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'Wayward Pines' postmortem: The truth is out--so what's next?

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Liane Hentscher/Fox

Warning: This story contains major spoilers from Thursday’s episode of Wayward Pines. Read at your own risk!

The truth is finally out about the town of Wayward Pines—and the results are pretty bleak.

As Ethan (Matt Dillon) explored the treacherous land outside Wayward Pines, his son Ben (Charlie Tahan) was confronted with a terrifying truth at school: The residents—or should we say survivors—are living roughly 2,000 years in the future, in the year 4028 to be exact. What used to make up humanity has evolved and mutated into ruthless, blood-lusting creatures called Abbies or Aberrations. Knowing the end was nigh, scientist David Pilcher (Toby Jones) created a community and hand-picked its residents to ensure the survival of the human race—Pilcher’s ark, if you will. Say it with me: Whuck?! EW caught up with showrunner Chad Hodge to get the scoop on what’s really going on and what’s next:

 

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: The truth about the town is pretty much the same as in the books. Did you ever consider changing the twist at all?

CHAD HODGE: No, never considered changing the twist. Never ever. The truth of what Wayward Pines is, which is what Blake Crouch came up with in his books, that idea is one of the main reasons I wanted to do this show. I thought it was so brilliant and one of those twists that you can go back and literally every plot hole you think you’ve found is plugged.

What are some of the best theories you heard before the twist was revealed?

Everyone thinks it’s a government conspiracy, or that they’re all dead, or that it’s a prison, or that everyone’s a robot—that was one of my mom’s after she had scene Ex Machina. [Laughs] Those are the ones that come to mind. Obviously none of those are true. The brilliant thing about Blake’s idea is that as far as he knows, and as far as I know, nobody has ever guessed that it is before finding out.

Why not tell the residents of Wayward Pines the truth about what’s going on?

That’s a very good question and was one of my first questions when I read the first book. In the next episode, you see a whole explanation visually in a flashback of why telling the residents the truth does not work. It’s pretty harrowing. There’s a major reason why not to tell the residents. David Pilcher didn’t want to keep the truth from the residents at first.

Are we going to get how Pilcher made this happen? And does Pilcher basically have a God complex?

We are going to see how Pilcher made this happen. That comes in the next episode. He peels back the curtain for Ethan and shows him the backstage of Wayward Pines, how it works and how he built it. What I think is very interesting going forward in this show is the nature of good and evil and how it’s very much a gray area in the case of this story and this man. If we’ve done our jobs right, you’ll go back and forth not sure whether Pilcher is a good guy or a bad guy or something in between.

We know Ethan didn’t choose to be there. Are there people who did sign up for this?

There are people who made the choice to be part of Wayward Pines. They are the people that built Wayward Pines. You’ll see exactly who they are in the next few episodes. I’m sure you can guess a few of them so far—the people that have been torturing Ethan up until now. Yes, there are people who made this choice, and who wanted a “better life” in the future.

Are we going to get a definitive ending after the 10 episodes? Or is Fox considering a second season?

You will absolutely get a definitive ending. The series was written and shot as a 10-episode event series with a beginning, middle and end. There is no cheating, manipulation or wink in what I’m saying. I love being able to promise that to the audience and then deliver. We’ve spent the last month saying, “You’re going to find out the truth in episode 5,” and you did. I’m telling you there is going to be an ending and there is. It was always envisioned as 10 episodes. Could there be a second season? Sure. This is a whole world and mythology that could absolutely go forward. The nature of the story itself is endless. This could go on. It comes to an ending, but also there’s a possibility for future story.

Wayward Pines airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET on Fox.