Conversations with Friends ending explained

Conversations With Friends on BBC Three: Why the ‘messy’ ending was so damn perfect

Fans have been left frustrated, but it's the most honest finale

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By now, most of us have binged the arse off Conversations With Friends (and there’s a lot of arse in it) – and here’s where I explain why the ending was as perfect as it gets.

Yes, it was heartbreaking.

I was a slobbery, snotty mess by the end of it.

But that’s EXACTLY why I loved the ending so much.

It was real, raw, complicated, and messy – just like real life!

Here’s the Conversations With Friends ending explained, and why it was the perfect way to end a series about relationships.

***Warning: spoilers from Conversations With Friends ahead***

Nick and Frances star longingly into each other's eyes in Conversations With Friends
Joe Alwyn as Nick, and Alison Oliver as Frances in the emotionally exhausting Conversations With Friends (Credit: BBC Three)

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Conversations With Friends ending explained – what happened?

In the last episode of Conversations With Friends, Frances and Bobbi are back together.

Or at least, they are having sex with each other again…

Viewers are left feeling that Bobbi is the rock that Frances needs in her life; the one solid friend (with benefits) that keeps her anchored.

Frances seemed happy again, but she’s not forgotten Nick (Joe Alwyn).

When she’s alone, we see her staring longingly at pictures of him.

Of course, we all suspect that it’s the best thing for her mental health that they stopped seeing each other.

After Nick told Frances that he’d started sleeping with Melissa again, Frances realised she just couldn’t handle it.

In heartbreaking scenes, Frances told Nick she couldn’t see him anymore.

Frances rock bottom, made worse by her recent endometriosis diagnosis , and even turned to self harm.

Until Bobbi came back into her life, and they resumed a sexual relationship.

In the closing minutes of Conversations With Friends, Nick accidentally called Frances instead of his wife on the phone.

He confessed that he still had feelings for Frances, telling her: “I have this impulse to be available to you all the time.”

She says: “Come and get me.”

Is the ending of the book the same as the series?

The ending of the novel Conversations With Friends ends in exactly the same way as the series.

In that way, the series is an honest interpretation of Sally Rooney’s story.

For Sally Rooney, the open ending was essential to the story.

She told PBS News Hour: “I had written several other endings for the book, which were much longer, because I seemed to believe at some unconscious level that it was my task to ‘tie up’ every ambiguity I had introduced.

“Once I identified that impulse, and reasoned myself out of it, I wrote the final scene as it is now – and I felt the novel was finished.”

Bobbi and Frances in Conversations With Friends
Conversations With Friends ending explained: Bobbi and Frances resumed a sexual relationship (Credit: BBC Three)

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Do Nick and Frances end up together in Conversations With Friends?

Frankly, we don’t know – something many viewers have found frustrating.

In both the book, and the TV series, there is not a neat ending.

Frances tells Nick to “come and get me” and we can only assume they’ll resume their love affair.

But for how long we don’t know.

Will Nick ever leave his wife Melissa? And what about Bobbi?

These are questions that never get answered.

So you just have to use your imagination, and write the ending YOU want for the characters.

Just like Sally Rooney’s second novel, Normal People, readers never get a happy ending tied up with a bow.

Because, frankly, that’s just not how real life works.

Conversations With Friends analysis

I think the ending to Conversations With Friends was pretty damn perfect.

But then, I am a big fan of the book, and the book ends in the same way.

Fans expecting a “happy ending” have been left disappointed.

However, I believe there is a kind of closure.

Frances opens herself up to Nick, even though she knows it’s going to hurt.

Meanwhile, she’s made peace with the fact that Nick can love two people at once.

After all, she loves Nick and Bobbi at the same time, too.

It’s a testament to the writing, that we are fully invested in the characters.

It’s understandable that we want them to have happy endings, but that’s just not real life.

Sally Rooney writes painful, complicated, untidy lives which often hurts to read or watch.

People can’t fix each other – both Nick and Frances have mental health issues and are both bad AND good for each other.

Essentially, Frances and Nick are in love, and that’s all we need to know.

Emotions are messy, and so are relationships, and Nick and Frances are no exception.

Anybody expecting to see Frances or Bobbi or Nick or Melissa skipping into the sunset with a piña colada and a big smile on their face was watching a different show.

Alison Oliver as Frances in Conversations With Friends
Alison Oliver is absolutely brilliant as Frances in Conversations With Friends (Credit: BBC Three)

Are fans happy with the ending of CWF?

Like any good drama, viewers have been divided by the ending.

One tweeted: “Okay, so I just finished Conversations With Friends and that ending pissed me off! Oh to be young and dumb again.”

Another wrote: “I’m sorry I HATE the ending of the book and TV show it makes me irrationally angry.”

A third said: “A thing I forgot between reading Conversations With Friends years ago and this Hulu adaptation was that the ending was infuriating and I threw my copy across the room.”

“WOW, best series I’ve seen in years,” said another. “The only thing I am conflicted about is the ending.”

Another tweeted: “I just watched 12 episodes of Conversations With Friends, just to be left feeling absolutely broken with that ending.

“I need to know what happens with Nick and Frances and I need to know asap because I’m not sure I’ll ever sleep again.”

However, others agreed that the ending was befitting of the series.

One said: “I want Frances and Nick to be together.

“I dislike Bobbi completely throughout.

“I don’t care much for Mellisa either.

“Therefore I loved the ending.

“I’m imagining them finally being together forever more and everyone else just disappearing. Crying.”

Another tweeted: “The ending of is one of the most complicated messiest glorious debacles and I love it.”

Perhaps it all boils down to whether you’re Team Nick or Team Bobbi?

But, just the amount of people who have binged watched six hours of Conversations With Friends in three days speaks for itself, surely?!

Conversations With Friends is available to watch on BBC iPlayer.

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