‘Outer Range’ Season 2 Ending Explained: How Did Autumn Survive The Gunshot?


So, finally, the ending of Outer Range season 2 confirms that what Royal saw during his second trip through the hole will eventually happen if he doesn’t stop his devilish granddaughter. For those of you who don’t remember, Autumn pushed Royal into the pit, after which he woke up in a future time period where he saw a mining company, BY9, had taken over his ranch and was mining the area for the mysterious minerals that caught Dr. Nia Bintu’s interest. So, how does it all connect to the future, and what will Royal and his family do next? Let’s find out through a detailed explanation of Season 2’s ending. If you are looking for the recap, please follow the link.

Spoiler Alert

The Black Mineral Has Healing Properties

So, before talking about the characters and their fates, let’s first address the elephant in the room. Throughout season 2, the Tillersons used the black mineral as some sort of drug that gave them a nice high. It all started with Royal breaking Autumn’s amber necklace that held the black mineral. As soon as Royal came in contact with the mineral, he had a vision of the future, and he saw himself dying before his eyes. My point is that the first thing that happens to anyone who comes in contact with the mineral is that they get a vision of their past and future. I say past, too, as in Luke’s case, he saw his young father bullying him, which fueled Luke’s hatred towards Wayne.

The second uncanny thing associated with the mineral is that it heals the person who comes into contact with it. For example, Billy fed the black mineral to his father, Wayne, who was in a coma. However, at the beginning of season 2, we saw Wayne standing on his feet with a newfound sense of energy and enthusiasm to conquer the world. A similar thing happened with Billy, who lost his ability to speak in the accident but later healed quickly after his father drugged him with the black mineral. The mark on Autumn’s head, too, healed in a similar manner after she smudged some of that mineral on her lips. So, what’s actually happening here? I can say the simplest answer is that the black mineral has healing powers, but I know there is much more happening here than meets the eye. 

The black mineral also has an effect on a person’s physical and mental health. Take Joy, Royal, and Perry, for example, who suffered from seizures, heart attacks, and a buzzing sound, respectively, after crossing the pit. In the case of children like young Royal and Amy, it messes up their memory a bit, which was the reason why Royal didn’t remember intentionally shooting his father and believed it to be a hunting accident, while Amy failed to recall her real name and called herself Autumn, which was the last name she heard before falling into the hole. The question here is: are these side effects of time travel permanent? Will Royal and Joy ever be able to heal themselves? Most likely, Season 3 of Outer Range will answer these questions.

What Will Happen to Wayne?

Wayne was the first Tillerson to come into contact with the mysterious pit when he saw young Royal come out of it in his childhood. Since then, Wayne had been obsessed with Abbott’s west pasture, and it could be speculated that he only dated young Cecilia so that he could take control of the Abbott Ranch and satisfy his insanity. But unfortunately, Cecilia left Wayne and married Royal. Years later, a Spanish worker found a mysterious stone with black minerals locked in it, which confirmed Wayne’s theory that there was indeed something magical hiding on Abbott’s land, which was why he decided to buy it by hook or by crook. However, Wayne’s obsession with the unknown only led to his downfall, as he lost his two sons in the process and got betrayed by the third. His ex-wife, Patricia, wanted to take the kids with her, but an arrogant Wayne didn’t let her.

In Season 2, we saw Wayne consuming the black minerals, which gave him visions of the past that made him believe that Abbott’s eldest, Perry, was traveling through time. It only solidified Wayne’s hypothesis that the pit indeed acted like a magical portal, and that’s why he jumped into the abyss after Billy’s death. He burned down the mansion and sacrificed all his luxury just to hunt down the unknown.

Now, even after watching two seasons of Outer Range, I still cannot find a pattern in how the pit functions. Take Royal, for example. He was a lad from the 1880s who found himself in 1968. On his second trip, he found himself in the near future where he saw a mining company digging his land for the mysterious black mineral. So, does the mysterious pit have a mind of its own and it sends the person to different time periods and timelines based on where they are needed or want to be? And if that holds true, then my best guess is that it will send Wayne to the past where he will try to save his sons or maybe learn a life-changing lesson that might help him become a better person.

How Did Autumn Survive The Gunshot?

Except for Autumn, none of the people who jumped into the pit had an alternate version of themselves co-existing in the same time period. For example, Royal jumped some 100 years into the future while Joy jumped some 200 years into the past. Perry, too, ended up in a time period where his parents weren’t married; therefore, he didn’t really exist at that point on the timeline. But the same couldn’t be said for Autumn or Amy.

I assume that a young Amy ended up at a point in the timeline where she wasn’t born yet. But she would be born soon, as a similar thing happened with Autumn, where she tried to create a new loop or a natural order for her existence. So what really happened?

In Royal’s timeline, Amy was born to Perry and Rebecca when Autumn, who already existed in this reality, was still a teenager. Now, after Amy’s birth, Autumn started losing her mind. She saw things in her vision, especially the Abbott’s family sign, that brought her to Wyoming to look for answers. Her hallucinations and anxiety increased twofold after she consumed the black mineral, which gave her the idea that Autumn and Amy shouldn’t exist in the same time period, or else one of them would lose their mind or life. Autumn realized that to save her future and herself, she needed to get rid of Amy, which was why she decided to push Amy into the pit so that she could maintain her position in the timeline. It would be safe to assume that the loop would keep happening like this in every iteration of this narrative cycle until someone killed Autumn and stopped her from pushing Amy into the pit. When and where, I don’t know. However, the question here is: how did the push save Autumn from a fatal gunshot wound?

