The Innocents' Truly Shocking Ending Explained

Photo: Courtesy of Netflix.
For about 390 minutes of The Innocents’ first season, the brand-new Netflix show is a teen romance pumped up with Scandinavian noir looks and disturbing sci-fi thrills. While the series may surprise you with a few twists and turns, it’s fairly easy to predict the road ahead, or at least what the major beats will be. John McDaniel (Sam Hazeldine) will eventually track down his runaway, super-powered, shape-shifting daughter June McDaniel (Sorcha Groundsell). Leading lady June will eventually track down her runaway, super-powered, shape-shifting mom Elena McDaniel (Laura Birn) to the creepy Norwegian island where she is hiding. The only man on that island, Guy Pearce’s enigmatic scientist Halvorson, has far more nefarious designs than we originally realized.
But then, the last 10 minutes of the The Innocents arrives and socks you directly in the feels. It is impossible to predict how the show's eighth episode, “Everything. Anything,” will wrap because the drama doesn't veer into tragedy — until the very end, that is. We close the finale wondering if June's adorable boyfriend Harry Polk (Percelle Ascott) is the latest, and worst, casualty of the teenage girl's superpowers.
Yet, the season-closer also hints at where a prospective season 2 could take Netflix’s latest teen couple, and it's not as awful as you think.
At first, the final few minutes of “Everything” are actually quite optimistic — the McDaniels and Harry escape Halvorson’s Island Of Horrors via boat — until Harry’s detective mom Christine Polk (Nadine Marshall) shows up to where the group’s vessel is docking. Christine is there for the express purpose of arresting June and Elena for putting various people in inexplicable comas and unresponsive waking fugue states. The arrest is personal, as one of Elena’s accidental victims is Christine’s husband and Harry’s father, Lewis (Philip Wright). Christine has no idea the trances are the accidental collateral damage of of both June and Elena’s powers. So, she handcuffs a compliant Elena. But, Harry tries to save June, speeding off the boat with John’s car and racing into the Norwegian forest.
Harry is so intent on saving June, and therefore escaping his mother who is chasing the duo, that he bolts down a winding road until the car hits a pothole. Quickly, the tire explodes, sending the car veering into a tree. Harry survives the crash with minor lacerations, but June is seemingly stabbed through the stomach (which is strange because it’s unclear what actually caused her very bloody, life-threatening injury). Harry urges his girlfriend to shift into him, which would save her life but could also lead to him ending up in a fugue state like his dad. Still, June does it.
Harry’s last meaningful words are, “I’ll see you again soon.” Then June touches her boyfriend and shifts into him, leaving him passed out with vibrating eyes.
For a moment it seems possible Harry might be able to come back, but his mother accidentally dooms him. Christine arrives at the scene and touches June, leading the teen to shift directly into the older woman. If the “Pennines Five” case — where Elena accidentally left five people, Lewis included, in a coma or fugue state after consecutively shifting into them without returning to her own form — is any example, Harry is now trapped in a trance for the rest of his life.
The Innocents further makes this tragic case when June shifts back into her own, now healthy, body. Back to normal, June tries to shake Harry back to consciousness. Instead, he stares at her with the same far-off look his father usually has and mutters, “I’ll see you again soon.” It’s an echo of the words his own father has repeated since Elena shifted into him years ago: “You should meet my son.” Those are also the most important words Lewis, who was having an affair with Elena, said to the McDaniels woman he fell for.
Harry, who opened the drama by taking care of his dad, is now officially in the same place as Lewis, bringing the show full circle. Harry is gone.
At least this awful twist may actually suggest a positive future in a possible season 2. As we’ve seen throughout The Innocents season 1, Harry and June would do anything for each other. Like, say, saving the other from a foggy mental hellscape that erases your every thought. It seems likely June would spend the next season of her series attempting to bring Harry back. The fact that Christine is seemingly cognizant in the final shot of “Everything. Anything,” even hints such a mission might be possible.
If June does figure out how to save Harry from his extremely dark fate, she would also hypothetically be able to help the Pennines Five victims, effectively keeping her mother Elena from going to prison for harming all of those people.
After all, the Netflix YA saga is a love story above all; The Innocents isn't going to leave its dashing male lead as a pile of unblinking bones in the corner. So, what may be a tear-jerking tragedy now may prove to be the best possible set of circumstances for the McDaniels and the Polks.
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