Major spoilers below for The White Lotus’ Season 2 finale, so be warned if you haven’t yet taken the plunge.
Mike White delivered another masterful season of The White Lotus, filled with gorgeous settings and complicated relationships amongst the large ensemble, as well as a shocking death (or four) serving as narrative bookends. This time around, the HBO drama’s biggest seasonal connection met their demise, with Jennifer Coolidge’s Tanya unwittingly causing her own death after single-handedly stopping Quentin & Co.’s murder plot. The finale, fittingly titled “Arrivederci,” also wrapped up several other overarching storylines, with Lucia proving herself to have used Albie for his money, while her supposed threat Alessio was revealed to be just another hotel worker. Scammers gonna scam, I guess.
But for all the answers that were given, The White Lotus still left me with plenty of additional questions that don’t seem like they’ll be granted full clarity anytime soon. So while waiting for the next boat to come and pick us all up from this picturesque dock, let’s run down some of the biggest curiosities that were left unexplained.
Why Was The Plan To Kill Tanya So Ridiculously Complicated?
Throughout Season 2, White Lotus fans were 100% on top of the notion that Greg teamed with Quentin to somehow take possession of Tanya’s fortune, but what failed to come up often enough was the simple question of why Greg would go through all of this trouble and planning to kill her in lieu of literally anything simpler and less distant. It’d be easier to understand Quentin wining and dining Tanya if the point was to get her to consensually sign over part of her fortune in one way or another, but I can’t grasp why they spent so much time and money to take her out to the opera and whatnot if the point was just to kill her outright anyway.
Seriously, why bring in the sexy hitman with all the party favors? Why get her all coked up and horny if neither the drug use nor the infidelity would be used to the gay mafia’s advantage? Are we to believe that Quentin, Matteo and others were truly so won over by Tanya that they wanted to give her a few last hurrahs before taking her out for good? Matteo’s tearful goodbye was perhaps partial proof of that, but still. It seems like a whole lot of flashy build-up for something that could have played out in the U.S.
Is Greg A Black Widower “Killer,” So To Speak?
Considering Greg remained absent after leaving Tayna in Italy, his story remains unclear beyond the bits of their marriage we were made privy to. As such, we don’t know if this was a one-time situation for Greg, or whether this is learned and patterned behavior. While I have to think his medical maladies were legitimate enough, since Tanya likely witnessed some of those procedures and check-ups, is it possible that Greg has been collecting and killing off wives (and possibly husbands) for years prior to Tanya? It’d certainly be one way for Quentin and his clan to keep up appearances without ever having to get official employment, though that would open up more questions about Greg and Quentin’s current relationship and where his sexual interests lie.
Was Jack Supposed To Kill Portia?
Jack’s finale behavior took a sharp turn away from the jovial, fun-loving lushiness he exuded in days prior, as Portia became more convinced she’d been intentionally separated from Tanya, and was in danger of spending her final hours inside Quentin’s Range Rover. (Assuming it was even his, of course.) Said danger grew more palpable once it came out she knew Jack and Quentin were banging each other, and it didn’t take a genius to realize he wasn’t actually driving her where he claimed. But in the end, he chose to let her go free with the dire warning not to return to the White Lotus, and not to bring more trouble on herself by talking about it with others. Which sorta makes it all the more strange that he DID let her go, since she definitely figured Tanya was going to die at that point. Maybe he just figured all her griping implied she didn’t care that much about her boss.
Were Jack And Quentin Actually Related?
Weirdly enough, the jury is still out on this one, considering The White Lotus didn’t double down on either Yea or Nay here. Creator Mike White previously played coy when asked, and it seemed like the show was going to explain that relationship a little more. But no, that wasn’t meant to be. So I’m just going to assume/pretend that Jack’s mom married Quentin’s sibling, making them a sexually active uncle and nephew through marriage and not by blood.
Will Portia Ever Say Anything To The Cops (Or Anyone)?
Surely, it doesn’t seem likely that Portia will go blabbing about the previous night’s discoveries either during her trip back to the U.S., or soon after. But what about when she learns more about Greg’s potential involvement and more background details? Will she still choose to remain quiet once she finds out it was Quentin and others that Tanya killed, or will that embolden her to come forward? And to reiterate a point introduced a little earlier: does Portia give enough of a shit about Tanya’s posthumous existence to put forth the effort?
What Happened Between Cameron/Harper And Daphne/Ethan?
The White Lotus wisely, if somewhat frustratingly, gave viewers no concrete answers when it came to the potential sex-capades that went on between Season 2’s most horned-up and horned-down couples. When Ethan confronted Harper full on about it, she mirrored his earlier half-admission regarding the condom wrapper by offering up slightly more to the story, saying Cameron suggested they go back up to the room together, and that they kissed for a brief time just before Ethan had returned to the room. But Ethan didn’t believe that was all that happened, and Aubrey Plaza did a fantastic job of playing it right down the middle, without ever being too convincing or too untrustworthy.
Fans were given even less information when it came to Ethan’s mid-day sojourn with Daphne, though there were literal waves of implications that they found ways to rectify their complicated feelings about Cameron and Harper, even if it wasn’t strictly all about rote intercourse. Whatever happened there, it was enough to convince Ethan that there are other ways for him to handle his issues with Harper that aren’t just anger and non-affection. Here’s what Mike White had to say about this one in the post-episode “Unpacking” feature:
So White doesn’t necessarily think that everyone went through with the least moral version of events, but isn’t confirming the most innocent take either.
Is Cameron Aware Of And Angry About His Kid(s) Having Another Father?
It was previously implied that Daphne’s trainer was the father of one or more of her children, and The White Lotus’ finale offered a secondary look at that likely scenario by showing Cameron flossing while both ignoring and getting frustrated with Daphne calling for him to greet the kids via video call. He could have been annoyed for any number of reasons, but it seemed like that moment was tipping its hat to the idea that Cameron spends every day knowing he’s raising another man’s biological child, with that likely being the daunting King piece on Daphne’s side of their twisted chess board.
For what it’s worth, Mike White also spoke to the idea that Cameron isn’t the kind of guy whose patterns are likely to change simply because it’s a good idea, so there’s always the possibility that some of the unspoken truths in his marriage will bubble up to the surface sooner rather than later. My dream for Season 5 is them both going to the same White Lotus as post-separation singles.
Did Albie Actually Learn Anything?
I feel like Albie had the right idea in the first place by aiming for Portia, only for him to get dicked over by both of them in very different fashions, resulting in 50,000 euros being siphoned from his father, while Albie also further sold out his values by lying to his mom about Dom being on good behavior. And in the end, he just ended up with Portia’s number anyway, while also obviously now being far more in line with the older men in the family, libidinously speaking. So is he coming out of this a better person in any respect?
The White Lotus is over for now, but both seasons are available to stream again and again with an HBO Max subscription, and we know Season 3 is coming, even if we don’t yet know exactly what it’ll be about.
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Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.