What Happened To Mabel From The Underground Railroad?

While Cora avoided the snake, her mother wasn’t so lucky. Just as Mabel realizes that she’s in the swamp and is about to go back for her daughter, she is bitten by the venomous snake. Mabel dies in the swamp, never to be found by anyone. Even Ridgeway doesn’t find her, which leads to everyone believing Mabel got away.

Did Mabel use the Underground Railroad to escape?

  • The punchline comes in the final episode of the series: Mabel did not use the Underground Railroad to escape. She didn’t even run away, not really.

Did coras mom die?

At the end of the novel, it is revealed that Mabel did in fact say her own kind of goodbye to Cora, and also that not long after fleeing the plantation, she decided to come back for Cora. However, she only made it a few miles before dying from a snake bite.

What happened to Polly and the Twins in Underground Railroad?

Jenkins’ show gives Mabel’s friend Polly a bigger role in Mabel’s flight. In the book, Polly dies by suicide after her baby is stillborn.

What happened to Polly and the babies in Underground Railroad?

Mabel does her best in the role as a midwife, helping Polly with the birth and then, later, assisting Polly as best she can as Polly is forced to breastfeed two infants from another plantation. The men of the plantation don’t accept the trauma Polly faces, and in a tragic ending, Polly kills the children and herself.

Why did Cora’s mother leave her?

Her hopelessness had gotten to her, but she felt that having left just for that little while, and having gone as far as she did, was enough to feel free for now. She intended to let Cora know there was something past what she knew, and that she could have it for herself some day.

What happened to Grace on the Underground Railroad?

In the book, Cora is alone up there for seven months. In the show, she has a younger runaway slave named Grace to “guide” her. She doesn’t appear in the book and for three whole episodes of The Underground Railroad, we are led believe she died in the flames that consumed the Wells house.

How did Cora get away from Ridgeway?

Ridgeway took Cora’s escape from the Randall plantation personally. Her mother, Mabel, had been the only slave to get away, and he wanted to make sure that didn’t happen with Cora. It turned out that Mabel met a sad fate in her unintended (without Cora, anyway) escape.

Why did Cora plant the okra?

Cora comes out of the underground railroad network. She plants her mother’s okra seeds, as a gesture of moving on with her life now.

Will there be underground railroad Season 2?

The Underground Railroad Season 2 won’t come in 2021 Whether the series is renewed or not, we’ve got some bad news when it comes to the release date. The Underground Railroad Season 2 won’t come in 2021.

Why did Moses get whipped when Polly died?

But even Moses is brought to his knees by what ensues: Polly kills the babies, then herself. Moses is whipped to death for this loss on the masters’ investment; Mabel is forced to scrub the blood from the cabin where the deaths occurred. Suddenly she can take no more.

What happens to Cora at the end of the Underground Railroad?

Inside of the tunnel, Cora faces an injured Ridgeway, overwhelmed by the weight of her past and her mother’s legacy. There, she shoots him three times, severing their cursed tie forever before heading back to Valentine Farm to see if anyone survived the massacre.

Mabel’s Powerful Story on ‘The Underground Railroad’ Is a Haunting Lesson

Works CitedHistoryCivil WarCivil Rights Movement


Mabel is Ajarry’s daughter, as well as Cora’s grandmother. After a brief romance with Grayson when she is 14, she becomes pregnant with Cora as a result of the relationship. Mabel, on the other hand, never mentions Grayson’s name again until he passes away from a fever before Cora is born. Mabel spends her whole life on Randall until one day fleeing, leaving Cora behind in the wake of her escape. Angry with her mother for what she considers to be her selfishness, Cora is enraged that Mabel failed to say goodbye to her.

She, on the other hand, barely made it a few kilometers before succumbing to a snake bite.

Mabel Quotes inThe Underground Railroad

Unless otherwise noted, all of the Underground Railroad statements listed below were either said by or allude to Mabel. You may view the various personalities and topics that are associated with each quotation by clicking on their names (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:). Please keep in mind that all page numbers and reference information for the quotes in this section apply to the Doubleday version of The Underground Railroad released in 2016. Once Mabel had left, Cora tried to think as little as possible about her.

  1. She despised her.
  2. It’s a kid.
  3. If she could pick cotton, she’d be able to get away.
  4. She had finally asked him why he had taken her with him on the train, in the deathless tunnel, and he had finally responded.
  5. Page number and citation information: 98 What Is the Explanation and the Analysis?

