‘Day Shift’ Ending Explained – How did Big John survive?

Day Shift Plot Synopsis

If you’re a fan of vampire movies with a heavy dose of action, you’re probably going to enjoy Day Shift.

Netflix’s new movie stars Jamie Foxx as Bud Jablonski, a working-class family man who is apparently earning a living as a pool cleaner to raise the money needed for his daughter’s education. As we quickly discover at the start of the movie, he isn’t a pool cleaner at all. After laying waste to a little old lady who turns out to be a vampire, his real profession is revealed: Bud is a vampire hunter!

Unfortunately, Bud is not above breaking the rules of his profession, which does not sit well with the union to which he is accountable. When union head Ralph confronts Bud about his rule-breaking, his job is put on the line. Fortunately, his old friend and fellow vampire slayer Big John Elliot (Snoop Dog) arrives on the scene and puts in a good word for Bud with the pencil-pushing union boss.

Big John’s intervention does the trick and Bud is allowed to keep hold of his job, although he does have to put up with union worker Seth (Dave Franco) who is assigned to him to make sure he sticks to union protocol.

Together, Bud and Seth explore LA, kill tons of vampires and occasionally team up with other vampire hunting professionals. One of these is Big John himself but during the movie, the cowboy-hatted badass loses his life. Or does he? Despite a scene where he apparently perishes, he emerges from a sewer just before the closing credits start to roll.

So, how did Big John survive? Let’s take a closer look at the movie.

Why are there vampires in LA?

Local realtor Audrey has been buying up houses in the area and filling them with vampires. Why? Well, it turns out that she is a vampire herself and, worried that the vampire population has been running low, she has started turning humans into vamps to populate LA with more bloodsuckers.

Thankfully, not every vampire is evil. While Bud certainly has his hands full with fanged monsters of the worst kind, he also meets those who are good. These include his neighbour Heather and, unfortunately, his new partner Seth who is turned into a vampire during one of their missions.

Fortunately, Bud doesn’t drive a stake through Heather and Seth’s hearts, although he instinctively decapitates Seth when he realises what the unlucky young man has turned into. Seth isn’t out of the picture for very long though as he manages to fix his head back to his body, although he almost loses it again when he and Bud have a very bumpy car ride!

Seth and Heather agree to help Bud with his vampire-slaying mission and it’s a good job that they do, as Bud needs all the help he can get when Audrey kidnaps his ex-wife and daughter.

Why does Audrey abduct Bud’s family?

Remember the little old lady that Bud kills at the start of the movie? Well, it turns out that she was Audrey’s daughter, despite looking significantly older than her, and this spurs Audrey onto a revenge mission against Bud. As part of her revenge, she abducts Bud’s family, and this causes him to come after her, along with his sharp-toothed buddies Heather and Seth.

Unfortunately, Bud’s attempts to break into Audrey’s lair is made difficult when he and his allies are besieged by a horde of the undead. But before they meet a bloody end, Big John arrives on the scene to save Bud’s neck for the second time and uses a massive chain gun to mow down the foul monsters.

Big John’s heroic act is not without consequences. He is bitten in the neck by one of the bloodsuckers and before he turns into a vamp himself, he blows himself up with a giant bomb, killing all of the other vampires around him and giving Bud the chance he needs to make his getaway.

Does Bud rescue his family?

Yes! Bud has a final showdown with Audrey and sets up a wired trap that decapitates the evil realtor. He is then reunited with his family who now realise that he isn’t a pool cleaner after all.

Bud is able to get back together with his ex-wife and pay for his daughter’s tuition with the money he earns from killing Audrey. It’s a happy ending for him and his family but what about Big John? Is he really dead? It would appear not as he makes an appearance at the end of the movie. So, how did he survive?

Why is Big John still alive?

It’s not clear how Big John survived the explosive blast. As Seth was able to piece himself back together, it might be that Big John was able to do the same. After all, after being bitten by a vampire, he likely became a bloodsucker himself, with the ability to survive just about anything that wasn’t a crucifix or a silver bullet.

Of course, it depends on the type of explosive that Big John used. It might be that it was a UV bomb rather than a regular bomb, as this would have done a better job of killing the sun-allergic vamps. As he wasn’t fully turned at that point, this is likely why he would have survived that kind of blast.

Despite our assumption that Big John became a vampire, we still don’t know if he did so. His final line of dialogue after emerging from the sewer and lighting a joint is “That’s what I love about LA. All the damn vampires”.

What does this mean? We have no idea and it’s no indicator as to whether he is a vamp or not. But if there is ever a ‘Day Shift 2,’ it might be that we get to find out the answer. If he is a vampire and if there is a sequel, one more question will likely be on your mind…

Will Big John be a good guy or a bad guy?

Let us know your thoughts on this and Big John’s survival in the comments below.


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15 thoughts on “‘Day Shift’ Ending Explained – How did Big John survive?”

  1. Big John is more likely a werewolf as he is very well known and respected in the union as the best vampire slayer. There were no humans in the underground tunnels to feed on (only vamps) to heal him quickly if he turned into a vampire after being bitten, and he said ‘you know I work alone’ showing how powerful he is. The bomb was likely a UV bomb (as it was a blue explosion not yellow/orange for normal fire) and the rings he wears are wolves – seen when he said ‘westside for life’ and flashed the ‘W’ sign. The wolf rings are seen more clearly at the end when he lights up the cigar. The ‘W’ in the westside for life hand sign could also have also been a sign representing the ‘W’ for wolf. The explosion did not affect his hat as it was in tact, and his clothes, hair, and the structural side of the building were also in tact showing that the bomb was not a normal bomb. Also werewolves are hardy and the vampire bite would make him woozy but only for a time and he would recover from it, hence him saying at the end ‘that’s what he loves about LA, all the damn vampires’ as he is more likely older than he looks and has been doing this for a loooong time being a werewolf. Just some thoughts xx

  2. The final line is a play on the ending of the movie ‘The Lost Boys’ where the grandfather says: “One Thing About Living In Santa Carla I Never Could Stomach…All The Damn Vampires.”

  3. How does Bud find out his neighbour is a vampire?? Because he had seen her talking to the bad one eyed guy and overheard a little of their conversation. Put 2 and 2 together when one eyed bad guy was chasing him.

  4. Bud saw the guy with one eye in Heather’s apartment. Then when they attacked him when he left the birthday party with his daughter, he saw the same guy again.

  5. I can’t remember to be honest but I’m sure there is a scene when he realises. Please correct me if I’m wrong 🙂

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