Created by Clara Salaman as her debut project as writer-producer and based on her namesake novel (under the pseudonym Natalie Daniels), ‘Too Close’ is a riveting psychological thriller that revolves around the complex relationship between forensic psychiatrist Dr. Emma Robertson (Emily Watson) and her newest charge, Connie Mortensen (Denise Gough). The latter has been accused of attempting to kill herself and two children, one of whom is her own daughter, after driving her car off a bridge and into a river.
Emma’s job is to find out whether her patient is fit to stand trial. According to Connie, she doesn’t remember what happened on that rainy night. As Emma helps her come to terms with her actions, she can’t help but reflect on the similarities between the two of them, as memories from her tragic past come back to haunt her. Here is everything you need to know about the ‘Too Close’ ending. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Too Close Recap
Following the incident and Connie’s subsequent institutionalization, the tabloids find their latest victim in her. They dub her the “Yummy Mummy Monster,” a clear reference to her beauty and the heinous crime she has been accused of committing. Meanwhile, Emma accepts the case despite a previous agreement between her and her husband, Si (Risteard Cooper), to do the opposite. From their conversations, the unkempt child’s room in their house, and the tiny unicorn head that Emma has pinned to her cell phone cover, we can glean that she is dealing with a tragedy of her own.
It is revealed that Emma’s daughter Abigail was killed after a truck ran her over. Even initially, we can guess that she takes the case to find catharsis for herself. As the series progresses, this belief gets reinforced. In their early meetings, Connie is downright hostile to Emma. But the latter nonetheless convinces Connie to open up, and the truth starts coming out in waves.
Emma diagnoses her patient with dissociative amnesia, because of which Connie has forgotten that her mother is dead and also anything from the night of the incident. However, her memories are fresh as ever of the things that led to her psychosis. She vividly remembers her husband’s affair with her best friend and how that affected her and changed her for the worse. Meanwhile, Emma discovers more parallels between the two of them when she starts suspecting Si of infidelity.
Too Close Ending: Why Did Connie Drive the Car into the River?
In her sessions with Emma, Connie recalls the happier days of her life. She used to be a work-from-home writer and loving mother of two children, Annie and Josh. A conversation between her and her husband Karl (Jamie Sives) reveals that the latter’s business was struggling, heavily implying that Connie was the main earner in the family at the time. She was anxious and weary but took medication for this. Her life was more or less stable, even if she had her share of struggles.
Connie met Ness (Thalissa Teixeira) at a local children’s park and learned that she had recently moved to the neighborhood with her daughter Polly and her female partner. A friendship quickly developed between the two, with Ness reminding Connie of her wild and uninhibited former self. As Connie tells Emma, a new friendship at her age feels like an affair. When Ness started wearing the same perfume and got the same tattoo as her, Connie felt both robbed and flattered. She developed a connection with this woman that she didn’t even have with her husband any longer.
Clearly, Connie was also sexually attracted to Ness. This was amplified after Ness’ partner left, and Connie virtually made her friend and Polly part of her own family. So, when she and Karl decided to have an open marriage, it was Ness to whom she first turned, only to realize that Ness had no sexual interest in her. She then reached out to an old professor of hers, but that didn’t go anywhere as well.
Connie felt a profound sense of betrayal when she discovered that Karl and Ness were having an affair. As she gradually descended into the dark abyss of depression and stress, her best friend and husband put her aside and created a world of their own. This was when she was also forced to confront the fact that her mother had dementia. The stress made her hair fall, and the antidepressants and other drugs that her psychiatrist at the time prescribed ended up accelerating the degeneration of her mental stability.
The trauma Connie experienced following her mother’s death was so all-consuming that she erased it from her mind. That day, she took her meds with alcohol, which had disastrous consequences. She endangered her daughter, and Karl subsequently forced her to go live with her father. Connie abruptly tried to quit her medications to return to her children, which ended up turning her from volatile to psychotic. She saw cockroaches crawling on her skin and tried to kill them by dousing herself with hydrochloric acid.
Connie hallucinated about her mother and followed her to the home she once shared with Karl. She discovered that Ness had completely taken over her life. But her subsequent actions weren’t driven by a rage-induced psychosis. She hallucinated that Karl and Ness had demonic faces and tried to save Polly and Annie from these infernal creatures. At the bridge, she hallucinated that her mother was beckoning her, promising her and the children safety. At the height of this psychotic episode, she pressed her feet into the accelerator, and the car fell nose-first into the river.
What is the Significance of the Rainbow Kite?
The rainbow kite represents Connie’s desire for freedom. As she says to Emma, the kite has been stuck on the tree outside her window for a long while. Its entanglement in the tree’s branches reminds Connie that she is a captive not only in a mental facility but also in her mind. After she causes the fire and is taken out of the facility, Connie slips away from the guards and tries to free the kite. In her mind, if she can do this, then someday, she will be able to leave the facility and reunite with her children.
What is in Store for Connie?
When Connie’s case finally goes to trial, she has undergone significant visible changes. Her hair has grown back, and she appears to be quite healthy. Evidently, she has responded to Emma’s treatment positively. However, the show doesn’t reveal the exact outcome of Connie’s trial. While she is still at the facility, she is now allowed to see her children. This indicates that Emma and Connie’s lawyer have convinced the court that Connie is not a danger to her children. The future certainly seems brighter for Connie than her past. One day, she will likely walk out of the facility and be with her children full time.
How Are Emma and Connie’s Lives Similar?
Towards the end of the series, it is revealed that Emma’s carelessness caused her daughter’s death. Abigail had certain psychological and mental issues that even Emma, despite her education, couldn’t deal with. That day, Emma was so frustrated that she shouted at Abigail that she (Emma) had had it with her. This is the last thing that she ever said to her infant daughter. As Emma was busy taking a call, Abigail’s stroller rolled onto the street and went under a truck. Emma understandably hasn’t forgiven herself for this, and as she starts treating Connie, she realizes that the two of them are quite similar.
The only reason she didn’t have a psychotic episode was that she wasn’t as emotionally volatile as the other woman. When Emma starts suspecting that Si is cheating on her, she sees even more parallels. However, this eventually turns out to be false. It is revealed that Si isn’t having an affair. Emma ultimately finds catharsis on her own terms. Unlike Connie, she will never get back her daughter. But she reconciles with her husband and makes her best effort to leave her grief and guilt behind. For now, that is enough.
Read More: Where Is Too Close Filmed?