Fallout: What Happened to Cooper Howard aka The Ghoul’s Wife and Daughter?

In the opening scene of Prime Video’s ‘Fallout,’ we see Cooper Howard at a child’s birthday party with his daughter, Janey. By the end of the party, they have to make a run for it as the nuclear bombs go off at a distance. The scene makes one think that Cooper and Janey wouldn’t have survived it, but soon enough, it becomes clear that things aren’t as simple as they seem. Two hundred years later, Cooper is still alive, though he is not the same man he was all those years ago. He is the Ghoul now. But then, if he is alive, it means that his family could have survived, too. SPOILERS AHEAD

Barb and Janey Howard Might Still Be Alive

By the end of the season, the chances of Cooper’s wife and daughter, Barb and Janey, rise exponentially, especially after we discover that Barb held a major position at Vault-Tec, the company that made Vaults for people to survive the nuclear fallout. With America engaged in a war with the Reds, the common people find themselves posed with a question: what happens if the nuclear bombs are dropped? The longer the war stretches, the more scared people get, and the easier it becomes for companies like Vault-Tec to tap into their fears, make them buy a place in the Vaults, and keep making more money.

At first, Barb joins Vault-Tec hoping to use her position as leverage to secure a space in the Vaults for her family. However, the more she gets involved in the company, the more twisted her motives start to get. By the time the bombs are dropped, Barb has not only become a person of prominence in Vault-Tec, but she is also the one who favors the continuance of the war and the dropping of the bombs. Considering how eager Barb is for the bombs to drop and for her family to get inside the Vaults, we can assume that she has already secured a safe passage at one of the more important Vaults by the company. While we don’t see her and Janey in the post-apocalyptic world, it is insinuated that the duo might still be alive, even though 200 years have passed.

Another thing that supports the theory of their survival is Cooper Howard, aka the Ghoul, refusing to die, even as he stands on the precipice of losing his sanity and becoming feral. He is the only ghoul who has survived for so long, and people often wonder what keeps him going even after all these years. What purpose does he think he has to make him want to live as a thing that isn’t even classified as a human anymore? It turns out that he hopes to see his family again.

The mention of his family and his hope of finding them comes at least twice in the show before the final scene, where the Ghoul finally has a lead that can answer all his prayers. By this time, the truth about Hank MacClean and his connection to Vault-Tec has come to light, and as he runs away from the Ghoul, the latter knows that he will find his way to Vault-Tec’s headquarters. Considering the role that Barb played in Vault-Tec before the war, it only makes sense for a person of her stature to be at the HQ. But why does the Ghoul think she and Janey would be alive even after 200 years?

The project of the Vaults was being led by a man named Bud Adkins, who repeatedly talked about the importance of Time, calling it a weapon to be used against one’s enemies. He believed that this was the most powerful resource they had, which they would need to use to make sure that the Vaults program worked. Because Time was given such importance in Bud’s plans and Barb had become such a close accomplice to him, it is safe to assume that she would also want to use Time to serve her own purpose. That could be easily done with the cryogenic pods and even putting one’s brain in a robot, as Bud did by staying in Vault 31.

Moreover, Vault-Tec’s desire to keep its original employees around even after centuries have passed to make sure their plan goes as they intended means that employees like Barb would be kept alive due to their involvement in not only the execution but the planning of the whole thing. Above all, it is Cooper Howard’s unshakeable belief that he is going to see his family again, which confirms that they are still alive and that he is going to be reunited with them in the next season of ‘Fallout.’

Read More: Fallout: Why is Every Overseer From Vault 31?