Lost in Space is no stranger to cliffhanger endings, and once again this year, the finale of season 2 finds most of the principal characters in dramatic limbo. In addition to the children of the Resolute failing to reach Alpha Centauri and being “lost in space” once again, the Robinson parents and Don West have no idea how to catch up or where their kids actually are. Somehow we have to account for Dr. Smith’s whereabouts as well since it appears her sacrifice may not have as been as permanent as her floating, shattered helmet would indicate. There’s even quite a bit of speculation surrounding the fate of the Fortuna and the planet where the kids ended up. We can only guess at what’s truly going on, but here’s what we know.
First of all, although we still don’t fully comprehend the connection between Will and his Robot, Lost in Space season 2’s final moments prove that he does not have any sort of special status with the robot race overall. However, the decision to heal Scarecrow by returning him to his designated glyph on the planetary pylon ring did win over the abused former Resolute pilot enough that he sacrificed himself to slow down the advance of his race’s vengeful army. As Penny said, “Maybe one is an anomaly, but two? Maybe it’s the start of something big.” Will may not be able to command the total obedience of robot-kind, but he definitely has some sort of persuasive knack on top of his mental connection.
But what was the ring around both planets’ equators for? There’s not much to go on, but based on Scarecrow’s need to return to a specific symbol that appeared on his own armor seems to indicate he had to “recharge” at a distinct location, perhaps his “home” of sorts. The army that sprung forth upon his return gave the impression that the ring is the nest, if you will, of the entire robot race, which spans the local system and perhaps beyond. Although we don’t have or need an explanation of how the planetary weather has been manipulated to produce regularly occurring lightning storms, the whole phenomenon fits with the idea that robots congregate to gather energy and maintain community.
Scarecrow wasn’t the only one buying time to allow the kids to escape either; Dr. Smith appeared to move at least a few wires out of the way of the not-so-frozen robot soldiers to delay their release. Maureen couldn’t help but be surprised that Smith would put herself in harm’s way, and we saw the duplicitous doctor moments before trying to leave on the Jupiter 8 alone with the Robot. Smith told Maureen that Will’s Robot only needed to say one word to convince her to end her self-centered ways, and that word was “family.” But was there perhaps more to that exchange before Smith gave up the ruse of fixing carbon dioxide scrubbers on the children’s escape vehicle?
On the one hand, the Robot, upon using the wormhole to escape the system, seems genuinely surprised to see an empty samples container identical to the one in which Penny, Smith, Vijay, and the professor escaped death earlier in the season, and we’re just as puzzled to see Smith’s signature scarf alongside the blue ball the doctor had picked up just after leaving the Jupiter 8. On the other hand, how could she have managed it unassisted? The simplest explanation is that she was able to duplicate the earlier effort inside the box, but it would seem the Robot would have to have brought the container onto the Jupiter 8 somehow. Its surprise would thus be related to her being missing from the container, not simply from the container’s presence.
That mystery will likely endure into Lost in Space season 3, as will the nature of what the kids found on the other side of the wormhole. Clearly, the Robot was following a human-made signal not to Alpha Centauri but to the derelict Fortuna, the ship captained by Judy Robinson’s biological father, Grant Kelly. But it’s unclear what the nature of his mission was 20 years ago and how it left his ship so far from home, presumably without the same wormhole technology later employed by the Resolute. As for the destroyed planet creating the debris field around the Fortuna and now the Jupiter 8, that story will present plenty of opportunities for next season’s adventure.
In the meantime, it’s easy to assume that because Don was able to pull Maureen and John out of the Resolute before its destruction took out the robot mothership, they’ll be able to find a way to go after the kids, whom they think went on to Alpha Centauri. However, it seems like they’d have to confront the many other ships that were headed their way, unless the Robot’s departure with the engine drew their attention away from the wreckage, whether there are human survivors or not. Could the Robinson parents acquire another wormhole engine in this system, perhaps through their newly acquired knowledge of the glyphs and the equatorial rings?
Again, speculation is the best we can do, but what fun guesswork it is! Because Netflix dropped the entirety of Lost in Space season 2 all at once, those who bingewatched out of their insatiable hunger for the adventure and intrigue that the show provides are feeling the interminable wait of the hiatus that much sooner, and fan theories are the best way to fill the time until the series returns. We’ve presented our best explanation for what we witnessed in the finale and hopefully planted the seeds for future discussion. Now all we need is news of a renewal!
Michael Ahr is a writer, reviewer, and podcaster here at Den of Geek; you can check out his work here or follow him on Twitter (@mikescifi). He co-hosts our Sci Fi Fidelity podcast and coordinates interviews for The Fourth Wall podcast.