‘The Baxters’ Ending Explained & Season 1 Recap: Did Kari And Ryan Get Back Together?

The Baxters is a brand-new Prime Video series about a devout Christian family based on the books by the author Karen Kingsbury. The show has several characters, and each of them has reasons to believe in God, even though some of them do not attend church anymore. As the story progresses, these characters and their dilemmas are put forward and this forms the story about a small church-going community.  


Spoilers Ahead 

How Did The Baxter Family Celebrate Mother’s Day?

The Baxter children celebrated Mother’s Day by visiting their parents. The Baxters were a close-knit family who loved being with each other and were well-known for carrying out charity work for the church and the rest of the community. Elizabeth Baxter and her husband, John, were the best support system any child could ask for. The Mother’s Day episode also had the couple’s oldest daughter, Kari and Tim not attending a family gathering together. Kari was quick to defend her husband’s busy schedule at university. 


Was Tim Cheating On Kari?

Tim, a professor at a local university teaching journalism, was in a relationship with his student Angela. Kari, on the other hand, ran a successful interior decoration business and remained clueless about her husband’s infidelity. Derek, one of Tim’s students and Angela’s secret lover, took it upon himself to inform Kari about Tim’s current location. Kari was quick to cross-check his whereabouts and reached the address to find Tim at that spot. Kari was heartbroken over this revelation but was unwilling to let go of him or their marriage of six years. Tim confessed to being in love with Angela and left her stranded, while she insisted on trying to make their relationship work because she was willing to forgive him for his mistake.

How Did Reagan Become A Part Of The Community?

Reagan had moved from New York to this small town to look for job opportunities and ended up working for Kari’s store. From a crowded city like New York to a quiet town in the interior of America, she got close to the church community, which had slowly become her new family. Reagan was a Christian herself, and she later involved herself in many church-related activities. She met Luke through Kari and the church and was soon settling into her new life.


Why Was Kari Not Willing To Give Tim A Divorce?

Tim accelerated the separation process by personally delivering the divorce papers to Kari. He expected her to sign the papers as soon as possible, as he was keen to start his new life with Angela. Kari, on the other hand, chose to have faith in God to do the right things for her. She discovered she was pregnant which gave her a reason not to sign the divorce papers. She delivered the documents back to him and informed him about the pregnancy. Kari’s family encouraged her to consider divorce so that she could move on, but she believed Tim would find his way to her for the relationship to work. 

Did Tim Change His Mind About The Divorce?

To Angela’s horror, Tim changed his mind about being with her after learning of Kari’s pregnancy. He initially asked for some time to process the turn of events so that he could make a sound decision. Angela was aware there was no coming back for Tim from this, and he eventually broke off the relationship within a few weeks of moving in together. Tim moved back only to witness his wife getting close to her old beau, Ryan, who was back in town after his successful stint with the NFL. Tim hoped to be forgiven and restart his relationship, but he never expected Kari and Ryan to be together. He considered backing away, which forced him into alcoholism. Kari chose to work on her marriage and helped Tim join an AA. Kari was getting closer to Ryan but chose to end their brief liaison for the sake of her marriage to Tim. Kari and Tim were back together, and she helped him get through the AA sessions, which was their first step towards salvaging their marriage.


Who Was Derek Desperately Looking For?

Derek was Tim’s student at the university who was secretly in love with Angela. He went out of his way to stalk her and did everything in his power to end her relationship with Tim. He considered Tim to be a predator who was preying on students like Angela. 

Angela, though she had broken up with Tim, asked Derek to stay away from her. She sensed a stalker vibe from the young boy, who was aware of the details of her life. Even though Angela left the university and moved away due to her heartbreak, Derek was desperate to find her to confess his love for her. He blamed Tim for her exit from the town, and he was desperate to take severe action against him.


What Was The Result Of Tim And Kari’s Couple’s Therapy?

As Kari was a few months pregnant, the couple began counseling to make things right, as their marriage had been through an ordeal. It was endearing to watch Tim take charge of making their marriage as smooth as it was a couple of years ago. Both were committed to helping each other in the process of making their lives easier. Tim was declared sober six months later and openly spoke about his father’s struggle with alcoholism and how he neglected his duties as a parent. Tim never wanted to be like his father to his child in the future, and being sober was his step towards becoming a responsible parent. Kari was right by his side as a strong support system, as she had promised. 

