‘The New Normal’: ‘Finding Name-O’ and ‘The Big Day’ make for a stunning season finale for Bryan and David

Colleen, Bryan, and David in "Finding Name-O."

Colleen, Bryan, and David in “Finding Name-O.”

The New Normal finishes its first season with a heartwarming two-part finale in “Finding Name-O” and “The Big Day.”

“Finding Name-O” opens with Bryan and David making wedding preparations. As someone who’s been near a stubborn and opinionated couple as they plan a wedding, I have to say that I don’t envy their wedding planner. However, when the planner advises them to make one small decision at a time, the two come to an understanding and are able to give and take with the little things – like candles and cake flavors. When David asks Bryan to invite his mother Colleen to their wedding, Bryan is reluctant, as he and his mother aren’t on the best terms.  However, David insists, and Bryan finally agrees.

They decide not to talk about their baby’s name in front of Colleen, as they want to show her how in-tune they are as a couple. This doesn’t quite happen as planned, as the three of them have dinner, during which Colleen constantly undermines Bryan and belittles his opinions and efforts. Eventually the topic of the baby’s name comes up, and she once again disregards Bryan and sides with David. This trend continues throughout the wedding planning process. It was frustrating to watch Colleen ignore her son and his feelings while taking over his wedding, as over-controlling parents are definitely something I can relate to.

In the end, they begin drawing out of a hat to make decisions for the wedding, and against all odds, David wins every single time. Bryan’s mounting frustration is clear, and it all comes to a head when he agrees to draw out of a hat to decide the baby’s name – and once again loses. He storms out, and later has a conversation with his mother. This conversation was, for me, the heart and soul of this episode. It was touching to watch Bryan and his mother work out old differences and make amends, even to the point that she delivers some pivotal advice: “Don’t worry about naming your child. When the time comes, you’ll know.”

The first part of the season finale closes with David and Bryan dancing around their room when their eyes land on an ultrasound photo of their child – the photo is labeled “Sawyer Collins,” and they instantly know that that’s the name.  I don’t know if this is how naming babies works, but in this case, it was perfect. This way, the baby takes both David’s and Bryan’s names – there’s no need to argue about whose last name the baby will have.

Bryan, David, and baby Sawyer Collins in "The Big Day."

Bryan, David, and baby Sawyer Collins in “The Big Day.”

The second episode, “The Big Day,” dives straight into Bryan and David’s wedding day. It’s clear that for all of their careful planning, their wedding is no longer quite theirs, as their mothers take over the event. However, in the end it doesn’t matter, as Goldie’s water breaks just as the ceremony begins. Despite being a bit predictable, it was exciting all the same to watch terror and elation cross the faces of nearly everyone involved – particularly Bryan and David’s.

Sawyer Collins is born without complications, and the awe and adoration on his fathers’ faces is absolutely lovely. It’s incredibly emotional and even a bit corny, but if your heart doesn’t melt during this scene, I’m not sure what to tell you.

As Bryan and David adjust to their lives with a newborn son, Goldie makes her own decisions. With words from her grandmother Jane to guide her, Goldie leans towards not remarrying ex-husband Clay and continuing life as she knows it now.

This decision is cemented with the final scene of the episode, when Shania briefly goes missing and is found on the beach. Shania tells Goldie that she loves her family – including the two of them, Rocky, Nikki, David, Bryan, and now Sawyer. As Shania says this, David and Bryan realize that this is what they want for their wedding – a simple affair with only their loved ones. As soon as David and Bryan realized this, I was thrilled – I was pleased with Sawyer’s birth, of course, but leaving the two men still unmarried seemed too much like a loose end.

The episode closes with their wedding – which goes uninterrupted this time. Everyone pitches in to help, and Father Michael marries David and Bryan, pronouncing them “a family.”

It’s a fittingly sweet end to the first season of the show, and I can’t imagine anything better. There was definitely a sense of closure, which is something I appreciate – I can’t stand when a season ends with too many unanswered questions, and the first season The New Normal certainly doesn’t.

What did you think of the series finale? Did it live up to your expectations? How do you think David and Bryan are going to deal with living with a newborn baby? Let us know in the comments below!


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