When my review of the final season of “Kevin Can F Himself” dropped in August I didn’t expect much response. The series has the small devoted following it has gathered in just two seasons, but it’s far from as rabid as other AMC network shows like “Better Call Saul.” But within days my email and social media inboxes were flooded with fans asking one question: Do Allison (Annie Murphy) and Patti (Mary Hollis Inboden) kiss?
This wasn’t asked with prurient interest, but instead with fans curious if the series cemented a romantic, queer relationship between the pair. And it’s certainly understandable considering the trajectory the two have been on since the show started. Back in Season 1, Patti and Allison were classic enemies at odds with each other. They seemingly had little in common, especially since Patti was part of the group of friends Allison’s horrible husband, Kevin (Eric Petersen) used to stroke his ego. Allison needed Patti to embark on a series of heinous deeds to attempt to kill Kevin, and as the pair said they were prepared to go their separate ways after.
But the Season 1 finale changed the trajectory between them. When Patti’s brother Neil (Alex Bonifer) attacked Allison, it was Patti who came to Allison’s defense. The final image was of them standing over Neil’s unconscious body holding hands. Season 2 was all about reminding the audience how much Patti and Allison needed each other. Allison attempted to let Patti go on her with life, leaving Worcester forever, only for Patti to pine over Allison and put her own personal relationships on hold. Allison, herself, couldn’t forget Patti either, and for all her new friends it was obvious only Patti understood her best. And that’s what makes the pair’s relationship endure: whether romantic or platonic, in a world where neither ever felt understood, they found it in each other.
The series finale, “Allison’s House,” will no doubt frustrate those who want an overt declaration of romantic love. Patti gave up her relationship with Tammy (Candice Coke) because the latter knew she’d never be as important to Patti as Allison. Allison, despite her desire to leave Worcester, was content to stay there so long as Patti was there. Their relationship is romantic, to a point. While there isn’t a physical declaration of that, the audience is meant to see the two love each other more than they love anyone else. And, really, it might not have been to the show’s benefit to put the pair in an overt romantic relationship. Not because it wouldn’t have been great to see, but because of where Allison ends as a character.
We’ve seen how Allison met Kevin during a vulnerable time in her life after her father’s passing. Allison’s tried to find happiness in romantic and sexual relationships, most specifically her friend Sam (Raymond Lee). Even when Sam left his wife, he and Allison couldn’t make it work. We’ve seen her take the bad marriage and find her own identity. The finale itself culminates with her confronting Kevin and revealing the small man that he really is.
Is it a cop-out? Sure, it’s easy to see it as such. Patti and Allison could have easily declared their romantic love for each other. But the finale seems to say that Allison needs time to be alone and she isn’t ready for a romantic relationship with anyone. If anything, I see the door left open for a possible romantic relationship down the line between Patti and Allison. You know, once they rebuild Allison’s burned down house. In the end, what sticks with audiences is the finale image of Allison resting her head on Patti’s shoulder and the two huddled together on Allison’s burned-out stoop. It’s a tender image that certainly feels romantic. That’s a good enough for this viewer.
“Kevin Can F Himself” streams on AMC and AMC+.