Warning! This article contains spoilers for Rise Of The Pink Ladies!Grease: Rise Of The Pink Ladies brings a modern spin to the Grease franchise that enhances it, and the Paramount+ series continues this trend while including some new twists in the process. A prequel to Grease that takes place four years before the original movie, Rise Of The Pink Ladies, follows the origins of the titular greaser group. Throughout the season, Pink Ladies Jane, Cynthia, Olivia, and Nancy have attempted to make Rydell more accepting, but going into the end of the season, their goals seem out of reach.
After the major events of the latter half of Rise Of The Pink Ladies, the Pink Ladies spend much of the season finale righting some wrongs. Jane attempts to get Richie back in school after he was expelled, while Olivia struggles with her self-worth and nearly makes a life-altering mistake. Nancy and Cynthia find acceptance in each other and help the other embrace their differences. Meanwhile, Hazel and Buddy struggle to figure out where they fit into Rydell’s landscape after the season’s huge events. Though not everything works out perfectly in Rise Of The Pink Ladies’ ending, the Grease prequel shows that being one’s authentic self is the new cool.
What Did Cynthia & Nancy Write To Each Other?
After Cynthia gets mad at Nancy for the way the latter treats Potato, Nancy goes over to Cynthia’s place to resolve the conflict and confront Cynthia about her recent behavior. Although Nancy tries to get Cynthia to open up about what’s bothering her, Cynthia refuses, despite being visibly upset. To coax Cynthia into sharing, Nancy asks if it would be easier for Cynthia to write what’s on her mind, which Cynthia agrees to. Silently, the two write about what Cynthia shares with Nancy, which helps Cynthia confront her inner feelings. However, while Rise Of The Pink Ladies depicts their wordless exchange, the two Pink Ladies don’t show what is written.
Even though Rise Of The Pink Ladies doesn’t show the audience what Cynthia and Nancy write to each other, hints from the rest of the episode provide clues about what it might have been. Given Nancy pushes Cynthia to go after Lydia at the fair later in the episode, Cynthia must have both come out to Nancy and confessed her love for Lydia on the page. It’s more difficult to infer what Nancy answered to Cynthia’s written admission. However, since Cynthia both laughs and bursts into tears, Nancy must have responded in both the supportive and hilarious way only Nancy could, affirming the importance of Nancy and Cynthia’s friendship.
Why Olivia Called Off Her Wedding
In Rise Of The Pink Ladies, Olivia struggles with her controversial relationship with Mr. Daniels, which comes to a head when Olivia almost marries the Rydell teacher in the season finale. However, the operative word is “almost,” since Olivia calls off her wedding to Mr. Daniels when the Pink Ladies rush to the church to stop the impending nuptials. Before this, the Pink Ladies tried once to stop Olivia’s marriage, but Olivia wasn’t initially receptive. Though Olivia hints at the reason she has a change of heart when she explains she’s leaving to Mr. Daniels, the full reason Olivia decides not to get married isn’t immediately clear.
The reason Olivia changes her mind about marrying Mr. Daniels the second time the Pink Ladies confront her about the decision is because of their differing approaches. Initially, they try to stop Olivia by saying she’s “being stupid,” but the second time, Jane gives a speech about Olivia’s value and how she helped Jane rediscover her self-worth. When Olivia explains why she’s leaving to Mr. Daniels, she’s really saying she deserves people who always have her back, like the Pink Ladies. Since Mr. Daniels sold Olivia out before, she knows he doesn’t qualify. Jane’s speech reminds Olivia of her own self-worth, which is why Olivia calls off the wedding.
Why Potato “Told Off” Nancy
Throughout the end of Rise Of The Pink Ladies, Nancy treats her boyfriend, Potato, in a hot-and-cold manner, but after her talk with Cynthia, Nancy decides to explain her feelings to Potato at the fair. However, contrary to his typical soft and sweet demeanor, Potato yells at Nancy, effectively breaking up with her before returning and sweeping her off her feet, kissing her. Nancy is clearly confused by Potato’s actions, but there are hints in their conversation at the fair that reveal why Potato tells Nancy off and the true nature of their relationship.
As Nancy is explaining herself to Potato, she says that she acts the way she does because she’s not normal and gets bored easily. This is ultimately why Potato reacts the way he does: forgiving Nancy like normal would be expected, but by getting mad at her and violating her “no PDA” rule, Potato is making sure Nancy doesn’t get bored with their relationship. Potato “telling off” Nancy is actually a sweet gesture in disguise, showing how much he cares about Nancy and that he truly understands her. Given Nancy’s reaction, Potato’s attempt to “keep things interesting” works, cementing Nancy and Potato as one of the Grease franchise’s cutest couples.
Why Buddy Got Richie Back In School Instead Of Himself
One of the biggest events in the last episode of Rise Of The Pink Ladies sees Jane and Susan drag race to determine if Buddy or Richie should get to return to Rydell. Unfortunately, Jane loses the race to Susan, meaning Jane has to tell the principal that Richie was at fault for their fight and that Buddy should return to Rydell. However, when Jane attempts to hold up her end of the bargain, the principal informs her that Buddy already confessed to everything, meaning Richie is welcome to return to Rydell. Buddy’s motives behind this move are never revealed, making it one of the season’s biggest remaining mysteries.
Though Buddy’s motives behind getting Richie back in school rather than himself are never verbally revealed, the reason is clear considering Buddy’s character arc throughout the end of the season. Buddy has been struggling with the realization that most of his life is a lie due to his dad’s meddling, with the most recent example being the Student Council election. This pattern would continue if Buddy returned to Rydell, as it’s another opportunity he didn’t earn. Buddy’s choice to get Richie back into school instead is his first major instance of taking his fate into his own hands and doing the right thing, thus breaking the cycle.
Rise Of The Pink Ladies’ Zuko Character Explained
The biggest question that still remains is the identity of the mystery figure introduced in the last episode. At the Frosty Palace, an unseen character arrives, who Gil introduces as his friend Frankie from New York. Before Gil can elaborate on who his friend is, Jane interjects and calls him “Zuko,” stating she never wants to see him again. The character’s name, “Zuko” is a connection to the original Grease movie, making it likely that the mystery person is Danny Zuko’s brother. However, since the episode ends on a cliffhanger, Frankie Zuko’s true identity can’t be known for sure unless Rise Of The Pink Ladies gets a season 2.
The Real Meaning Of Grease: Rise Of The Pink Ladies Season 1 Ending
Grease: Rise Of The Pink Ladies brings nuance and complexity to Grease in many ways, particularly in its themes. Rise Of The Pink Ladies delivers a powerful message about it being cooler to be unique rather than fitting in. This concept is illustrated through the arcs of many of Rise Of The Pink Ladies’ featured characters, particularly Jane, Hazel, and Buddy. All three characters are initially concerned about their image and reputation, but they are freed once they embrace what makes them stand out, allowing them to be themselves. The other popular kids, who are concerned with fitting in, are actually deeply unhappy.
Like Grease, Rise Of The Pink Ladies shows that breaking the mold is the only path to true happiness. By being unapologetically themselves, Jane and the Pink Ladies are able to harness what makes them different and use it to make Rydell a better and more accepting place. While it’s still unconfirmed whether the Paramount+ show will get renewed for season 2, Grease: Rise Of The Pink Ladies’ stellar ending not only makes it a worthy addition to the Grease franchise but also manages to make the original better.