Netflix's 'Bodies' Recap And Ending Explained

In the finale of 'Bodies,' Elias vanishes due to a disrupted time loop, while Iris Maplewood's unexplained presence hints at unresolved mysteries in this mind-bending series.

Bodies Ending Explained

The Netflix series 'Bodies' takes viewers on a time-bending journey filled with shocking revelations, and it all comes to a head in the explosive finale. In this article, we're diving deep into the ending of 'Bodies' and exploring the fate of Elias Mannix. If you haven't watched the series yet, be warned - spoilers ahead!

Recap: A Complex Web of Events


The story kicks off with DS Shahara Hasan's discovery of a lifeless body on Longharvest Lane. Her investigation leads her down a rabbit hole as she unravels the mysteries surrounding this gruesome find. This same body, however, pops up in different time periods, with various detectives stumbling upon it. In 1890, DI Edmond Hillinghead finds a photograph that hints at the presence of a mysterious man nearby, while in 1941, DS Karl Whiteman encounters the same body.

Fast forward to 2053, and Detective Iris Maplewood stumbles upon the very same body, only to discover that the man is, inexplicably, still alive. In this future, New Britain is under the rule of Commander Elias Mannix, who happens to be a close friend of Syed Tahir, the boy who led Hasan to the body. This discovery sparks Hasan's interest, leading her to dig deeper into Elias' life.

Elias, arrested by Hasan, reveals a chilling secret: a bomb that could cause unimaginable destruction. Meanwhile, Hasan learns that the fingerprints found on the body match those of Sir Julian Harker, a suspect in the 1890 investigation. It's a shocking twist - Elias is somehow linked to the Harker family, even more surprisingly, Hasan's boss, DCI Barber, is connected to Elias.

Elias is driven by a dark plan, one that involves detonating the bomb he planted between 1890 and 1941. This plan aims to shape the future of Britain under his rule, but it comes at a tremendous cost, including the life of Hasan's son, Jawad.

A Race Against Time


In 2053, Maplewood's investigation takes an unexpected turn when she identifies the body as Gabriel Defoe, a physics professor. Her world is turned upside down when she finds Defoe still alive in his workplace, while the body she discovered is being cared for by The Executive.

Defoe's reappearance sets in motion a series of events that will determine the fate of London and its residents. Maplewood, joining forces with Hasan, aims to stop Elias from carrying out his time-traveling scheme, ultimately preventing the devastating bomb blasts of 2023.

However, Maplewood's loyalty takes a twist, as she starts to believe that Hasan and Defoe are nothing more than terrorists. She betrays them by revealing the existence of the time machine that Defoe had created. Elias enters the scene, confirming his involvement in the 2023 bombings to Maplewood.

Defoe attempts to follow Elias through time, but a gunshot disrupts the process, leading to Defoe appearing in different years as a lifeless body. Hasan exposes Elias to Maplewood, who realizes the urgency of stopping him to save countless lives.

Before taking on Elias, Hasan and Maplewood venture back in time, attempting to save Defoe from his eventual fate. The goal is to nurse him back to health and have him lead them in the mission to stop Elias from wreaking havoc on London.

The Explosive Conclusion

As the series hurtles towards its climax, the fate of London hangs in the balance. Maplewood travels to 1890, where she encounters DI Hillinghead. She reveals a startling truth - Elias is not Julian Harker from the past, but a man from the future. Elias intends to marry Hillinghead's daughter, Polly, ensuring his own birth in a future generation. This revelation infuriates Hillinghead, leading to a confrontational showdown with Elias.

Elias, upon traveling back in time, embarks on a quest for love, a deep yearning that stems from his childhood marked by abandonment. His actions, directed by this newfound desire for affection, lead him to create an organization known as "Know You Are Loved." Using knowledge from the future, he makes friends and marries a woman, hoping to experience love and recognition.

Hillinghead's words, however, shatter Elias' plans. He begins to question his own choices and actions. His life takes a significant turn when Polly discovers that he killed her father. The love he once received from her turns mechanical, devoid of any genuine affection. Even on his deathbed, Polly remains emotionally distant. Elias contemplates the decision to detonate the 2023 bomb, but Polly's desire for vengeance pushes him to record a message convincing his younger self not to go through with it. She wishes to see the world suffer, just as she did.

This internal struggle leads Elias to create a secret recording, one that advises his younger self not to detonate the bomb. He entrusts this recording to Whiteman, who plans to kill him. Elias implores Whiteman to keep the recording, with the hope that Hasan will discover it. Knowing that Hasan is a police officer, he hides the recording in a police pub frequented by Whitechapel officers.

Hasan, continuing Maplewood's mission to thwart Elias, travels to 2023. Alongside Defoe, she locates the recording and plays it for the younger Elias. He listens and is convinced not to proceed with the bomb detonation. He destroys the key to the second detonator, reuniting with his mother. In a poignant moment, Hasans from 2023 and 2053 share a hug, celebrating the prevention of the catastrophic blasts.

Elias' Mysterious Disappearance

In the wake of preventing the 2023 London bombings, Elias's fate takes a dramatic turn. He vanishes from the timeline, leaving viewers to wonder about the implications of his absence. The reason behind Elias's disappearance is intricately tied to the time loop he was caught in.

Elias's very existence hinges on a complex time loop that involved him traveling back to 1890, assuming the identity of Julian Harker, and marrying Polly. This marriage was a crucial link in the chain, as it led to the birth of Elias's father, Barber. In turn, Barber's existence was essential for Elias's birth.

However, when Elias decided not to detonate the bomb in 2023, the entire time loop was disrupted. Without the bomb blasts, Elias never became the Commander of New Britain, and he never discovered the time machine in 2053. Since Elias couldn't travel back in time without the time machine, the loop that extended to 1890 was effectively broken.

In essence, Elias's decision to spare London from the devastating bomb also erased his own existence. His presence in the timeline was intricately linked to the events he set in motion, and without those events, he ceased to exist.

The Mysterious Taxi Driver: Maplewood's Presence


A perplexing aspect of the story is the appearance of Iris Maplewood as a taxi driver in 2023, despite her not supposed to exist as an adult in this timeline. This raises questions about the nature of time and the persistence of certain events and individuals.

In the new timeline, the 2023 bombings never occurred, which means Elias never rose to power, and Maplewood was never employed by him to investigate Hasan's Chapel Perilous or discover Defoe's time machine. This should, theoretically, make it impossible for Maplewood's 2053 self to appear in front of Hasan in 2023.

One possible explanation is the existence of a new time loop. Maplewood might be traveling backward in time from 2053 to 2023 after Defoe discovers the Throat in the later year. Their paths could have accidentally crossed, providing Maplewood with access to a time machine. However, her knowledge of Hasan, despite the bombings not happening, complicates this theory.

The existence of Maplewood's knowledge about Hasan suggests that the original time loop might not have been completely broken. Elias may not be the sole controller of the loop, as hinted by the presence of a building in 2023 with "KYAL" lights, which shouldn't exist in this new timeline. This indicates the possibility of either a new loop or the old one persisting due to the involvement of other significant agents.

In a statement by creator Paul Tomalin, the mystery surrounding Maplewood and KYAL in 2023 remains a mystery. The characters were brought to an end, but an ellipsis is left open for potential future developments, should the demand arise. “The characters were brought to an end. But that being said, if it’s a ridiculous hit and people are storming Netflix [for more], we left that ellipsis just in case, with a very exciting idea that does justice to the setup and develops it further,” Tomalin told Cosmopolitan.