We finally have all the answers about Red Rose in the season finale. Ten months ago, Jacob was still a student at St. Augustine’s, Manchester. He was madly in love with a girl who was way out of his league. Her name is Alyssa. Red Rose was initially conceived as an observer room where Jacob and his friends could talk about Alyssa. They supported him in his courting of her. She downloads the app and they start chatting. A robotic voice joins the conversation too and tells Jacob he is not far from having her.
Jacob brings Alyssa’s favourite book to class the next day to show their aligned interests. The data points in Red Rose are an entire map of her life. Jacob learns everything about her; and so do the other participants. It is the day when he asks her out. Jacob does not want to rush it but the others push him. He remains defiant but eventually gives in. When Jacob starts to tinker around with the lines of code to remove some users, he accidentally feeds the cameras in Alyssa’s house onto the portal. He tries but is unable to undo it.
The next day at school, they finally meet in the library. He expresses his liking for her. She is flattered but says does not reciprocate the liking. He is heartbroken and talks to the people on the platform. They make fun of him. He leaves the chat. That is when The Gardener drops a private message to him. He tells Jacob that the ideas are great and they just need some more tweaking to take them to the next level. Gardener is able to convince Jacob to make him an admin with the promise that he will have Alyssa in the end. He says the portal will be relaunched in a few weeks’ time.
Jacob sees Alysa’s behaviour changing. Once he logs on to the portal, he sees Alyssa alone in the house and the Gardener playing around to scare her. It is the night of episode 1 when Alyssa committed suicide. Jacob tries to warn her through the phone but cannot reach her. He watches her jump to her death. When Jacob threatens to call the police, the Gardener calls and threatens him instead. We even see the Gardener dropping a rose into Alyssa’s grave.
Wren encounters three men in a tunnel who slowly clap her out. Jaya reveals that Simon was trapped by the portal too. The gardener uploaded child abuse material onto Simon’s laptop and forced him to do his dirty job. Noah is confronted once again by I Heart BLTN, whom we saw last in episodes 6 & 7. She asks him if RR has changed his worldview and then tells him the location where Wren is heading to. Noah takes the Dickheads with him. Wren enters the building and Jaya tracks her.
The doors close by themselves. Jaya warns Dickheads to not use the doors as the cameras cover them and Gardener will learn about their presence. Ashley suggests taking the tunnels instead. Rick’s voice guides Wren to a room. He says he will kill her like Wren killed Roche. Wren gets distressed. People on the portal start berating Wren thereafter.
A video starts playing where we see a man had actually gone to Roche’s house and drowned her. She did not commit suicide. The door behind Wren opens and a voice calls her out to “the garden.” Jaya sees someone following the Dickheads on the feed and calls Taz to make a run for it. The male nurse from the hospital is chasing them. Jaya uses her quick wit to click a picture of him through his phone and threatens to “make him famous”. He stops the pursuit and the Dickheads are safe for now.
Wren walks into the garden and sees a bald guy who is most probably the Gardener. There is a live feed going on and the people on the portal are cheering him on. Gardener is holding a knife. Rick pleads with Wren to get out. Antony reaches the ceiling from the outside and asks Jaya t delete RR, even if it means there will be no evidence for the police. Gardener stabs Rick in the leg and then Jaya deletes it. It throws him off and Antony throws a rock through the glass ceiling. Wren takes the upper hand and uses the stick she has brought with him to kill the Gardener. She frees Rick and he asks Wren to leave, taking the blame on himself.
The police arrive at the scene to arrest Rick. Jaya spots I Heart BLTN in the shadows. It is revealed that she is The Gardener and the mastermind behind the plan. Jaya asks if everything is over now and she shrugs nonchalantly. Wren and Dickheads visit Roche’s grave and pay homage to her.
Meanwhile, the finale ends with a scene from Tokyo. We see a group of friends sitting in a bar. Someone called Riku gets a text message to download the Rose app but the colour this time is white and golden. He clicks on download and the screen goes black.
The Episode Review
It is funny how the last five minutes of an entire season can spoil the fun. Red Rose, up until the moment Jaya met I Heart BLTN, the real mastermind, was turning out to be a solid watch. But the final few minutes completely left us in the lurches. Important questions about why everything happened were never put into perspective. We leave season 1 without a functioning understanding of why everything happened.
The bit at the start with Jacob and Alyssa was something we would have liked to see more of. It was tastefully done and brought us closer to Jacob’s frustrations. I guess the show proved a point about how technology can be a boon but at the same time, it can also be used to spread darkness and hurt people.
Tokyo’s scene at the very end raises hopes for a second season. But the writers missed a trick by choosing the easy way out and giving us an unsatisfactory ending.
You can read our full season review for Red Rose here!
2 thoughts on “Red Rose – Season 1 Episode 8 Recap, Review & Ending Explained”
Important questions about why everything happened were never put into perspective.
Red Rose is being used on the Dark Web to torment people for the enjoyment of watching online.
What made you think Jacob accidentally patched in the feeds from alyssa’s phone and home? He clearly did it intentionally, though out of anger and then he regretted it.