Mystery and violence take center stage in the Netflix adaptation of Karin Slaughter’s “Pieces of Her,” but one key character leaves us with more questions than answers by the season finale. “Pieces of Her” tells the story of a mother named Laura Oliver (Toni Collette), whose daughter, Andy (Bella Heathcote), is forced into hiding after a string of violent attacks on her birthday. Frightened, Andy drives across the country to evade the police. Along the way, she uncovers shocking clues that reveal a sinister connection between her mother and a man named Nick Harp (Joe Dempsie) who may be responsible for an infamous murder.
How Does Laura Meet Nick?
Told in part through flashbacks, “Pieces of Her” illustrates Laura’s life long before Andy is born, when her name is Jane Queller (Jessica Barden) and she is the only daughter of a wealthy business mogul named Martin Queller (Terry O’Quinn). Martin is notorious in the medical field for valuing economic growth over the welfare of the poor and disadvantaged, a philosophy that earns the Queller company several enemies.
During his college years at Stanford, Jane’s brother Andrew (Nicholas Burton) befriends Nick, a charismatic student with radical ideas about society. Through Andrew, Jane spends more time with Nick and slowly begins to fall for his free-spirited approach to life. Over time, Nick and Jane’s romance develops in secret, a toxic relationship that would eventually result in murder and betrayal.
Who Are the Army of the Changing World?
What Jane doesn’t learn until it’s too late is that “Nick” is an assumed name, and the real Nick Harp died of an overdose four years before he meets Jane. The Nick she knows is the leader of the Army of the Changing World, a cult-like revolutionist terrorist group that uses nuclear and biological warfare to attack government organizations, like the Queller company. As the leader of the ACW, Nick enlists the help of Paula Kunde (Mia Artemis), Andrew, Jane, and Jane’s brother Jasper Queller (Calum Worthy) to break into FBI headquarters, an operation known as the Oslo mission.
Following the Oslo operation, Andrew reveals that he’s been shot, and Jane insists they should take him to the hospital. Nick refuses and physically attacks Jane, who’s secretly pregnant at the time. After hitting him over the back of the head with the butt of a gun, Jane manages to get Andrew to the ER, but her brother dies shortly after they arrive.
Not long after Andrew’s death, Nick forces a woman named Grace Juno (Catherine McClements), whose husband died as a result of medical malpractice at the hands of the Queller company, to bring a bomb into the lecture hall at the International Economic Forum where Martin is scheduled to give a talk. Grace impersonates a professor named Alex Maplecroft and ends up shooting Martin to death on stage before taking her own life.
Is Nick Andy’s Dad?
Before the Oslo mission, Nick gives Jane an ultimatum, making her choose between him and her father, both of whom have had a dangerous hold on her life from the start. To mark her change in loyalty from her father to Nick, Jane purposely breaks her hand, putting an end to her career as an acclaimed pianist. It isn’t long before Jane finds out she’s pregnant with Nick’s child and keeps the news a secret from everyone except Andrew, who she tells hours before his death.
While serving time for her involvement in the Oslo operation, Jane gives birth to Andy, who goes to live with her friends Clara and Eli at a secluded cabin for four and a half years. When Andy is 4 years old, Nick approaches her in the forest and tries to kidnap her, but changes his mind at the last second when Eli and Clara come looking for her. Shortly after, Andy is reunited with Jane, and the two begin their new lives together.
In the present day, Nick is on the FBI’s most-wanted list for his crimes. To avoid testifying against him in court and to erase the memory of her complicated past, Jane goes into witness protection with some help from Charlie Bass (Gil Birmingham).
What Happens to Nick in the Finale?
In the final episode of “Pieces of Her,” Nick hits Charlie’s car as he and Andy are on their way back to Georgia from Alabama. Charlie dies instantly, and Nick brings Andy back to the cabin she grew up in, where her memories come flooding back to her. Laura arrives and reluctantly hugs Nick, who admits he sent the intruder after her in the first episode to abduct her because he wanted to speak with her. At first, Nick attempts to use his charm to win Andy and Laura over, but both women are deeply hesitant about trusting him, and he quickly switches to scare tactics in an attempt to take possession of a tape Laura has been hiding for decades.
Nick finds the tape, which contains evidence of his and Jasper’s involvement in Alex Maplecroft’s death, and destroys it. Thinking quickly, Andy knocks a candle over and starts a fire in the cabin, distracting Nick long enough for Laura to grab his gun and chase him into the woods. Andy follows and finds her mother about to shoot Nick. And just as Andy talks Laura down and tells her that it’s all over, the police arrive and take Nick into custody.
After Laura gives a statement to the police, Jasper calls to tell her that Nick has been sharing details about her involvement in the Oslo mission with the police, implying that both men intend to blackmail her. Even after years of witness protection, Laura, aka Jane, is still at Nick’s mercy, and we can only hope a second season is in the works to give her and Andy the freedom they’ve been waiting for.