‘Obituary’ Ending Explained & Series Recap: Will Elvira Stop Killing In The Future?


Obituary, created by Ray Lawlor, makes us privy to a girl named Elvira who had a fascination with the entire concept of death, and she dreamt of becoming a successful writer one day. So she combined the two and took a job as an obituary writer at one of the media houses in the town. Elvira might have been passionate about writing, but she came to know that there was another thing that gave her the kind of satisfaction and contentment that even writing couldn’t. So, let’s find out what happened with Elvira and if she was able to get out of that mess.

Spoiler Alert

Why had Emerson joined the Kilraven Chronicles?

Emerson Stafford didn’t know it back then, but it was a planned move on Clive Cavendish’s part to lure him to work for the Kilraven Chronicle newspaper. Since the readership was declining with every passing day, Hughie Burns decided to either fire people or keep them as freelancers as he was not in a capacity to pay people full-time. Clive decided to quit, but he still wanted someone to take the lead on the Maria Riedel story. He wanted to find out who the real killer was, as he knew that the man convicted in the case, i.e., Maria’s husband, Daniel, was innocent. Emerson was working with Clive, and the latter gave him all the evidence that he had documented over the years. Emerson met Elvira, and both of them felt attracted towards each other from the very first moment. But Elvira’s friend Mallory, took her chances, and she started dating Emerson, though she had an idea that Elvira liked him.

At first, Emerson didn’t believe that Daniel, Maria’s husband, was not the killer, but then he had a chat with him and realized that probably what the whole society believed to be the truth was merely a convenient route, and the authorities didn’t want to investigate what happened on that fateful day. So, Emerson began his investigation, but what he didn’t know was that some powers had eyes on him and were probably a step ahead at all times.

Why did Elvira kill Sandy Benson?

At the beginning of Obituary, we saw that Elvira Clancy had pushed Sandy Benson off the cliff and killed him (at least, that’s what she and everybody else believed). Sandy was also a weird character, as he had told the entire town that he was suffering from cancer when, in reality, he was not. He probably liked the attention, which is why he created a blog, and he has taken an initiative to walk 5 kilometers every day to raise money for charity. Elvira’s boss, Hughie, had told her that she wouldn’t be getting a monthly payment as the Kilraven Chronicle, the newspaper, was not making a lot of profit. Elvira only got paid for the obituaries she wrote, so she kept a check on anyone whom she believed could possibly die in the near future. That is why she was keeping track of Sandy’s movements, and one day, he really triggered her by insulting her late mother, which is why she ended up pushing him. The thought of killing people who were suffering from terminal illnesses, or were old or maybe were bad elements of the society had crossed Elvira’s mind a lot of times, and with Sandy, for the first time, she ended up doing it in reality. 

Days went by, and Benson was believed to be dead, but one fine day, he came back home, and the news spread like wildfire. From Emerson to each and every reporter in the country, everybody was eager to cover the news. Elvira, on the other hand, was pretty stressed out, but it was a relief for her to know that the man had lost his memories. When Elvira went to meet him, in his quintessential rude behavior, he told her that the obituary she wrote for him was pathetic and that she should rewrite a better one for him. Those words once again awakened Elvira’s demons, and she decided to indulge in the activity that gave her utmost sadistic pleasure. She killed Sandy and even stabbed herself so that she could show the world that it was Sandy who had attacked her, as he had lost his mind. People bought her narrative, and Elvira once again was able to commit the perfect crime.

Who killed Maria Riedle?

On the night of January 6, 2018, Maria Riedle had no clue how a comedy of errors would lead her to her fateful end. Hughie Burns loved Maria, and not a lot of people knew about it back then. They had gotten intimate one time, after which Hughie fell for her charm, but the tragedy was that Maria didn’t reciprocate his feelings. She was sitting in a bar when, out of nowhere, Hughie came to her, and that’s when he got to know that she was leaving Kilraven and going to Germany. Like a child, Hughie thought that if he could steal her passport, then she wouldn’t leave the city. Hughie gave money to Mallory Markum and asked her to steal Maria’s purse. Mallory did what she was asked to, but Maria chased her inside the woods. Meanwhile, when all this was happening, Elvira was drowning in her own sorrows. She had decided to end her life, and she was also present in the woods doing something that she loved at one point in her life, i.e., target practice with her father’s rifle.

