Spoiler alert: This article contains spoilers for Season 2, Episode 4 of Modern Love.
Season 2, Episode 4 of Amazon Prime Video's anthology series Modern Love, titled “A Life Plan for Two, Followed by One,” is based on an essay of the same name by Marina Shifrin. She wrote the essay as an ode to a different kind of love — one that When Harry Met Sally, which she references in the essay, claims is impossible. But it takes her whole life to appreciate that special kind of love.
As we watch this story unfold, many of us are wondering what Marina Shifrin is doing now, and what happened in her relationship with her childhood best friend, Kevin. Are they still friends, and has Kevin seen the essay that’s all about him? This episode of Modern Love is sweet and optimistic, so we want the same thing from Marina’s real life.
Marina Shifrin wrote the essay that ‘Modern Love’ Season 2, Episode 4 is based on.
Marina’s essay, “A Life Plan for Two, Followed by One,” was published in The New York Times' “Modern Love” section in 2013. It detailed Marina’s relationship with her childhood best friend, Kevin, and how she felt she always had a one-sided crush on him.
She writes about her “plan” that they will one day grow up and get married. However, although they are each other’s first kiss, their future relationship encounters obstacle after obstacle. After they sleep together in college, Marina essentially gives up on her dream of being with Kevin, but two years later, they reconcile their friendship. The essay and the Modern Love episode both end on a note of gratitude for a lifelong friendship, a rarer kind of love.
Now, Marina Shifrin, who wrote a ‘Modern Love’ story, appears to be happily married.
As far as we can tell, Marina is happily married to a man named Sam whom she actually met through Kevin. Isn’t that ironic? Once they reconciled, they became part of each other’s lives once again, and Kevin supported Marina by going to her comedy shows. Marina explained her current love story in 2018 to WBUR, which produced her essay for radio.
“I remember being mad at Kevin for bringing a really cute guy to my horrible show,” she shared. “And then a few weeks after that Kevin brought Sam to another show, and then Sam started coming on his own, and then Sam and I went on a few dates, and then we got married last week. I skipped a lot, but the timing is there."
Although she didn’t get the happy ending she expected with Kevin, this development means she might be even happier. Her story is a good lesson in appreciating the relationships we have and not trying to force feelings that aren’t there. Now, she and Kevin are still close friends, but they agree that their relationship is totally platonic.
"I love Kevin to death, but we like all the opposite things," Marina explained. Kevin confirmed, “We got on each other's nerves, but it wasn't like, 'That's so cute, they rile each other up.'" Kevin is also happily married to a woman named Annie, and the two couples seem to spend a lot of time together.
Marina Shifrin is a comedy writer for television, as well as personal essays.
The art form of the personal essay is a tricky one to master, but Marina has made quite a career out of it. She’s been published in The New York Times and Huffington Post multiple times, as well as in LA Weekly, Bustle, Glamour, and several other publications. In addition to that, she ghostwrites and writes for television shows — most recently, she wrote two episodes of Hulu’s Crossing Swords.
Marina also published a book of essays, titled 30 Before 30, which, according to her website, is “a charming, relatable and hilarious collection of essays documenting a young woman's attempt to accomplish thirty life goals before turning thirty.” Especially after the year and a half of dealing with quarantines and putting life goals on pause, that’s something we can all relate to.
Season 2, Episode 4 of Modern Love is now available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.