Mabel Character Timeline inThe Underground Railroad

In the following timeline, you can see where the character Mabel occurs in The Underground Railroad. That the children are not auctioned off is shown by the colorful dots and symbols, which indicate which themes are related with that appearance. Mother Mabel, Cora’s mother, is the lone survivor of the ordeal. Eventually, while standing in the cotton fields, Ajarry succumbs to a cerebral bleed and passes away. It has an eerie air about it. Similarly, enslaved individuals battle for tiny areas of land to call their own in the same way that free people do.

  • (See the complete context.) Connelly advised her to “choose a spouse,” two years after she was raped and six years after Mabelran was taken away.
  • of the plantation (for the entire background).
  • Mabel never left the confines of Randall until the day she vanished, never to be seen or heard from again.
  • In the aftermath of Mabel’s abduction, Ridgeway, a “infamous slave hunter,” paid a visit to Randall with the help of an acquaintance who was wearing a necklace.
  • After running away for the first time since Mabel, he makes it 26 miles before being apprehended and placed in an iron cage to his family.
  • Mabel is a mystery, and Cora is upset and resentful that she went without even a goodbye kiss on the cheek.
  • Ridgeway has been haunted by his inability to apprehend Mabel for years, and the opportunity to track down Cora fills him with purpose.

Even with an elderly gentleman in Cora’s class who “sputtered and coughed” his way through the lecture (full context).

The woman lives in a nice house with her husband and two children, one a boy and one a girl.

(See the complete context.) It was also established that Fletcher existed.

She makes an attempt to inquire about Jasper’s personal life.

The man continues to speak through the doorway, telling her that he knows Mabel must be up in Canada laughing at him and that he views this as a sign of affection from the woman.

No matter how much Cora despises her mother, she continues to seek everyone for help.

By this time, she has told Royal everything she knows about Randall, Ajarry, Mabel, Blake, and the doghouse, as well as the night she was raped in the doghouse.

(complete context)When Mabel was expecting Cora, she would express her regret to the unborn child for bringing her into the world.

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A free LitCharts account is required to make notes and highlight passages. Using your account, you may see all of your notes and highlights in one convenient location.

The Underground Railroad Finale Recap: Mabel’s Fate (and Cora’s Hopeful Future) Revealed — Grade the Series

On The Underground Railroad, motherhood in all of its manifestations is a key issue. Cora spends the entirety of Amazon Prime’s limited series either suffering about her mother Mabel’s departure or seeking and offering the maternal love she lacked as a child, much as she did in Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. If Cora is not engaged in her struggle for self-emancipation, this is the case. This topic, as well as Mabel’s ultimate destiny, are further addressed in the conclusion of Barry Jenkins’ adaptation, which is currently streaming on Netflix.

  1. The tale is taken a step further, however, by Jenkins, who transforms Mabel into an overworked midwife, further fleshing out her reasons.
  2. Despite the fact that Mabel is concerned about Polly’s mental health, Moses, her husband, and Connelly, the plantation’s overseer, encourage Polly to keep the plantation running by nursing a pair of twin twins whose mother died before childbirth.
  3. But then Polly begins to refer to the infants as her own, prompting Mabel to warn Moses and Connelly that Polly is not in a stable mental state.
  4. Polly murders the infants and then commits suicide as a result of her actions.
  5. In recognition of slavery as a terrible tradition, Connelly punishes Moses and holds him responsible for Polly and the infants’ deaths.
  6. When Mabel becomes overwhelmed by the unnecessary loss of life and the injustice that has been heaped upon Moses’ shoulders, she loses her cool and just walks off the estate.
  7. Mabel eventually leaves.

However, Mabel is too late to realize what has happened, and a venomous snake strikes her, taking her life.

Instead, Cora is portrayed as a child, sitting on the porch, waiting for a mother who would never come back to her.

Despite the fact that Jenkins fills in the gaps left by Whitehead, Mabel experiences the same awful destiny as before, and poor Cora never receives the closure that only facts can offer.

Despite the sorrow of not knowing what happened to Mabel, Cora is given a ray of hope when she adopts Molly, who has recently become orphaned due to a car accident.

By the conclusion of the episode, Cora and Molly are looking for a fresh start and decide to hitch a ride with a Black guy who is driving a covered wagon west.

The song “How I Got Over,” performed by Mahalia Jackson, then plays over the end credits, tying the entire tale together from beginning to conclusion. Please rate The Underground Railroadfinale and the limited series in our poll, and then share your opinions in the comments section beneath it.

The Underground Railroad Finale Recap: Coursing All Through You

Photograph courtesy of Atsushi Nishijima/Amazon Studios Following the events of the last episode, as well as the death of Ridgeway, this episode feels more like an epilogue than a finale. The majority of “Chapter 10: Mabel” is, of course, devoted to Cora’s mother, Mabel, and her life and times (a heartbreaking performance from Sheila Atim). Due to either seeing her in flashbacks or hearing about her via Ridgeway’s hatred or Cora’s rage, we haven’t had the opportunity to get to know Mabel well enough.