Elvira was under the influence of drugs, which is why she accidentally shot Maria, though nobody was able to see the former as she was even further inside the woods. Mallory saw that, and she came to help Maria and she took her to the edge of the woods where Elvira’s car was parked. Mallory looked inside and found that Elvira had already passed out in her car. Before Mallory could open the car door and save Elvira, she saw that Maria had succumbed to her injuries. Mallory couldn’t afford to be caught by the law enforcement authorities at such a scene, so she took the hard call to leave both Elvira and Maria and escape from there. Mallory felt guilty, but she believed that her friend Elvira probably wanted to end her miserable life. But that belief was shattered, and that guilt increased manifolds when Elvira came back into her life, as she hadn’t died that night.

After Mallory left, luckily, Ward arrived at the scene, and he found that his daughter was still alive. He knew that she had shot Maria, and that is why he decided to make sure that no evidence led the law enforcement authorities to her. It was a stormy night, and when Ward was disposing of the body, he realized that Maria was somehow still alive. Ward thought for a moment, and then he decided that if he wanted to save the only family he had left, then he would have to silence Maria. So basically, it was Ward who killed Maria, though even Elvira didn’t know about it, and she believed that her father became an alcoholic because he had to dispose of the body to save her.

What did Hughie come to know about Elvira?

At the end of Obituary Season 1, both Elvira and Ward realized that it was imperative to derail the investigation of Garda Rose Mulcahy, as she was getting really close to finding the truth. So the father-daughter duo decided to frame Hughie, as he was an easy target, considering he had a vested interest in the victim not leaving the city. Maria’s passport was planted in Hughie’s house since Mallory still had it with her, and then later, the murder weapon, i.e., the rifle, was put in his office to make it look like he was hiding it there. Hughie had the gun with him, as Oisin Markum, who was Mallory’s cousin, had given it to him for money. Hughie was put behind bars, but he believed that he would be out in no time, considering he hadn’t committed the crime. Also, he had a gut feeling that the murders of Veronica Sloan and Sylvester McHugh were somehow related.

During Obituary‘s ending, Hughie got to know that Sandy Benson had tried to kill Elvira and had died during the altercation though he knew that it was Elvira who was behind the murder. Hughie didn’t have any evidence to prove it, but at that moment, he knew that it was Elvira who had murdered all those six people who had died in the recent past. It all just came back to him at that moment, and he was able to connect the dots, though he knew that he would probably never be able to prove it.

Will Elvira Stop Killing In The Future?

Elvira isn’t going to stop killing anytime soon because the adrenaline rush she gets and the kind of satisfaction she is able to attain from them are unparalleled. She didn’t have any kind of remorse for what she had done, and it was all play for her. The way she killed Sandy, even when he didn’t remember anything about her, made us realize the kind of ecstasy she felt when she killed someone. Also, we believe she took pride in the fact that she could murder someone and get away with it. Emerson also had no clue that his partner was the barbaric killer, and probably in Obituary season 2 (if there is one), he would unravel the mystery and bring the truth to light. Apart from Hughie, no one even suspected that, from writing obituaries to being the reason why they had to be written in the first place, Elvira had crossed all the boundaries and explored a dark side of her personality, which gave her utmost pleasure and satisfaction.

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Sushrut Gopesh
Sushrut Gopesh
I came to Mumbai to bring characters to life. I like to dwell in the cinematic world and ponder over philosophical thoughts. I believe in the kind of cinema that not necessarily makes you laugh or cry but moves something inside you.

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