You know what I really like about this new clip? The fact that Isak did at least a little bit of research about mania/bipolar disorder on his own, but that probably none of what he looked up/found were personal accounts of living with bipolar disorder or living with someone with bipolar disorder. It was wikipedia articles and such. And that’s good, that helps you understand it somewhat, but there’s a vital difference between the medical, technical understanding of an illness and understanding the lived experience. And that’s what Magnus provided.
In a way, this entire season has also been about communication, and I love that. Anyone who has ever talked to me about any kind of relationship has probably heard me go on and on about how most problems can/could be solved by better communication between people. It’s one of the biggest challenges we face, as people, to communicate clearly, and kindly, and openly.
Isak struggles to tell his friends about his sexuality, and that causes trouble until he does.
Even tells Sonja about Isak almost immediately, and that gets rid of a problem (or would, if her half of the communication had worked as well as his, because she probably refused to accept it, as implied by the scene between her and Isak), BUT doesn’t tell Isak about it beforehand and makes Isak nervous with his disappearing act.
When Isak doesn’t know what’s going on with Even and Eskild tells him to play hard to get, Jonas tells him to be clear about what he wants - et voilà, result. (Sidenote: playing hard to get is stupid and should be booted as a concept.)
In the morning after kitchen scene, Isak brings up not one, but two issues he’s insecure about with regards to Even, and Even can disspell both of them. Cue happy pop songs and kissing and “mannen i mit liv”.
Isak tells his father and mother about Even, and that gives an impetus for an improvement in their relationship.
Isak and Sana have a discussion about religion/science and they both learn from it.
Even reaches out to Isak post episode in an attempt at communication, but isn’t very clear about it. Isak shuts it down, and they both stay miserable for three more days.
Isak tells his friends about what’s going on, Magnus provides much needed perspective.
I love how with Isak we’ve gotten a character who listens when people talk to him.
Even Sonja talking to Isak gives Isak at least some needed information. And I think part of why Sonja’s words hurt so much is that in that moment Isak didn’t have the emotional capacity to be wary of what she was saying. If she’d told him about Even’s mania just after their happy bubble of a weekend, I’m not convinced he wouldn’t have asked Even about it. But as it was he had no idea what was going on, he was scared, alone, cold, and there was this girl who’s known Even for four years, telling him things that, on the surface, connected with the dots of Isak’s experience/insecurities.
Not because Even hasn’t shown a tremendous amount of care for Isak, but because Isak has constantly been in a slight state of bewilderment about it. Like, he runs with it, everytime Even gives him the least bit of attention, but he’s quick to doubt the sincerity and longevity of it as well. Isak hardly ever initiates anything between them in the beginning, he always waits for Even to come to him. Because Even is this cool, older guy who knows cool music (mostly), and has interesting and dark thoughts about the state of the self, and Isak is just this kid trying to figure out life. Isak is constantly trying to prove to Even he’s worthy of being with him, and when Even tells him he’s broken up with Sonja (the first time), I’m pretty sure Isak’s “I’ve decided I’m better off without mentally ill people in my life” was at least in part said in order to reassure Even that he’s not getting into anything messy with Isak. That he hasn’t broken up with his gf of four years just to get in way over his head with Isak’s turbulent family. That he can have Isak without “the baggage”, and Isak can be chill and undramatic. Not because he’d completely cut his mother out of his life at that point. They didn’t have “no contact at all” even though that’s what he told Even. In a way, Isak’s trying to hide his mother’s mental illness from Even for much the same reason Even hides his from Isak - they’re both worried it’ll drive the other one away.
I just… I love this theme of how talking to each other is a good thing that we should do. And that when it’s not done well, it can go wrong.
Gansey: Ronan, you deserve the best, and you found it. Adam, don’t you dare hurt him. Adam: I won’t. Blue: Don’t laugh. He means it. Adam: Okay, I-I won’t. Noah: Seriously, man, don’t hurt him. Adam: Okay, I’m not planning on hurting him. Gansey: You better not be. Adam: I’m not! Why would any of you think I would hurt Ronan? You’re all my friends too.