HomeTV'The Diplomat' Season 1 Ending Explained: An Explosive Finale

‘The Diplomat’ Season 1 Ending Explained: An Explosive Finale

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Netflix’s The Diplomat is a suspense thriller series on Netflix starring Keri Russell as Kate Wyler, a career foreign service officer who is unexpectedly made the U.S. ambassador to the U.K. after a British warship is bombed, resulting in the death of 40 service members. The eight-episode drama dropped on Netflix on April 20 and is quite a whirl, with an ending that begs for a follow-up — and now that the series has officially been confirmed for a second season on the streamer, let’s dive into that explosive Season 1 finale and discuss where we left off with Kate and the rest of the characters as a bigger crisis looms.

Marriage vs. Political Drama

'The Diplomat' Season 1 Ending Explained: An Explosive Finale
Image via Netflix

Created by Debora Cahn of Homeland fame, the series operates as a political soap opera where multiple countries’ fate depends on marital problems, hidden romantic relationships, and the development of a power throuple. The series follows U.S. Ambassador Kate Wyler as she helps the UK recover from a devastating attack, all while dealing with a crumbling marriage and a budding illicit office romance.

Throughout Season 1 of The Diplomat, Keri Russell’s character Kate repeatedly expressed her desire for her husband Hal (Rufus Sewell) to leave so that she could work in peace. This was due in part to her inability to forget or forgive Hal’s actions in Afghanistan, where his heroics had saved time but had also prevented 300 Afghan collaborators with the U.S. from being transported out of the country.

This is all set against the backdrop of Kate and Hal’s dying marriage. Despite having had a successful relationship, Kate had decided to call things off with Hal when she was carted off to the UK. The two had been planning to end things officially and have Hal move out, but this all happens before the President (Michael McKean) and the White House Chief of Staff (Nana Mensah) decide to make her the new VP. Additionally, Hal’s recklessness often results in significant consequences that make it difficult for Kate to trust him again.

However, their joint success with the Russia strategy, which involved getting the UK Prime Minister (Rory Kinnear) to leave his plan, ultimately convinces Kate to give Hal another chance. This allows her to focus on the VP idea without worrying about staying married in order to become the new Vice President.

In Episode 8 of the Netflix political drama, UK Foreign Secretary Austin Dennison (David Gyasi) meets with Kate to discuss the Prime Minister’s plans to kill a group of Russians. However, after being told no by the US Secretary of State, the PM decides to arrest one man, Roman Lenkov, for his involvement in a previous aircraft explosion. Dennison reveals that he and Secretary of State Miguel Ganon (Miguel Sandoval) are going to Paris to oversee the arrest. At a gala event, French Minister of Interior Brielle Fournier (Micky Sébastian) tells Kate that the UK plans to lead the arrest of Lenkov, which is unusual as it’s on French soil. However, Fournier drops a bombshell by revealing that the UK intends to assassinate Lenkov instead of arresting him, leaving Kate shocked.

The Explosive Ending of ‘The Diplomat’ Season 1

'The Diplomat' Season 1 Ending Explained: An Explosive Finale
Image via Netflix

The Season 1 finale thus sees Kate realizing that the British plan to murder a Russian-linked mercenary instead of arresting him. She storms out of the gala, disappointed in her husband and Dennison for manipulating her for their political gain, especially given their feelings for each other. Kate realizes that the only people who would want Lenkov dead would be the ones who hired him, in an attempt to make sure their identity is never revealed. After chatting with Dennison, however, she believes that he isn’t aware of the real plan going on.

In the ending scene of The Diplomat Season 1, as Kate and Dennison are reacting to all this, Hal is heading to meet Merritt Grove (Simon Chandler), a member of the British political party the Tories, for dinner. However, upon arriving, he discovers that Kate’s Deputy Chief of Mission Stuart Heyford (Ato Essandoh), and aide Ronnie (Jess Chanliau) are already present because Kate had asked them to be there. Grove becomes upset and leaves, prompting Heyford and Ronnie to follow him, while Hal approaches them from a different direction.

When Grove opens the vehicle door, it explodes without warning. This essentially confirms (or at least lends strong credence to) the theory that Trowbridge may have planned a terrorist attack on his own country. As they absorb the shocking truth, police cars and security forces arrive, and the sound of their conversation fades out. The last shot shows Kate with tears in her eyes, looking at Dennison, as they begin to contemplate the situation’s aftermath.

The revelation sets up the premise for the show’s upcoming second season, given that the finale leaves plenty of unanswered questions behind — who survived the explosion, how will Kate cope with her loss, and is the world on the brink of war? If Hal does survive, the series leaves the state of his relationship with Kate up in the air, as well as the current odds of Kate’s VP candidacy.

With such high stakes, knowing that we have a second season of The Diplomat to look forward to, given all of these lingering questions, is definitely a reassurance. The only struggle that remains now is just how long we’ll have to wait for it to premiere on the streaming service.

Season 1 of The Diplomat is currently available to stream on Netflix. Season 2 will premiere at a date yet to be announced.

Watch the Trailer below;

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