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Tell Me Your Secrets Season 1 Ending Explained

"Tell Me Your Secrets" is the latest Amazon original that viewers are fired up about, and its storyline offers an abundance of crime, thrills, and unexpected turns along the way to the Season 1 finale. 

Created by Harriet Warner, "Tell Me Your Secrets" follows the lives of three main characters, Emma Hall (Lily Rabe), who suffers memory loss and is placed in witness protection after a horrifying past, Mary Barlow (Amy Brenneman), who is a mother looking for answers after her daughter went missing and is presumed dead by everyone but Mary herself, and John Tyler (Hamish Linklater), a convicted predator trying to live a reformed life without committing any more heinous crimes.

The series is made of detailed character backstories that intertwine with one another before joining together in the season finale on Episode 10. While some parts of the show are a bit hard to follow, the last episode ties up loose ends among multiple characters and leaves audiences wanting more story after it closes on a cliffhanger. For those that may be a bit lost on the details, here's a closer look at the ending of "Tell Me Your Secrets."

Rose's troubles have led her to murder

Rose Lord (Chiara Aurelia) is the daughter of the most powerful people in the town of St. James, Louisiana. From the very first time she is introduced, it's apparent that she is troubled. Her desire to leave town and escape the emotional abuse she endures from her mother drives her to a breaking point. She has no idea that her dad is secretly committing atrocities against the young girls that live in the Saint Jerome House. When Emma Hall (Lily Rabe) tries to tell her about her father's crimes, Rose interrupts by confessing her love for Emma before becoming enraged at both Emma's rejection and accusations against her father.

It is revealed in the last episode that Lord is responsible for the death of a missing girl who was trying to tell her about the awful things her father does. The final Rose scene ends with her realizing that her father is, in fact, a monster committing heinous crimes against young women — how she will respond to this, exactly, remains to be seen.

John Tyler reverts back to old habits

A convicted predator that is trying to work his way back into a normal society is pushed to his limits by a grieving mother and begins to commit unspeakable acts all over again. The final episode is a fight between life and death as John Tyler (Hamish Linklater) loses all control when he finds Emma, whose real name is Karen.

Mary has forced John into finding Karen at any and all costs, and by the time he's found her, he has reverted back to his predatory ways. After brutally attacking both Karen and Mary inside Karen's cabin, they fight back and render him bloody and unconscious.

Believing that John is dead, the two women lock him inside Karen's pantry for the time being, and they both leave. The end of John's time in the episode is played out as Bodie Lord (Richard Thomas) is snooping around the bloody massacre that is Karen's cabin, and John appears menacingly behind him, leaving a clear opening for him to return in Season 2.

Pete's murky past is starting to come to light

Pete (Enrique Murciano) is a seemingly deranged psychologist that is tasked with getting Karen transitioned into her new life as Emma Hall once she is released from prison. Hiding someone who became associated with a serial killer is no easy task, and Pete puts Hall up in a cabin that he has been keeping a secret from his wife.

Pete's backstory is intentionally a bit murky, to say the least: he admits to committing a crime when he was in his twenties, and working at the Saint Jerome House, but the finer details of his story are off, and the truth about where he comes from still isn't fully revealed by the end of this season. 

However, throughout the show, Pete develops more and more possessive and unprofessional tendencies over Emma. The finale showcases a bit more of Pete's mysterious past when he receives a call from Bodie Lord threatening to harm Emma. In response, Pete yells that he wants out of whatever Bodie is up to before he is simply informed that he'll never get out of it. Naturally, this leaves a lot of questions about what Pete is involved in and what sort of past he has.

Theresa is the opposite of who viewers thought she was

Theresa Barlow (Stella Baker) is the missing daughter of Mary Barlow. Throughout the entire season, she is made out to be a victim of a senseless and terrible crime. However, the end of Season 1 throws a whopping curve ball at the audience when it's revealed that Theresa is the actual killer.

Theresa's obsession and jealousy drove her to murder nine women and attempt to murder Emma Hall and steal her newborn baby as well. The only reason that Theresa got away with it was thanks to Emma's very inconvenient memory loss, and by keeping a low profile. Even with her parents and younger brother frantically searching for her for nearly a decade, Theresa remains hidden, and at one point is even thought to be dead.

The very end of "Tell Me Your Secrets" Season 1 shows Theresa driving on a mountain road with none other than Emma's baby, now a child, sitting in the passenger seat with her. Given what we now know about Theresa, this is a very ominous conclusion.

Mary's grief drives her to do unthinkable things

Mary Barlow is Theresa's mother. While so many gave up looking for Theresa, Mary never stopped looking to the point where she willingly lied to her family, neglected her son, and collaborated with a convicted predator.

Mary's grief causes her to slowly descend into insanity as even after Emma informs her that it is, in fact, Theresa who is the real murderer. When she tells her where to find Theresa's journal, Mary refuses to accept reality.

After digging up Theresa's things in the yard, Mary learns that her daughter was abused by her swim coach from a young age and that she is indeed a killer. Mary holds a press conference, and viewers are made hopeful that she will set things right so that Emma can live a normal life. Instead, Mary's refusal to see the truth leads her to lie and say that Emma is actually Karen Miller and is the real killer — effectively putting Emma in grave danger.

The only part of reality Mary is willing to face is the swim coach that abused her daughter, who she invites to her home to kill.

Emma Hall is revealed to the world to be Karen Miller

Karen is the main protagonist of the show and also the biggest victim. Her crime is falling in love with the wrong person. Her love of a serial killer blinded her to what he really was and led her down the path to a jealous and murderous Theresa.

The world blames Karen for the death of nine women, so she is forced into witness protection under the identity of Emma. The last episode shows Emma being attacked by John in her own home after hanging out with him at a bar, not knowing his true colors. She and Mary effectively knock him unconscious, and Emma confides in Mary the truth about her daughter. The episode ends with not only the outside world thinking that Emma is a killer because of Mary's press conference, but Bodie Lord is now seeking her out to take the fall for the murder of a young girl in the Saint Jerome House and the murderous Theresa has kidnapped her daughter from her foster home.

The season ends on a whole lot of cliffhangers and leaves viewers with more questions than answers. While there is no official word on whether a Season 2 of "Tell Me Your Secrets" is happening, there are a lot of viewers that would like to know more details about these characters and their secrets, so fingers crossed it happens.