How Did Susannah Die? Did Rachel Blanchard Leave The Summer I Turned Pretty?

Image Credit: Dana Hawley/Prime Video

Prime Video’s romance drama, ‘The Summer I Turned Pretty,’ follows Belly, a young girl caught in a complicated romance with the boys she has known since childhood. Ever since she can remember, she has spent her summers at the beach house in Cousins, owned by her mother’s best friend, Susannah. Over the years, Susannah and Belly develop a close relationship where Belly sees her as a mother-like figure but also sort of her best friend.

For Susannah, Belly is the daughter she never had, and she wishes for her to end up with one of her sons. Susannah has many plans for her children’s future, but she does not live to see them. If you are wondering what happens to Susannah and why she’s absent from the second season, we’ve got you covered. SPOILERS AHEAD

Susannah’s Battle with Cancer Ends in Loss

Image Credit: Dana Hawley/Prime Video

While Belly’s budding romance life was the central plot device of ‘The Summer I Turned Pretty’ Season 1, the most heartbreaking thing about it was the revelation of Susannah’s declining health. She treats this summer as the final one she’ll get to spend with her loved ones, which is why, at times, she seems to be invested in making everything perfect. The summer is also different for Belly, who starts to take her romantic life seriously, and Conrad, who seems distant and out of with everyone else.

It is later revealed that the reason behind Conrad’s reservedness is Susannah’s cancer. She had received treatment for cancer before, and around that time, things went well. However, it came back, and this time, things were much worse than they were before. Susannah knew there was no point in going through the treatments because there was no cure for her illness. She’d been through chemo before and felt like it tore away who she was. She didn’t want to go through that again and wanted to focus the remaining time with her children as best as possible.

In the final episode, when everyone discovers the truth about Susannah’s cancer, they convince her to give chemo another chance. She is enrolled in a new experimental program that seems promising. Seeing how heartbroken her children are about the prospect of losing her and how they want her to fight for her life, she decides to go forward with the program. Everyone is glad about it because they really hope that it will help Susannah. However, the opening scene of Season 2 confirms that the medication didn’t work. Almost a year after she began the treatment, Susannah died of cancer.

Rachel Blanchard Returns in Flashbacks for Season 2

Image Credit: Dana Hawley/Prime Video

While Susannah might be dead, she is not exactly gone from ‘The Summer I Turned Pretty.’ She is the character that connects the Conklins and the Fishers. She was loved by everyone, which is why her absence feels like a gaping hole in the story that takes place at her beach house. The second season expands the story for Belly’s romantic life and Susannah as we get a deeper look into her past. Her half-sister, Julia, is introduced this season, which opens the door to understanding who Susannah was and what her relationships were before she met Laurel.

With the role that Susannah plays in the story, even after her death, we believe that actress Rachel Blanchard won’t simply disappear from the show. The season relies heavily on flashbacks to fill the gaps of the time between the two summers from Season 1 and Season 2, which means that we will get to see Susannah again. The arrival of Julia also suggests that we’ll get to see more of Susannah’s life, most probably, unfolding through flashbacks and memories of other characters.

Considering all this, we can say that while Susannah is dead, Blanchard will still be around for Season 2, though in a recurring capacity. The actress, known for her roles in movies and TV shows like ‘Deep Water’ and ‘Fargo,’ plays Susannah with charm and affability, making it difficult to imagine the story without her. With so much of Season 2’s plot resting on the events before the second summer, we believe Susannah will continue to be an integral part of the show.

Read More: When and Where Does The Summer I Turned Pretty Take Place?