This post contains spoilers for Season Two of “Firefly Lane.”
It’s the question that fans of “Firefly Lane” have been asking over and over since the hit Netflix show premiered in February 2021: Why are the two protagonists estranged by the end of the first season?
What started as an ode to the decades-long friendship between Tully Hart (Katherine Heigl) and Kate Mularkey (Sarah Chalke) turns sour in the Season One finale as the former besties have a seething encounter at a funeral.
So, what happened and will the best friends ever reconcile? Now that the first nine episodes of Season Two have arrived, we finally get some answers to all the burning questions, as star Heigl promised.
The Season 1 finale foreshadows the feud
Season One of “Firefly Lane” follows the past and present friendship of Tully and Kate. At the end, the season gives a glimpse into the future in the finale when Kate attends the funeral of her father and runs into Tully outside.
Rather than welcoming the sight of her best friend, Kate confronts her and says, “No one wants you here.”
“C’mon Kate, don’t you think you’ve punished me enough?” Tully replies.
“When I said I could never forgive you for what you did, what did you think that meant?” Kate says, visibly angry.
Tully explains that she just wanted to pay her respects to Kate’s father.
“You’ve got a lot of nerve showing up here. Leave, Tully. Go home now. I don’t ever want to see you again,” Kate says in response.
In Season 2, we learn that Kate and Tully were fighting about a car accident
If you’ve read the book that “Firefly Lane” is based on, you already know what caused the rift between Kate and Tully. But if you’re just along for the ride and are only watching the TV show, you learn a lot in Season Two.
In the first episode, Kate’s brother Sean (Jason McKinnon) asks if she wants to talk about her encounter with Tully at the funeral, saying, “It seemed pretty intense.” However, Kate has no desire to dwell on the topic.
When Kate’s daughter Marah (Yael Yurman) enters the room, she says she’s sorry that people keep asking about Tully and adds, “It’s been a while since the accident.”
Kate replies and says, “And yet even though she’s not here, still somehow it’s all about Tully. She’s like the gift that keeps on taking.”
At the end of the episode, we learn that there was a car accident six months after Johnny’s accident in Iraq. But we don’t know who was involved in the accident and if they’re OK.
In Episode Four, we discover that Tully was in the accident and see her passed out in the car, with blood on her face as paramedics arrive on the scene. A few episodes later, we learn that Marah was involved in the accident as well.
What happened on the night of the accident?
In Episode Seven, Marah goes to Tully’s place for a sleepover. Technically, Marah is grounded and Kate leaves Tully with strict instructions that the teenager isn’t allowed to leave her penthouse.
When Marah’s best friend/crush starts sending her flirty text messages and invites her to a movie, she begs Tully to let her go. Tully has a major soft spot for her goddaughter and obliges. Later in the night, the teen calls Tully from a fraternity party and explains that her bestie ditched her.
While at the party, an older guy starts hitting on Marah and makes her uncomfortable with his advances, so she locks herself in a pantry. Tully instantly has flashbacks to the time she got raped in high school and rushes to pick Marah up.
What caused the car accident?
While driving home, Tully and Marah get hit by a driver who ran a red light and they both suffer injuries from the accident.
At the hospital, Tully wakes up and screams for Kate, who is outside her room talking to a security guard. Kate looks at her in disgust and ignores her, then Tully later gets arrested for drunk driving (she had had a few drinks before the accident).
Kate shuts Tully out and won’t return any of her calls afterwards. When Tully shows up to her door one day, Johnny answers and we learn Marah sustained two broken ribs and a concussion in the accident. She also had to get shoulder surgery.
Marah sends Tully a text from Kate’s phone telling her to come over. Kate is upset to see her in her living room. The two friends hash things out and Kate angrily tells Tully that she could’ve done anything but drive under the influence to pick up Marah.
“It’s all about you just covering your a– so that I wouldn’t find out and then Marah is the one who pays the price,” she says.
“Well I am paying a price too, Kate, I am. My career might be over, they dropped my new talk show, my mug shot is everywhere. And no one is acknowledging that that car accident was not my fault. But worst of all, I may have lost my best friend and I am completely alone,” Tully replies.
Although Kate knows it’s hard for Tully to say she’s sorry over and over again, she says she can’t forgive her even if she wants to, because every time she looks at Tully, she thinks of what happened to Marah.
In short, Kate has no sympathy for Tully and says she’s done cleaning up her messes.
What does this mean for Kate and Tully’s friendship?
The former friends continue to live their separate lives for the remainder of the season until the finale, when Kate attempts to go see Tully after she gets diagnosed with cancer. Unfortunately, she’s too late. Tully is in an elevator on her way down to the building’s lobby and is about to leave for a months-long job in Antarctica.
Bad timing means that these friends’ long-awaited reunion might not happen.
Will Tully head back upstairs and find Kate? Will the two friends make up? Or will Tully leave without ever knowing Kate went to see her? We’ll have to wait for part two of Season Two to be released in 2023 to find out.