Homecoming Season 2: A very unhappy ending explained

Homecoming Season 2 concludes with an unhappy ending for its characters.

Homecoming Season 2 was…interesting, to say the least. It doesn’t quite live up to the hype that Season 1 did, and sans Julia Roberts, it just didn’t feel the same. This isn’t to say that Janelle Monáe doesn’t shine in her role as Alex/Jacqueline, but her character’s journey felt more like a dragged out déjà vu.

Following the lead of the season before it, the second season follows the mystery of Geist and its shady practices, aka erasing people’s memories, specifically veteran’s traumatic memories so they could be sent back out to fight.

It’s a very morbid idea, and while I wasn’t a fan of Homecoming’s second season, I was glad that we ventured away from seeing their horrible practices in action. Watching Walter Cruz (Stephan James) and his fellow Homecoming participants gradually lose their sense of self and memory was all too devastating. Season 2 takes a different approach to the story, but at the core, it is essentially the same.

The path towards redemption

Homecoming Season 2 ends on a very weird and, well, sort of redemptive note. It’s hard to connect with Monáe’s character because we only got 7 episodes with her, so handing over the reins to James’ Walter Cruz felt like the right decision.

However, the ending didn’t feel happy in any way. It was a very abrupt and strange way to conclude the season, and I think many of us have a lot of questions we need to be answered. Clearly, the ending left us scratching our heads, so let’s break down what the Homecoming Season 2 ending might actually mean.

A very long story short, Alex is accidentally injected with the Homecoming serum and a series of events followed which led her to the opening scene of the Season 2 premiere. As the season goes to explain and reveal, Walter Cruz was the one who injected Alex with the serum, something she initially set out to do so Cruz would forget about filing a complaint against Geist.

Similar to the first season, the story goes back and forth in time to string the storyline together. And the more it does that, the viewers begin to understand that the story is more about Walter Cruz and what happened to him versus Alex’s journey.

But it is through Alex that we get a better perspective on how the Homecoming program affected Walter. For a season that was rather slow and dragged along, I did appreciate this unique way to tell Walter’s story and his path to putting the puzzle pieces of his life together.

Who is Leonard Geist?

Alex’s role in this (pre-memory loss) is to basically handle those in a position of power. And by handle I mean that anytime they screwed up, it was her job to swoop in and make sure their mistakes were not apparent to everyone else.

But as we dive deeper into Homecoming Season 2, we learn that Leonard Geist (Chris Cooper), the founder of the Geist company, has no idea that his company is involved in the shenanigans of the Homecoming training program.

To correct the error of his company’s ways, Geist takes matters into his own hands. I thought it was more of a selfish move so the world would not find out what the Homecoming program is. Of course, when the Department of Defense pushes their way in with their own motives, Geist finds himself at a crossroads.

Homecoming

Homecoming: Season 2. Image Courtesy Ali Goldstein/Amazon Studios

An unusually fit punishment

We inevitably arrive at the Homecoming Season 2 finale with a very weird twist courtesy of Walter Cruz, who finally gets his file from Geist. He feels wronged (as he should) for what Geist did to him, and the only punishment he sees fit is to give them a taste of their own medicine, er juice.

What’s rather shocking in the finale is how it ties back to the Season 2 premiere, helping us understand the importance of Leonard Geist’s speech to his workers. I thought he was losing it, but the finale sheds light on his indirect warning to those that work for this company.

They just went along with what was happening, with no regard for the repercussions. Such blind loyalty isn’t always a good thing, and it’s that ignorance that prevents them from seeing that they’re toasting with juice and not champagne.

If they would have noticed that, then maybe they would have honed into the atrocity they were about to unleash on themselves. One by one everyone takes a sip of their juice and falls to the ground as their memories vanish from their very minds.

It was a very slow burn to get to this point, and I might add it was too slow, but it sort of pays off in the end. Sweet justice, if you want to call it that.

Was punishment on this grand scale cruel? It’s one of those situations where there isn’t a clear answer, and it’s what Homecoming Season 2 leaves us wondering. And the fact that Leonard Geist knows of Walter’s intentions and his plan is another moral conundrum to think about.

In the end, we’re left wondering what comes next, and how these individuals will go about living their lives with their memories stripped away. Not to mention, it’s particularly curious to focus on Walter who doesn’t seem too riled up over what he’s done. I mean, can we blame the guy after what Geist put him through? But still, he seemed rather content with his decision.

Homecoming Season 2 ends in a full circle way but doesn’t quite give Walter everything he lost back. He sort of just imposed the same torture on others, but it’s not like he got back his memories in the process. The cycle of Geist’s shady practices sort of continues on in what Walter did, but as we see him in finale’s last few moments, he’s moving forward.

If there is a Season 3, we can bet that the story will involve Walter going out on a mission to help other victims of the Homecoming program. He knows who Heidi’s other patients were, and since his victory can’t involve the return of his memories, I think he feels the least he can do is help those that don’t even know they need it.

And that, my friends, is Homecoming Season 2 in a weird, crazy nutshell. 

What did you think of the ending? Did you like how it all came together or would you have preferred a different conclusion? Let’s talk in the comments below!