The Leftovers is one of the best and most infuriating shows on TV, bringing up multiple mysteries each week and rarely solving any of them. It only gets away with the latter because of the former. We’re a season and a half into the show and, among other things, we still don’t know why hordes of people disappeared into thin air on October 14. (And if we’re to believe Damon Lindelof, we never will.) We have no idea whether Kevin (Justin Theroux) is nuts or some kind of tortured prophet. More significantly, as of last night, we’re not sure whether Kevin is even still alive.
Last night’s episode ended with a desperate, sweatier-than-usual Kevin chugging a glass of poison at the behest of Virgil (Steven Williams), who claimed the only way Kevin could shut Patti (Ann Dowd) the hell up was to “do battle” with her on the other side — i.e., die. Virgil assured Kevin that a) he’d done this type of work before and b) he’d quickly revive Kevin, Pulp-Fiction style. Then Virgil went and shot himself in the damn head. The episode concluded with sweet churchboy Michael (Jovan Adepo) dragging Kevin’s lifeless body out of his grandfather’s house.
Did The Leftovers really just kill off its lead? Is Michael an accomplice to murder? Why does Laurie’s (Amy Brenneman) hair look so great all of a sudden? Let’s talk about it, guys.
Is Kevin dead!?
This is really the only question I have a solid answer to. And that answer is “no.” At least, it’s highly unlikely. Here’s why: Not only is Justin Theroux the star of the show and the sole reason why sweatpant sales have soared this year, but many of The Leftovers‘ central mysteries revolve exclusively around Kevin. If Kevin dies, we’ll never know whether his hallucinations were real, or why he does insane shit while asleep, or what really happened to Evie (Jasmin Savoy Brown) and her friends, or why Kevin’s father gave him that copy of National Geographic, or why Kevin’s just stopped running entirely. (Okay, fine, it’s because we all objectified Justin Theroux.) It’s also important to remember that Kevin’s narrowly escaped death before, waking up at the bottom of an empty lake after an apparent failed suicide attempt. As Virgil put it, Kevin’s “got somebody looking out for you, or you’ve got yourself a most powerful adversary.” Either way, nobody’s letting Kevin die. Plus, he’s in Miracle, y’all! Where birds in boxes can live for days!
What the hell, Virgil?
Why did Virgil let Kevin die on his floor, emptying his epinephrine syringe all casual-like? Is he really a “magical black man sitting out on the edge of town,” as Patti so aptly put it? As the New York Times previously noted, Virgil is the name of Dante’s spiritual guide in The Divine Comedy, which, in the context of The Leftovers, likely means this Virgil really is trying to help Kevin get to the other side. But it’s possible that there’s something much more troubling going on, something having to do with the dark past Virgil alludes to — you know, whatever he did to make his own son shoot him in the penis. Which begs further questions: Why did Virgil shoot himself? Virgil knows that Kevin was at the lake the same night Evie vanished, but hasn’t asked Kevin a single thing about that evening. Does he think Kevin had something to do with Evie’s disappearance? Did Virgil have something to do with Evie’s disappearance? Is Virgil even really dead? Why does Virgil have so much clutter in his trailer? Does Virgil need Marie Kondo?