My theory is that the black mineral and the pit connect Autumn with Amy, which is what Autumn saw in her vision and realized in the end. So if Amy exists in a certain time period, then Autumn remains alive in another? Similarly, if Autumn dies at some point in the timeline, then Amy dies too? Or was the energy of the universe getting divided between the two Amys, but when one of them left the time period, the entire energy was grasped by the surviving one, therefore bringing her back to life? Like it happened in The Flash? However, the simplest and most logical answer could be that the black mineral, which Autumn had already consumed to the core, kicked in and healed her wounds, just like it did for Billy, Wayne, and Royal.

Did Perry start a new reality?

A young Royal Sumner had told his son from the future that one shouldn’t fiddle with things they don’t completely understand, but I don’t think Perry even grasped half of it. After ending up in another reality, which was much closer to his original timeline, he decided to warn his alternate self to not punch Trevor (and kill him). However, it seemed that someone was bound to die that day, and even though Perry saved Trevor, he failed to save his alternate self, who died on the spot due to a head injury. As seen in season 1, it was Trevor’s death that kicked off things, as Royal only visited the pit again to dump Trevor’s body into it so as to make it disappear from his reality. But now, instead of Trevor, it was Perry’s body that goes into the hole that is bound to incite a new set of events, good or bad; I don’t know yet, but the only thing I could say is that Perry shouldn’t have done so as it changes the dynamics for everyone else.

There will be no murder investigation, and Wayne won’t find an excuse to buy off Abbott’s ranch. Perry will stay with his daughter, and Autumn won’t be able to turn him against his father. In a way, it will disrupt Autumn’s loop, and maybe, this is how things should have been. So, is this Perry going to lead the life that Royal has always wanted for his family? Is this going to be the only happy timeline? We are sure to find out in season 3.

What will Autumn do next?

During his trip to his future, Royal saw a huge crowd around the mysterious pit, where he also saw Autumn donning a yellow attire, along with a few other people standing behind her. At first, Royal believed that Autumn worked for the mining company BY9 and had come to his ranch to take it from him. He even questioned Autumn about what the color “yellow” meant to her, to which she answered “power.” Now, after watching season 2, I am finally able to connect the dots and figure out what it could all mean, so let’s talk about it in a chronological fashion.

In Outer Range season 2’s ending, Autumn pushed Royal’s granddaughter into the pit, but she couldn’t be arrested as neither Royal nor Joy could explain anything about the hole. Additionally, the pit disappeared once again right after Amy fell into it. So, Joy had no other option but to let Autumn go. In Wayne’s absence (who would be presumed dead), Luke would become the only heir to the Tillerson property, and Autumn would make good use of his inheritance to start a cult where her disciples would wear the same yellow “kurta” as Royal saw in the future. It is to be noted that Autumn had planned the same thing with Billy because he was about to inherit the property before Luke killed his own brother. It also implied that the future is not fixed and could be changed, which means Royal still has time to save his ranch and his family, but will he be able to bring Amy back too?

Nevertheless, moving forward, Autumn’s cult will use the black mineral to get an instant high and give a glimpse of the future (or the past) to her disciples, which will indeed turn her into a popular cult leader. And she will most likely not want to lose her only source of black mineral to BY9, which suggests that she will try to save the ranch, just like Royal. Rhett, on the other hand, was already making deals with Dr. Nia Bintu, and if she shared her research with the world, there would be no stopping the chaos that it will bring to Wyoming. We have already seen the American army deployed on Royal’s land, so one can understand the seriousness of the threat.

Will Royal be able to save the ranch?

Outer Range season 2’s ending left Royal with only one question: how was he going to change the future that he had already seen through the mysterious pit? Royal knows that he has to stop Autumn by any means possible; otherwise, he will not only lose his ranch but also his family. Even though he developed a soft spot for Autumn at the end of season 1, now he won’t let those feelings influence him. He would most likely end what he had started, and kill Autumn if needed. On the other hand, Royal has to deal with Rhett, who has greedily welcomed the scientist to experiment on the family ranch so that he could get his share of the money to leave town with his girlfriend. But as Autumn suggested, Maria will leave Rhett sooner or later, and we already know the reason why. I guess in season 3, we will most likely find the origins of the mysterious black pit and its minerals, which is the only possible way for Royal to get rid of it or make use of it to save his family. His family won’t be complete until he brings Amy and Perry back to the original timeline, and to do so, he has to use the mysterious pit. But when will it appear again? I don’t know. Also, what if Dr. Nia Bintu isn’t the evil scientist that Royal believes her to be? What if she was trying to help him solve the mystery? As the younger version of Royal said: we cannot change things until we completely understand them, and maybe it is time for Royal to understand the pit, which is something that he has been running from his entire life. I believe Autumn did understand it, and therefore, she was able to use her visions in her favor, and most likely, Royal has to make a similar play to beat her in her own game.

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Shikhar Agrawal
Shikhar Agrawal
I am an Onstage Dramatist and a Screenwriter. I have been working in the Indian Film Industry for the past 12 years, writing dialogues for various films and television shows.

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