Dana Terrace was right, we weren’t ready for this week’s episode of The Owl House.
The season two finale is now less than a week away, with all the pieces aligning ahead of multiple narrative revelations and character moments that will change our view on this universe forever. Battles will be fought, people might be lost, and we’ll see exactly how Luz and company plan to triumph in the face of Emperor Belos and the Day of Unity.
Luz Noceda’s queer magical adventure only has a single episode and three extended specials left to tell its story and I’m absolutely not ready for it to end, but I adore how the team behind it are wasting absolutely no time in making every second count.
Not a single instance is wasted as we inch closer and closer to the conclusion, even as certain developments the crew hoped to expand upon are merely hinted at or left on the cutting room floor because there just isn’t enough time to do them justice. There's even a joke about a beach episode and not having enough time for 20 more adventures in this week's episode.
That breaks my heart, but fortunately it’s being kept aflutter by all manner of moments that will go down in history as some of animation’s fruitiest ever. The Owl House is unapologetic in what it wants to be, depicting each character with a level of emotional honesty that few in its demographic are able to match. Luz is a lovable yet layered heroine who is impossible not to root for, with a comprehensive character arc that is still being unearthed as we inch closer towards the finale. We have no idea where she will end up, but she cares so much for the people and world around her while never once forsaking her own personal agency.
We’ve seen this explored so much in recent weeks in the face of a coming battle, where Luz is forced to consider her true friendships and where exactly her found family sits in all of this. King is the last living Titan, Eda wants her loved ones to escape the inevitable danger, while Lilith’s motives remain somewhat clouded. There are so many perspectives to consider, and while not all of them are given the appropriate breathing room given the remaining running time, the big moments land, and that’s an achievement to be proud of. While I’ll delve into this week’s episode and its wider repercussions in a separate piece, here I want to focus on the moment everyone is talking about – the kiss between Luz Noceda and Amity Blight. This isn’t some peck on the cheek nonsense, but a fully-fledged smooch that none of us expected to happen so soon, but all of us have been waiting for. Goodness me it was glorious.
Given how groundbreaking The Owl House’s queer representation has managed to be, especially as a show produced by Disney, it can be easy to grow complacent. Luz and Amity’s relationship was cemented in the midst of the second season, with the couple making it clear they’re girlfriends with cutesy comments, obvious blushes, and so many adorable scenes together that are ripe with the innocence of young love. There’s also Willow’s dads being mentioned frequently, Raine Whisper’s unapologetic non-binary identity and the show’s willingness to exist in a world without homophobia. Everyone is accepting, with even the villains never resorting to undermining one’s identity to get the upper hand.
Even with its looming cancellation, The Owl House has established itself as one of the most progressive animated shows in history, and will be looked back on alongside a handful of other trailblazers as a moment where things began to change. Where who you are, what you look like, and who you fall in love with isn’t a point of contention in media, but an aspect of normalcy. Luz and Amity’s relationship is a cornerstone of that message, and it reached a new crescendo in this week’s episode that, as I mentioned before, none of us were ready for.
Let me set the scene – Amity has been grounded as the Day of Unity approaches, with her parents working alongside Emperor Belos to produce all manner of weapons and machines to be used in the approaching battle. Odalia Blight has no moral standing in this conflict, she has agreed to help in exchange for a place of prestige in a new society, to secure her family positions of economic prowess where they will no longer need to worry about working to enjoy life or being lumped in with undesirables. Alador Blight thinks his wife is being a massive bitch, failing to understand the true wishes of her family and where they stand. He eventually sides with Amity, destroys his creations and presumably files for divorce. What an absolute chad, this dude deserves the world.
But before all that, Amity is trapped in her bedroom with Edric and Emira by her side. She’s worried about Luz, concerned for her safety and unsure how to proceed while trapped in the clutches of her parents. While pacing back and forth she’s asked what Luz would do in this situation, what advice she’d give her girlfriend to triumph over adversity and rise above it all. Little does she know that right outside her window Luz is kicking the crap out of guards in order to rescue her girlfriend like the lovable Prince Charming she is. It’s simultaneously clichéd and refreshing, with our heroine clambering up a makeshift wall of vines to burst through the door and surprise her awaiting partner. Right after she’s done promising she’ll take her girlfriend on a real date when all this is over, Luz appears and Amity jumps into her awaiting arms.
Their reunion is drenched in love, the two clearly smitten for one another as the embrace tightens and they reunite for the first time in days. Amity is hesitant, but takes Luz’s cheeks in her hands before planting a kiss firmly on her lips. Luz’s eyes widen, accepting the gesture and deepening it for a few precious seconds. It feels like a huge step forward in their relationship, the kiss concluding with a mixture of adorable comments and needless justifications for what feels like a completely natural evolution. “Crikey” is the perfect reaction to your anxious girlfriend planting one on you, and beautifully in character for a protagonist like Luz who is all about schmaltzy romance, but whose enthusiasm often fades away in service of apprehension when it comes to truly pushing herself.
Here we have a moment of calm before the storm, a brief instance for Luz and Amity to express their feelings before putting everything on the line. We don’t yet know what the future holds in store for them, or how the selection of specials will test their relationship and threaten to rip them apart forever. Dana Terrace will undoubtedly want to tear our hearts out before piecing them back together again, and I can’t wait for that experience, but I’m also relieved to see such a wonderful moment presented to us before it all falls apart.
The episode’s conclusion has Luz taking Hunter’s place as she’s taken to Emperor Belos, ready to duke it out in the lion’s den with no way for her friends to save her. This season will likely end on a cliffhanger, with my money being on the Day of Unity reaching its natural conclusion and our heroes are made to regroup, to reflect on their failures and see about restoring the world to its former glory now the enemy has won. Or not, who knows! If Belos lays so much as a hand on Luz's unhatched palisman I will flip a table. Or just cry a lot like I do every week.
But the kiss was perfect. The animation was soft and detailed, almost lifelike in how natural the expressions felt and how Luz and Amity sank into one another with a delicateness we didn’t see in the rest of the episode. This won’t be the last kiss between these two, but one of such romantic honesty and queer vulnerability right before the potentially tragic finale feels like a statement of intent, like The Owl House is ready to deliver an overarching narrative and thematic message that is unashamed when it comes to LGBTQ+ representation.
Bring on the finale, bring on more kisses, and bring on more shows like this. I’m not ready for things to end, but I equally cannot wait to see what comes next.
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