The Bear Season 2: Lingering Questions


Following the final shot of The Bear season 2, with a defeated Carmy (played by Jeremy Allen White), trapped in the freezer of the new restaurant on opening night, many viewers have been left with an abundance of unanswered questions. This moment was the accumulation of this chef’s overwhelm and distraction over the course of the past few months as him and the rest of the crew frantically prepared The Bear for a impossible opening deadline. While the restaurant seems to have had a relatively successful opening night, Carmy’s inability to participate leaves both him and the audience in limbo as we anxiously await his future. So with the recent renewal of a third season, here’s our Take on some of show’s biggest lingering questions. Spoilers ahead!

Will Claire and Carmy reconcile their relationship?

In the final episode of the second season Carmy has a breakdown in the freezer of the new restaurant after being unable to participate in the opening night endeavors. This moment intends to reflect his distraction from the business as a result of his new relationship with his childhood friend Claire. As Sydney continually reminded Carmy to fix the broken refrigerator, completing this minor task consistently seemed to slip his mind. In his singular attempt to contact a repair man, Carmy received a call from Claire. His internal struggle between work and his new relationship came to a front in this scene as his decided to let the call go to voicemail while simultaneously forgoing communication with the repair man. As a result of this, Carmy became locked in the walk-in fridge, finally forced to confront his subconscious concern that his newfound relationship is limiting his ability to accomplish something greater. In a fit of rage, Carmy expresses his insecurities and concerns about Claire to his co-worker Tina through the refrigerator door. However, unbeknownst to Carmy, he was actually expressing these uncensored frustrations directly to Claire, resulting in their breakup. In this sequence of events, the finalization of their relationship seems too abrupt and unresolved to be entirely over with. The relationship they developed was one of support, communication and happiness, all building blocks to a successful relationship. And their history with each other allowed for a deeper understanding and bond, something Carmy was hesitant to build with anyone else for a long time. Their undeniable connection suggests that their relationship may be a right person wrong time situation. Where Carmy must first learn to overcome certain insecurities and pressures and develop a greater work life balance before the couple can finally fully commit to one another.

Is their a future romance blossoming between Sydney and Marcus?

In the second half of the latest season, the relationship between Sydney (Ayo Edebiri) and Marcus (Lionel Boyce) seemed to be building towards something beyond friendship. However, in an awkward encounter between the two of them, Marcus asked Sydney to dinner in the hope of deepening their connection. Sydney was entirely caught off guard by this inquiry, leaving Marcus to rescind his offer and question the basis of the bond they were establishing. Following this interaction, tensions rose between the two close friends, leading to a few brief arguments between them in the midst of opening night. A glimpse of hope for their future arose however, after Marcus caught one of their new hires smoking crack in the back alley. He then approached Sydney to confirm he could fire the worker, in which she reassured him that this would be entirely necessary. While the interaction was quick, a few jokes and light-hearted banter reassured audiences that there will be a future to their relationship, whether that be as friends or something more. We can only hope however, that an honest conversation is in their future, as clearly some words have been left unspoken.

Will the business earn back Jimmy Cicero’s investment or will Uncle Jimmy end up acquiring it?

The original premise of season 2 established an immediate sense of urgency as Carmy crafted a deal with Uncle Jimmy in an effort to receive a loan for $500,000. Following Brother Mikey’s prior loan from the uncle, this amounted to a totalling debt of $800,000. Carmy assured Jimmy that over the course of the next 18 months they will be able to make a full return on his investment or Uncle Jimmy will acquire the business in full, a hefty and entirely unrealistic agreement. But while friends and family night seemed to have it difficulties, reviews of the food received high praise, suggesting the crew may have the chops to pull this off. Considering Carmy successful history working at a Michelin three star restaurants, Richie’s recent intensive hospitality training and newfound love for restuarant service, Sydney’s composed manner and brilliance, and the rest of the crews exploration into new culinary techniques, the future of the business is looking bright. This is also not the first time the crew has experienced financial hardship, with their previous restaurant the original beef of chicagoland barely scraping by. So, it seems for the first time their hard earned path may finally be paying off, or at least one could hope. But narratively, it unrealistic for Carmy to get off that easy, suggesting there will likely be more unexpected struggles thrown their way in season 3.

Is Donna okay? What will the future of her relationship to the family look like?

In the final episode of season 2, Carmy and Natalie’s mom Donna Berzattos (Jamie Lee Curtis) was discovered outside the restaurant at friends and family night. Natalie’s husband rushed out to greet her, excited to show off the great success her children had accomplished. However, unexpectedly Donna was found in a state of extreme overwhelm and insecurity as a result of this endeavor. Her previous history with the family is not particularly stellar, as shown in a prior flashback to Chistmas dinner. And as a result of this, she felt coming to the restaurants opening night would only cause more issues for the family. She feels as though she is a burden, often found to be intoxicated and emotionally unstable. And although the family, particuarly Carmy, makes sincere attempts to help and comfort her, she continuously refuses. Therefore, she feels as though removing herself from their life entirely is the only way for them to forgive her for the many mistakes she has made along the way. These feelings ultimately mainfested in her breaking down in front of Pete (Chris Witaske) and eventually leaving before even entering the restaurant. As she saunters away, viewers are left to question if her relationship to the family could ever recover. However, as Pete returns to the restaurant, he asks Natalie to forgive her mother for not making it opening night, suggesting Natalie and Carmy are still deep down willing to forgive her and welcome her back into their lives. The true question is, will Donna be able to overcome her own extreme guilt and struggle and allow this future to blossom. Throughout this show, the characters consistently tackle with forgiveness amongst their relationships. Whether that be Richie accepting his past and reinventing himself, or in the minor brawls that come about each shift at The Bear, which Carmy and the rest of the crew are actively working to overcome. So, it is only reasonable to predict that there were be an eventual reconciliation with Donna and the rest of the family as she hopefully allows herself to put the past behind her and move into the next chapter of her life.