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The Big Cassie Change That Only Book Fans Will Notice In The Flight Attendant

The original ending of The Flight Attendant could change the course of the entire show. Please fasten your seatbelts — spoilers for the book and series The Flight Attendant!

Throughout the HBO Max original series starring and produced by former Big Bang Theory leading lady Kaley Cuoco, New York-based flight attendant Cassie Bowden (Cuoco) finds herself embroiled in an unexpected murder plot when she wakes up in Bangkok next to a dead body. After fleeing the scene and leaving her murdered lover Alex (Michiel Huisman) behind, Cassie becomes a leading suspect, and must figure out who committed the crime before she's held responsible... and to make matters worse, she has to try and solve the crime while struggling with a crippling alcohol addiction.

In the original book by Chris Bohjalian, however, Cassie's ending turns out very differently, and changes the trajectory of her entire life. Now that The Flight Attendant has been renewed for a second season, the original ending is more relevant than ever, but it doesn't seem like Cuoco and the show's creative team will stick with Bohjalian's ending. Here's the big change that only fans of the book will notice in The Flight Attendant.

The original ending of The Flight Attendant contained a huge twist

At the end of HBO Max's adaptation, Cassie finally finds the man who killed Alex — her other lover, Buckley (Colin Woodell), who turns out to be an assassin and spy — and decides to turn her life around, quit drinking, and even is offered the chance to work with the FBI. While the book has a similar ending, with Cassie working for the U.S. government, but with one big change: she discovers she's pregnant with Alex's baby.

In the book, this is the push Cassie needs to stop drinking, and she devotes her life to raising her and Alex's daughter. However, according to a New York Times interview with Cuoco and showrunner Steve Yockey, the pregnancy plot point was soundly rejected.

"I can safely say we don't go there. That was a bit too far," Cuoco told The Times. Yockey agreed, saying, "Kaley has the veto power to stop us from ever doing that. "And it would feel a little deus ex machina if the reason Cassie makes massive strides to clean up her life were for a child, instead of for herself. It was important to me that she go on this journey to better understand her own history. We basically watched Cassie learn to love herself, so her emotional arc feels complete.

The interview came before news of a second season, but at the time, Yockey said, "If we did have a second season, it probably would be a whole new adventure, like a new Hitchcock movie for Cassie to stumble into" — giving audiences an idea of what to expect from The Flight Attendant going forward.

The entire first season of The Flight Attendant is available on HBO Max now.