  1. Even still, it’s difficult to spend 36 minutes back on the Randall farm, especially when the plot is as depressing as it is.
  2. While it’s interesting to learn more about Mabel, the episode’s last chapter is a little punitive (but not completely hopeless).
  3. The plot revolves on Mabel’s friend Polly (Abigail Achiri), who is dealing with the aftermath of a stillbirth, as it does around what would lead Mabel to abandon her baby.
  4. While acting in the role of midwife, Mabel assists Polly with the birth of her child and subsequently assists Polly as best she can when Polly is forced to breastfeed two infants from another plantation, a duty that Mabel excels at.
  5. Polly’s husband, Moses, gets whipped as a punishment, and Mabel is tasked with cleaning up the blood that has accumulated in the cabin.
  6. A superbly played and staged sequence depicts Mabel walking through the woodland, with the camera following her from the side, rather than sprinting.
  7. After arriving at a swamp—the same swamp that Cora and Caesar were in when Cora witnessed the snake grab a frog—Mabel wades into the water, the camera following her every step of the way.
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“Cora!” she exclaims with a gasp.

She can’t, however, leave her alone in such place.

As she begins to regain her composure, a snake rushes out and bites her.

After all, we now know the truth: Mabel never left the house.

Cora had no way of knowing that her body had been rotting in that marsh for all of this time.

In a stunning piece of photography and editing, the camera descends underwater from the Randall marsh, where the darkness of the deep transforms into the darkness of an underground tube, as shown in the trailer.

Molly takes a bag from her sock and says, “I found it when the battle was taking place.” It’s Cora’s okra seeds you’re looking at.

Cora digs a little hole for the seeds with the help of a rock.

Even without any conversation, it’s a lovely scene, but one that seems a little hesitant after the horror of the previous episode and the murder of Mabel.

She has the opportunity to put all of this behind her and blossom into something new.

Cora pulls Molly closer to her in order to protect her as the two cautiously approach the man.

“Most of the time,” he admits after some thought.

Louis, where he’ll “catch a trail” and eventually arrive in California.

Cora responds by identifying herself as “Cora,” without specifying which aspect of this voyage she finds enjoyable.

The final image depicts Cora with a blanket wrapped over her and her arms wrapped around Molly in a circular motion.

I believe that the Mabel piece might have functioned as a standalone narrative, similar to “Chapter 7: Fanny Briggs,” if it had been placed someplace else in the sequence.

The brutality is visceral, yet it’s a little (maybe purposefully) dissatisfying at the same time.

It hasn’t escaped my notice that Cora and Okra are anagrams of one another!

In my opinion, the show should be divided into three arcs and an epilogue, which should be watched in batches and on one’s own schedule: Eps 1-3 (Cora’s first arc on the Railroad); Eps 4-6 (Ridgeway-focused arc); Eps 7-9 (Valentine Farm, and Grace); and an epilogue (Episode 10).

Even after spending so much time with the series, I believe that the book is well worth your time to read.

I believe that the book and series are complementary in unique ways, and it is fascinating to watch how two different persons approach the same narrative through various mediums.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read and include these summaries into your The Underground Railroadjourney!

The following is a quote from Mabel’s book, which I’ll leave you with: “The world may be cruel, but people don’t have to be, not if they refuse.” Take precautions! Underground Railroad (also known as the Underground Railroad System) In the Finale, we will be running all through you.

On Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad : Coles’s On Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad Chapter 11 Summary & Analysis

Brief Synopsis of MabelSummaryChapter 11 takes us back to the night Mabel managed to escape from the Randall farm. Then she walked away, leaving Cora behind with an apology to the sleeping girl and a bundle of veggies she had dug up from her backyard. She recalled how Moses, one of the slave bosses, had been raping her and threatening to rape Cora if she didn’t comply with his advances. The woman pondered what would have happened if Grayson, Cora’s father, had lived for a few more weeks after Cora’s conception instead of a few weeks after Cora’s conception.

  1. Mabel took a break in a marsh after a long day of jogging.
  2. She suddenly realized that she’d had enough of independence for the time being and that she needed to return to the plantation to be with her mother, Cora.
  3. She hadn’t traveled very far before she was bitten by a cottonmouth snake.
  4. She had given up hope of making it back to the plantation when she laid down on a patch of moss and muttered, “Here,” before disappearing into the swamp behind her.
  5. Because of Mabel, Terrance Randall takes Cora’s absence much more personally, and Ridgeway is significantly more driven to track out Cora as a result of Mabel’s disappearance.
  6. Despite this, the legacy that Mabel leaves behind is based on incorrect assumptions about the world.
  7. Mabel’s independence, on the other hand, was just for a few brief hours.

