‘3 Body Problem’ season one ending explained
(Credit: Netflix)

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‘3 Body Problem’ season one ending explained

Netflix’s latest sci-fi thriller series, 3 Body Problem, brings us an exhilarating tale of first contact with an alien race, the San Ti. Created by David Benioff, D. B. Weiss, and Alexander Woo, 3 Body Problem is a shot at redemption for the Game of Thrones creators.

Based on Liu Cixin’s acclaimed novel, the series follows the trajectory of humanity’s encounter with an enigmatic alien civilisation nicknamed the San-Ti, who pose an existential threat to Earth.

Season one of the series delves into the first book of Liu Cixin’s trilogy, Remembrance of Earth’s Past. The inaugural season sets the stage for a grand narrative filled with intricate plots and intergalactic diplomatic challenges. 

The series begins in 1960s China and leaves with a world where the fate of humanity hangs in the balance, with tensions escalating and the stakes reaching astronomical heights. In case you need a brief rundown of everything that happened at the end, read on.

What happens at the end of 3 Body Problem?

In the season one finale of 3 Body Problem, several key characters undergo significant developments, while the culmination of the Staircase Project results in a seeming debacle.

A confusing conversation between Jonathan Pryce’s Mike Evans and the San Ti leads them to become suspicious of humans capable of deceit and destruction. The San Ti, fleeing a planet under the constant destructive forces of three suns, deem humanity no better than pests. Instead of coming for peaceful co-existence, the San Ti decided humans should be eliminated for their safety.

Ye Wenjie (Rosalind Chao) returns home after being in Wade and Da Shi’s custody. Having lost everything—her daughter, her partner Evans, and her cult—she vows to help figure out how humanity can tackle the San Ti when they arrive. But ultimately the San Ti send Tatiana to kill Wenjie, which she reveals she had been planning on doing it herself.

Still haunted by the Judgment Day massacre brought upon with her help, Eiza González’s Augustina ‘Auggie’ Salazar becomes increasingly disillusioned with fighting an invasion that is centuries away. She moves to San Luis Potosi, Mexico, to use her nanofibre tech to help the locals filter their water resources better in a bid to improve human lives in the present rather than worry about an uncertain future.

Alex Sharp’s Will Downing plays a pivotal role in the Staircase Project, with his frozen brain serving as a crucial component of humanity’s desperate bid to repel the alien invaders. Jovan Adepo’s Saul Durand is thrust into a position of unexpected prominence as a Wallfacer. Despite his initial reluctance, Saul ultimately embraces his role. 

The Wallfacer Project, devised by Wade (Liam Cunningham), becomes one of humanity’s last resorts to combat the extraterrestrial crisis. Benioff explained to Tudum, “The reason the term was chosen references staring at the wall, trying to achieve a state of enlightenment and not interacting with the outside world. And it’s a pretty damn lonely existence.” 

The Staircase Project was one of humanity’s last-ditch efforts to thwart the San-Ti invasion, utilising a series of atomic bombs to propel a probe towards the oncoming alien fleet. However, despite meticulous planning and preparation, the project ultimately fails.

Jess Hong’s Jin Cheng, who was spearheading The Staircase Project, and  Saul find themselves grappling with the failure of the project, Will’s sacrifice, and possibly dooming humanity. Da Shi, portrayed by Benedict Wong, becomes the guiding force for Saul and Jin. Seeing them mope around, Da Shi takes Jin and Saul to a nearby marsh, where they encounter swarms of cicadas. “People hate bugs, been trying to get rid of them forever,” Da Shi tells them. “Look around, they’re not going anywhere.” 

After this practical bit of wisdom, the season ends with our heroes looking hopeful yet again. The fight isn’t over yet.

You can watch 3 Body Problem on Netflix and catch the trailer here: