Cruel Summer Season

Confess Your Sins”: Episode 8 of Cruel Summer Season 2

3 minutes, 21 seconds Read

Cruel Summer, in both its seasons, centers not only around the crime at hand but also the relationships that revolve around it, specifically the female friendships that are tested, strengthened, or shattered in the aftermath.

Throughout the season, Luke’s death has been closely intertwined with the friendship between Meghan and Isabella, and it becomes clear that Isabella’s obsession with Meghan may hold crucial evidence. In “Confess Your Sins,” the fallout from Luke’s deceit and attempts to juggle both Meghan and Isabella reaches its climax. Meghan’s vindictive side emerges as she lures Luke to the cabin, under the guise of engaging in kinky sex, only to tie him up and drug him in order to extract a confession. And confess he does: Luke admits to orchestrating the sex tape but claims he didn’t want it shown at the party and doesn’t know who played it.

Cruel Summer Season 2

Isabella is present during this interrogation, hoping to coerce Luke into confessing, but things don’t go as planned. Luke, in self-defense, reveals that he and Isabella slept together before he started dating Meghan—a devastating blow to Meghan, who believed she and Luke shared their first sexual experience together.

Even in his bound state, Luke manages to manipulate the situation, pitting the best friends against each other. Meghan is shocked by Isabella’s betrayal, while Luke reminds her of private conversations where Meghan referred to Isabella as clingy and obsessive. Isabella, hurt and furious, confronts Luke, demanding he admit that he made her lie. Lexi Underwood delivers a powerful performance, portraying Isabella’s pain in a convincing manner, joining the ranks of memorable obsessive TV characters. Meghan doesn’t come out looking great, as Luke should have been the one honest with his girlfriend, but this confrontation leads to an explosive conclusion: Isabella produces a gun (its origin remains a mystery) and fires it before the screen fades to black.

“Confess Your Sins” marks the season’s darkest episode, and even the seemingly innocent timeline from summer 1999 reveals troubling behavior by the male characters toward women. During a charity car wash, the girls are in bathing suits, and Brent takes advantage of the situation, violating Isabella by pulling at her bikini ties, nearly exposing her. When his father Steve intervenes, he dismisses it as “boys will be boys.” Even Jeff, typically more respectful, is involved in dealing VHS tapes that likely contain explicit content (although it’s unclear whether they include the Pam Anderson & Tommy Lee sex tape, as referenced by the boys). It all feels repulsive and serves as a stark contrast to the women’s storylines, which revolve around friendship and deep emotions.

Cruel Summer Season 2

The situation worsens for the group in the summer 2000 timeline. Luke is dead, and the police have discovered that Meghan and Isabella lied about the sex tape. They catch the girls breaking into Ned’s house to retrieve the security footage that would reveal their presence at the cabin on the night of Luke’s death. The sheriff even obtains footage from the party, thanks to Jeff’s camcorder, isolating Meghan and Isabella’s conversation about making Luke regret meeting them. Overall, things don’t look promising for the girls, and it seems like one of them will have to turn on the other to escape unscathed. Meghan, with her loyalty solely to herself and the University of Washington’s computer science program, is the most likely candidate.

Throughout the season, it has been strange that Meghan hasn’t shown much emotion regarding Luke’s death. Even though the cabin confrontation in this episode tainted her feelings for him, they were childhood friends turned lovers, and it’s expected she would still have some emotions surrounding his passing.

Additionally, Isabella having a gun adds another layer of complexity. Although I don’t believe we’ll find Luke or Meghan dead at the start of the next episode, Isabella possessing the weapon certainly complicates matters. With only two episodes remaining, we can anticipate answers soon, and it’s clear that neither girl is entirely innocent.

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