Tiny Beautiful Things | Official Trailer | Hulu

Honoring the memoiry moments of the book, the show is full of stories from Strayed’s life that will break your heart. Flashbacks to a younger Clare (Sarah Pidgeon) and her mother (played excellently by Merritt Weaver) are weaved throughout the show, informing the responses Clare writes as Sugar. This tracks with the real-life column, and it’s done elegantly. Strayed didn’t just give people advice as Sugar. She disclosed her own struggles, being just as vulnerable as the letter writers before delivering her signature move: bluntly calling things as they were, cussing, and speaking with radical empathy and love. (Of course, the show doesn’t borrow all of the book’s amazing zingers and sign-offs. Which is kind of a shame, as we think Hahn could have pulled off lines like, “Ask better questions, sweet pea. The fuck is your life. Answer it.”)


For fans of the original, Tiny Beautiful Things is full of Easter egg-like nods, not only to the source material but also Strayed’s essay “The Love Of My Life.” Although her relationship with her mom is front and center, there are also references to her first marriage and the infidelity that broke it, as well as the essay on Gogol’s “The Nose” that she was unable to write to graduate college. And in the end, it gives a pretty well-balanced taste of Strayed’s strengths as a writer. It’s a devastatingly hopeful show. And just like the book, it reminds us that no matter how far we get away from who we intended to be, there’s always the chance to try again.

Tiny Beautiful Things premieres April 7 on Hulu