miss Frances choose Dana Sue for the money?

Following Miss Frances' passing, we learn that she leaves behind a huge chunk of money, particularly for Dana Sue, and neither the audience nor the women know why. And because she never does anything on purpose, it keeps us wondering why Dana Sue is the chosen one. Did she adore Sullivan's so much that she wanted to ensure it'd continuously have funds? Is she somehow related to her? Does she know something we don't?

Dana Sue is worthy of the money, but we can't help but wonder if it'll somehow backfire and put her in more debt. There's also a great deal we still don't know about Dana Sue's past, and it forces us to question if this will bring more to light. While it's easy to trust that Miss Frances had the best intentions, it's hard to trust that a crack in the system won't pose a challenge in the future.

Can Dana Sue and Ronnie make it work this time?

Dana Sue and Ronnie Sullivan have quite the journey in Season 2 as they navigate through making their marriage work. It's one of the highlights, without a doubt, but it's also critical to wonder if Dana Sue has truly forgiven him for cheating on her. Ronnie's growth is one of the most admirable facets of "Sweet Magnolias" Season 2 because Brandon Quinn does a captivating job of exhibiting the tangible changes in the character. However, it isn't the type of mistake that's easy to rectify. It comes with a mess of perils, and though the couple goes through the wringer even as they seek counseling, it stills feels like the forgiveness needs more work.

And while we're still questioning Kathy's identity and if she has anything to do with the woman Ronnie cheats with, it's easy to query if this darkness will see the dawn sooner rather than later. The couple does end up together in the books, so fans can presumably be confident that's the same route the series will take, but something tells us that the hurdles in their path are far from over.

How will the mayoral recall change everything for the kids?

One of the fascinating elements in "Sweet Magnolias" Season 2 is how showrunners handle the teen arcs. Giving Jackson Lewis (Sam Ashby) a character bent outside of the typical teen bully is refreshing, to say the least. We can tell his feelings for Annie are genuine, but since their parents loathe one another, it remains unanswered whether this dynamic will change in the future. While Nellie is young enough to listen to her parents and vocalizes to Kyle why they can't see each other anymore, that's not an approach Jackson takes. Even Ty seems to make a breakthrough with Jackson by not wanting there to be as much animosity between the two. Still, words are empty promises in the world of adults, let alone teenagers, so it's hard to tell where they'll go from here.

We also know that while Annie and Jackson don't end up together in the books, it seems the series wants to push the story along a little further. Could the recall election move the Lewis' out of Serenity, forcing a long-distance relationship of sorts? Will one of the Magnolias run for office instead? Helen's undoubtedly the best fit, and it'd be satisfying to see her in such a position.

Where does the news about Isaac leave Bill in Serenity?

Earlier in the season, Bill Townsend decides to separate himself from his family for a bit to give everyone the space they need to cope with his actions, but Peggy's news about Isaac's identity brings him right back. At this point, it wouldn't even surprise us if Kathy also has a child with Bill, but it begs the question: What on earth is he going to do now? 

Isaac learning that he has two brothers and two sisters can be a beautiful thing for his growth, especially considering Maddie's kindness. Still, Bill's presence seems to continue looming over the family like a useless shadow. He's definitely trying, but there's nothing worthwhile that he appears to contribute. Sure, it looks like he's warming up to the idea of Tyler not pursuing baseball, but it still seems like he should stay away for a bit. Plus, what happened to the job he had accepted? How long will he be back in Serenity? And will his mother combine forces with Peggy to make the scandal disappear again? They've done it once, and it's easy to assume that they could do it again.

Will Tyler pursue music if baseball doesn't work out?

Tyler Townsend's growth throughout the 2nd season is one of the more admirable routes "Sweet Magnolias" takes. While physical therapy is challenging and he can't understand Kyle's concerns, by the end of the season, he seems to be on a more promising path than where he began. Tyler plays baseball professionally in the books, but with his injury putting a pause on his dreams at the moment, it seems like he could go in the musician route. 

It's certainly something he's good at, but at the same time, where would that lead him? Would he leave Serenity and go on tour if he makes it professionally? It's a bit too far off to be considered, but seeing they're still in summer vacation mode, it seems he still has time to decide. If nothing else, we have a concrete answer that he doesn't feel the immense pressure he did in the 1st season. Yet, we also don't know how he will react to the news about Cal, seeing as how much of his comfort on the field was having a coach he could trust.

Has Annie gotten over her feelings for Tyler?

While Ty and Annie end up together in the books, it seems the evident crush is on pause for the time being. Surprisingly, Annie's relationship with Jackson isn't as bad as it could've been, and it's nice to see how much she's inspiring him to do better. However, fans of the duo have been waiting since Season 1 to see something happen between them, and the good news is that their friendship seems to be growing stronger.

There is the matter of Lily flirting with Ty, however. Does she know that Annie has a crush on him? Does she know how close the two of them are, and will this be something that impacts their friendship? The teens don't have strong friendships the way the adults do, and while the cattiness this season isn't as bad as it was before, this could bring about unnecessary drama in a friendship that is otherwise lovely this season. The slow burn between Ty and Annie is making the relationship sweeter, and fans don't want to see another dramatic rift between two women. Frankly, it would've even been nice to see Cece and Annie patch things up, but perhaps that's for another season.