Lila's Portrait as modified by Lila.

After Elena spending so much time in Lila’s world, things are flipped, and with that, we see some old demons pop out.

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After Elena spending so much time in Lila’s world, things are flipped, and with that, we see some old demons pop out.

Directed By Saverio Costanzo
Written By Elena Ferrante, Francesco Piccolo, Laura Paolucci, Saverio Costanzo
Aired (HBO) 3/30/2020
Introduced This Episode
Nadia Giorgia Gargano
Maestra Galiano Clotilde Sabatino
Gigliola Rosaria Langellotto

This content contains pertinent spoilers.

The Witch’s Spell: Gigliola, Michele, Stefano, Lila

Gigliola (Rosaria Langellotto) dealing with Lila doing as she pleases.
Gigliola (Rosaria Langellotto)

With running the shop and having influence over the store, this gives all Lila needs to avoid having to deal with life and her lack of power over her own. But, as she pushes herself more and more, she has a miscarriage, and she sees it as a blessing. The kind of blessing that furthers her pursuit of gaining power and influence whenever possible, which includes with Michele. Someone who looks highly upon Lila and with that, his pseudo-girlfriend, Gigliola, she gets jealous to the point of calling Lila a witch. One who, on purpose, had a miscarriage. Words which later on create a sense of fury in Stefano.

How The Tables Have Turned: Nadia, Nino, Maestra Galiano, Elena, Stefano, Lila

With Lila in a power position at work, it has led to her reinvesting in Elena so that she can keep up. After all, while best friends at times, we are reminded, every so often, the two are also rivals. So whenever Lila pulls too far ahead, she does something to push Elena to catch up. Be it challenging her at school, aid in her education, or even show, through fights with Stefano, why Elena can’t let up and succumb to the neighborhood.

But, while Lila isn’t necessarily happy with what the neighborhood has offered her and its limitations, in many ways, in the neighborhood, she is queen. If not, at the very least, of a stature where, outside of occasionally having sex with Stefano, and dealing with beatings, she is nearly untouchable. However, with going to Maestra Galiano’s home, Elena’s teacher, Lila finds herself immersed in Elena’s world, rather than the other way around. This leads to Lila realizing all that she wasn’t allowed to have thanks to her family, and yet Elena does. Someone who often has to be pushed to take things serious squanders so much.

At least, that’s one way to put it. On the flip side, one can view how rude Lila is at Maestra Galiano’s party as someone who enjoys feeling like a big fish in a little pond. So, when reminded she is by no means the big shot she thinks she is, it disturbs her. Much less, while well-read, speaking of politics and philosophy, it isn’t her wheelhouse. She can not elicit the kind of reaction she wants or be the center of attention the way she desires in such company.

So, she ends the night early and criticizes not only the Maestra, her daughter Nadia, who is Nino’s girlfriend, but also Elena. For with Elena clearly fitting in, Lila does as she always. When it becomes clear she is losing Elena’s attention and feels threatened, she pushes her away. The thing is though, with Nino coming to visit, and Nadia enamored by Elena, what reason does Elena have to return to Lila or forgive her?

After all, they are getting too old for the back and forth and Elena is coming to the point where Lila’s antics aren’t entertaining but frightening. Especially as she sees Stefano choke her and punch a wall hard enough to put a hole in it.

What Must Also Be Noted

  1. Pinuccia has gotten pregnant and is marrying Rino.


Immacolata’s Tears When Elena Came Home With The Books

As established in the last season, Immacolata, like Lila, has made the best of a situation that doesn’t allow for much in the way of growth. So just as Lila’s feelings seem complicated when experiencing Elena’s world, I think Immaculota’s is just the same with seeing Elena have so many invest in her. For alongside her father, she has a best friend buying her books – new books at that. Heck, books the thickness of bread!

And in those tears, you see the joy, the pain, the jealous, jut an overwhelming mix of emotions that acts as a reminder that Elena’s story isn’t the norm. Yet, being adjacent to it is both a blessing and a curse.

Lila Establishing She Too Competes With Elena

It’s easy to forget that, with the show being titled, “My Brilliant Friend,” that Lila is just as much competiting and taking note of Elena’s life as Elena is Lila’s. The thing is, it is rare for Lila to ever have a reason to venture into Elena’s life, so Lila consistently has the home-court advantage. But with feeling she isn’t the best anymore, just better than Elena in some ways, things have changed.

Leaving you to wonder, when the two reunite as Rino’s wedding, will it be another case of Elena mad, until Lila’s antics draw her back in, or has Lila gone too far at least?


Immacolata’s Tears When Elena Came Home With The Books - 85%
Lila Establishing She Too Competes With Elena - 86%


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