'Yellowjackets' Creators Address Fan Theories Ahead of the Season 1 Finale (Exclusive)

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Yellowjackets creators and executive producers Ashley Lyle and Bart Nickerson have read your theories and have a few thoughts. “I shouldn’t admit this but I have been, along with the entire cast and most of our EPs, trolling Reddit a little bit and watching Twitter a little bit,” Lyle tells ET. “I would say that somebody out of the thousands of comments that have come up has rightly predicted almost everything. And it’s not always the most popular of theories, which I find interesting.” 

She adds, “It was really fun to watch people theorize about all of the [characters], particularly Antler Queen... I like that as much as I actually enjoy the completely off-the-wall theories that are completely insane sometimes, but really creative. So, I salute everyone who’s coming up with [those]. It’s really fun to see.” 

Ahead of the season 1 finale, which airs Sunday, Jan. 16 on Showtime, the duo addresses some of the biggest conversations surrounding the surprise hit series starring Christina RicciJuliette LewisMelanie Lynskey and Tawny Cypress as soccer players who live through a plane crash and turn to cannibalism to survive. And no, one of their teammates, Jackie (Ella Purnell), is not traveling through time.  

“Jackie is not a time traveler,” Lyle says, before Nickerson adds, “If we ever start, like, a Jackie time-traveling storyline, that is a cry for help from the creative team. Like, someone is holding us [hostage]. We’re in trouble.” 

Admittedly, the theory came out of something seen on the show, when fans noticed that her notebook featured references to films that came out way past 1996, when the past timeline is set. “I’m just so glad that people are watching so closely and then coming up with that theory,” Nickerson says. “Like, what is more fun than that? But she is not a time traveler. Like, hard no.”  

That said, here’s what they reveal about everything else...  [Warning: Spoilers for the first nine episodes of season 1.]

Yellowjackets
Showtime

Is Jackie going to die? All season, a dark shadow has loomed over Shauna’s (Lynskey in the present and Sophie Nélisse in the past) best friend-turned-frenemy, who has failed to meaningfully contribute to the group’s survival efforts, alienated most of the team, slept with Travis (Kevin Alves), and was almost killed by an abandoned plane found by Laura Lee (Jane Widdop).  

“I kind of worried about everybody. I mean, there are obviously a few characters that we think we know survived,” Nickerson says. “I think that survival is a continuum and what’s going to happen to these people and what those scars are going to look like. So, I would say concern for all the characters is warranted.” 

Yellowjackets
Showtime

Will Adam ever be seen again? After first meeting in a fender bender, Shauna starts having an affair with the mysterious body shop owner and artist (Peter Gadiot) before she thinks that he’s the one blackmailing her and the other adult survivors, Natalie (Lewis in the present and Sophie Thatcher in the past), Misty (Ricci in the present and Sammi Hanratty in the past) and Taissa (Cypress in the present and Jasmin Savoy Brown in the past), who all know the truth about what happened after their plane crashed 25 years earlier. Then in episode 9, Shauna stabs him with a knife only to realize that he had nothing to do with the scheme.  

“I will say that he, as an entity, is something that will be a bit of a wrench in the works for Shauna and the Sadecki family moving forward,” Lyle says. “And, of course, the rest of the women by proxy. He will be a thing that continues to haunt the Yellowjackets moving forward.” 

Yellowjackets
Showtime

Will we ever see Shauna’s book club? The deeper Shauna got into uncovering the blackmail scheme, the more lies she had to make up at home, with her resorting to her book club as an excuse to get out of things with her husband, Jeff (Warren Kole). But now that the secret is out, and Jeff was the one trying to extort money from Shauna’s friends, does that mean the book club is no more?  

“I think that metaphorically, the book club is like a code word for something beneath the surface, that has complicated dynamics. I think that we're going to be at a book club a lot,” Nickerson says.  

Lyle adds, “I think book club, the lie is dead. But I think Jeff has accidentally joined book club.” 

Yellowjackets
Showtime

Is Taissa possessed and are the supernatural elements seen so far real? From the beginning, Taissa has been adamant that any pagan beliefs or ideas are not real. But the outspoken atheist doesn’t even realize that she’s sleepwalking at night and eating dirt. Not only that, but she’s been haunted by visions of wolves and of a man with no eyes. So far, it’s been unclear whether this is happening or it is all just in her head.  

“To some extent, our question is, Does it even matter? You know, what is sort of a literal manifestation of the supernatural and in a way -- and this is going to sound like a dodge, but I promise you it's not because we so fully believe it -- the concept of supernatural is sort of an oxymoron because anything that exists in our world is of this world,” Lyle says. “I think that to look at what is happening to her as a very literal, straightforward possession in some sort of a Judeo-Christian sense of biblical, demonic possession is not necessarily the whole story. But we’re certainly playing in the idea of what people believe in.” 

“It is almost a kind of a Rorschach test in a way, because regardless of what you think there is a phenomenology of a kind of possession, like a thing that some people experience. And then obviously depending on the lens that you're viewing it through, some people will call it psychosis. Some people call it a demonic possession. There’s a continuum of interpretations between those two points,” Nickerson says. “And then I think there’s also a metaphysical question about what it means for something to be real. Like, what would it mean for a demon to be real? And so, I think a lot of those things can be part of the interpretation of what’s actually happening with the supernatural.” 

Yellowjackets
Showtime

Who is the mystery man in the opening credits? As the season has unfolded, the opening credits have proven to be a guide to what’s going to happen. And one of the things fans still haven’t seen yet is the mystery man, who appears to be leering through a doorway. 

Simply put, “You see him in the finale,” Lyle says without disclosing anything more.  

Yellowjackets
Showtime

What’s next for the Antler Queen? As of episode 9, it was revealed that the leader of this new tribe of survivors is Lottie (Courtney Eaton). All season, she’s been embracing their new world order the longer they survive together in the Canadian Rockies and has experienced visions that have proven to be true.  

“With Lottie, she is very much a believer and we’ve talked a lot over the course of developing this show and working with our writers about belief and what it means to people and the power that it can hold,” Lyle says, comparing what Lottie is going through to the true-crime documentary, Wild Wild Country, which explored the dynamic between controversial Indian guru Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and his loyal follower Ma Anand Sheela. “Lottie is more the Osho. And so, the question is who will be her Sheela?”  

By the way, Antler Queen is a term that viewers came up with. But the creators are totally adopting it. “That’s all fandom,” Nickerson says. “But it’s definitely one we’re using now.” 


Yellowjackets airs Sundays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on Showtime.  

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