Did Franklin Die? What Happens to Him at the End of Snowfall?

Image Credit: Ray Mickshaw/FX

FX’s crime drama seriesSnowfall’ is all about the enthralling saga of Franklin Saint, who becomes the kingpin of Los Angeles’ drug scene in the 1980s after starting his trade as a marijuana dealer for his uncle Jerome Saint. He becomes rich and influential with the help of Theodore “Teddy” McDonald, who sells cocaine to Franklin to fund the war against communism in Nicaragua. In the sixth and final season of the series, Franklin tries his best to get his $73 million back from Teddy, who steals the same to rejoin the CIA. The consequences of Franklin’s efforts to retrieve the money determine his fate as well. If you are intrigued about the same, you are at the right place! SPOILERS AHEAD.

Franklin Survives the Ordeal

No, Franklin did not die. When Franklin Saint gets prepared for an ultimate showdown between him and Teddy, the viewers had been concerned about his death. Franklin loses his potent allies when Jerome and his aunt Louanne “Louie” Saint turn against him by conquering his empire. Although he tries to regain what he built through his partnership with Kane Hamilton, the latter’s death closes the same door as well. Franklin realizes that the only way to regain his lost empire is to retrieve the $73 million Teddy stole from him. The kingpin then captures Teddy, who promises to give half of the money to the former in return for his freedom.

Image Credit: Ray Mickshaw/FX

However, Franklin’s mother Sharon “Cissy” Saint kills Teddy before the latter could transfer the money to the kingpin. Cissy knows that the money will help her son fight for the drug empire he had built over the years, which will only threaten his life. To avoid the same, Cissy makes sure that Franklin doesn’t receive any cash, even if it’s through Leon. Meanwhile, Franklin’s partner Veronique steals money from Franklin’s account and runs away. Although he tries to raise some funds by tracking down Peaches, all he finds at the house of the latter is $12,000 instead of the $5 million Peaches stole from him.

Franklin’s downfall reaches its culminating point when he loses everything to debts and mortgages. The money left in his account, after Veronique has “cleaned” the same, dries up soon and he further loses his properties and business. Without anything to his name, he starts to live in Cissy’s home without owning anything or anyone. Franklin, who dealt with hundreds of millions, has to beg Leon for $10 to buy alcohol. Franklin is on the verge of losing his mother’s home since he doesn’t have money to pay taxes. At the end of ‘Snowfall,’ Franklin is nothing but a homeless man who ends up on the streets of Los Angeles, which was once ruled by him.

Co-creator Dave Andron and his creative team considered killing Franklin off but they ultimately chose a storyline that makes the viewers think Franklin’s current state is worse than his death. “It’s funny because when we talked about whether should Franklin die, there was a contingent of people who felt that that was an easy way out. That that him dying means he doesn’t have to face the damage he’s done,” Andron told Deadline about Franklin’s fate. “He destroyed this neighborhood and did unreal damage to his community. They really needed a helping hand and what they got was another plague. […] Now he has to be on the street with these junkies who he in some way is responsible for. The dramatic irony of that felt right to us,” he added.

Image Credit: Ray Mickshaw/FX

Andron and his team also considered Franklin ending up in jail but the writers eventually chose his transformation into a “nobody” to enhance the tragedy. Franklin’s alcoholism is another significant feature of the character at the end of the show. “And then you think of the totality of everything Franklin Saint’s been through in his life and the horrible things that he’s done and you think that could very much break a guy and you know he’s got the possibility of the alcohol gene from his father. He always hated and resented what his father, was and for him to become that very thing that he hated seemed like it was right,” the co-creator told The Hollywood Reporter.

Although Franklin survives or succeeds in staying alive, the kingpin loses everything he owned and built by destroying the streets, only to end up in the same place more or less as a beggar. He is left without anybody to love or look after him, including his son who is born a few months after Veronique runs away from the former, which is nothing but a fitting conclusion to his saga.

Read More: What Happened to Alton? Is He Dead or Alive in Snowfall?