Big Little Lies Finale Preview: What Clues Does It Offer About Whodunit?

Warning: This post contains speculation about Sunday’s Big Little Lies finale. If you’ve read the book, please do not spoil anything in the comments.

We’re down to just one episode left in HBO’s fascinating miniseries Big Little Lies, with lots and lots of lingering questions still left unanswered: Who died? Who killed them? Who’s Ziggy’s father? Who’s hurting Amabella?

For all you BLL obsessives out there, HBO has released a nearly minute-long preview for Sunday’s finale — which you can watch above — and we thought we’d comb through it for clues about the big reveals to come. So press PLAY on the video above, and then dive in with us:

0:01: Ed shaved his beard! He looks much better, doesn’t he? Will that help heal his marital rift with Madeline?

0:08: A tense standoff at the “Elvis & Audrey” fundraiser between Jane, Madeline, Celeste and Renata, followed by Renata’s husband threatening Jane with a restraining order. Maybe these two moms didn’t make up after all?

0:15: Ed asks Madeline, “What is going on with you?” before she tells her spurned lover Joseph, “You’ve gone so far in the direction of wrong.” He replies, “Oh yeah? Then why are you here?” Yeah, why is she there?

0:19: Madeline tenderly hugs Jane. Is it just us, or does this look like it’s happening after the murder? Does that mean Celeste (and Perry) are the ones directly involved?

0:29: Celeste kisses Perry as her therapist tells her, “Your husband is ill… but so are you.” Then a shot of Celeste crying on the floor as she says, “I kept saying, ‘He’s gonna change. You’ve got to stay.'” Hmmm… we’re thinking he hasn’t changed.

0:35: Shots from the fundraiser, including Bonnie singing (!) and Celeste slapping at a sideburn-wearing Perry. A voiceover that sounds like Celeste says, “We all do bad things sometimes.” Does her pent-up rage boil over in front of everyone?

So, wild speculation time: I’m theorizing that Celeste fights back against Perry and kills him somehow. And that’s because — dun-dun-dun — she finds out that Perry is the one who raped and impregnated Jane. (We’ve never seen Jane and Perry in the same room, so it’s possible she’s never seen him before the fundraiser.) That shocking revelation is enough to push Celeste over the edge… and Perry over the cliff.

Now it’s your turn: What are your Big Little Lies theories? Drop ’em in a comment below — and, again, if you’ve read the book: No spoilers, please! 

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Jim says:

    I think you’re spot on about Perry and Jane. I’ve thought that for a few weeks now. I really admire how the show has been crafted to lay all the groundwork for that but not make it obvious to the viewer, by burying it in the very compelling Perry/Celeste story. I’m not sure Perry’s going to be the one who ends up dead though, and I don’t know which kid is hurting Renata’s daughter. Maybe it’s one of Celeste’s boys, but part of me feels maybe it’s Madeline’s seemingly too-perfect daughter.

  2. John036 says:

    I don’t think the Celeste-Madeline-Jane-Renata clip is tense. Renata looks like she’s apologizing

  3. rebecca says:

    I’ve thought from beginning that Perry is Ziggy’s dad. I also think one of Celeste & Perry’s twins is the one hurting Amabelle, after watching what dad does to mom.

    • Jakay says:

      I agree that Perry is the one who attacked Jane and one of Perry and Celeste’s kids is the chip off the old block hurting Amabelle. That makes me also speculate that Perry is the dead body but I am thinking the same one of those twins who hurt Amabelle will kill Dad for hurting their mom. That’s my new theory and I’m sticking to it for at least the next five minutes!

    • Leigh says:


  4. SJ says:

    I think Perry being Jane’s attacker would be far too obvious at this point. Anyone could have predicted it from a mile away. I think it’s either the all-too-perfect Ed, whom Jane has also never seen (I think the clean-shaved face is a dead giveaway; as in, she likely wouldn’t have recognized him otherwise) or even Nathan, whom she has also never met. Plus, it would give the seemingly budding romance between Ziggy and Madeline’s younger daughter an icky undertone as they’d be half-siblings. And it’s definitely one or both of Celeste’s boys who are attacking Emmabella (Amabella? Who knows?).

    The most tragic outcome would be Celeste killing Perry and then going to jail and having her kids taken away from her because, like the therapist said, she never told anyone about the abuse nor has she documented any of it. But maybe the show wants to make hers a cautionary tale…

    • SK says:

      Jane met Ed during the play.

    • RSH777 says:

      I completely agree with this assessment and the reply. I think it’s Nathan. Here’s some additional proof:
      1) The scene in the 4th or 5th episode where Nathan and Jane are at the same gun range. Nathan turns and sees Jane but the scene cuts before Jane can turn to see him. (It’s an allegory for how close Jane’s rapist has been to her all along without her noticing). Immediately after this scene the next is Madeleine scolding Jane for not telling her about the gun. This is the writer trying to throw us off of Nathan. Nathan and Jane haven’t officially met yet on screen so Nathan wouldn’t know who she was. Jane probably told Madeleine herself about the gun right before the start of the scene but the clever cuts are meant to throw off the viewer.

