Warning: Heavy, heavy spoilers for Netflix's Tabula Rasa ahead.
Netflix's Tabula Rasa had a lot to reveal. The premise was: a woman involved in a disastrous car accident can't retain any new information. Then, she becomes the primary witness in a missing persons case. This woman, named Annemie D'Haeze and played by Veerle Baetens, who also created the show, is our narrator. Naturally, she is shit at it. "Unreliable" almost doesn't apply. Annemie, who goes by Mie, cannot remember a damn thing. In place of memories, her mind confabulates, painting pictures, scenes, and creatures that don't exist. The show uses red dust to convey the dissipation of memories. Wherever there is red dust, there is Mie losing control of her memory. The trouble is, many of the characters surrounding Mie are also making shit up. No one is to be trusted, especially not our narrator.
All of it has to come to light eventually, and the finale lifts the curtain in one, glorious — if bewildering — fell swoop. The doctor's a liar, Benoit's a cheater, Vronsky has borderline personality disorder, Gus is just a lascivious hunter, and Thomas de Geest (Jeroen Perceval) is a minor vigilante superhero. What?! Okay, one more time.
Mie is not the perpetrator or the villain in this tale. Instead, she is the tortured victim, the eye of an elaborate jealousy plot concocted by a character who, for most of the series, wasn't involved. The doctor! The diabolical narrative unspools the moment Dr. Mommaerts (Natali Broods) listens to the voicemail from St. Antonius Hospital left for Mie. From this point, the show focuses on Dr. Mommaerts' side of the tale. She's not sane, per se, but she's also not suffering from retrograde amnesia, so we can trust her.
Dr. Mommaerts, who has thus far been a voice of reason in an otherwise bonkers show, isn't a doctor at all. Her name is Veronique, otherwise known as "V". She dated Benoit (Stijn Van Opstal) before he met Mie. So, yes, the plot of Tabula Rasa boils down to a jealous ex-mistress.
Veronique has always been jealous of Mie, who was once a famous singer. (Mie's career, much to my dismay, is alluded to but never explored. Excuse me, I want song and dance numbers!) Benoit, as we discovered earlier in the season, cheated on Mie with Veronique months before Mie's accident. Benoit ended the affair when Mie attempted suicide, leading V into a catastrophic rage spiral. Furious at being dumped, V punches a tray of oysters, bloodying her hand. This girl is evil! She's jealous of Mie for being with Benoit. She also in one scene alludes to a desire to be a performer.
"I should be the one with the career!" she rants to her therapist.
Veronique is an elaborate deus ex machina, a character so purely evil she's almost convenient. With her disguise unveiled, the central mysteries of the show neatly Tetris into place. "Bob," the man that Mie dreams about, is Veronique. Veronique is the root cause of everything terrible in the show, from the death of Romy, Mie's daughter, to Thomas de Geest's missing hand. (And, indirectly, the death of borderline personality patient Vronsky.) As part of her rage spiral, V plans to kill Mie. She also plans to frame a hapless drunk for the murder, and Thomas de Geest is the unlucky gentlemen picked for the job. Watching Veronique's version of events is interesting because we the audience sort of know what's going to happen. We know that Mie will survive the car accident. We also know that Romy will not. What we don't know is that Veronique will — and this is the part that veers into crazytown — deliberately try to make Mie feel crazy.
Veronique has been gaslighting Mie this whole time. She placed the dead bird in the toilet. She is responsible for the incessant chiming of the door security system. She's also the hooded figure that periodically materialised throughout the season. The cloak is a little much, but Veronique is, true to her V-name, a villain! That's Tabula Rasa's biggest reveal of all: This show is a little campy.
Before you can say, welp, the evil mistress trope still sort of works, the show pivots to Thomas de Geest. Did you forget? How could you? He's hapless, semi-cute, and he breathes very heavily. We were all rooting for you, Tom. And we were right! Thomas de Geest is not a villain, although he did accept a leather hand job from Veronqiue. Veronique pushed his car (using her own car) into the street just in time to collide with Mie's. Too drunk to recall the events of the night, Tom assumed he was indeed the person who killed Romy. This led to a brief relationship with an amnesiac Mie, who then decided to run away with Tom. But, you know, Mie learns that Tom allegedly killed Romy, and she drugs him with sleeping pills and Red Bull. (I agree, it was a weird moment for product placement.) Mie — who still forgets everything — ties Tom up in their cabin in the woods, hollers at him a bit, and proceeds to forget all about him.
At no point does the show bother to show us how Thomas de Geest got from the cabin to Flemish vigilante. As Inspector Wolker (Gene Bervoets) discovers, Tom pulled a 127 Hours and sawed his off own hand to escape the cabin in the woods. He is, miraculously, not mad at Mie. Instead, he is bent on revenge. Tom secretly visited Mie at the psych ward covered in a hood. The psych ward is, apparently, a popping place to hang out in Flanders. During his visit, he saw Veronique, whom he recognized from his drunk night out. With some breaking and entering and a few letters — he was the one sending coded letters to Mie — Tom figured out Veronique's plan just in time to kill her.
True to its name, Tabula Rasa wipes the slate clean in the final minutes of the finale. Both Veronique and Tom die in a car crash, but not before Tom exonerates Mie. Inspector Wolker receives a chunk of evidence against Veronique courtesy of Tom. The evidence also serves as a suicide note. Inspector Wolker then retires, and Mie is sent home from the psych ward. Benoit and Mie head to Romy's grave, where they will finally mourn their daughter together. And, based on the slow, intense disappearance of red dust, Mie's amnesia is gone. Now, I guess, she and Benoit have to ... get back to their daily lives. Does anyone have any Fristi?