This article contains spoilers for First Kill season 1.
At the center of Netflix‘s First Kill is Juliette Fairmont (Sarah Catherine Hook), a Legacy—pure-blood—vampire and Calliope Burns (Imani Lewis), a vampire hunter. Both girls are next up in their families to take on their first kill, but their feelings for one another complicate things.
The (hopefully) first season of this series is based on a short story from Victoria “V.E.” Schwab and expands the plot to eight episodes. With so much extra time to fill, the ending of First Kill season 1 goes its own way. Here is what you should know about First Kill‘s final act.
How First Kill Differs From V.E. Schwab’s Story
The freshman season of First Kill dramatically expands the story it’s adapted from, adding more characters and worldbuilding but some aspects remain the same, including the setup to this whole saga…
Early on, the blood capsules Juliette takes to curb her appetite become ineffective, and she needs to feed before she loses control. It’s time for her to make her first kill, but she doesn’t want to be a murderer, despite pressure from her family. While she’s trying to figure out how to be normal, and contain her thirst, the new student Calliope catches her eye.
Calliope notices Juliette noticing her, and becomes suspicious that the girl is more than she seems. When Juliette finally works up the nerve to ask her out, her suspicion is confirmed. Calliope is desperate to prove herself to her hunter family after her near-fatal mistake on a hunt. She returns Juliette’s advances, hoping to get close to the vampire.
The two meet up at a party, where a rigged game of spin-the-bottle leads them to a makeout session in the pantry. When Juliette’s fangs pierce Calliope’s neck, Calliope plunges a wooden stake into her chest and runs away. It’s love at first bite. Juliette survives because wooden stakes aren’t fatal to Legacy vampires. When the girls see each other at school the next day, they both have to confront their fears… and desires. As they grow closer, the hostilities between their families grow more intense, and things get more dangerous for everybody.
Calliope and Juliette are center stage in this Shakespearean-inspired romance, but their starcrossed love is only the tip of the stake. Both families have to fight to maintain power within their respective cultural hierarchies, all while contending with their family drama, and the people of Savannah who know monsters are back in their city. The final episode of the season sets the stage for many more conflicts to come, should the show return.
First Kills (Finally)
Mid-season, Juliette saves Calliope from another hunter who tried to kidnap her. When the man attacks them again, Juliette loses control and feeds from him until he dies. When the classmate who was found dead at the party returns to school as a zombie, Calliope protects Juliette, and dispatches the monster. Both girls get their first kills in protection of the other, while both of their families would’ve preferred them to have been each other’s first murder victim.
The Fairmonts – What Are Legacy Vampires?
The Fairmonts are Keepers of the Emerald Malkia—the serpent from the garden of Eden who created all vampires. They’re expected to be paragons of pure-blood vampire culture, but have fallen from grace. Juliette’s first kill is a rite of passage, and she’s expected to debut in front of other Legacy families at her consecration ceremony, a cotillion of sorts—which is meant to reaffirm their position. Things go awry when the Burns attack the gathering, cementing the Legacy’s distrust in the Fairmonts.
Juliette’s dad, Sebastian (Will Swenson) is fatally wounded from the raid, so Elinor makes a deal with her grandmother Davina to save him. They use the Emerald Malkia to turn him into a pure-blood, then he eats grandma. Now Elinor and Margot (Elizabeth Mitchell) have to keep up appearances so the other families can’t make a claim for the serpent. All the while, MA’AM (Mothers Against All Monsters) have formed a mob to flesh out monsters.
The Burns – Who Are The Hunters?
The Burns family are respected hunters in the Guardian Guild, until Calliope’s relationship with Juliette undermines that. The Burns lead an unsuccessful raid on the Fairmonts and lose two friends and fellow hunters while failing to kill any of the legacies. The Guild loses faith in the Burns, and family heads Talia (Aubin Wise) and Jack (Jason R. Moore) will do whatever is necessary to regain the Guild’s trust, and finish the job.
That is, until their kids are at risk. The Burns may have to fight battles on multiple fronts. Talia against Jack, then against both the Guild—who no longer trusts them—and the monsters amassing in Savannah.
What Happens to Theo?
Learning about Legacy vampires leads Theo (Phillip Mullings, Jr.) to realize the vampire who killed his mom was one. He and Apollo (Dominic Goodman) search for the family a crest belongs to, and Apollo goes to Elinor (Gracie Dzienny) for help identifying the crest. Theo finds them hooking up and mistakenly assumes a threat, and a fight ensues. Apollo accidentally stakes Theo, while going for Elinor, and Elinor erases Apollo’s memory of the fight while he watches Theo bleed out and die.
Calliope comes to the scene with Juliette, who stays to clean up. Calliope and Apollo go home to tell their parents Theo is dead, but Theo is there when they arrive. He goes through a painful transition before losing control. He feeds from Juliette, which calms him because it turns out she drank from Theo—intending to end his suffering—but her bite resulted in him turning. Jack and Apollo want to kill Theo, but Talia does not. And after convincing the family to leave her alone with Theo to say her goodbyes, she escapes with him, and takes him to Juliette’s brother, Oliver (Dylan McNamara).
Elinor’s Power Trip
Elinor wants power, and to eventually be the Keeper of the Emerald Malkia. And Juliette’s refusal to kill is a bad look for the Fairmonts. Elinor tries to coddle and gently coax Juliette into killing, and when that doesn’t work, she goes full dark side, going as far as abducting Calliope. When Juliette discovers that Elinor is responsible for Theo’s death, she and Oliver tip off local law enforcement who find Elinor’s storage unit and her kill trophies. With MA’AM on the hunt, it’s in the best interest of the family to leave her in jail. And she won’t kill everyone and escape, because outing legacies would undermine her scheming for power.
What’s Next for Oliver?
Oliver is the season’s biggest bad, lowkey. After being exiled from the family for being particularly sadistic—which he blames on his twin, Elinor—he comes back to Savannah to exact revenge and wreak havoc on the Fairmonts. He wants his parents and twin sister to suffer as he did, and he wants to turn Juliette against them. What at first seems like a petty familial squabble is revealed to be a much bigger plot to destabilize the Fairmonts and make Savannah a nightmare.
Oliver and his witch lover Carmen (Walnette Marie Santiago) have been manipulating things the entire time. They came to Savannah with a horde of miscellaneous monsters and have been unleashing the creature to terrorize the town. They are behind the resurgence of monsters in the area and because of them, the townsfolk are hip to monsters in their midst and mobilized to fight them. Savannah may not remain a safe place for the Fairmonts which appears to be exactly the point. When we last see Oliver and Carmen, they are showing newly-turned Theo their backyard full of awaiting monsters and basically declaring war on the city.
Both girls’ families are going Through It, and their relationship was a major catalyst for that. They defied the naysayers throughout, putting themselves and their families in jeopardy. But now the consequences have encompassed everything around them. Calliope breaks up with Juliette because Juliette turned Theo into the things he hates most, and showed herself to be the monster Calliope hoped she’d never be.
All eight episodes of First Kill are available to stream on Netflix now.