‘Masters Of The Air’ Episode 6 Recap & Ending Explained: Did Bucky Reunite With Buck?


The fifth episode of Apple’s Masters of the Air was largely centered around the attack on Munster to take down the railroad marshaling yard. Some questions were raised about the nature of this mission because they were about to drop bombs on civilians. Bucky silenced any critical opinions by painting every German citizen with the same Nazi brush and soldiering on. And while they did manage to do what they planned to do, Bucky’s entire fleet took heavy damage, and only a handful of them survived the ordeal by jumping out of their planes. Bucky landed in Westphalia, Germany, and seemingly made his way to a farm. Rosie showed a lot of courage, and his fellow airmen killed a bunch of Nazis, but all of them got injured physically as well as mentally. During the concluding moments of the episode, we saw Crosby mourning the losses of so many good men, especially his best friend Bubbles. Let’s find out where these characters are in today’s episode.

Spoiler Alert

Rosie Goes to Therapy

Episode 6 of Masters of the Air opens with Bucky getting hunted down and being apprehended by the villagers of Westphalia. Then, the focus shifts to the narrator of the show, Crosby, as he travels to Balliol College in Oxford to represent the 100th at a conference between the Allied nations. There’s a sweet, cross-cultural moment where James (the concierge?) corrects Crosby’s pronunciation, and he keeps imitating James until he gets it right. But things get dark as soon as he opens his wife’s letter, and there’s a line where his wife refers to Bubbles because she is unaware of his death. As James deals with the complex emotions rumbling in his mind, the episode goes to Rosie and his team as they enter Coombe House for an extended therapy session. Correct me if I am wrong, but I think that’s the Englefield House (and I won’t apologize for recognizing it because of X-Men: First Class). While everyone is really happy to be there, Rosie seems uncomfortable and is eager to get back on his plane. Francy, the lady in charge of getting the officers acquainted with this “temporary normal,” says that she doesn’t know when he’ll get the chance to do so and urges him to simply relax and trust the process. 

This calming environment is purposefully juxtaposed with the grueling situation Bucky is in. He and a few other survivors from the 381st are purposefully made to walk through a German colony that has been bombed by the Brits. It offers a moment of self-reflection for the airmen and those who keep baying for war in the name of patriotism and religious supremacy, and things get violent as they begin lynching the Americans. The Nazis use this opportunity to shoot the American airmen, point blank, except for Bucky. It’s a pretty complex moment because you’re supposed to empathize with the German citizens because they are the victims of a war that has been ignited by a fascist like Adolf Hitler. But then again, these very German citizens brought him to power, so should you actually empathize with them? Then you see the dead bodies of kids, and that takes the introspection back to square one. When you see them lynching the Americans, you are supposed to wonder if these bloodthirsty airmen deserve this. Then you see the Nazis using the chaos to murder the airmen, and the lasting impression ends up being, “To hell with fascists and fascism.” To make things even more jarring, the episode again cuts back to Rosie preparing for therapy with Doctor Huston, as he is clearly uncomfortable with relaxing while his friends go to war, and then cuts back to Bucky escaping into the forest after jumping out of a horse carriage carrying the dead airmen. It’s all purposeful and, hence, impactful.

Bucky is interrogated by Lt. Ulrich Haussmann

At Oxford, Crosby seems to be getting comfortable by attending lecture sessions about the war, as he is seen silently making jokes about the Brits. Later on, he hilariously meets his roommate, Subaltern Wesgate. It’s hilarious because Crosby thought that his roommate was going to be a man, and that’s why he was having fun while being half-naked, but now that it’s a woman, he realizes that he has to be a bit more “decent.” That said, once they start going about the college and interacting with other aviators who are attending the conference, it becomes clear that Wesgate has Crosby’s back. She is the extrovert that an introvert like Crosby needs to get through difficult situations. During a late-night drinking session, it also seems like she is filling the gap in Crosby’s life that has been left by Bubbles’ death. Elsewhere, Rosie goes about the Coombe House, and, initially, everything seems fine, but when he notices an airman crying in a corner, reality hits hard. Late that night, unable to sleep, he tries to go for a stroll around the castle and encounters Huston. And that’s when Rosie actually blurts out that he isn’t comfortable with relaxing, but Huston somewhat convinces him that he needs to chill out or else he won’t be of any use in the war that he thinks is his final calling. 

This is quite a complex moment because the inference should be that there shouldn’t be a war in the first place, especially one that requires “mental health breaks.” It’s such a luxury to get to kick your feet up and drink and enjoy music during a war where people are dying, and it’s confusing if that’s a healthy thing or a deeply discomforting thing. Well, things are obviously worse for Bucky, who is arrested by the Nazis and taken to Dulag Luft in Frankfurt, which is a transit camp for prisoners of war. There, he is interrogated by Lt. Ulrich Haussman (yes, that’s the amazing Louis Hoffman from Dark). Ulrich seemingly knows everything about Bucky and tries to use that as a pressure point in order to force Bucky to spill some details about what the Americans and the Allied Forces are planning. He fails because Bucky keeps repeating his name, his designation, and his serial number. As a result, he is sent to a holding cell. It’s a really cold scene, and Louis is great in it because his soft voice stands in stark contrast with the stuff that he is saying and the character he is playing.

Did Bucky reunite with Buck?

Francy wakes Rosie up, and he is seen reading Of Mice and Men by the canal, apparently at peace and accepting the fact that he needs this to be functional. Crosby, a married man, by the way, seems to be catching feelings for Wesgate. Coincidentally, that’s when she gets a letter asking her to leave Oxford and probably return to her post. Apparently, Crosby also goes back to his base in Thorpe Abbotts. So does Rosie. And they all seem to be preparing for their next attack on Wilhelmshaven, which is a town in Germany. This is obviously juxtaposed with Bucky’s harrowing ordeal as he is made to board a train with the rest of the prisoners of war. One of them tries to escape, but he is shot down, and his body is thrown into the carriage so that the rest of the prisoners have to tolerate the stench of the decaying body during their journey. Bucky and the prisoners also notice a train carrying Jewish prisoners to the concentration camps or, worse, to the gas chambers.

At the end of Masters of the Air episode 6, Bucky reunites with Buck at the Luftwaffe-controlled Stalag Luft III in Sagan. Both of them are seemingly relieved that they are alive, but then the creepy sensation settles in that they don’t know how they are going to make it out of there alive. I don’t know if this is a spoiler, but if you look at the story of the real-life Bucky, you’ll see that he did survive the concentration camp, as did the real-life Buck. However, not much is known about what they faced there. I don’t know if the show will give a factual recounting of the events or a fictional one, but either way, it’ll definitely be a harrowing one.

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Pramit Chatterjee
Pramit Chatterjee
Pramit loves to write about movies, television shows, short films, and basically anything that emerges from the world of entertainment. He occasionally talks to people, and judges them on the basis of their love for Edgar Wright, Ryan Gosling, Keanu Reeves, and the best television series ever made, Dark.

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