Undo was created for me. Set in San Antonio, Texas, the series focuses on Alma, a Mexican-American woman whose life has been turned upside down, side to side, inside and out after an accident causes her to awaken with transformative powers. time. It’s latinidad and sci-fi, but more importantly, the series has maintained a sharp look at mental illness, trauma, and grief.
For those who have lived it (or some version of it), Alma’s life is incredibly familiar. She was raised by a Mexican mother and white father, who in the past was always focused on making sure his daughters fit in. Their ancestors were Spaniards, weren’t they? Nahua. Additionally, Alma was pushed for a cochlear implant and placed in a hearing school, separating from her school and Deaf community to be “normal”.
On the other side of life towards assimilation, I could see myself in Alma. My mother took the initiative to not let me speak Spanish, chose the most “white” sounding name she could think of, and taught me to hide my disability and mental health problems with people around. For my survival I had to bury parts of my culture and myself, making excuses to just be me. This is The core of Undo season 1, but that’s not where the story ends. Instead of choosing to simply reject assimilation, the series will look at how to heal from it in season 2.
[Ed. note: This post goes into full detail about the end of Undone season 2.]
At first, Alma is agonized, torn from grief, and dancing on the razor-sharp edge of her manic episodes, fearful of witnessing her mental illness. Her father saves her – he shows her that her mental illness is not a curse, but a superpower, and Alma begins to develop into it. Her time travel is to save her father’s life, it’s also to fix everything she regrets. Alma confronts everything she doesn’t like about herself and sees it as her mission to undo it. And when she can’t erase it completely, she’s undone enough to at least make all her pain worth it.
Undo‘S The sci-fi and time travel elements present themselves as a possibility, but as something more fantasy than reality. The show kept bringing up the idea that it was all in Alma’s head, a choice that lasted all the way to spinning glass animation Style. When part 1 endsAlma is sitting alone in front of the cave waiting for her deceased father to come out and prove to her that she has power, that she can change the ugliness in her life and erase it. all the pain is in it.
When Undo season 2 to begin with, it’s like a completely different program. Alma walks through the cave and realizes that she has fixed it all. She unearthed her father’s death and in the process created a new timeline. However, no matter how idyllic this new reality is, it comes with its own pain. Only now, the purpose of the series has been changed. It is not about avoiding and erasing the past, but about reconciling it.
To do that, part 2 unpack the sins carried by the series’ mothers: Camila and Geraldine, Alma’s paternal grandmother. Both women felt compelled to change who they were, completely rejecting the elements in their lives that connected them to their past. And their wounds spill over into Alma’s life in ways she can’t stand, prompting her to try to mend it all.
As for Camila, she left a child she had illegitimate in an orphanage in Mexico. Gripped by the pain of having to give him up but worried about the fear of losing her current family in the United States, she chose to keep him hidden, sending him a card from time to time. send mom on holidays and money. She effectively hid that part of herself, hiding it from everyone in the hope of living life in America and fulfilling all expectations.
That choice was strongly influenced by her mother-in-law, Geraldine. After fleeing Poland during World War II, Geraldine locked herself in before disembarking. As the last living member of her family and having erased her former self, Geraldine is quick to tell Camila to leave her child behind. And while it feels like Geraldine is being overprotective of her son at first by telling Camila to forget her baby in Mexico, the truth is, she doesn’t know how else to live. Geraldine doesn’t know how to deal with the past or the trauma that comes with it. Instead, she knows that assimilating and pretending it doesn’t exist means being.
The last few episodes of Undo season 2 delve into Geraldine’s subconscious, trying to free her youthful self behind closed doors. Every time Alma and her family come close to having Geraldine grow into her childhood self, they turn away. Time and again, Geraldine denied her past and denied her Jewish identity and name in the process.
Geraldine’s story and how it weaves through her family is one that many on the fringes know – it’s about locking in your past life in order to embrace a new life from what feels necessary. Many families have changed, paired, or Americanized their last names to create every opportunity possible. And in some cases, like Geraldine’s, the past is seen not as a family legacy to be preserved but as something to be thrown away, leaving more questions than answers about where they fit in.
But if Undo Season 1 taught us anything, it’s that Alma is an unstoppable force. And her desire to cure illness in her family brings the season home by curing everyone. Camila accepts her son into her life, and he joins the family as a beloved brother and son. Geraldine never denied her identity and taught her family about her past. The happy ending of the season comes from the acceptance that both women have for themselves. Alma eased the pain by helping each family member accept themselves for who they were.
That healing and acceptance is something Alma also chose for herself. When faced with staying in her difficult timeline of a loving family, where guilt and pain have been erased, for the most part, or back to herself, she gives out selection.
As she’s found, even with time travel superpowers, the ability to undo bad choices and make good choices doesn’t stop things. It didn’t stop Alma’s father from eventually dying. It does not make for perfection, but it teaches Alma that healing does not mean the absence of suffering. It’s about accepting every part of yourself, your mistakes, your pain and your happiness.
Whether you see season 2 as a confirmation of Alma’s powers, or if you’re like me and take it as proof that she doesn’t have them, the ending is the same: acceptance. Her choice is to go back to the timeline where she was a quintessential monster fighting her mother and sister. A timeline where she’s unemployed and a bum, where she hates herself – and most importantly, where she’s mentally ill.
But by helping her mother and grandmother accept their guilt and pain, Alma was finally able to look her in the face. There is a calm in the final moments of the season, a quiet acceptance of the pain and problems the entire series has had to deal with. While Alma’s story is full of specifics about her legacy or her deafness, Undo ultimately goes beyond that with universal elements that speak to all of us who wish we could rewind our choices over and over. Undo considers itself time-traveling sci-fi, but the healing it teaches surpasses that. We are not who we are just because of our victory or our joy. We were forged in the fire that ravaged us over time and rebuilt stronger than the last. No matter how much we fight, we win, and that too deserves love.