joseph quinn and lupita nyong'o standing next to each other with a cat
(Paramount Pictures)

‘A Quiet Place Day One’s Emotional Ending Explained

A Quiet Place Day One has ended. Long live A Quiet Place Day One! In case you couldn’t tell from the title, this prequel to A Quiet Place and its sequel gives us a peak into the first day of Earth’s invasion by aliens. What’s up with the ending? This:

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Ending with a bang

Spoilers for the ending of A Quiet Place Day One ahead

A Quiet Place Day One begins with the story of the terminally ill Sam, played by Lupita Nyong’o, who is living in a hospice with her adorable little cat named Frodo. The hospice staff organizes a fun little trip to New York City to see a show, and Sam joins them on the promise of a New York City slice of pizza. What she gets is a slice of destruction.

While in the city, a species of sound-sensitive aliens called Death Angels descend upon the planet and begin to murderize everyone and everything within earshot. Sam manages to escape with dear Frodo in tow and take shelter in a theater, but rather than take a ferry to safety with the rest of the survivors, she decides to go it alone in search of pizza. She’s gonna die anyway, she reasons. Why not die with a slice in her hand?

Sam and a law school student named Eric she met in FiDi trek all the way to Patsy’s Pizzeria in Harlem only to find the ruins of it. Instead, they decide to hit up a jazz bar called Loretta’s where Sam’s dad used to perform. Eric goes out on the hunt for pizza once again, because NYC pizza is just that good. Good enough to risk being torn to shreds by aliens for.

After eating their fill, they decide that they’ve had enough of New York City and make their way towards a convenient boat that they spot sailing down the Hudson. The only thing standing in their way is a group of Death Angels waiting to swoop down upon them. Sam, knowing that she’s doomed for death already, makes a plan to distract the Death Angels so Eric and Frodo can escape.

Sam sets off in the opposite direction from the ferry, setting off car alarms and making a bunch of noise. Terrifyingly, Eric ends up making a sound himself just before he and Frodo reach the boat. The aliens bum-rush Eric, but he dives into the water just in time and is pulled aboard the boat with Frodo. He gives Frodo a little squeeze, and then finds a note from Sam in his pocket warning him not to overfeed the little guy. They then sail away to presumed safety, Long Island I’m guessing?

Her cat safe and her mission complete, Sam decides enough is enough and that she wants to die on her own terms. She goes for a stroll about the city blasting “Feeling Good” in her iPod speakers. She then decides to take the speakers out her ears and point them out at the empty city. The shadow of a Death Angel appears behind her right as the beat of the Nina Simone song drops, and the screen cuts to black.

So what happened to Sam?

Sam’s dead, gang. But that was the plan all along. She was ready to die while distracting the creatures from Eric, but then Eric ended up making noise, double distracting the creatures back towards himself. It’s awfully convenient that these interstellar sonic apex predators are so easily distracted, no? After seeing her friend and cat safely off, she decides to die by alien. It’s not the first time in the series a person has chosen to die this way. In the first Quiet Place film, John Kransinski’s family man Lee stumbles upon an old man mourning a corpse in the woods. The old man screams in grief and rage and is killed by the creatures. While it’s never made explicitly clear, it’s assumed to be a purposeful suicide and not just an emotional outburst. Lee later dies in the exact same manner, screaming at a Death Angel in order to distract it from killing his own children.

So do Eric and Frodo survive?

Yes, for now at least. Eric and Frodo make it onboard a ship and sail away into the distance. The Death Angels don’t seem to be fans of water, and show no desire or ability to swim. (Or rather, they seem to be able to swim, as a chase through a flooded subway tunnel shows us, but they don’t know the importance of coming up for air and just drown.) As it turns out, Eric and Frodo are heading to the island where the events of A Quiet Place 2 occur. Bummer is, an alien eventually makes its way to the island and kills many of the inhabitants. But it’s possible that Eric and Frodo survived that too! We never see them in the sequel, but we never see their bodies either! No news is good news!

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Jack Doyle
Jack Doyle (they/them) is actually nine choirs of biblically accurate angels crammed into one pair of $10 overalls. They have been writing articles for nerds on the internet for less than a year now. They really like anime. Like... REALLY like it. Like you know those annoying little kids that will only eat hotdogs and chicken fingers? They're like that... but with anime. It's starting to get sad.