Modern Love season two portrays various forms of love through diverse storylines


Amazon Prime Video

The thumbnail of the second season of Modern Love, an Amazon Original.

Love is many things—love is familial, love is for the self, love is passionate, and love is universal. There is not just one way to spell out the true meaning of it. However, the show Modern Love embodies the complex essence of love through an anthology of disparate storylines, cultivating a diverse and heartfelt viewing experience.

I was immediately entranced by this show, starting from the first season. Every episode varied immensely from the last, presenting a different set of couples, family members, coworkers, or strangers, all adventuring through a different version and experience of love. Each episode is so beautifully different and encapsulates each story’s significance impeccably. Moved by the impact season one brought me, I was ready to be hit again.

S02E01: On a Serpentine Road, With the Top Down

The story follows a doctor who drives a bright blue, vintage car previously owned by her first love. The car breaks down frequently, but despite its many mishaps, she refuses to give it up. She drives it through windy roads on Irish mountains and fields to foil the memories she once had with the ones she loved within this car. The episode slowly unveils the deeper meanings behind her vehicular memento, which unravels the first form of love shown in this season. 

This episode beautifully folds in grief, nostalgia, challenge, forgiveness, and commemoration. The optimal way to watch this episode is by seeing each event unfold to make the story whole. It’s by far the most tear-jerking and what I think is the most full-circle, well-formed episode of the season. Overall, the path this episode took me on is a scenic view of the beauty of a memory.

S02E02: The Night Girl Finds a Day Boy

She lurks in the night, he dwells in the day, just as the title describes. The girl has a delayed sleep phase syndrome that causes her to go about her “day” during the hours of dusk. The guy, on the other hand, has a regular sleep schedule and is able to live his life in daylight. But one late night—or early morning in the girl’s case—the two meet at a diner. The rest of the episode follows how the couple handles the tension between their conflicting sleeping schedules and how it affects their relationship.

I honestly would say that this episode is one of my favorites as well. The concept is something that has never crossed my mind, or frankly, something I never knew existed. I found it interesting how such a relationship could come about. This episode has moments of alignment in the beautiful ways of romance but also has moments of utter frustration and a disconnected sense of togetherness—but I suppose love is not always going to be a flawless, steady ride, so the episode captures that theme thoroughly. In the end, the perils of time are hard to deal with, but the night girl and the day boy’s relationship chases that theory, making for a layered premise and a charming story.

S02E03: Strangers on a train

This episode falls under the more cliché, stereotypical depiction of love, but it’s fascinating and heartwarming nonetheless. A girl is on her way to her mom’s by way of a train. She is peacefully sitting in her seat when she sees an attractive man—going to live with his brother—board. She hopes for him to sit with her, but he then opts for the seat adjacent holding another girl. She is disappointed and hurt, but as the train makes its rounds and people come and go, room for conversation opens up for the two strangers. As the train reaches the station, the two strangers must part paths, only with the exception of one parameter that I will not give away.

This episode is just adorable, and it is certainly the epitome of a classic, expected love story. I really do like this episode, but in comparison to others, it’s like a product of a common love-story formula. But as some other episodes have a heavier more complex nature, it’s a relief having this episode intermixed.

Love in the media is frequently translated into basic, shallow themes that lack representation of race, sexual orientation, mental health, and other circumstances, but this show perfectly maneuvers every form into a beautiful plotline.

S02E04: A Life Plan for Two, Followed By One

Starting from an early age, a girl had a crush on her best friend who she met through school. Over the years, she falls even deeper in love with him, but his feelings are not reciprocated. She is in a constant state of the “friend zone,” forcing her to move on, despite her unwillingness to do so. As she becomes an adult and starts a career as a stand-up comedian, she spots her former crush in the audience, opening up an opportunity that could cultivate many possibilities.

This episode is sadly not on my list of favorites. I really admire the premise of it and deeply wish I was able to enjoy it, but I could not. The storyline is hard to follow and was left unfinished—not in a cliffhanger or “up-to-your-own-interpretation” way but in a simply unfulfilling. I think this episode had a lot of potential, but it did not live up to my standards or likings. 

S02E05: Am I…? Maybe This Quiz Will Tell Me

This episode features a middle school girl who is confused about her sexuality. She continually takes Buzzfeed quizzes to tell her what her sexual orientation is, but her questions are never thoroughly answered. She ends up making friends with a girl in her class on a field trip, and the story traces the emotions and feelings she has towards this girl, herself, and her current circumstance, falling under yet another category of love.

This is another episode that I wished that I liked more. I think that this storyline is something that should be more normalized in media, and I am so glad that this show covered this topic. I have complete respect for everything about the synopsis and subject matter, but I just found this episode to be a sensory overload. There were so many phone sounds, background music, shrill voices, baby cries, and arguments that just made this episode very difficult to watch. This could’ve been intentional to reflect the mind space and environment of this girl, but it was too much for me to take in. Despite that, I appreciated the plotline and was pleased with the ending of the episode.

S02E06: In the Waiting Room of Estranged Spouses

He has PTSD from his experience as a marine, and his wife is cheating on him. She is a new mom, and her husband is cheating on her. The man’s cheating wife and the woman’s cheating husband are having an affair with each other, leaving their spouses out to dry. They both end up in a therapist’s office, which starts their official friendship. Because they are both in the same situation, they are able to help each other cope and form the base of a sturdy support system.

I found this episode to be unique and restorative. The characters’ unfortunate reality adds depth to the episode, but how they are able to be available and supportive to each other is positively requiting.  The episode as a whole was satisfying and leaves on a hopeful note.

S02E07: How Do You Remember Me?

A guy and his date are walking on the street when he catches a glimpse of a guy he knows from the past. This entire episode takes place in the time span of the two men passing each other on the street, but it includes frequent flashbacks of the one failed evening they shared. The flashbacks are set in the same moments but come from the perspective of each guy and how they remembered the events that happened. Although their date and their potential relationship failed, both of their gazes meeting throughout the episode speaks volumes about their authentic emotions towards each other.

Once again, I was a fan of this episode. It got a bit confusing at times, trying to figure out which memory was whose, but it was sometimes nice to draw conclusions of my own. I loved the overall setting and timing of the episode as it’s something I’ve never seen before. Altogether, this storyline had many nuances and complexities that I deeply admired from a creative perspective.

S02E08: A Second Embrace, With Hearts and Eyes Open

They are divorced, but their love for each other still stands strong. The couple has two daughters whom they both love endlessly, so they still need to remain in contact. They separated on seemingly amicable terms, resulting in a lasting relationship with one another. Their love ends up flourishing once again, as they feel like they once did as young adults, but certain issues and technicalities arise throughout the episode, forcing the couple to mend the ongoing rifts they continue to face.

I felt that this episode was the perfect way to wrap up the season. It encapsulates numerous types of love, tying in aspects of previous episodes. The poignancy, the rekindled love, and the purposeful care assimilated perfectly to foster my love for the show as a whole.

Season two of Modern Love was another diverse, alluring storybook about the multifaceted meaning of the word love. Although I ran into a couple of bumps in the road in my watching experience, I thought the whole season was still a great pair with the first. Love in the media is frequently translated into basic, shallow themes that lack representation of race, sexual orientation, mental health, and other circumstances, but this show perfectly maneuvers every form into a beautiful plotline. For that, my love for this show is boundless.