‘Dead to Me’: Everything You Need to Remember For Season 2

Netflix‘s dark comedy Dead to Me is about to return for a second season. While Season 1 is easily binge-worthy, we’ve put together a list of what you’ll need to know in preparation for the Season 2 premiere on May 8. 

So, in remembrance of all of the plot points you might have forgotten, here’s everything you need to know about Season 1 of Dead to Me starring Christina Applegate, Linda Cardellini, James Marsden, Brandon Scott, and Valerie Mahaffey. 

[Spoiler alert: If you aren’t caught up on Dead to Me, Season 1 — spoilers ahead.]

Netflix 'Dead to Me' Season 1 recap
James Marsden, Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini | Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic

What is ‘Dead to Me’ about? 

Dead to Me is a series about a mourning widow, Jen (Applegate), who meets a mysteriously peppy woman named Judy (Cardellini) at a grief support group. The two form a close friendship, despite Jen’s difficulty connecting with anyone after her husband’s untimely death. 

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Eventually, we learn Judy has more in common with Jen than their friendship, as Judy is grappling with guilt — not loss. She and her ex-husband accidentally killed Jen’s husband, Ted, in a hit-and-run accident. Judy’s remorse is what drives her to befriend Jen and kickstarts the drama that plays out in Season 1 of Dead to Me.

Ted was having an affair 

Ted was killed in a hit and run accident involving Steve (Marsden) and Judy. Don’t forget that Ted was having an affair with someone who thought he was a widow. This could mean more potential enemies who would might want Ted dead. With enough motive, someone could have pushed Ted in front of the moving car the night he died.

Additionally, it’s possible that Ted’s death wasn’t an accident at all. Dealing with the stresses of his failing marriage could have pushed Ted to suicide.

Judy suffered a series of miscarriages 

As a traumadey, Dead to Me deals with several weighty issues, including the death of a loved one, abusive relationships, and miscarriages. Judy’s character is deeply rooted in her fertility journey. She desperately wants to have a child with Steve, but he blames Judy for her inability to carry a baby to a full term as the reason they haven’t been able to have one yet. 

Steve’s inability to be kind to Judy doesn’t stop there. It becomes clear that Steve cares very little about Judy when he gaslights her into believing she is responsible for Ted’s death. “You were driving,” Steve told Judy. “You are the criminal. I’m the only eyewitness.” 

Throughout the series, Steve’s feelings for Judy are touch-and-go. He understands that he can manipulate Judy with ease, and Judy is always ready and willing to please, until she decides to tell the police about Steve’s use of the art gallery for money laundering.

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Not even a water cooler in the back?

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Steve is laundering money through his art gallery

At the beginning of the series, it’s clear that Steve has a lot of money. As Jen starts to uncover clues in the mystery that is her husband’s death, she learns that Steve owns an art gallery, TKG Arts. This is where Judy’s emotional artwork about her miscarriages is displayed, and how Jen learns the truth about Judy’s relationship with Steve.

Nick is investigating Ted’s hit-and-run 

Nick (Scott), the off-duty police detective Judy meets at a grievance retreat, has a fling with her in Season 1. He does find out that Judy is the one responsible for Ted’s death, but he gets dumped by Judy, who believes she is pregnant.

While Nick is a secondary character in Season 1, he could play a more significant role in Season 2. Nick has a sincere dislike of firearms — something he shares with Jen’s son, Charlie, when Nick discusses losing his best friend in an accident involving a gun. Could that person have been Nick? He was on a leave of duty for psychiatric reasons — but we don’t know if it was his choice or mandated by his job. 

Steve’s shooter is a mystery 

At the conclusion of Season 1, Steve is floating (presumably) dead in Jen’s pool. “I’ll just say that you don’t know that she shot him,” creator Liz Feldman told The Hollywood Reporter. Season 1 concludes without revealing who Steve’s shooter is, but there are several possibilities.

It would make sense for Jen to have shot him, considering her history of angry outbursts, possession of a gun, oh — and the motivation to do so. Remember, she knows the kind of person Steve is and that he was in the car the night Ted was killed.

It’s not likely, but Nick could have shot Steve. Working in law enforcement, he was in possession of a gun and made comments about how uncomfortable they made him. We know he was going to get rid of his — but did he? 

Jen’s eldest son Charlie (Sam McCarthy) is another possible suspect. His desire to be the man of the house puts him at the forefront of protecting his mom, who could have dropped the gun she was formerly holding during her discussion with Karen (Suzy Nakamura).

Who shot Steve? Was Ted’s death really an accident? So many questions! Now that you’re caught up with the details of Season 1, stream Season 2 of Dead to Me on Netflix May 8.