The Bear Has 1 Major Mystery Left To Answer After Season 2’s Highly-Praised Christmas Episode

WARNING: This article contains SPOILERS for The Bear season 2.

The Bear season 2 reveals a lot about Carmy’s family ties, but season 3 still needs to solve one Berzatto family mystery. After The Bear season 1 ends with Camry finding his brother’s hidden money, season 2 picks right up, where Carmy and the crew set out to start a new restaurant business. Their endeavor brings them one step closer to securing what Mikey had started and building a potentially better future for themselves in the culinary world. However, as seen in The Bear season 2, bigger dreams come with the hefty price tag of even bigger challenges and struggles that push Carmy and Sydney out of their comfort zones.

Each The Bear season 2 episode serves as a standalone storyline that focuses on how the primary characters go through a rite of passage and become better members of The Bear restaurant’s team. While Marcus finally leaves Chicago and goes to Copenhagen to gain insights into becoming a better pastry chef, Richie finds his purpose through an apprenticeship. In all of these episodes that highlight the characters’ present story developments, one harkens back to a disturbing Berzatto family Christmas dinner that makes it hard not to wonder what happened to Carmy’s father.

What Happened To Carmy’s Father In The Bear

A photo of Carmy's father with Uncle Jimmy in The Bear season 1

The Bear season 2 does not reveal much about Carmy’s father but one crucial moment from season 1 hints at what might have happened to him. In The Bear season 1’s episode 4, Carmy and Richie cater lunch at a kid’s birthday party. Towards the end of the party, when Carmy is winding up his work, he spots a picture of his father with Uncle Jimmy. When Carmy asks Jimmy if remembers the last time he talked to his father, Jimmy recalls how it has been over two decades. The fact that Carmy asks this suggests that his father may still be alive.

In The Bear season 1, episode 4, Uncle Jimmy later recalls how Carmy’s father had also started a restaurant business, referring to The Beef. However, working endless shifts in the restaurant’s kitchen took a toll on Donna and affected her relationship with Carmy’s father. Jimmy also recounts having a dream in which he and Carmy’s dad drive a truck when suddenly a boy appears on the road. When they hit the brakes, Carmy’s father flies out of the windshield but never lands on the ground.

These subtle details surrounding Carmy’s father’s past hint that he might have abandoned his family, perhaps after his relationship with Donna went downhill. Since Jimmy has not talked to him in years, he likely cut off all contact with The Bear‘s central Berzatto family after leaving. The way Uncle Jimmy talks about him and describes his strange dream could also mean that he died. However, considering how Jimmy says that the boy on the road in his dream waved Carmy’s father “goodbye” as he went flying seems to hint that he walked out on his family.

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Why The Bear Season 3 Still Needs To Address Carmy’s Father

Carmy gets stuck in the walk-in fridge during The Bear's grand opening

Several narrative threads in The Bear are connected to Carmy’s father and what happened between him and the rest of the family. Uncle Jimmy’s account of how he and Donna started a restaurant business but failed to make it work could explain Donna’s mental illnesses. Donna and Carmy’s father’s torrid relationship could also explain why Mikey never wanted Carmy to work at The Bear season 1’s The Beef restaurant. While Carmy has little to no memories of his father, Mikey likely remembers how working in the same restaurant ruined his parents’ relationship since he is the oldest sibling in the house.

By delving into the details of what happened to Carmy’s father, The Bear season 3 can also address why Donna hesitates before entering The Bear restaurant towards The Bear season 2’s ending moments. Since Carmy’s father was also a restaurateur, he seems to be a part of Carmy’s legacy as much as Mikey, and his struggles to keep his restaurant afloat could alone be a primary source of emotional conflict in The Bear season 3. With so many unresolved plot points surrounding his identity and relationship with the Berzatto family, The Bear season 3 must address what happened to him.

How The Bear Season 2 Sets Up Carmy’s Father

Michael, Natalie, and Carmen Berzatto from The Bear's Berzatto family.

The Bear season 2 does not directly refer to Carmy’s father, but his absence becomes evident in episode 6. When the entire family reunites to celebrate Christmas at the Berzatto family’s home, Carmy’s father is nowhere to be seen. The chaotic dinner in The Bear season 2’s episode 6, which ends with Donna driving her car through the living room’s wall, hints there is more to the Berzatto family’s history than meets the eye and Carmy’s father is a crucial part of it. Hopefully, The Bear season 3 will address these underlying mysteries surrounding Carmy’s father after setting them up in seasons 1 and 2.

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