Certainly, Caesar would not have considered her a fortunate sign.

In addition, if Cora had known that Mabel was attempting to reunite with her, she would not have felt so abandoned and frustrated by her mother’s legacy.

Because of the circumstances surrounding her death, no one other than Mabel herself will ever be able to determine what exactly occurred to her before she died.

As a result, it is not the real Mabel who has the most influence, but the imagined Mabel who does.

On the contrary, when she got as far away from the Randall plantation as she possibly could, she got a sense of true independence for the first time.

In that sense, she passed away as a free woman.

Mabel’s chapter also gives a chance to consider what it is about a corrupting system that causes people to become corrupt.

Moses, she recalls, had a variety of trials during his time as a slave, yet none of these turned him into a “mean” person.

As a result, Mabel believes that humans are not innately wicked; rather, they become evil when they become entangled in evil institutions. “Men start off wonderful,” she observes, “but then the environment turns them into terrible people.”

In ‘The Underground Railroad,’ Sheila Atim’s Mabel Is a Unifying Figure

The character Mabel is something of a ghost throughout the course of Barry Jenkins and Colson Whitehead’s new Amazon Prime seriesThe Underground Railroad, which premiered on May 14 and has already garnered critical acclaim as a viable candidate for the best drama series Oscar this year. As Cora’s mother, she bears witness to her daughter’s trek through the United States as a fugitive slave attempting to remain free, as told in 10 heartbreaking episodes of the television series Cora. However, although if Mabel’s narrative isn’t presented in its entirety until the last episode, she is still very much present: her persistence is frequently mentioned, and her role as the midwife on the Randall Plantation is intricately intertwined into the plot.

  • In the role of Mabel, Sheila Atim portrays her.
  • She phoned me from Kampala, Uganda’s capital city, where she was visiting relatives and working on an as-yet-undisclosed project when she first connected with me via Zoom videoconferencing.
  • “What I love about the subject of American slavery is that it has so many different stories,” she remarked.
  • Each individual has come from a different area—they may have ended up in the same spot, but their tales are very distinct.” In the limited series’ separate episodes, which are each themed and have their own moods and topics, these varied storylines are depicted in visually breathtaking way.
  • “Being able to devote the necessary time and attention to the entirety of that tale and those people was critical.” Atim talks about the concept of trauma porn, Mabel’s place as a pivotal character, and her experience filming in Georgia in the following interview.
  • Is it accurate to say that you approached Mabel in the same way you approached your source material when you first met her?
  • I didn’t do a lot of research; instead, I looked into midwifery, read the book, and some of the other materials that Barry had brought over to help me out.
  • He informed me that he simply wants to understand what it is like to be a mother in that position, and particularly what it is like to be Mabel, as opposed to being a slave.
  • Moreover, what exactly are these core human aspects?
  • As a midwife, she bears a great deal of responsibility.

Mabel could be thinking, “If I can do it in the greatest manner possible, and in a way that causes the least amount of damage and pain, then that’s OK with me.” However, it does not take away the reality that you are still assisting with the delivery of kids while also being aware that they will not be receiving the care, love, and nurturing atmosphere that they should be receiving.

  1. They were in charge of bringing in human property, and hence money, to the plantation and keeping it there.
  2. On the plantation, there is a general understanding that Mabel is a unifying force, even if others are reluctant to accept it.
  3. Others on the plantation, on the other hand, do not overtly grant her that status; she simply accepts it as part of the load.
  4. The war, the interior human struggle, is epitomized in her, and she represents a microcosmic form of transatlantic slavery and race-based tyranny in general.
  5. Misan Harriman captured this image.

The experience of race-based oppression anywhere in the world will tell you that you will frequently find yourself in situations where you know it is not the ideal, but you feel a sense of responsibility—whether it is to try and keep the atmosphere convivial for everyone to just get on with it, or whether you are one of the only people who are not white in that situation.

  1. People are always needing to bargain for better terms in their lives.
  2. I’m interested in hearing about your filmmaking experiences in Georgia.
  3. Yes, that was the case.
  4. The previous year, I appeared in a Tempest production in Brooklyn, but it was with a U.K.
  5. It was fascinating for me to be at a location with such historical value, as well as to be filming in the location where the tale takes place, because it doesn’t happen very often in filming.
  6. Mabel instructs a slave named Polly, who has recently miscarried, on how to care for the newborn twins of another slave in the final episode of the series, which is a touching and memorable sequence.
  7. How did you deal with the emotions that were there during the filming of this specific scene?