Did The Baxter Family’s Thanksgiving Dinner Turn Bitter?

Elizabeth Baxter and her family were witnesses to a tragedy a few years ago that involved a pregnant Ashley and Luke’s best friend, Colton Ashford. Both were in a car accident that took Colton’s life, and ever since, his parents had moved away to another town. Years later, Elizabeth learned of Colton’s mother’s return to sell their old house, and she hoped to have a long-overdue conversation with her to offer closure. Ashley’s survivor’s guilt never left, and she chose to be angry with her mother for opening old wounds that would cause extreme pain and trauma to Colton’s mother. Ashley had not moved on from the accident, even though a lot of changes had happened in her life ever since. The dinner turned bitter as Ashley walked out and chose to keep her distance from her family. 


Why Was Ashley Disturbed?

Ashley’s son Cole was being raised by her mother and father as she was busy formulating her career as an artist. After a heated argument, Ashley chose to run away without Cole. Her parents decided to take charge of her life and had a heart-to-heart conversation about her habit of running away the moment she sensed any discomfort around her. Elizabeth and John Baxter heard her talk about feeling guilty for having survived and driven the car that killed Colton. She never got over the pain, but her parents were quick to jump in and help her get over the guilt, as the accident was not her fault. Elizabeth and John did not want Ashely to give up on her son. Ashley was back home in no time, and she hoped to have a better relationship with everyone moving forward. 

Who Killed Tim?

Kari faced an ugly surprise when Derek showed up at their home, pointing a gun at her and looking for Tim. Derek wanted to get rid of Tim for his role in Angela leaving town. Kari tried to pacify the situation by advising him to earn Angela’s love before taking any drastic step that would ruin his life. Derek was a mentally unstable boy who would never understand boundaries. He was not in love with Angela but obsessed with the idea of being with her. Derek walked away, while Kari hoped he chose to put aside his killing tendency, only to hear two gunshots. Derek ran away from the scene of the crime after shooting Tim in his driveway. Tim was moved to the hospital, and heavily pregnant Kari went into labor because of the tension. The family was hit with another tragedy as Tim died due to the gunshot wounds. 


Did Kari And Ryan Get Back Together?

Kari gave birth to a baby girl named Jessie, and she was having a hard time moving on. Three weeks into Tim’s death, there was nothing Kari could bring herself to look forward to. Now with an infant in the picture, she chose to spend most of her time on Jessie’s wellbeing, which was a small step towards moving on. Kari was asked to be a part of the family gathering for Christmas, but she chose to stay away from the festivities. Kari and Tim were in love, which was the reason they managed to make their marriage work out again. Losing Tim the way she did was completely unexpected, and she would probably not get justice since Derek was not found after committing the crime. 

The Baxters season 1 ended with Kari choosing to attend the Christmas Eve dinner with her parents. She probably did not want to be alone with her child, and this was her way to slowly move past the tragedy. All her siblings chose to be by her side since Kari was dealing with a loss on a monumental scale. Ryan visited the Baxter home one last time, as he had decided to work as a coach with the New York Giants football team. He visited Kari one last time in the hope of finding closure and moving on with his life in the city. Both had had a brief conversation about the night she lost Tim, and she was glad to have Ryan by her side. They were still in love, but their lives took unexpected turns, and they chose to do what was right instead of hanging on to the past. Ryan offered his goodbyes, but he probably wanted to convey his love for her. Since the timing was wrong, he chose to move away and pursue his career.


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Smriti Kannan
Smriti Kannan
Smriti Kannan is a cinema enthusiast, and a part time film blogger. An ex public relations executive, films has been a major part of her life since the day she watched The Godfather – Part 1. If you ask her, cinema is reality. Cinema is an escape route. Cinema is time traveling. Cinema is entertainment. Smriti enjoys reading about cinema, she loves to know about cinema and finding out trivia of films and television shows, and from time to time indulges in fan theories.

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