How Does Dominic Die in The Banshees of Inisherin?

The Banshees of Inisherin’ follows the story of Pádraic and Colm. Their friendship comes to a sudden end when Colm decides that he has had enough of Pádraic’s mundane talks about his donkey and other useless conversations that do nothing but waste their time. Soon, the entire town gets entangled in their feud, which escalates with every move that Pádraic makes to calm things down between them. During this time, Pádraic becomes friends with Dominic, whose story turns out to be more tragic than what appeared in the beginning. By the end of the film, a lot of things are destroyed and Dominic’s life is one of them. If you are wondering what happened to him and how he died, then here’s what you need to know about him. SPOILERS AHEAD!

A Tragic End: Unveiling Dominic’s Fate

Image Credits: Jonathan Hession/ Searchlight Pictures

After Pádraic burns down Colm’s house, Dominic’s father, Peadar, who is a police officer, marches towards his house to arrest him. On the way, he meets Mrs. McCormick who diverts his attention to the nearby lake with Dominic’s corpse floating in it. It isn’t confirmed how Dominic came to be there, but in his letter to Siobhan, Pádraic says that the boy might have slipped into the water. The truth, however, is much more tragic than that.

When we first meet Dominic, he is considered the town gom. He is a simple person, considered rather foolish and naive by most people in town. He is ignored by everyone, and his mere presence is considered an intrusion or a matter of irritation. No one pays attention to him, and that’s in a place where nothing much really happens. This makes Dominic an outcast. He has no friends; he is not welcomed anywhere. However, Pádraic, who is next in line to be the gom, is kinder to him.

Pádraic and Dominic become close friends after Colm, rather unceremoniously, departs the scene. Facing continuous rejection from Colm, Pádraic finds himself spending more time with Dominic, who is happy to finally have made a friend who doesn’t immediately rebuff him. Over time, Pádraic discovers that Dominic suffers abuse at home. His father beats him over the most inconsequential regressions, and the situation becomes so dire that Dominic finds shelter in Pádraic’s home. It is later that we discover that the boy is also sexually abused, which is why his father keeps a tight leash on him.

Because he is treated badly at home and doesn’t receive better treatment outside the house, becoming friends with the “nice” Pádraic gives Dominic some hope about his situation. He even encourages Pádraic to keep trying to fix his relationship with Colm. However, he is utterly disappointed to discover that Pádraic might not be such a nice person after all. This is after Pádraic reveals how he lied to Declan, Colm’s new friend, about his father.

Dominic is further heartbroken by the rejection from Siobhan, even though she means well and lets him down politely. He is infatuated with her, and after befriending Pádraic, he thinks that it might lead him to get close to Siobhan. However, she has other plans. She eventually leaves the island when she receives a job offer from the mainland. This makes Dominic feel stranded. The only two people who actually seemed to care about him are suddenly removed from his life.

Once again, he has nowhere else to go. He can’t leave the island because he has no prospects out there. He has no friends left to provide him refuge. The only option is for him to go back to his father, who will certainly retaliate with abuse of an even harsher degree. It is too much to bear for Dominic, which is why he jumps into the river. Though it is never confirmed in the film whether or not his death was by suicide or if it was accidental, the tragic circumstances of his life point towards the fact that he might have been pushed to take his own life.

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