In addition, her milk is starting to come through.

Mabel’s central theme is that she is attempting to behave as a human glue, holding all that is fragile around her and inside her together.

Mabel had to maintain a certain level of detachment from the stakes of the situation, else it would be too much for her.

However, I do not believe that The Underground Railroad is trauma porn.

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People are correct in stating that there are correct and incorrect ways of going about doing this type of thing.

This is undoubtedly one of the topics Barry wished to address in the piece—to take us beyond the harshness of the situation and show us that these slaves were human beings, just like us, but living in a different historical period.

The question of how much of the truth of the atrocity should be explored in a way that is both responsible and really benefits the play is a delicate one to find a happy medium.

The gravity of the issue is not brushed over in this film.

In addition, it has a humanizing effect, which is one of the things that distinguishes what Barry and Colson have accomplished.

Because the globe is still living in the aftermath of those events, it appears to be a narrative he felt was vital to convey.

In recognition of your achievements to the arts, you were awarded the title of Member of the Order of the British Empire in December 2019.

What was it like to be experiencing such contradictory emotions?

What’s the harm in trying?

However, there is a part of me that is pleased to be Black British, and this is the part that I feel most comfortable with.

However, I entirely understand and appreciate the decision of those who chose not to accept them, since it is always a personal decision.

In order to attempt to serve as a gatekeeper and effect change, I want it to be something that I actively utilize.

It’s one of my long-term goals.

It’s usually one of those strange situations where you can’t exactly tell what’s going on in the moment, and you just realize it afterwards when you look back and realize, “Oh, that’s the exact time when it happened.” However, it is unquestionably a duty that I feel strongly about.

The Underground Railroad Chapter 11: Mabel Summary and Analysis

The character Mabel is something of a ghost throughout the course of Barry Jenkins and Colson Whitehead’s new Amazon Prime seriesThe Underground Railroad, which premiered on May 14 and has already received critical acclaim as a genuine awards season candidate. As Cora’s mother, she bears witness to her daughter’s trek through the United States as a runaway slave attempting to remain free, as told in 10 heartbreaking episodes of the television series The Help. However, although if Mabel’s tale isn’t presented in its entirety until the last episode, she is still very much present: her persistence is frequently mentioned, and her role as the midwife on the Randall Plantation is intricately intertwined into the narrative.

  1. In the role of Mabel, Sheila Atim portrays her.
  2. She phoned me from Kampala, Uganda’s capital city, where she was visiting relatives and working on an as-yet-undisclosed project when she first connected with me over Zoom video chat.
  3. As she put it, “the history of American slavery is complicated because it contains so many stories.” ‘It isn’t just a standard sequence of events,’ says the author.
  4. The diverse scenarios are depicted in magnificent form on the limited series, which is divided into episodes that each have their own moods and themes to explore in depth.
  5. To be able to devote the necessary time and attention to the entirety of that narrative and those characters was essential.
  6. Barry Jenkins revealed that he drew inspiration for The Underground Railroad from films such as The Master and There Will Be Blood, and that he avoided other films or television series that dealt with slavery.
  7. I had something to say that was more immediately tied to Mabel and her experience.

But I tried to make it lighthearted; I wanted to uncover the person underlying it all, which was something Barry was also extremely interested in.

Despite the fact that she is one, we attempted to get to the heart of her character’s humanity.

In Mabel’s story, she is a lady who is attempting to make the most of a really difficult and unnatural circumstance.

Knowing that you’re actively assisting in the creation of life in another universe is a very contradictory experience.

The reality remains, however, that you are still assisting in the delivery of these infants while being aware that they will not receive the care, love, and nurturing atmosphere that they should be receiving.

On the plantation, they were responsible for bringing in human property and, consequently, money.

Many people on the plantation see that Mabel is a unifying force, even if they are unwilling to confess it out loud.

Other plantation workers, on the other hand, do not openly grant her that position; instead, she simply accepts it as part of the responsibility.

A microcosmic form of transatlantic slavery and race-based oppression in general, she exemplifies that war, the interior human struggle.

Misan Harriman took this photograph.

One of the things that anyone who has experienced race-based oppression anywhere in the world can tell you is that you frequently find yourself in situations where you know it’s not ideal, but you feel a sense of responsibility—whether it’s to try and keep the atmosphere convivial for everyone to just get on with it, or perhaps you’re one of the only people who is not white in that situation.

