Major White Lotus spoilers ahead. Proceed at your own risk.
If you had told me that The White Lotus Season 2 ended with Jennifer Coolidge in a yacht shootout with the mafia, I would have thought you’d had one too many Aperol spritzes. But that is, in fact, exactly what we got.
Of course, other shenanigans went down as well. Scams succeeded, cheating (may have) occurred, and new relationships formed. But the moment everyone will remember most from this finale is undoubtedly who died — and how they went out. So without further ado, let’s break down the wildest moments of The White Lotus Season 2 finale.
And the White Lotus Resort victims are…
Please don’t hurt Jennifer Coolidge. Credit: Fabio Lovino/HBO
From the very beginning of the season, we’ve known multiple White Lotus Resort guests would die. And we now know that those guests are Tanya (Jennifer Coolidge), Quentin (Tom Hollander), and Didier (Bruno Gouery). Tanya’s one-time lover Niccoló (Stefano Gianino), while never a White Lotus guest, rounds out the body count.
The wild road to these deaths involves a cowboy, a yacht, and an escape gone terribly wrong. Quentin takes Tanya back to Taormina on his yacht, while his alleged nephew Jack (Leo Woodall) distracts a concerned Portia (Haley Lu Richardson). However, when Portia is finally able to call Tanya, the two realize something dangerous is afoot.
It all comes back to that photo of two cowboys Portia saw in Quentin’s palazzo. Turns out the cowboy next to Quentin — and likely the one he told Tanya he was madly in love with — is her husband Greg (Jon Gries). It was Greg who insisted they go to Sicily, yet he returned home to continue his affair with an unknown individual, leaving Tanya alone. That’s when Quentin and his fellow “high-end gays” befriended Tanya.
As a drunk Jack told Portia, Quentin and his friends have no money. However, he also says they’re about to come into a huge windfall. Tanya puts two and two together: Her prenup with Greg says that he’ll get basically nothing if they divorce. However, if she dies, he gets her immense wealth. With that, the puzzle pieces fall into place. Quentin is going to kill Tanya for Greg, who will pay him with Tanya’s money so he can manage his palazzo.
The high-end gays were plotting murder this whole time. Credit: Fabio Lovino/HBO
As if the alarm bells weren’t ringing loudly enough, Niccoló — who is either in the mafia or just really well connected to it — shows up to take Tanya back to the hotel. Tanya grabs his bag, which turns out to be full of your standard kidnapping and murder supplies. Next thing you know, all hell breaks loose.
By “hell,” I specifically mean “Jennifer Coolidge with a gun.” Armed with Niccoló’s gun, Tanya takes down Quentin, Didier, and Niccoló himself in a scene that is as wildly unexpected as it is haunting. Turns out that Tanya “Peppa Pig” McQuoid is actually a one-woman army in a floral print dress. She’s also a sobbing wreck, and understandably so. She could demand an explanation from Quention, but all she really wants to know is whether Greg is having an affair. He doesn’t answer before he dies, leaving Tanya — and us — in the dark.
With the immediate threat out of the way, all Tanya needs to do is climb into Niccoló’s smaller boat and escape. This proves hard to do in the dark and in heels, and before long, Tanya pitches headlong into the ocean. A devastating thunk as she hits the edge of the boat tells us all we need to know: Tanya, the only holdover from Season 1 of The White Lotus apart from her terrible husband, is dead.
It’s a huge blow to lose Tanya (and especially Jennifer Coolidge) in such a fashion. The whole episode builds to this moment, yet after the shootout, we still hold out a sliver of hope that she can escape. Tragically, it’s a cruel world, and The White Lotus soon confirms that Tanya is the body Daphne (Meghann Fahy) finds in the water in the very first episode. The clues were all there, including the references to Madama Butterfly’s death, but just because we could see it coming doesn’t mean it hurts any less.
So where was Portia this whole time?
Portia, get out of there! Credit: Fabio Lovino/HBO
When Portia’s not talking to Tanya, she’s doing her best to get Jack to take her back to Taormina. Unfortunately, Jack has gone from bumbling Essex bloke to absolutely terrifying abductor, and the atmosphere only sours when Portia reveals she knows Jack has sex with his alleged uncle. (The White Lotus never confirms nor denies the blood relation outright, but it’s highly implied that Quentin hired Jack.) Jack drops Portia off at the airport and tells her to stay away from the hotel. She follows his instructions to the letter, no doubt all too ready to put this traumatizing trip behind her.
Did Harper cheat on Ethan with Cameron? And how does Daphne react?
