Why Laura Dern Is the Best Part of ‘Big Little Lies’

If you’ve seen a single episode of Big Little Lies, then you’ve witnessed the perfection that is Laura Dern’s portrayal of Renata Klein. She is loud, obnoxious, and most importantly, loves being rich. Renata is more than confident, and a business executive at that. It’s mesmerizing to watch her freak out and blow things out of proportion.

Renata Klein grows closer to the core friend group

Laura Dern
Laura Dern attends the season 2 premiere of “Big Little Lies” at Jazz at Lincoln Center. Nicholas Hunt/WireImage

Renata was a supporting character in season one, and is slowly making her way into the core friendship group on the show. Desperate to better her friendship with Madeline (Reese Witherspoon), Celeste (Nicole Kidman), and Jane (Shailene Woodley), it appears they’ve bonded over their mutual lie.

At the end of season one, Renata and the others, along with Bonnie (Zoe Kravitz) become closer after Celeste’s husband, Perry (Alaxander Skarsgard) is pushed down a flight of stairs while abusing Celeste. Bonnie deals the deadly push and is now distraught because of it. Renata has grown closer to her group of friends in turn.

Things change overnight for Renata in ‘Big Little Lies’ Season 2

Renata’s husband is promptly arrested for security fraud and is closing in on bankruptcy. Soon thereafter, her daughter Amabella (Ivy George) is put in the hospital after fainting in a school closet. You slowly start to see Renata unravel, and it’s pure magic.

Slowly we learn more about her back story, in that she grew up poor and vows to never go back to that place again. She will stay rich and that’s just how it’s going to be. It’s her greatest fear, and she will not go back to poverty.

Laura Dern won a Golden Globe and an Emmy for ‘Big Little Lies’ Season 1

Laura Dern
Laura Dern attends the 76th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel. Steve Granitz/WireImage

Dern was already doing big things in the first season. She won a Golden Globe and an Emmy for best supporting actress. Dern finds a way of getting to the heart of Renata, and you feel that in the way she ferociously fights for her daughter, Amabella.

Renata is determined to fight for her daughter and make sure she has the very best. Since Amabella spent much of the first season of Big Little Lies being bullied, it’s no wonder her mother is so protective.

Dern told Uproxx that she “could have no more fun than playing Renata, my god.”

Renata Klein is losing it and it’s so entertaining

Renata screams at both her daughter’s teacher and principal. “You think because of this whole bankruptcy thing that the school thinks I don’t matter?” she asked. “Please. I will be rich again. I will rise up. I will buy a…polar bear for every kid in this school. And then, I will squish you like the bug that you are.”

You could almost taste the venom coming from Renata, and it’s so entertaining to watch it all unfold. She’s lashing out at anyone and everyone because it feels like the end of the world to her.

Renata will do anything for her daughter Amabella

Ivy George
US actress Ivy George attends HBO’s “Big Little Lies” Season 2 premiere at Jazz at Lincoln Center. Angela Weiss / AFP / Getty Images

If you’ve watched even a single episode of Big Little Lies, then you’ve witnessed the way Renata cares fiercely for her daughter Amabella. She’ll do absolutely anything and take on anyone for the love she has for her. You can feel that within a single scene between them or when she talks about her daughter.

Though she is selfish deep down to her core, Renata’s over exaggerated worldview has damaged her daughter. Amabella suffers an anxiety attack when she learns of the issues of sustainability and climate change. She is clearly dealing with some underlying issues because of her mother. She knows something is going on with her but can not do anything to help her.