  1. People are constantly forced to bargain for their own survival.
  2. It piques my interest to hear about your filmmaking experiences in Georgia.
  3. It was, in fact, the situation.
  4. Previously, I’d performed in an adaptation of The Tempest in Brooklyn, but it was with a British production company; this was the first time I’d appeared on a movie project as an American among an all-American ensemble.
  5. The tremors in the ground were palpable to my ears.
  6. In the first, it appears to be a violation; yet, in the moment, it turns out to be quite delicate.
  7. Because Mabel understands that Polly is going through a difficult time right now, especially after having recently lost her own kid, the situation is exactly as complicated as you found it.

Because Polly’s husband Moses is also there, the entire moment is fraught with tension as he deals with his own feelings of betrayal and anguish about the circumstances surrounding his wife.

In my experience, it’s always been about negotiating that and recognizing the volatility of it—knowing that even the most intimate moments can’t be indulged in excessively because grief or catastrophe may be around the corner.

There are times when it is quite difficult to watch the show, particularly during the flogging sequences or when individuals are being burnt at the stake.

What do you think of this statement?

I absolutely agree with this assertion.

The importance of this is especially vital when writing stories about things that are filled with genuine, visceral violence, since this may sometimes take over and dominate all we see, think about, and remember.

It is also because of the book that the program does not feature trauma porn.

However, it is not demonstrating what we already know; instead, it is demonstrating things from a different perspective.

Due of the lack of a sense that it is for titillation, it does not have the sensation of being trauma porn or anything like.

And he was right to think so.

You’ve said that receiving an MBE as a Ugandan, or as a citizen of any country that was formerly conquered by the British Empire, is a difficult process.

After being honored, it’s a pretty amusing experience because you suddenly receive a letter in the mail asking whether you’d want to accept the accolade.


The bloodshed that the British empire inflicted on so much of the world is something that I do not support.

That celebration, which I believe was well-deserved, piqued my interest, and I considered taking part in it.

It’s something that I’ve been interested in doing for a while.

The way things are going, it looks that both you and Mabel are gatekeepers in your own right.

At this point, I am unsure if I have arrived or not.

It’s usually one of those strange situations where you can’t exactly tell what’s going on in the moment, and you just realize it afterwards when you look back and realize, “Oh, that’s when it happened.” Nonetheless, it is a duty that I take very seriously and one I feel really strongly about.


Chapter 11, the novel’s final and possibly most crucial interlude, concludes the narrative of Cora’s mother, Mabel, and her relationship with her. Cora’s rage and animosity toward her mother are misplaced, as it turns out: Mabel died as a result of a snake bite while attempting to return to her daughter. The narrative of Cora’s father, Grayson, is also told to the audience. It turns out that Cora was born as a result of a love union between Mabel and Grayson, a fact about Cora’s beginnings that is mentioned in passing in the closing pages of Cora’s narrative.

  • Throughout the narrative, readers are made to assume that Mabel was successful in her escape and eventually reached safety.
  • Indeed, Ridgeway cites Mabel as the ultimate example of a slave who managed to elude capture, and she serves as the inspiration for his tenacious pursuit of Cora.
  • She died alone in the swamp, still in the transitional space between the plantation and the rest of the world, on a voyage back to servitude, still trapped in the liminal zone between slavery and freedom.
  • What’s more, this chapter effectively cut the novel-length chord that connects Cora’s tale to Mabel’s story.
  • Mabel lies down on her back and takes in her surroundings, which is the swamp, during a brief period of rest during her escape.
  • Some part of her relinquishes control.
  • According to the narrator, this is what freedom is all about: resting when one is tired, enjoying the fruits of one’s own labor, and being at one with one’s surroundings.

‘The Underground Railroad’ Episode 10 Recap: Into the West

At the end of the day, there isn’t much to it. No, not at all. One issue is that Cora’s mother, Mabel (Sheila Atim), was never able to flee. Legend has it that the only enslaved person who managed to escape the hands of slave-catcher Arnold Ridgeway was a man named John Smith. But this is only a legend. In the marsh near the plantation where she was held in bondage, she was bitten by a snake only minutes after discovering she’d fled away in panic and chose to turn around to reconcile with her daughter.

What was it that made her leave?

Because of her masters’ unfathomable cruelty, Polly (Abigail Achiri), a grieving mother who has lost her stillborn child, is forced to work as a wet nurse for another woman’s twin babies, who have been stolen from their own grieving father at a nearby plantation after their mother died during childbirth.

  • What happens next, however, causes even Moses to fall to his knees: Polly murders the infants and then herself.
  • Suddenly, she is unable to take any more.
  • Her effort to return to the plantation, and therefore to her daughter, is cut short by a snake.
  • And what of Cora, who is now an adult, and Molly (Kylee D.
  • They pump the handcart through the “Ghost Tunnel” of the Underground Railroad until they reach the end of the route, where they discover an abandoned farm.
  • She walks up to the first wagon that passes by, which is pulled by a pleasant Black guy named Ollie, and asks him for directions.
  • Louis, where he plans to meet some folks, and then it’s on to California and the West Coast: “That’s what’s greatest,” he adds in a rhyming tone.
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Cora and Polly clamber onto the back of the man’s wagon, where they huddle together under a blanket for warmth.

