Hannah Hall In ‘The Last Thing He Told Me,’ Explained: Does She Get Back Bailey In Her Life?

Olivia Newman’s The Last Thing He Told Me premiered its finale episode today, and we experienced a bittersweet ending for Bailey and Hannah. Bailey accepted Hannah as her mother, and she never went without a mother’s love again, but the women lost Owen from their lives. Hannah lost her husband, while Bailey lost her father, a hole in her life that might never be filled. The takeaway from the miniseries is the selfless attitude of Hannah, a woman who dedicated so much to keeping a promise made to her husband. Let’s take a look at Hannah and understand why she can be considered an ideal parent.

Growing up without a mother as a woman is a hardship that only the women who have had to undergo such a situation can fathom. Hannah Hall from Texas was a young girl who didn’t receive a mother’s love in the years that she needed it the most—the adolescent and teenage years, when a mother guides her offspring on how to better herself, using the experiences of her own life. Instead, Hannah had a grandfather who tried his utmost to raise the truant child on his own. He imparted his woodworking skills to Hannah and the knowledge that only we can decide what we want to dedicate our attention to. Hannah could’ve easily turned into a delinquent and repeat offender without the guidance of a mother, but she didn’t stray from the path of morals that her grandfather imbibed in her. She grew up realizing the pain of not receiving a mother’s love and probably made up her mind early on that if she had any opportunity to become a mother, she’d ensure that child didn’t suffer the same fate as she once did.

The opportunity to be a mother came when Hannah met Owen Michaels, a software engineer, and fell head over heels in love. She’d never experienced love as she did with Owen, which is why, despite having been in relationships before, she decided to settle with Owen. This was a man who valued Hannah as the most precious person in his world, right under his daughter, Bailey. The teenager Bailey, though, had a very tough time warming up to this unknown woman who was suddenly taking up most of her dad’s attention and time, and Bailey made no bones about hiding her displeasure at Hannah. However, Hannah tried her very best to win Bailey over, getting them tickets to plays and making sandwiches for her stepdaughter. She still had difficulties connecting with the teenager, and despite the repeated apologies from Owen for Bailey’s reluctance to connect with Hannah, she continued to excuse Bailey because she truly understood what Bailey was currently going through.

So long as Owen was in the lives of Bailey and Hannah, the gap was miles apart, and the distance wouldn’t close soon. This all changed, however, when Owen’s workplace came under FBI investigation, and Owen disappeared without a trace, except for a single note to Hannah that said, “Protect her.” Thus began Hannah’s journey of braving waves of strange events, people, and facts that she didn’t know how to handle but still had to put on a game face for because she couldn’t let Bailey see her primary protector in the world at the moment be terrified. It’s interesting to note that throughout the flight to Austin, Texas, from their home, Bailey remained cold and distant towards Hannah, an attitude that more or less didn’t change until she started seeing several positives in her stepmother. Hannah cared for Bailey from the get-go; watching her experience chills on the plane, she wanted to offer her a jacket, and it wasn’t because her husband had asked Hannah to protect his daughter. She did it because of the promise she’d made herself—in no way would she let Bailey grow up without a mother figure doting on her. Despite Bailey’s impatience, Hannah didn’t lose her temper with the teenager, not once, because she realized very well that if she gave up on Bailey that easily, the girl wouldn’t experience love.

It wasn’t just patience and care that helped Hannah and Bailey find answers, though. Bailey was repeatedly impressed at how fast Hannah was thinking on her feet and coming up with statements out of thin air to aid their cause. While Bailey got upset and irritated, Hannah handled things with a lot of precision, using her finely worded sentences to win people over. She was smart, more than capable of taking care of a teenager, and on top of that, she cared the most about Bailey’s happiness and well-being. There are parents who are satisfied with just providing food and shelter for their children and calling it a day, not giving another thought to whether their child is happy or not. On the other hand, there’s Hannah, who had to take care of a truant stepdaughter in a strange place, and yet she made sure that the girl’s happiness wasn’t ignored.

The climax of The Last Thing He Told Me arrives when Hannah is faced with a choice, standing before her husband’s former father-in-law, Nicholas Bell, a mob lawyer for the terrifying Campano family. Nicholas, who adored his granddaughter Kristin (Bailey’s real name) before she was taken away by Owen, would love nothing more than to be able to re-establish a connection with the teenage Kristin. Although Hannah had the opportunity to enter WITSEC and rip Bailey away from everyone she knew and settle her in a completely different place with a totally different identity, she decided against it. What she did instead shows just how selfless a person needs to be to give up any opportunity to be reunited with the love of their life to keep a promise. Hannah entered into an agreement with Nicholas so that he could be a part of Bailey’s life, thereby blocking any chance of Owen ever being able to return to their lives. Hannah willfully gave up the future she wanted with Owen—settling in a distant land and whiling away their time loving each other—to keep Bailey in her life and give her a mother’s life. The gamble worked, and five years later, Hannah was no longer an uninvited guest in Bailey’s life but her mom. Hannah, the ideal parent, gave up on her own love so that the teenager she was entrusted with could have the life she’d longed for as a child.

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Indrayudh Talukdar
Indrayudh Talukdar
Indrayudh has a master's degree in English literature from Calcutta University and a passion for all things in cinema. He loves writing about the finer aspects of cinema, although he is also an equally big fan of webseries and anime. In his free time, Indrayudh loves playing video games and reading classic novels.

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