Little Fires Everywhere wants to do so much. It’s Ostensibly about race and class and privilege. And motherhood, and work. Choices and lack thereof. Acceptance and lack thereof. It’s about sexuality and secrets. It’s about who’s to blame. It’s about the monsters we try to hide under our skin.
WHO STARTS THE FIRE
IN THE SHOW: It’s the Richardson kids. In the season finale moments, Izzy the youngest of the Richardson siblings is broken after learning Mia and Pearl are moving out of the town. Mia, a rule-breaking artist, had become a mentor and mother figure to Izzy, who felt like an outcast in her own mother’s district, rule-abiding, and idealistic household, Losing Mia, on top of her mother’s resentment and the bullying she endures at school, pushes Izzy to her limits.
Desperate to start a new, she takes a can of gasoline and plans to set her room and her house on fire, but her siblings stop her before she can do so. The confrontation escalates into a screaming match between Izzy and her mother, Elena who ultimately admits, “Do you think I wanted a daughter like you? I never wanted you in the first place.” Izzy then decides to run away.
IN THE BOOK: Izzy starts it all. Like she is in the show, Izzy is dejected after learning that Mia and Pearl have left and that her family is to blame. One night, she dumps a can of gasoline onto her sister Lexie’s bed (Lexie is staying at a friend’s house), strikes a match. lets the house burn, and tun away.
WHERE DO MIA AND PEARL GO?
Mia’s childhood home. After Elena’s tense visit, Mia tells Pearl the truth about her birth father and mother, and Mia’s late brother. They pack up their things and leave. Per Pearl’s suggestion, Mia drives to her parents’ house, where she grew up.
WHERE DOES IZZY GO?
It’s unclear, after her explosive face-off with her mother, she leaves in the night. She dreams that while hitchhiking, Mia nad Pearl finds her and pick her up, but she wakes up in a nondescript bus. Showrunners Liz Tigleaar considered the idea that at age 15, it’s likely returning home to her family after a few days.