It’s finally over.

Cora is moved from one location to another by the Railroad and its offshoots on a number of occasions, yes.

Since Cora’s tale was published, we have learned that there is no safe haven from the horrors of American racism—not in St.

People like Cora and Polly then, and everyone active in the struggle against what the late, unlamented Arnold Ridgeway described to as “The American Imperative” now, hold out hope for a brighter future in the uncertain hopes of people.

“Most of the time, yeah,” he admits, before adding, “Of course, like everybody else, I have my moments of doubt.” Of course, of course—he says it again and again to emphasize the point that no one can be their ideal selves all of the time, at least not in this world.

You may give it a go.

Collins (@theseantcollins) is a television writer who has written for Rolling Stone, Vulture, The New York Times, and pretty much anywhere else that will have him.

His home is on Long Island, where he lives with his family. On Amazon Prime, you may watch the tenth episode of The Underground Railroad.

The Underground Railroad episode 10 recap – the ending explained

Summary “Chapter 10: Mabel” brings The Underground Railroad to a close in a typically tragic manner, bringing an outstanding series to a close on a note of welcome optimism. Spoilers and a candid discussion of The Underground Railroad’s conclusion are included in this review of episode 10, “Chapter 10: Mabel.” Given that the series’ penultimate episode was one of the best ever captured on film, it was almost unthinkable for The Underground Railroadnot not have an anticlimactic conclusion. “Chapter 10: Mabel,” on the other hand, is astute in that it does not attempt to compete with it in terms of stakes and scale.

  • It’s no wonder that The Underground Railroadepisode 10 is so heavily focused on delivery and parenting, given that Mabel is the main character.
  • The role of men, some of whom are fathers and others who are not, can quickly become oppressive and violating, upsetting a delicate balance that should lean more toward the feminine side of things.
  • Throughout the course of “Chapter 10: Mabel,” the title character comes to represent the very concept of motherhood.
  • Protectiveness is so closely associated with parenting that her loss of Mabel was also accompanied by the removal of a protective barrier between herself and the harsh reality of enslaved life.
  • This is the way Mabel is consistently framed.
  • Nobody believes her when she says she knows better.
  • She comes to believe that she is directly responsible for the horrors that are occurring around her, which causes her to go into a state of near-delirium.

There are times when everything is so noisy and confusing that you nearly miss the fact that she has been bitten, or what it could imply for her.

The shocking surprise of The Underground Railroad’s conclusion is that she didn’t do it after all.

She was never able to flee.

Many of the episode’s later segments are almost completely devoid of context, one in particular depicting her burying the okra from her bag.

The tale discovers in her a persistent, generational spirit, a will not only to live but also to safeguard the survival of others.

In order to survive. It is only natural for her and Molly to put their trust in a man who assures them that he has no ill intentions toward them. They decide to travel west together. And they manage to survive as a group.

The Underground Railroad Mabel Summary

MabeltellsCora She expresses regret for the night the daughter was born, as well as for the night she had to abandon her in order to flee the Randall farm in the first place. As she makes her way across the marsh, Mabel is reminded of the folks she left behind. Moses was one of the few newborns to survive during a time when the majority of slave children did not survive. When Connelly promoted him to the position of boss, he turned harsh. Mabel first fought, but when he threatened her kid, she relented and allowed him to rape her again.

In the aftermath of giving birth to a stillborn child, Polly committed herself by hanging herself.

Mabel eventually finds herself in a marsh and feels liberated.

She is bitten by a snake when she is returning home from the store.


MabeltellsCora For the night she gave birth to her daughter and for the night she had to leave her to flee from the Randall plantation, she expresses regret and regrets both. As she makes her way through the marsh, Mabel is reminded of the folks she left in the city behind her. Moses was one of the rare newborns who survived during a time when the majority of slave children did not live. As soon as Connelly promoted him to supervisor, he turned harsh. She first protested him but when he threatened her kid, she gave in and allowed him to continue the abuse.

Polly committed herself after giving birth to a stillborn child.

In a marsh, Mabel has her first true freedom.

She is bitten by a snake as she returns home.