      2) The narrator’s comment in the first episode about things having gone differently had Madeleine and Jane not met is even more poignant if Nathan or Ed is Jane’s rapist. We know it can’t be Ed because they’ve met on screen.

      3) Chloe and Ziggy share a really strong love of music and similar taste. This subtely hints that they could be related.

  5. kjmorse says:

    Having never read the book, I guessed at about ep 3 that Perry had raped Jane & that one of his & Celeste’s kids was hurting Ammabella.

    Then while watching ep 4 when Jane was having flash backs, the rapist, even when it’s just an back lit figure- it looks like Perry.

  6. abz says:

    One of the best shows this year. I’m sad to see it end. I know it’s based on a book, but I’d love to see it continue beyond that. No murder mystery or anything, just following the lives of these women. The entire cast is stellar, but particularly Nicole Kidman. Every scene with Celeste and Perry, I’m on the edge of my seat and I honestly feel like I have to hold on to something like the last episode, for example, when she told him to pick up the toys. I was almost yelling at my screen “What the hell are you doing, woman? Why would you say that to this psycho?” Alexander Skaarsdard’s performance should be applauded too.
    The entire cast though is amazing from Reese Witherspoon (that vomiting scene was perfection), Shailene Woodley, the young kid who play Ziggy, Laura Dern. I should also mention the therapist because of how raw and well done those therapy sessions were.
    Not a fan of Ed/Adam Scott though. Such a blah character. Same with Nathan and Abigail.
    Don’t entirely know how I feel about Bonnie though.

  7. Jason Paul says:

    Are we going to find out why she named her child Amabella??

    • César A. Ureña-Taswell says:

      I believe it’s Anabella not Amabella and it’s quite an usual name.
      Just like Laura Dern character’s name is Renata and I don’t know why these article writers keep referring to her as Rebecca!

  8. PBW says:

    I read the book and I have just one question, why do they stray so far from the original and add things that are not important to the story line yet change the characters?

  9. Jackie says:

    Glad I didn’t see those deleted comments but on one of the first reviews of the show on this site someone spoiled a bit of the ending and I wish it had been deleted. I know things can’t be monitored 24/7 but it’s still there nearly two months later. It was just a review of the show before it started, not a recap. I was very disappointed to learn a bit about the ending before it even started.

    That being said, I think it’s a tag team hurting Amabella…..most likely the twins, or maybe even Ziggy and Chloe.

    I still get weird vibes about Ed and his watching of children, esp. Madeline’s older daughter.

    I hope it’s Perry dead at the end but I’m sure it won’t be. I keep thinking back to the first episode and the police interviews th the busybodies…one of them saying something to the effect of if Madeline hadn’t fallen and been helped up by Jane when they first met none of this would have happened.

    • Leigh says:

      Yes on Ed and the oldest daughter! Which for me brings him back in question… perhaps his own rage about being steady eddy, he unleashed it once with Jane as a stranger and now on maybe Jane as a murderer? Not sure who dies here. Also, the flashbacks suggests a lighter haired man, so… Nathan? Murdering Jane or Ed if there was something going on with Ed and oldest daughter?
      I don’t know! lol I think the perp of Amabelle is one of the twins or Chloe.

  10. Jackie says:

    It looks like Jane and Celeste are dressed nearly identical at the trivia night….is there a case of mistaken identity maybe?

  11. Jo says:

    I totally think the same. Perry is Ziggys dad.

    But who is hurting Emma Bella?

  12. MichaelM says:

    Agree with the theories that the murder must involve Perry/Celeste. Feel like the Child psychologist saying that the bully is very intelligent and could be bullying Ziggy too must mean that its got to be the only way-too-smart character, which would mean Chloe?

  13. Beth says:

    I think Perry raper Jane on a business trip bc she didn’t always live there. I think one of the twins is hurting Amabella because he saw Perry hurt Celeste even though she claims they’ve never seen it. I think Perry dies but the killler is somebidy we wouldn’t think of! I keep playing out different scenarios and for some reason I think it’s Bonnie or her husband.

  14. Jorge says:

    Jane recognizes Perry as Ziggy´s father, Perry may be attacking Celeste, Jane pulls her omnipresent gun and shots him, Celeste assures Jane she will defend her in court, everyone´s happy…

  15. Kaelsma says:

    I’m taking it none of you people read the book?

  16. abz says:

    Wow, Sometimes I can let go if I accidentally spoiled something for myself, but you Anita are a huge a**hole. TVLine, Please delete this comment. The ending is already spoiled for me now, but at least maybe other people can still be surprised.

  17. Matt Webb Mitovich says:

    Say goodbye to Anita and “JA903”; sorry we were too late.