Atlanta Season 3 Ending Explained: Why Atlanta Season 3 Ended with A Weird Van Episode?

Atlanta Season 3 Ending Explained

On March 24, 2022, FX broadcast the series debut of Atlanta’s third season. Executive producers for the season are Donald Glover, Paul Simms, Dianne McGunigle, Stephen Glover, Hiro Murai, and Stefani Robinson.

The season is produced by RBA, 343 Incorporated, MGMT Entertainment, and FXP. As the season’s creator and showrunner, Donald Glover wrote two episodes and directed three others.

Plot Summary

Atlanta Season 3 Ending Explained

In June 2018, the season was ordered. Starring in it are Zazie Beetz, LaKeith Stanfield, Brian Tyree Henry, and Donald Glover.

The show follows Earn as he goes about his daily life in Atlanta, Georgia, trying to make up with his parents, his cousin Alfred, a rapper who goes by the stage name “Paper Boi,” his eccentric right-hand guy Darius, and his ex-girlfriend Van, who is also the mother of his daughter Lottie.

The characters are in the midst of a journey to Europe when the season begins, and it takes place there. Amsterdam, London, and Paris are a few of the European cities that are highlighted during the season.

The season’s stand-alone, vignette-style episodes also examine events taking place in America that are unrelated to the main characters.

Some viewers and reviewers have hypothesized that these episodes represent Earn’s dreams. These episodes are set in New York and Atlanta.

The season’s first episode aired on FX on March 24, 2022. The 18-49 demographic comprised 0.310 million viewers and 0.1 ratings share for the season debut. With an average of 0.25 million viewers, the season finished on May 20, 2022, down 61 percent from the season before.

The season has gotten high praise from critics, who have praised the acting, directing, writing, and storytelling.

As the season has progressed, the standalone episodes have received a more conflicted reception; while they were initially well received, criticisms have focused on the abrupt changes in settings, the anthological nature of each episode, as well as the main cast’s absence from any of the standalone episodes.

FX renewed the show for a fourth and final season in August 2019, which was 2.5 years before the season’s premiere.

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Ending Explained

Atlanta Season 3 Ending Explained

Every season of “Atlanta” is an exhilarating journey, but the third season, which is set in Europe, blows the rest out of the water.

The season takes the action to some very bizarre locales, including opulent homes concealed beneath dilapidated apartments, unsettling dreams, and well-known European locations.

When the mood strikes, the episodes don’t appear to have an issue switching their emphasis, which leaves some characters with surprisingly little attention.

Van Keefer Zazie Beetz, who receives relatively little attention in the first nine episodes, appears to be the main victim of this strategy for the majority of the season.

Over the course of the season, she reappears in brief mid-credits sequences, coincidental meetings, and subtly sinister indications that not everything is as it seems.

Therefore, it is only fitting that Van is the focus of the season finale. However, as her prior appearances have hinted, this isn’t quite the Van you’re used to.

This Episode Is a Dark Parody of A Beloved French Film

Atlanta Season 3 Ending Explained

It turns out that Van has been on a quest for self-discovery, inspired by the French film “Amélie,” one of the top foreign-language box offices draws in the country.

Van’s Amélie Poulain-inspired attire and bob wig—possibly the same one she was charged with stealing in “White Fashion”—as well as her casual meddling with the people around her are all reminiscent of the appearance and tone of the Jean-Pierre Jeunet classic.

This was definitely the goal, according to author Stefani Robinson, who spoke to The A.V. Club. Van’s actions, meanwhile, have a very different vibe from the episode’s motivation because this is “Atlanta.”

Van is obviously not living in a romantic comedy because of odd interactions with gangs, the use of melee weapons like baguettes, and open cannibalism.

Instead, as befits her episode-specific nickname, Tarrare, she engages in a variety of unsettling and violent behaviors during her numerous missions. This makes a not-so-subtle allusion to the historical performer Tarrare, also known as the man who couldn’t stop eating.

The historical Tarrare was rumored to be able to consume anything, even humans, and was always insatiably hungry.

Van herself makes reference to that latter section of the show, and in fact, it looks like she is bringing food for a supper that has a decidedly human feel and is eventually consumed by a few individuals while wearing fabric over their heads, evoking the real-world custom of eating ortolan.

Van finally receives assistance from Candice Adriyan Rae in giving up her French-themed coping strategy, which turns out to have an unexpectedly tragic aspect.

It’s unclear how her time in France will affect her or where her future lies, however, “Atlanta” Season 4 is supposedly continuing the subject of Europe.

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Alexander Skarsgård Has a Blast as A Parody of Himself

Atlanta Season 3 Ending Explained

In “Atlanta,” celebrity cameos aren’t exactly unheard of. Liam Neeson’s outrageously self-deprecating cameo in Season 3 alone should be enough to satisfy the star quotient of any lesser program.

The season finale of “Atlanta” manages to top itself when Van has a strange and brutal friendship with actor Alexander Skarsgard, who plays a deranged parody version of himself and seems to enjoy life in ways that are far different from the norm and has a thing for humiliation.

With a staged drug addiction scenario, Van nearly carelessly kills Skarsgrd’s career and further degrades the actor when he confronts her about it.

The writer of “Atlanta,” Stefani Robinson, revealed that Ryan Gosling was the original choice for this outrageous cameo part in an interview with The A.V. Club. Skarsgard, on the other hand, gave the role his all and gave it his all like a genuine pro.

Robinson seems to recall that Skarsgrd had not only come up with the concept on his own but that it was also the actor’s condition for agreeing to film the sequence in the first place.


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