Season two of Sweet Magnolias provides a new perspective on romanticizing small town life



Season two Sweet Magnolias Netflix poster showing three of the main characters

When scouring Netflix for my next comfort TV series to add to the long list—Gilmore Girls, The Office, New Girl, etc.—I am in search of a show that meets certain criteria. With the recent popularization of shows like Euphoria, which don’t allow for a second to breathe between each scene, I am in desperate need of a light-hearted drama. 

Don’t get me wrong, I tune in each Sunday night for my weekly dose of chaotic characters in Euphoria. Still, to maintain my sanity, I need to equally balance out the craziness with some consistent, small-town comedy with a touch of theatrics. 

Season two of Sweet Magnolias came out on Feb. 4th, 2022. After season one left viewers on a major cliffhanger, I was ecstatic to have found another series to binge-watch as well as satisfy my need for an easy watch. 

Season one consisted of small-town family drama with cheating husbands, new relationships, and many more underlying lessons that could be found within the fifty-minute episodes. Similarly, season two held onto many of these same themes but gracefully elevated them with new content and different plot twists. 

In its essence, the show is about three women and their lives in the town of Serenity, South Carolina: Maddie Townsen—the main character—played by JoAnna García Swisher, Dana Sue Sullivan (Brooke Elliot), and Helen Decatur (Heather Headley). 

The show depicts the limits you can push until eventually, the sheltered bubble these characters live in pops, leaving everyone questioning the neighbors they used to be so fond of.

The show gives off a very homey and wholesome vibe, while still showing the more dramatic sides of both adult and high school relationships. In many ways, the show has a deeper meaning, it being that a perfect small-town image is not realistic in our current society. The show depicts the limits you can push until eventually, the sheltered bubble these characters live in pops, leaving everyone questioning the neighbors they used to be so fond of. 

My favorite example of this is the messy divorce between Maddie and her ex-husband, Bill Townsend (Chris Klein). After he cheats on her in season one, viewers see the very realistic and sorrowful effects of Bill’s actions and what he has done to their family of five. 

In addition to the parents desperately trying to fix the cracks in their relationships, I also loved the subtle yet noticeable development of ​​Annie Sullivan (Annelise Judge) and Tyler Townsend (Carson Rowland). The pair grow up being extremely close family friends, and between the flirtatious banter and the drunken kiss from last season, it would seem producers might be hinting at these two eventually getting together. 

Despite Annie currently being in a relationship, I am rooting for them and their adorable scenes together. 

In my experience, Netflix’s original TV shows and movies can be very hit or miss. Either the first season is amazing, and the second season is complete trash, or they just weren’t very good, to begin with. However, with Sweet Magnolias, there was a very smooth transition from season one to season two, and the atmosphere the show provided stayed dependable throughout all ten of the new episodes. 

Although the last episode wasn’t quite as enticing as the prior season finale, it still got the job done, and season two as a whole ensured my return and anticipation for season three.