Some were dealt definitively on Sunday night, others not so much. But the bigger question about the show’s future — will there be another sequel? — was already answered last month, when HBO announced its renewal.
With that in mind, here’s a rundown of the questions answered in Sunday’s finale, the mysteries left lingering from the Sicilian adventure, and what we already know about Season 3:
Who died in the second season finale?
Many, it turns out, after estranged socialite Tanya (Jennifer Coolidge) picks up a plan hatched by her husband, Greg (John Gries), and co-conspirator Quentin (Tom Hollander) to kill her on a boat in the Ionian Sea and split up her billions. Sensing danger aboard Quentin’s yacht, while wine and dine with a gang of his accomplices off the coast of Taormina, Tania grabs her death-defying bag – filled with rope, duct tape and a gun – and shoots Quentin, Didier (Bruno Gouery) and Niccoló (Stefano Gianino) In a teary-eyed agitation.
But the body we see in the season’s opening scene — a flash-forward in which White Lotus guest Daphne (Megan Fahey) bumps into a corpse while wading into the ocean — is none other than Tanya. After apparently surviving the assassination attempt, she is spooked by the fleeing yacht’s captain, then slips while trying to jump into a smaller boat below, sending her head crashing against the railing and sinking under the Sicilian moonlight.
The White Lotus ends as the corpses pile up
Speaking of a post-episode recap on HBO, White explained the decision to bring Coolidge back — who won an Emmy for the first season of Maui — and kill off her character.
“I love her as a character, and obviously I love Jennifer,” said White, who wrote and directed all seven episodes. “But I felt like, you know, we’re going to Italy, which is an archetype of the larger-than-life female singer—I felt like we could draw our own operatic conclusion to Tania’s life and story.”
When it came to the manner of her death, he added, “I think her death at the hands of someone else felt very tragic. I felt that she needed to give her best fight and that, in a way, she had some kind of victory over whoever was plotting to get rid of her. So it made me laugh.” Only to think that she’s going to take out all this gang of murderers, and after she succeeds in doing that, and then die this sudden death. I just felt like, ‘So Tanya.'”
Will Greg get away with his plan?
Greg eventually doesn’t show up after leaving Sicily for an alleged work commitment earlier in the season, but he appears to be the biggest winner in the episode’s events, considering he’s in line to inherit Tanya’s fortune and no longer have to split it with the deceased Quentin.
But Tanya’s assistant, Portia (Haley Lu Richardson), makes it out alive, after he’s dropped off near the airport by Quentin’s alleged nephew, Jack (Leo Woodall) – who may or may not have been tasked with beating her before getting to foot. cold. Even if Portia was shocked enough to remain silent, Italian police soon came across the bloodstained yacht, and White hinted that fallout from this investigation could find its way into a future season.
“It’s possible that Portia, I think, was just scared enough to leave her alone,” White said. “But the fact that all those guys died on the boat seems like there must be someone out there who is going to trace it back to Greg. But you’ll probably have to wait and see what happens.”
Are Cameron and Harper hooked up?
The ending intentionally leaves this issue blurry. Finally succumbing to her husband’s suspicions, Harper (Aubrey Plaza) confesses to Ethan (Will Sharp) that she kissed college roommate Cameron (Theo James) after making shots at a hotel bar and meeting with their roommates. However, Ethan remains unconvinced, accusing his wife of telling the half-truth and speculating that they did more than just kiss.
“I think that’s probably all that happened,” White said. “At the same time, there’s some time that doesn’t fully account for it, and I think that’s why it’s taken up in Ethan.”
HBO’s The White Lotus returns for a second season
Have Daphne and Ethan arrived?
Not clear, but likely. In his anger, Ethan finds Cameron’s wife, Daphne, bathing on the beach and tells her of the couple’s indiscretions together. After a devastating moment of self-reflection from Daphne, dealing with the betrayal in real time and calculating her punishment on the spot, she drives Ethan to the isolated island of Isola Bella before the scene ends.
When Harper confronts Ethan about their future together later that night, her husband surprisingly caresses her face and kisses her, prompting the couple to undress and have intimacy for the first time along the way.
“Did they have some kind of foreplay on the island?” Wyatt said of Ethan and Daphne. “Whatever happens, it allows him to let go of the jealousy that was kind of brewing in him and bring back that kind of first sexual charge that happens at the beginning of a relationship that sometimes fades over time.”
Is Cameron the father of Daphne’s children?
This question is not addressed, though the epilogue hints at an answer. In Episode 5, Daphne admits to Harper that she had an affair with her house coach. Focusing on his “blonde hair and big blue eyes,” she shares a photo of her two children in which her eldest child sports, as she expected, blonde hair and blue eyes that bears little resemblance to her husband’s dark features.
Although Cameron and Daphne appear to be on solid ground when the finale pans out, we get a brief scene in which Daphne calls her husband over to talk to his kids and Cameron doesn’t seem too excited — which means, perhaps, that he knows they aren’t in. Indeed his children.
“Some unspoken things between them, you wonder if that will eventually catch up with them,” White said. “It’s somewhat of a happy ending, though there are dark clouds on the horizon, too.”
Does Valentina get a happy ending?
To some extent. Valentina (Sabrina Impacciatore), White Lotus’ moody manager exploring her sexuality in middle age, wakes up in bed with sex worker and aspiring musician Mia (Beatrice Grani) early in the episode. Although Mia gently resists her advances, she promises to help Valentina find a “real lesbian lover” before suggesting they spend another night together.
Was Lucia running a scam on de Grassos?
yes! After starting the show as an escort hired by sex-addicted Hollywood producer Dominic Di Grasso (Michael Imperioli), Lucia (Simona Tabasco) successfully wins the heart of her naive son, Albie (Adam DiMarco), convincing him that she is endangered by a controlling pimp and prompting him to claim his father by awarding her 50,000 euros.
Even though Dominic sees the scheme for what it is – even calling his son a “marker” – he sends the money anyway as a “karmic payment” for his betrayal. Albie eventually realizes he has played, as Lucia has been silently walking away from his room in the morning, but he still thanks his father and puts in a good word for Abby, his mother, and Dominic’s estranged wife. But when we last see the sexually frustrated Di Grasso clan—Dominique, Albie and Grandpa Bert (F. Murray Abraham)—the three men are still staring at the young woman who passed them at the airport.
“I hope Dominic really changes,” White said. “But there is so little in their fabric that their relationship with women will always be fraught with this sexual desire.”
Meanwhile, Lucia wanders triumphantly through the streets of Taormina with Mia at the end of the episode and shares the man who was pretending to be her pimp – confirming that there was never a threat.
What do we know about the third season?
After setting season one in Hawaii and season two in Italy, White suggested he’s planning an Asia-set third season in an interview with Deadline in October.
“[Coolidge] She’s my friend and everyone loved her in season one, and I was like, ‘I can’t go to Italy without Jennifer,'” White said. “And maybe that’s still the case. Like, you probably can’t go to Japan without Jennifer either. There’s a lot of fun actors we’ve worked with so far, so it’s just kind of like, who’s available.”
While the promise of Coolidge’s continued meddling may have been a misdirection – or a hint in an earlier story – White doubled down on the idea of moving The White Lotus to Asia in HBO’s post-finale breakdown and indicated that the third season will be centered on mortality.
“Season one is the money kind of feature, and then season two is sex,” White said. “I think season three, it’s going to be kind of a funny, satirical look at death and Eastern religion and spirituality. It looks like it could be a rich tapestry for another run at White Lotus.”
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