'Big Mouth' Season 2 Ending Explained: Why the World Building Doesn't Work
Big Mouth is one of the best shows on Netflix (animated or otherwise) and if you were a fan of Season 1 then Season 2 definitely won’t disappoint. It’s grosser, funnier, smarter, and way darker than before, all while offering a painfully realistic look at the cruel joke that is puberty.
Big Mouth Season 2 is almost perfect, but in its final episode the series tries to push the envelope even further to give its iconic Hormone Monster a more fleshed out backstory. Unfortunately, the ending falls flat under the weight of its own half-baked world building.
Spoilers for the Big Mouth Season 2 ending ahead.
Similar to Season 1’s journey into “The Pornscape,” Season 2 ends with another other-wordly trip. This time, our three pubescent heroes (Nick, Andrew, and Jessi) travel through a portal left behind by one of their Hormone Monsters and into a bureaucratic world called Human Resources full of anthropomorphized human emotions.
Their goal is to find a new Hormone Monster for Nick, but after locating the Puberty division the kids quickly get sidetracked by various other monsters. It’s at this point that the world of Human Resources quickly starts to fall apart.
Sure, it’s fun to see Maury, Andrew’s Hormone Monster, flirt with his co-workers, but as the cast of monsters expands beyond hormones it starts to lose the thread. Just take a look at the full lineup of creatures meeting to debate Jessi’s future.
If Jessi is equally controlled by her hormones, her intellect, her DNA, her ambition, and her anxiety, then why do we only see the Hormone Monstress back on Earth? Where’s the Intellect Sphinx when Jessi takes a test at school? Where’s the Anxiety Armadillo when she feels awkward at a party?
Big Mouth seems to answer this question with the introduction of the Kitty from the “Depression Division.”
“I’d like to take over as Jessi’s number one,” Kitty says, suggesting that these monsters essentially take turns running the show. For most of the series, Jessi’s hormone’s are in charge, but at any point, another being could take over if the group collectively agrees that it’s the best option.
However, the introduction of Kitty also raises its own bizarre plot holes. Kitty presumably wants to bring Jesse back to earth and pacify her adolescent rebellion with depression, but instead, she leads her new human to a padded cell and traps her there. And as we learned from Maury earlier in the same episode, any human who stays in this world for over an hour will be damaged irreparably.
“If you stay here you will be developmentally stunted forever,” Maury tells Nick and Andrew, “either physically like child weightlifters or mentally like my dear friend’s son Michael Jackson.”
This feels like a pretty lazy Race Against the Clock scenario, but I’m willing to let it slide. But the fact that Kitty willfully tries to trap Jesse in Human Resources feels like a huge plot hole in an already porous episode.
Maybe I’m taking this crude cartoon a little too seriously. Sure, I recognize that plenty of the jokes are just quick gags with no deeper meaning behind them. And sure, it might be asking too much to hope for well-developed lore from a series that breaks the fourth wall on a regular basis.
But it’s because Big Mouth is so great that I’m disappointed by this one major shortcoming. For a show that manages to be clever, honest, and deeply personal almost despite itself, it’s a shame that when Season 2 tries its hand at something new like world-building it can’t quite stick the landing.
Big Mouth Season 2 is streaming now on Netflix.