The Idea of You: Why Does Hayes Leave His Watch for Solene?

Image Credit: Alisha Wetherill/Prime Video

The age difference between Solene and Hayes becomes the talk of the town when they are revealed to be dating each other. In Prime Video’s ‘The Idea of You,’ we follow the couple’s tumultuous journey as they fall in love while also trying to deal with the judgment of the world that comes their way. Hayes’ popularity as the singer in a boy band called August Moon also becomes one of the factors behind the incessant scrutiny of their relationship, but in between all this, they also find hope that their love will persevere through all the changes. Hayes’ watch becomes one of the symbols of that hope. SPOILERS AHEAD

Hayes’ Watch Represents His Love Against All Odds for Solene

Hayes and Solene meet each other at Coachella, but it is when he comes looking for her at her art gallery in Silver Lake that his intentions become clear. He is smitten by her and while Solene also feels the attraction, she knows that the age difference between them will attract criticism from the whole world. After they share a passionate kiss, Solene asks him to leave, which is when Hayes secretly leaves his watch at her place. This is, in a way, an assurance for their next meeting, an excuse to see Solene again, like leaving your sweater at their house on the first date, so you can meet again, just to return the sweater and make a second date out of it.

It is a clever move on Hayes’ part, and this is probably not the first time he has done it, as it later becomes clear to Solene. He has his ways to woo women, and he has used all of those things on Solene. However, the difference is that this time, things are much more serious for him, which becomes clear the second time he leaves his watch at Solene’s place. By this time, he and Solene have been through a lot. They indulged in a secret affair that turned into a public scandal and affected so much of their lives, especially Solene’s, that she decided to back away from the relationship even when it made her happier than she’d been in a long time.

The next time that Hayes leaves his watch for Solene, it is more of a promise than an excuse to meet again. This is not a sly move to get the girl, but an earnest act to show that he really does love her and will wait for her. In this context, the watch also represents the time he gives the both of them. When Solene asks to break up, he proposes that this should be more of a temporary break than a permanent goodbye. He asks her to meet him again five years later, which is enough to change a lot of things for both of them. By then, he believes they’ll both be freer and more in control of their lives. By then, he hopes they’ll be free to love each other without suffering through the public’s judgment.

The fact that Solene keeps the watch and is even wearing it five years later proves that though she’d asked Hayes to move on if he found love with someone else, she hasn’t been able to do so for herself. For her, the watch represents the life she could have had with Hayes, the time they lost because the world wouldn’t allow them to be together. It was the symbol of that loss, but also hope, connecting them even when they had drifted apart and would seemingly never meet each other again. Or so Solene thought. In the end, Hayes comes back, just as he had promised, and is ready to have the life he had hoped he would with Solene now that things, especially the timing, are much more in their favor.

Read More: The Idea of You: Is August Moon a Real Band? Where to Listen to Their Songs?