Brake alert: This interview includes spoilers until episode 6 of “The White Lotus,” which airs Sundays on HBO and streams on HBO Max.
The season’s penultimate episode of “The White Lotus” ended with a wild night for Tanya (Jennifer Coolidge), as she was trapped at a palazzo party thrown by her mysterious vacation BFF Quentin (Tom Hollander). Although she spent quite a bit of time on the dance floor, Tanya was much more interesting in the VIP room, sniffing lots of coke with Quentin and the guy who wasn’t so good at setting her up with her, a gorgeous Italian named Niccolo. (Stefano Giannino). Although Nicolo’s intentions are unknown – is he a drug dealer? sex worker? Neighboring mafia? Tanya needed a little convincing to head into the bedroom with him.
However, before Niccolo enters fully nude, ready for Tanya, she notices an old photo of Quentin and his long-lost cowboy love, who bears a striking resemblance to her husband, Greg (John Gries). Although Tanya seems pretty lost in the drug haze to fully connect the dots, “White Lotus” fans went into overdrive once they saw what appeared to be a hidden clue in the background of the one-shot. As Niccolo and Tania entered into a kiss, a clear red light, about the size of a golf ball, appeared in the mold of the room (see image shown above). As the episode drew to a close minutes later, with the couple getting more intimate on the bed, the camera swooped in in a voyeuristic fashion that seemed to highlight the red dot and point to a basic theory: They weren’t just seen — they were recorded.
Needless to say, social media sites like TikTok and Reddit exploded after the episode with obsessive “Did you watch it?” Comments about the red dot. But who would want to register Tanya’s relationship? At this point, Greg and Quentin appear to be scheming together, especially after Quentin tells Tanya he’ll still do anything for the cowboy after 30 years, and Jack (Leo Woodall) drunkenly reveals to Portia that his “uncle” is financially poor and may have to sell his palace.
Two theories make sense:
1) We learn that Tanya and Greg have a kisser protecting her enormous fortune. But is there a condition of disbelief that invalidates part of it or has a penalty?
2) Could it be used to try to blackmail Tanya for part of her half a billion dollar fortune?
Either way, the red light was one of creator Mike White’s wittiest easter eggs yet, a way to spark fan theories yet again before the season finale, which airs Dec. 11 on HBO.
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