EntertainmentWhat happens at the end of Spiderhead? (spoilers)

What happens at the end of Spiderhead? (spoilers)


Spiderhead starring Chris Hemsworth, Miles Teller and Jurnee Smollett is now streaming on Netflix. This offbeat sci-fi thriller is a captivating and easy to watch movie perfect for a weekend night in.

Major spoilers ahead for Spiderhead

In the movie, Hemsworth plays pharmaceutical genius Steve Abnesti who runs an experimental prison facility where prisoners can commute their sentences in exchange for agreeing to drug trials. But these mind-altering drugs can be dangerous and when one prisoner, Jeff, falls for another, he has to find a way to save them both.

But what happens at the end of the movie? What is Steve’s real agenda? What happens to Jeff and Lizzy? What becomes of the Spiderhead facility? Let’s break down the movie’s many twists.

Spiderhead ending: Why did Jeff and Lizzy do to get imprisoned?

In the aftermath of a party, Jeff got into his car and drove drunk while escorting his friend and his wife, Emma. Despite claiming he was cool to drive, he clearly wasn’t and ended up crashing the car headlong into a tree, resulting in both passengers dying. Jeff was convicted on two charges of voluntary manslaughter.

Despite telling Jeff that she was imprisoned for robbery, we later find out that Lizzy actually got sentenced to prison because she forgot her infant baby in a car for three hours while she went to work, resulting in her child’s death.

What does Darkenfloxx do?

Darkenfloxx is a drug discussed frequently in the movie as it becomes part of Steve’s trial to test the “love drug” N-40. It causes extreme mental and physical duress. When Heather’s MobiPak gets flooded with the drug, she ends up committing suicide in front of Steve, Jeff and Mark.

Spiderhead - Netflix

SPIDERHEAD. Chris Hemsworth as Abnesti in Spiderhead. Cr. Netflix © 2022

Spiderhead ending: What is Steve’s real agenda?

Steve tells Jeff and the other inmates that everything they do is directed by an unseen committee. In reality, that’s not true. The entire facility is actually just an experimental lab for Steve’s personal company, Abnesti Pharmaceuticals, meaning Steve has been lying the whole time.

Beyond that, Steve’s real goal isn’t to test various drugs to better the world, but to test one singular drug called B-6, or his test name OBDX (obedience). This drug would force people to do whatever they’re told, even if it is antithetical to their beliefs. Every inmate is on B-6, it’s how Steve has cajoled them all into allowing and acknowledging the drip and essentially letting him use them as guinea pigs.

But B-6 has one problem and that’s that the user will not kill or harm something they love, hence why Steve keeps trying to make one of the inmates fall in love using N-40 and then force that person to administer Darkenfloxx to make them comply with hurting/killing someone they care about, thus proving that B-6 creates universal obedience. Steve wants to change the world into a place where people follow the rules and can be completely controlled at all times.

Why does Steve give himself N-40?

Throughout Spiderhead, you might have noticed Steve ramping up his levels of N-40 while alone. It’s not explicitly clear why Steve does this, but I assume it relates to B-6. If he loves himself enough, he would not commit suicide or hurt himself if anyone ever tried to use B-6 (OBDX) against him. That’s my current theory anyway.

What is the significance of the bingo card?

Steve uses the bingo card to name his drugs and also to keep track of all the drugs he has already successfully proven work with B-6, meaning he knows people will agree to take them because of the control B-6 gives him over each person. It’s basically like Steve is trying to see how far he can push people with B-6 to test their obedience. That’s why B-6 and N-40 are the only two on the card without stars on them because Steve hasn’t made them work in tandem the way he wants to yet.

What happens at the end of Spiderhead?

In the movie’s final act, Jeff convinces Mark to betray Steve. Mark becomes increasingly wary of Steve’s actions throughout the film and that culminates with Heather’s suicide. After that, Mark secretly gives Jeff access to Steve’s MobiPak controls (and adds Darkenfloxx to Steve’s vials).

Realizing that Jeff is in love with Lizzy, Steve tries to force him to administer Darkenfloxx to her. Jeff refuses and ultimately turns the tables on Steve, using the administration app on the phone to mess with Steve’s MobiPak instead of Lizzy’s. He tells Steve that Mark has left the facility and is going to bring the police there.

Steve also admits that Lizzy and Jeff have actually been free to go for awhile now, but Steve has held them there anyway.

A skirmish ensues between the two men with Steve eventually getting the upper-hand and flooding Lizzy’s pack with Darkenfloxx. Lizzy tries to strangle herself with her belt while Steve overpowers Jeff. When Jeff sees Lizzy on the verge of death, he gets a burst of strength and shoves Steve away from him, steals his keys and rushes to save Lizzy. Jeff unlocks her MobiPak and removes all the vials just in time.

Steve slowly recovers (but his vials have all been flooded and damaged too and he no longer has his keys to remove the MobiPak) and gets on the intercom to tell all the inmates that Jeff and Lizzy are threatening to ruin their entire program, setting all the inmates against them. Luckily, the pair manage to fight them off and escape to freedom.

Meanwhile, Steve also tries to escape and makes it to his seaplane as the authorities arrive to the facility. But because he’s still fighting the effects of all the drugs at once, Steve ends up crashing his plane into a nearby island. We can assume that the subsequent explosion kills him.

Does Spiderhead differently than the short story Escape from Spiderhead?

Yes, the movie makes some notable changes from the source material, “Escape from Spiderhead” by George Saunders. In the short story, Steve is actually Ray Abnesti and Ray tries to force Jeff to administer Darkenfloxx to Rachel (Lizzy’s character) in a similar experiment we saw in the film.

Seeing that Jeff is refusing to comply, Ray leaves to get a warrant that would force Jeff to do as he says. Left alone, Jeff administers Darkenfloxx on himself instead of Rachel and kills himself while under the drug’s influence. A voice in his head tells him he can still recover from this if he wants to, but Jeff ultimately chooses to die so he can never hurt anyone again.

Does Spiderhead have a post-credits scene?

No, there is no post-credits scene at the end of Spiderhead.


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