After two series, Phoebe Waller-Bridge has (quite literally) waved farewell to her nameless heroine in a “perfect” final episode of BBC3’s Fleabag.
The series two finale – centred around her father’s wedding to Olivia Colman’s wicked Godmother – ended in true bittersweet Fleabag fashion; sister Claire finally left abusive and alcoholic husband Martin to race to the airport for new love Klare, but Fleabag herself didn’t have quite the same happy ending.
Despite her passionate tryst with the hot priest (a fantastic Andrew Scott), her proclamation of love at a bus stop fell a little flat; while the priest said he loved her too, he ultimately chose to keep following God, telling her that her feelings for him “will pass.”
The final scenes saw her walk away from the camera she so often shot knowing glances to, with one last wave.
Fans heaped praise on Waller-Bridge on Twitter, with one willing to put quite a price on the series’ conclusion.
Others described the heroine as one of TV’s greatest characters.
The priest’s poignant, passionate and damning wedding speech was also highly praised by fans…
… as was this zinging line from Fleabag’s father:
But while she may have been hoping to elope with her priest, it was Fleabag’s relationship with sister Claire that viewers thought was the true love story of the series.
The second series is thought to be the show’s last ever, with Sian Clifford, who plays Claire, describing Fleabag as “complete”.
ANALYSIS – by RadioTimes.com Editor Tim Glanfield
Ending a beloved show is hard. Those who are invested in its characters and read meaning into every twist and turn along the way will always have their own views on what should have happened.
But in the finale of Fleabag, Phoebe Waller-Bridge has achieved something truly remarkable in television – a conclusion that has won near-universal praise from critics and fans of the programme alike. This is no accident, it is the result of a rare talent for writing and performing that has quite rightly propelled her to being one of the most celebrated names in the industry.
What is more, in taking the brave decision to end the show on a high with everyone wanting more, its creator follows the same high road that the likes of Cleese and Booth and Gervais and Merchant took with Fawlty Towers and The Office, and surely elevates Fleabag into the same upper echelons of the British television hall of fame.
“There will not be a third series,” Clifford told BBC Breakfast presenters Charlie Stayt and Naga Munchetty. “This is it.”
“I think I’ve described it online as this beautiful, perfect ending and I think it is, but I think what it’s closer to is poetry,” she added.
“I think people will accept that this is the end when they see it, because I think it is complete. I think the story is complete.”
Fleabag is available to stream on BBC iPlayer