3 Body Problem: Why did Vera Ye Kill Herself?

Netflix’s ‘3 Body Problem’ begins with a mystery. A series of deaths takes place all over the world, and the most visible common factor between the victims is that they are all scientists. It is the death of one of the scientists that leads the investigators to come to Oxford, from where things unravel even further. This particular scientist, Vera Ye, was working with particle accelerators in Oxford, which had been shut down because the experiments seemed to be useless. Soon after the shutdown, Vera kills herself. At first, it seems like a step she took due to professional reasons. By the end, however, the answer to her death is much different than anyone could have expected. SPOILERS AHEAD

Vera’s Death is a Repercussion of Her Mother’s Actions

The mysterious suicides of scientists all over the world baffled the scientific community as well as the investigators, and it took some time for the truth to come to light. However, it turns out that Vera Ye knew everything all along, and this was the reason behind her tragic death.

Vera was the daughter of Ye Wenjie, the woman single-handedly responsible for bringing the alien race of San-Ti to Earth. Years ago, when she’d received a signal from a pacifist San-Ti asking her not to reply under any circumstances, she didn’t heed their warning and not only replied but also invited the San-Ti to come to Earth, agreeing to help them in taking over the Earth and humanity, which she thought was past the point of redemption by now. Ye Wenjie kept her connection to the San-Ti a secret from the rest of the world, but there is only so much you can hide from a person who lives with you.

Vera grew up without a father. She’d only ever known her mother and was not ready to abandon her in her old age, so Vera lived with her. At the same time, she was also heavily invested in her research at the particle accelerator in Oxford and was distraught, just like the other scientists, when the accelerator gave erratic readings in the experiments. The results from the accelerators all over the world forced scientists to give up on science. The results didn’t make sense with any law that they thought governed the universe, and it made them think that their whole life was a lie. But for Vera, this extended far beyond that.

In trying to find an answer to why the accelerators were not giving the desired results, she chanced upon something much closer to home. One day, by accident, she discovered her mother’s communication with Mike Evans, the billionaire and the owner of an oil company, and it led her to two startling truths. The first was the revelation about Vera’s parentage: Mike Evans was her father. He had been there her whole life, but Vera never got to know him because neither her mother told her the truth nor Mike tried to reach out.

This betrayal was heartbreaking as is, but what pushed Vera off the edge was her parents’ betrayal of humanity. Through their correspondence, Vera found out that her parents were collaborating with the aliens who were planning an invasion on Earth. Her parents were dedicated to “the Lord,” whom they not only served but also invited to come to Earth and decimate the human race. Vera could have made peace with her mother’s betrayal of keeping her father’s identity a secret, but how could she ever make peace with her mother’s actions that threatened the existence of humans?

In all of this, Vera also realized that the aliens were tinkering with human science, which is why the accelerators were not working, and they never would. Extrapolating from that, what are the chances that the science they thought they knew had also been messed with and reality wasn’t what they thought it to be? Snowballing this line of thought would have led her to even more chaotic ideas that would have messed with her head.

It is the culmination of all these things that eventually led Vera to take a drastic step. Before going to her death, Vera asks Saul if he believes in God. By this time, she knows that the aliens who are about to invade them already have the power that would seem god-like to humans, and with their science crippled, there is no way humans can fight back their invaders. This must have made Vera feel like Earth and humans were a lost cause. She would also harbor the shame of her parent’s involvement in the whole thing, and all of this drove her to take her own life.

Read More: Who is the Lady With the Sword in 3 Body Problem?