The Biggest Differences Between The Underground Railroad and the Book It’s Based On

Slate provided the photo illustration. Kyle Kaplan/Amazon Studios provided the image. The Underground Railroad, a Barry Jenkins’ adaptation of the 2016 novel by Colson Whitehead, will be available on Amazon Prime Video on Friday, according to the company. Abolitionist author Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award–winning novel follows Cora, a former enslaved woman who flees from a plantation in Georgia and makes her way north using an actual underground railroad system complete with underground tunnels and locomotives, as well as stations and conductors.

The actual railroad isn’t the only thing that contributes to Whitehead’s novel’s ability to take a skewed view of United States history.

In South Carolina, white folks who are committed to “uplift” coexist among liberated people while harboring heinous hidden motivations.

Hoosier free Black people dwell in enclaves around Indiana, where they live in an uncomfortable state of reconciliation with their white neighbors.

The following are some of the most significant changes between the book and the program. As you can anticipate, there will be spoilers below.

Caesar and Royal

Despite a few possibilities for love, Cora manages to stay out of romantic relationships in the story. Her experience of being (she believes) abandoned by her mother, as well as her general sense of captivity, appears to have left her unwilling to pursue romantic relationships. In the novel, Caesar, who begs Cora to accompany him on his voyage away from the plantation, thus beginning her adventure, is portrayed as a brother and comrade rather than as a lover. Cora’s roommates in the South Carolina dormitory taunt her about him, but he ends up with another lady instead of teasing her about him.

  1. While Cora is fleeing South Carolina when Ridgeway, the slave catcher, captures her and sends her back on the run, she is concerned about Caesar’s chance of arrest, reasoning that if she had “made him her lover,” they would at the very least be captured together.
  2. She had strayed from the road of life at some point in the past and was unable to find her way back to the family of people.” In the second episode of the sitcom, Cora falls in love with Caesar, who is played by Aaron Pierre.
  3. He approaches her and asks her to be his wife; she doesn’t say no.
  4. Besides Ridgeway, Cora has another love interest on the program in Royal, a freeborn man and railroad conductor who saves her from the latter and transports her to the Valentine winery in Indiana, where a group of free Black people live in community.
  5. When he passes away, they are the memories she will hold onto, along with her recollections of Caesar on the dance floor with her friends.

Grace and Molly

Both the novel and the program are examinations of the maternal instinct, as well as the ways in which enslavers play on and frustrate that impulse, in order to control and harm their victims. Cora herself falls prey to this dynamic early in the novel, when she instinctively saves Chester, an enslaved youngster she’s been caring for, from a beating by the plantation’s owner, who is also a victim of the dynamic. He hits both her and Chester as reprisal, punishing both the protector and those who have been protected.

The first, Fanny (who does not appear in the novel), is a character who lives in the attic crawl space where Cora hides during the episode that takes place in North Carolina.

The second, Molly, is the daughter of Sybil, with whom Cora shares a cabin when she stays at the Valentine winery with her mother.

Molly, on the other hand, is a sign of optimism for the future in the episode, as she flees the burning Valentine town with Cora, accompanying her into the tunnels and running west. Her relationship with Cora is the only one that isn’t severable due to white meddling.


Jenkins’ adaptation makes a significant change to the narrative of slave catcher Arnold Ridgeway, who is played on the show by Joel Edgerton. A blacksmith is meant to follow in his father’s shoes, but Ridgeway isn’t sure he wants to do it: “He couldn’t turn to the anvil since there was no way he could outshine his father’s brilliance,” the story says. After becoming a patroller at the age of 14 and performing duties such as stopping Black people for passes, raiding “slave villages,” and bringing any Black person who is “wayward” to jail after being flogged, his father is dissatisfied with his son’s performance because he has previously fought with the head patroller.

When Ridgeway’s father appears on the program, Jenkins adds to the character’s past by portraying him as one of the show’s only morally upright white males.

As a result, Ridgeway’s decision to go into slave-catching, which in the novel is portrayed as inevitable, becomes a personal revolt against his father’s ethical worldview.


Jenkins’ interpretation makes a significant change to the narrative of slave catcher Arnold Ridgeway, who is played by Joel Edgerton in the series. A blacksmith is meant to follow in his father’s shoes, but Ridgeway isn’t sure he wants to do it: “He couldn’t turn to the anvil since there was no way he could equal his father’s ability,” the story says. After becoming a patroller at the age of 14 and performing duties such as stopping Black people for passes, raiding “slave villages,” and bringing any Black person who is “wayward” to jail after being flogged, his father is dissatisfied with his son’s performance because he has previously fought with the patrol leader.

By making Ridgeway’s father one of the only morally upright white males on the program, Jenkins adds depth to the character’s past.

It is Ridgeway’s personal revolt against his father’s ethical worldview that causes him to turn to slave-catching in the novel, which gives the appearance of being inevitable.

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