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‘Hart of Dixie’ Season 3 Finale Review: Wedding Day Hiccups

Eddy Chen/The CW

If there’s one thing you can count on when it comes to Hart of Dixie, it’s that there will be a wedding or an attempted wedding in the season finale. Last night’s episode upped the ante with three weddings scheduled for the same weekend in Bluebell and the town needed to band together to pull them off after Fancy’s was destroyed by fire and flood. But the real theme of the episode was, as the title states, “Second Chances.”

As the episode began, Zoe was trying to make peace with the fact that Wade was leaving town, AnnaBeth was trying to decide whether or not she should accept Davis’ proposal, Lavon was also waiting to hear what his ex would decide and Lemon was begging George for another chance at their business partnership after she yelled at him, told him he was the worst partner ever and then accidentally burned down the restaurant. No one was in a particularly good place so it wasn’t hard for them to throw themselves into preparing for the weddings or in George and Lavon’s case, a road trip to meet one of their idols.

Things were awkward between Zoe and Wade as she pretended to be happy that he was leaving, but went about it all wrong. She developed a bad case of the hiccups as she tried to give him a going away present – an ice scraper just in case there’s another rare ice storm in Atlanta. Wade tried to scare her hiccups away, but when that didn’t do the trick, Lemon hit Zoe with a dose of reality and told her that she was in love with Wade and she needed to admit it. Zoe denied it as her hiccups grew louder and then she finally blurted out that she was in love with Wade just as Joel walked in. Well this is awkward…

Except it wasn’t because it turns out that Zoe and Joel have kept in touch via email and he’s happily dating someone else! As hard as I’ve been on Joel this season, I’ve never loved him more than I did in this episode. He urged Zoe to go after Wade and then later in the episode, he gave Wade some much needed advice when the Rammer Jammer franchise opportunity wasn’t exactly what Wade thought it was (Joel’s right – Wade is not the kind of guy who belongs behind a desk pushing paperwork). But Joel was not the only ex to blow into town. Vivian and Wade had a more awkward run-in, but the results were the same. They each wanted the other one to be happy.

While I’m never going to be okay with how much time the show wasted this season, I do understand why these relationships (Zoe/Joel and Wade/Vivian) were necessary before Wade and Zoe could even think about getting back together. Neither of them had been ready for a serious relationship and they needed to grow up and figure out who they each were and what they wanted. Joel and Vivian were a major part of that and it was nice to see closure for both relationships in this episode. I only wish it had happened earlier in the season.

Anyway, Meatball and Lily Anne’s wedding was first and Meatball ended up calling it off when he realized how many of his friends his bride had slept with and how she didn’t really know him at all. So Zoe stepped up to take the microphone and say goodbye to Wade for the town and tell him how proud they all were. Then she brought up the bold declaration of love he’d made to her last year and this was her turn. She told Wade that she loved him and he turned around and walked out. That hurt my heart just like it did when Zoe walked away last year, but thankfully, this was not the end of the episode.

Zoe tracked Wade down before the next wedding and was sad to see that he was still planning on leaving town. Wade told her that he just didn’t think it was a good idea for them to be together and there were no second chances. He was still going to Atlanta (ouch). Zoe left for Cricket’s wedding, which ended with a great twist. Like Zoe, Cricket had developed a bad case of the hiccups from stress and everyone assumed it was because she was tired of living a lie when her husband appeared to be gay. But when Cricket stopped the ceremony for a confession, she was the one who came out of the closet. Well done, show!

The final wedding of the hour, Joel’s grandmother and Brando’s, was the only one that went off without a hitch. And things got even better when Wade returned! He’d decided not to take the job after all and Zoe didn’t attempt to hide how happy she was. Wade told her not to read anything into it, but she totally was and then the two shared a dance. Zoe made it clear to Wade that she knew he thought they were over, but they were not and she was going to prove it to him. Zoe walked away when the dance ended and Wade smiled as he watched her go. Something tells me that Mr. Kinsella is not going to need that much convincing next season.

Now we have to talk about the other big stories of the episode. Lavon and George had left town, but that didn’t stop them from thinking about their lady loves, who were coming to major realizations back in Bluebell. Grandma Breeland agreed to give Lemon the money to fix Fancy’s, but in exchange, she had to go on the singles’ cruise and not come back until she found a husband. Lemon decided to give up on love and go for it because she stopped believing in second chances. AnnaBeth, on the other hand, cured her hiccups when she told Davis the truth: he was her rebound and she’d been in his position once and it wasn’t fair for her to accept his proposal when she was still in love with someone else.

Thanks to their mentor, Lavon and George each decided that it wasn’t too late for a second chance at love and they went racing off to make confessions. George got to the docks just as the ship was getting ready to pull away. He banged on the window and shouted to Lemon, but there was no way for her to hear him as she chatted with a man on the ship. George was disappointed and then he turned as the crowd in front of the window parted and there was Lavon. He’d gone after Lemon too. Damnit, Lavon.

I seriously wanted to throw something through the TV at that point. I know there are plenty of fans who have wanted Lavon and Lemon together since season one. I did too once upon a time, but I really thought Lavon had gotten over Lemon when he was so sad about losing AB. I thought she was the one he was rushing toward and I was so happy that she’d decided not to marry Davis. But now George and Lavon both want Lemon so we can kiss their renewed friendship goodbye and it’s even more depressing because this is not going to end well for two people.

AnnaBeth is not going to get her happy ending. If Lemon chooses Lavon, she’ll have to watch the man she loves with her best friend. If Lemon chooses George, even if she does end up with Lavon again, she will always be his second choice. And either Lavon or George isn’t going to end up with his true love and who knows if Lemon will even want one of them after her cruise? Maybe she’ll meet the love of her life there. Seriously, this cliffhanger is so depressing, even more so because the show is only coming back for a limited number of episodes.

I really was enjoying the finale up until that moment and I’m thrilled that Zoe and Wade are finally on the path to reconciliation after 22 episodes of watching them barely interact. But the decision to revisit the George/Lemon/Lavon triangle put a damper on things for me. Maybe the writers have an amazing plan that will leave everyone satisfied next season, but I’m having a hard time figuring out what it could possibly be and I just don’t like the idea of seeing any of these characters have unhappy endings.

Sorry to end things on a depressing note, guys. The CW has not announced a premiere date for season four, but it’s likely to be midseason so we’ll have to meet back here in 2015. In the meantime, feel free to hit the comments and share your thoughts and theories with us. How do you feel about the triangle returning? Will AnnaBeth find happiness? Are you excited for Zoe and Wade? Which wedding was your favorite?

About the author

Mandy Treccia

Mandy Treccia has served as TVSource Magazine’s Executive Editor since 2016, formerly as Editorial Director from 2012-2016. She is an avid TV watcher and card carrying fan girl prone to sudden bursts of emotion, ranging from extreme excitement to blind rage during her favorite shows and has on more than once occasion considered having a paper bag on hand to get her through some tough TV moments. Her taste in TV tends to rival that of a thirteen-year-old girl, but she’s okay with that. Follow her on Twitter at @SourceMandy.