T.S. Eliot once famously wrote, “This is the way the world ends. Not with a bang, but a whimper.” Ignoring every subtle metaphor every set place in any creative work, ever, the From Dusk Till Dawn season 3 finale, “Dark Side of the Sun,” ends the world with enough blood and guts to make T.S. Eliot ever wonder why I put him in this introductory paragraph.
As Amaru (Natalie Martinez) opens the gate to Hell, Seth (DJ Cotrona) and Scott (Brandon Soo Hoo) race to save Kate- Meanwhile Richie (Zane Holtz) struggles in Amaru’s grasp, and Freddie (Jesse Garcia) tries to save an entire hospital’s worth of people, including his wife Margaret (Jamie Tisdale) and adoptive sister Dakota (Nicky Whelan).
The most triumphant story of the finale, Kisa (Eiza Gonzalez) learns not only to accept herself as leader of the culebras, on her own terms, but also finally gets to work with the Geckos and the Fullers, in a team up that’s long overdue. Two of the most satisfying scenes this entire season come from the interaction between Kisa and Kate- First, when Kate apologizes for Amaru killing Manola, and again, when Kisa comforts Kate at the end of the episode. Dusk has rich characters with compelling motives and a fast plot- But they’ve always had very little female to female interaction. The sheer power of these two, small scenes proves that if anything, it’s the missing link that the show has needed this entire time.
While Richie has been alluded to be a very powerful piece in the puzzle for the full three seasons of the show, it was a shame to see him undersold in the finale. Richie is the one that crawled into hell and brings Kate back out of the gates- Unfortunately, we never see what he and Kate do in Xibalba. If there is a season 4 of the show, we can hope that it will elaborate on this- While the show rightfully put a large amount of focus on Seth, Kate, and Scott, on the other hand, you can’t just send two people to hell and not tell us how they made it back.
As mentioned, this week was really about Seth, Kate, and Scott- but more than that, it was about Scott and Kate coming into their own as adults. We’ve seen them struggle with early season 1 teenage angst, a dead mother, being kidnapped, one of them being a culebra, one of them being possessed- and it turns out, that kind of thing may or may not change the bond you have with your sibling. While their father once told Kate that she and Scott needed each other, this episode proves him both right and wrong. Kate and Scott protect one another, but lack the codependency of the Geckos. What better show of maturity is there than that? They haven’t grown apart from one another, but they have grown to appreciate who they are as people. And they, unlike the Geckos at the end of season 1, are willingly choosing to decide who they are without being constantly in each other’s lives. While they deserved a longer goodbye scene, their scenes this episode really did serve to highlight the acting chops of Davenport and Soo Hoo.
Cotrona also really shines this episode, as he tries to accept his bond with Kate by constantly intruding on her personal space. Kate rightly checks Seth several times- But the push and pull of their relationship, reminiscent of their partnership in season 2 but distinctly different, reminds us that this show is, in many ways, about accepting the person in front of you for who they are- A criminal, a killer, a reluctant hero. While Scott and Kate fall back into sync, Seth doesn’t seem to truly accept Kate’s capabilities until the final hour- And when he does, it’s both heartbreaking for the audience and for Kate herself. A necessary step in their relationship, Kate telling Seth, “It’s time to let go, partner,” will have fans crying into their couches.
Plus, you know, she lives, so it all checks out.
While only the villain for one episode, Martinez was a thrilling Amaru- Her brand of evil, while a mirror of Davenport’s Amaru, brought a new life to the character that I wish we could’ve seen more of.
And while Freddie’s hospital scene was good in terms of gore- Freddie really wasn’t given as much to chew as he should’ve been this season. He’s a major part of the main cast- But his plotline was marred by the death of Ximena and dramatic underuse following her demise. I love me some Ranger Gonzalez, and that’s why I would’ve loved to see him with the main cast in the finale- Not locked up in a hospital, even if he was repairing his marriage. It felt clunky and his presence was missed among the other main 5.
I will say this about the show- This season’s ending was good enough that I’m willing to forgive several season long blunders. A satisfying conclusion, coupled with an original song by Madison Davenport? Well, let’s just say I’m a sucker for a girl in a white dress.
From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series is an original production of the El Rey Network. All seasons are currently available for streaming on Netflix.