Tuesday, July 5, 2022

REVIEW: 'Only Murders in the Building' - Bunny Rejects What Retirement Is Suppose to Be in 'The Last Day of Bunny Folger'

Hulu's Only Murders in the Building - Episode 2.03 "The Last Day of Bunny Folger"

A foul-mouthed parrot becomes a critical window into Bunny Folger's last day on Earth. Some of the individuals with whom Bunny crossed paths surprise the trio. Along the way, a reveal deepens the trio's need to solve Bunny's case.

"The Last Day of Bunny Folger" was written by Ben Smith and directed by Jude Weng

Charles, Oliver and Mabel interacted with Bunny on her final day. That's not surprising. She was constantly popping up in their lives during the first season. And yet, these interactions were incredibly pivotal. Bunny devoted her entire life to the Arconia. The podcast has now become a part of the building's identity. It's where the fantastical story of murder was found. It was solved within the building when the police couldn't handle the job. Bunny doesn't want to show any encouragement to Charles, Oliver and Mabel. They've annoyed her far longer than they've been heroic detectives. The investigation itself was very bothersome. People even suspected her of being the killer. A version of her has been presented to the public. That doesn't form the totality of her being. Her life is meant to be shown more earnestly this season. She's humanized so her death rings out in this building. It's more than just a way to keep the podcast going. A life was lost. That has to remain the focus even though Charles, Oliver and Mabel fear being framed for her murder. They have a personal investment in the outcome. In life though, they didn't like Bunny. They didn't appreciate her either. And yet, she was the representative of the Arconia. She ensured this historic building stood the test of time. So many stories have played out within these walls across the generations. People aren't even aware how they are connected to the past. Charles worries Bunny was actually his half-sister. He gets distracted by that premise. He needs to snap out of it. Mabel hopes he can do that. The central trio also believe Mrs. Gambolini can tell them exactly who the killer is. She's just quoting from a movie. The bird can provide no clarity to the team. She still serves as a profound connection to the life Bunny lived. She found compassion through this animal, who was always by her side in the apartment. Bunny had so much access. And yet, her actions pushed so many away. Only a specific type of individual would be drawn to her through participation in the board meetings. That's still a necessary burden in order to maintain the upkeep of this place. Bunny has to be aware of so much. Her decisions dictate how this community thrives. She was handed a legacy. She's forced to accept retirement. She doesn't have the same reaction her mother did. Leonora was eager to move beyond the Arconia in search of what else life had to offer. She felt no need to stay even after her daughter was killed. For Bunny though, the Arconia was the love of her life. She invested everything into this place. As such, she can't pursue what is expected of her in retirement. Florida isn't fulfilling in that way. She has a routine that can't be disrupted now.

Bunny was willing to let go of this position. She was eager to step down with Nina taking over. Howard has the minutes for how this decision was made in the first place. Bunny wasn't being pushed out because someone wanted to take over. Of course, Nina has drastically different views of how to move the Arconia into the future. She believes the building is too stuck in the past. It has to move boldly with what's now capable in the 21st century. Bunny did the work the same way her mother did. That allowed so much of this building to be preserved. It's still a prosperous property as well. Amy Schumer just moved in after all. The building really isn't in any danger of losing its appeal. It's all about internal divisions. That's what makes Nina look guilty. She is targeted as the prime suspect. Of course, she has no history with Charles, Oliver and Mabel. If she does, it hasn't been explained yet. That's crucial given what the focus of this story has been up to this point. The podcasters' presence in the building is notable. They offer that way into the future even as the central trio yearn for purpose. They were suffering from existential dread not sure where their lives should go at this point. They are now being celebrated as heroes. Part of that is simply the fame from their obsessive fans. This is all still presented as an incredibly insular world. People perceive certain actions as more consequential than they may ultimately be. The reverberations are fairly contained. It's still desirable to feel seen and be included. Bunny doesn't want to give up her influence. She was forcing herself into accepting this fate. It was inevitable. This has to occur. That's not true in the slightest. It's all a narrative she's been told. She fights back. That's her true desire. The board meeting isn't the celebration she wants. She wants it to be treated as a normal meeting. The other board members expect to say goodbye to her. It's the end of an era for the Arconia. Bunny doesn't want to accept that. Instead, she's envious of the true and honest celebration going on down the hall. Charles, Oliver and Mabel are privately cheering what they accomplished with the podcast. That's the mood Bunny is looking for. It's denied to her because the trio don't want to include her. That's incredibly sad and devastating. It leaves Bunny vulnerable to attack. These three couldn't reach out and act with compassion. They were too caught up in their own worlds to see the genuine pain on her face. In that moment, Bunny was accepting the changing identity of the Arconia. Charles, Oliver and Mabel are part of that. They don't accept what she has long offered to the building. And so, that's yet another tragic realization of this world evolving beyond her. Nothing can be resolved either. Someone kills Bunny before the building can figure out how to manage this collective identity together.