Harper is going through it, and who can blame her? Credit: Fabio Lovino/HBO
The quartet of Harper (Aubrey Plaza), Ethan (Will Sharpe), Daphne, and Cameron (Theo James) has been an incredibly rich source of mess throughout this entire season, and in the finale, the mess escalates to soaring heights. Ethan confronts Harper, believing she cheated on him with Cameron. She reveals that Cameron kissed her briefly and dismisses it as a “drunk, dumb nothing.” Ethan still thinks Harper hasn’t told the full truth, but he’s more certain of the fact that Cameron made a move on his wife. He retaliates by confronting Cameron and almost drowning him in the ocean. No death here, though! Just male aggression.
Later, Ethan runs into Daphne and tells him about his suspicions. After a brief moment of hurt, Daphne gives him some advice similar to what she told Harper earlier this season: “You just do whatever you have to do not to feel like a victim of life.” Not long after, the two are headed to the Isola Bella… presumably to hook up. However, just like with Harper and Cameron’s potential affair, we don’t know the full truth of what happens. What happens on Isola Bella, stays on Isola Bella.
Still, whatever Daphne and Ethan did must have worked wonders, as Ethan and Harper have sex for the first time all vacation long on their very last night in Sicily. It’s a joyous moment and a relief for Harper, but there’s something worrying underneath it all. What will their relationship look like if they both continue to do “whatever” they have to? Will it come to resemble Daphne and Cameron’s? One can only hope not, for their sakes.
Lucia is the scammer queen of Sicily.
Scam in progress. Credit: Fabio Lovino/HBO
The strange triangle of Albie (Adam DiMarco), Dominic (Michael Imperioli), and Lucia (Simona Tabasco) comes to a strange conclusion in the Season 2 finale. Lucia asks Albie for 50 thousand euros so she can escape the ever-mysterious Alessio. How is Albie supposed to get this much money? Through emotional manipulation, of course!
Albie demands his father pay Lucia the money, calling it karmic payment for all the cheating Dom has done. He sweetens the deal by promising to tell his mother that Dom has truly had a change of heart on the vacation. That’s what seals the deal. Dom pays up, and Lucia skips out on Albie after one last night together. Turns out the whole Alessio sob story was a ploy to appeal to Albie’s naive, “wounded bird”-saving side. I’m not sure if anyone can “win” The White Lotus, but congratulations to Lucia for coming out of this season 50 thousand euros richer.
And what about the elephant in the room? You know, the fact that both Dom and Albie, father and son, had sex with the same woman? You’d think The White Lotus would find some way of revealing this supremely awkward fact, but no. This may just be a secret Dom has to stew with for the rest of his life. But can you imagine the drama if Albie had found out? Now that would have been truly delicious.
Mia and Valentina and the start of a beautiful friendship.
Congratulations to our first-ever surviving White Lotus Resort manager. Credit: Fabio Lovino/HBO
While hotel manager Valentina (Sabrina Impacciatore) and aspiring singer Mia (Beatrice Grannò) won’t be starting a full-fledged romance, it looks like they will be forming a new work partnership. Valentina fires pianist Giuseppe (Federico Scribani) after he returns from the hospital (ouch), and replaces him with Mia. She also reunites front desk worker Isabella (Eleonora Romandini) with fiancé Rocco (Federico Ferrante), even giving Rocco a warm welcome back. Character growth!
Perhaps best of all is Mia’s promise to find Valentina a girlfriend, a process which will involve Mia, Lucia, and Valentina going to some “crazy clubs.” White Lotus spinoff incoming?
Maybe we’ll see you on our next vacation? Credit: Fabio Lovino/HBO
Just like with Season 1, Season of The White Lotus ends in the airport, with all the guests flying home. In a role reversal from their first scenes together, Cameron and Daphne appear more distant from each other, while we’ve never seen Ethan and Harper more relaxed or affectionate. All three DiGrasso men take a second to check out an attractive young woman, proving that some things truly never change. And Portia, sporting sunglasses and a headscarf-wrapped-baseball cap to remain incognito, reunites with Albie. They exchange numbers and horror stories (Jack is “deranged,” Lucia “scammed” Albie), with a hint that this could be the start of a new relationship.
So there we have it. The White Lotus Season 2 was a horny, messy, wild ride with 100 percent more shootouts and 100 percent less pooping in suitcases. Will any of these guests reappear in Season 3? Will creator-writer Mike White face justice for robbing us of Jennifer Coolidge? And most importantly, will the White Lotus Resorts finally fix their unusually high mortality rates? Seriously, it’s a miracle these places are still open.