The thing about lying is that once you tell one lie, there is always a consequence. You either come clean and face the consequence, or you guard it with more lies and further spiral down the path of darkness. If you think about it, the entirety of whatever bad happened to Luke Chambers in Cruel Summer season 2 started with the lie to his girlfriend. While this episode doesn’t reveal how he died, it makes it abundantly clear that if Luke hadn’t lied, he probably would have still been alive. At most, he would have lost his relationship (and maybe his friendship) with Megan. But Luke made a bad choice, and here we are.
Love At The End Of Summer
It is the day after Luke’s birthday party, and the inevitable thing between Megan and Luke still hasn’t happened yet. However, with Isabella actively shipping them and the story having deliberately morphed into a Netflix rom-com, it is really only a matter of time. Upon Isabella’s insistence, Megan and Luke go to the cabin to run some errands. Reminiscing about their childhood, they both agreed upon the fact that they had the time of their lives when the other person was around. It still took a while for the lovers to reach the dock, where they finally bared their hearts, and the romance kicked in.
One very important thing happens before that. Now, I understand that the Cruel Summer writers had a task in hand when it came to putting this story in the show’s three-timeline structure. A lot of things got added and subtracted at the writing table, I am sure. Considering that, not everything can be perfect. But even then, the show’s choice of pretending that Luke didn’t know Ned and referring to him as just the weird guy who lives near the cabin was a dumb one. Especially when Ned was always going to be a key player, this episode reveals that he had a history with Steve, as the two can’t stand each other to the point where Steve would actually think that Ned might be Luke’s killer. In the summer timeline of this episode, Luke happens to bump into Ned, apologizes for accidentally trespassing onto his land, and has an extremely awkward interaction. Ned mostly appears nice to him and even fixes up the frequency of Luke’s walkie-talkie. Little did they both know at this point that they would have a parking lot scuffle on the last day of the year.
The Doomed Academic Fate Of Megan Landry
We are taking a non-linear route this week. In the Summer 2000 timeline, Megan is called to the police station. Assuming this has something to do with Luke’s death, she goes prepared with her lawyer, Tom. But things take a surprisingly worse turn when she finds out that this summons has nothing to do with Luke. Megan Landry is now being charged with a misdemeanor thanks to her supreme fake ID-making skills. This effectively ruins her chance at her dream life, which was supposed to be getting a University of Washington scholarship, a college degree, and a flashy career in tech. She desperately seeks Ned’s help, but it is out of even his hands, as he says. In the parking lot of the Supermarket, she bumps into Jeff, who appears to be nice to Megan for a change. When she tells him that a college education might not happen for her, Luke confesses that it has something to do with him getting caught with the fake ID he had and eventually giving Megan away to the police, as if her day couldn’t get any worse.
Ned has his own trouble going on, as Steve is now onto him, suspecting that he is the one who took Luke’s life. In fact, Steve literally goes to Ned and tries to get “the truth” out of Ned’s mouth. A tense confrontation happens. Ned wields a rifle in order to stand against Steve. While the senior Chambers has gone off the rails, Brent seems to show a lot of maturity and tries to control his father’s rage. He not only stops there, but he also tries to warn and protect Megan from whatever is going on between Ned and his father. It’s ironic how the show introduced Luke as the good brother and Brent as the bratty pervert when it was probably the other way around. Luke’s action in the winter timeline only proves that further.
What Was The Consequence Of Luke’s Lie?
Back at the point where we started. The Winter timeline is where the main deal of this season is, which is Luke’s death. It can fairly be said that this is the episode in which Luke Chambers’ ill-fated journey kicks off. While the lie is somewhat understandable, even though it might not be justified, Luke turns into a complete prick in his attempt to solidify his lie as the truth. While shopping for the New Year’s Eve party at the Supermarket, he tries to poison Megan’s head further by telling lies about Isabella. Megan even refuses to completely buy all of that, despite believing in what Luke told her about the Plunge. Outside the Supermarket, when Megan bumps into an agitated Ned, Luke tries to meddle, and the infamous parking lot scuffle takes place.
At home, Megan discovers she is pregnant. With absolutely no interest in attending the party at the Cannery’s, which is a newly bought property of the Chambers’, Megan goes on for the sake of it. She finally confronts Isabella at the party, who is shocked to find out that Luke has lied to Megan and that her best friend has taken Luke’s side without even asking her. But it doesn’t take much time for Megan to find out the real truth when she finds out Luke is pretty much bragging about playing the two girls at his fingertips to his friend Tim (a minor character who probably doesn’t matter). Luke Chambers’ turning out to be a rotten apple is not surprising, though, given that Cruel Summer has the habit of constantly surprising you.
But Megan Landry is not going to tolerate this anymore. She is going to take her own fate into her own hands, as she tells Jeff when he points the camera at her while documenting everyone’s resolutions for the new year and the millennium. An enraged Megan takes Isabella to the corner, and the two plan to teach Luke a lesson he will never forget. At this point, I am putting my money on things going exactly as we predicted in the detailed theory article. We should ideally find out what happened to Luke Chambers’ by next week only, but I have a feeling the show is not going to give it to us that easily.