Recap: The Ending of ‘Sweet Tooth’ Season 3 Is Perfect

By Jonathon Wilson
Published: June 7, 2024 (Last updated: 5 days ago)
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Sweet Tooth Season 3 Episode 8 Recap and Ending Explained
Sweet Tooth. Adeel Akhtar as Singh in episode 308 of Sweet Tooth. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2024

WARNING: THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS MAJOR SPOILERS

Not to be hyperbolic here, but the ending of Sweet Tooth Season 3 is perfect. Episode 8, “This is a Story”, contains everything you could ever want from a finale to this show — action, tough decisions, sacrifices, and genuinely meaningful conclusions to the show’s underlying themes, ideas, and relationships. It’s beautiful and brilliant and is well worth a few of the missteps Sweet Tooth has taken to get here.

What came first, the hybrids or the Sick?

Let’s start with the tree.

At the center of the cave that Gus has spent all season getting to is a giant tree with antler branches and an axe, courtesy of Captain Thacker, buried in its trunk. The tree has been bleeding to death for a century, and its sap, the so-called Blood of the Earth, is what caused both the Sick and the emergence of hybrids, of which Munaq – as we learned in Episode 7 – was the first.

To answer the show’s essential chicken and egg argument of what came first out of the hybrids and the Sick, it was the Sick. Thacker’s crew all contracted it and killed themselves to stop it from spreading. Manuq was born after.

Dr. Singh’s Redemption and Death

Singh never meant to kill Birdie. To be honest, he doesn’t really want to kill Gus either, but he has been driven so mad by his experiences that he has convinced himself it is simply fate. It is his destiny to sacrifice Gus and thus bring about an end to the Sick, which he has spent all of his time on the show trying to do.

But Zhang invoking Rani’s name to spur Singh on has the opposite effect. He is reminded of how his wife left him because of his single-minded obsession with finding a cure. He is reminded of how much he loved her and how devastated she would be to see him now, about to stab an innocent child to death. So, Singh turns the knife on Zhang’s goons instead.

This turns out to be Singh’s final act. He’s crushed inside the collapsing cave a little later, just about redeemed for his actions.

Everyone Gets Sick

If the tree has a will in all this, it’s quite clear that it’s on the side of the hybrids. When Zhang pulls the axe out of the tree during the scuffle, all of the still living human characters, including Jepp, Siana, and Bear, all immediately contract the Sick.

Gus cannot stand all this. He wants to save everyone. When he takes his frustrations out on the tree itself, however, he is taken back to that weird woodland pocket dimension where he can commune with Pubba. Gus’s father explains to him that in this situation, he can’t have his cake and eat it. He has to pick a side and commit to it. Jepp, who in reality is dying on the floor, is present in the vision and can interact with Pubba, who gives him a passing-the-torch-style nod of approval.

Hybrids Inherit the Earth

When Gus returns to reality, he burns the tree down. Immediately, the Sick disappears, and those infected with it are suddenly healed. However, the cave also begins collapsing (this is where Singh meets his end.)

When everyone gets outside, the humans, including Zhang’s people and the folks from the outpost, are no longer fighting. Instead, they have all been united in a beautiful moment – Ginger has given birth, with Bear and Wendy having helped deliver the baby. When Zhang staggers out of the cave, Rosie smilingly walks over and introduces her to her granddaughter – a half-seal hybrid.

Nature has chosen the hybrids. There will be no more humans born after this point. However, thanks to the Sick being eradicated, the ones who remain will be able to live out their lives, together with the hybrids. Everyone seems resigned to this fate, except for Zhang, who is left to wander the frigid wilderness alone.

Who is the narrator in Sweet Tooth?

As Gus and the others are trekking back, Jepp, still badly wounded, has to take a break. He asks Gus to tell him a story, and he does – he tells him this one. As we flash forward, we see the hybrids have built a loving community in the forest, and that Gus is the elder. He married Wendy and had children. He has been the narrator the whole time, telling the next generation of hybrids the story we have seen unfold across three seasons.

In a nice touch, Gus built the harmonious utopia he always wanted. He never lost his idealism or his innocence. He built the world he wanted to live in for himself.

Does Jepp Die In Sweet Tooth Season 3?

The ending of Sweet Tooth Season 3 leaves Jepp’s fate deliberately ambiguous.

Gus is telling Jepp this story, seemingly as he dies in Alaska. He’s badly wounded, and the future version of Gus tells the young hybrids that the Big Man lives on through his stories, just like how he learned to deal with his grief in Episode 4.

So, we know Jepp died eventually. The question is whether or not he died in Alaska, or made it back to Yellowstone to live out the rest of his days happily drinking maple syrup with Gus. The show implies he did by showing him come out of Pubba’s cabin and sit with Gus, watching the kids play. But there’s something about how this sequence is framed that suggests it’s just another part of Gus’s story – a fantasy that he included because it’s less miserable than telling the kids that Jepp died back in Alaska.

Ultimately, though, it doesn’t matter. As Gus said, the Big Man lives on through the stories of his life and his heroic deeds, giving everything to help Gus secure a future for the hybrids and bring an end to the Sick.

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