The Flight Attendant came to a dramatic crossroads in its second season. Kaley Cuoco’s Cassie has been struggling with not drinking after nearly one year from her last sip of alcohol. In episode five, “Drowning Women,” Cassie relapses with a vengeance, and then she discovers that she picked up a bottle not once but twice before her goal of one year. In some shows, the tone would be shameful or condescending, but director Pete Chatmon handles Cassie’s latest hurdle with grace and respect.
Not only did Chatmon feel freedom when Cassie entered the Mind Palace, but he gets some big, emotional markers that highlight the season. Early in the episode, Marco confronts Cassie about her lack of communication, and she tells him, “I guess I forgot about you.” It’s definitely not something anyone wants to hear from their partner, and I admitted to Chatmon that I thought Marco was involved all season.
Chatmon revealed how much he knew about the season’s conclusion, and it helped in directing key scenes. Grace tells Cassie, “I don’t like a lot of people” during this episode, and that exchange alone is something that I have been thinking even though I have seen the season twice the whole way through. Chatmon is incredibly skilled in these teases of emotion in addition to huge blowouts between characters. The director also detailed what he liked about the Busby Berkeley-inspired swimming sequence.
The Flight Attendant hits new heights in its sophomore season, but Chatmon also zeroes in on the intimacy that is on the line when we are at our lowest points.
The Flight Attendant is streaming on HBO Max.