Amazon Prime’s ‘Solos’ is a sci-fi series that explores the phenomenon of human connection. The seven-part anthology, created by David Weil, features a different protagonist in every episode who is forced to reckon with their own humanity. The futuristic setting makes it possible to present otherwise impossible scenarios in a way that still feels realistic, making the show alternatingly hopeful and bleak, depending on how the protagonists respond to the situation they are confronted with.
Episode 7 features Stuart (Morgan Freeman), a mysterious man sitting by the sea, appearing to be living out his days in solitude. A visit from Otto (Dan Stevens), who has long been searching for Stuart, breaks the latter’s silence, and we begin to learn of the two men’s entwined memories. ‘Solos’ episode 7 explores the ethereal realm of human memories, and we are here to help guide you through it. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Solos Episode 7 Recap
‘Solos’ episode 7 opens with Stuart sitting alone on a picturesque beach. We then see Otto entering the Alzheimer’s section of a high-security medical facility and soon realize that that’s where Stuart is. Approaching him, Otto calls Stuart’s name, which the latter affirms. However, Stuart also responds to Otto calling him Clark Kent and Mickey Mouse, telling us that he is, in fact, suffering from memory loss.
Otto proceeds to inject Stuart with stem cells and fixes a small device to his wrist that measures the treatment’s progress. Slowly at first, and then more rapidly, Stuart’s base memory comes flooding back as he lets loose a barrage of words that he had forgotten due to his failing memory. By the time his memory is 20% restored, Stuart can recognize that he is on a beach. Soon, his muscle memory returns, and he begins to sing and dance with joy.
Breaking out of his reverie, Stuart then becomes serious and says, “I know that I know,” referring to his realization that he has a memory disorder. He asks Otto where he is from and why he is helping Stuart regain his lost memories. Otto offhandedly responds that he is from the National Health Service and then tells Stuart to brace himself, as now his “personal” memories are going to come flooding back.
Solos Episode 7 Ending: Does Otto Get His Mother’s Memory Back?
Stuart gets a faraway look in his eyes as his personal memories come rushing back into focus. However, when Otto asks what he remembers, he jovially responds, “My wife’s farts.” Otto, not satisfied with the answer, wonders out aloud whether Stuart actually has Alzheimer’s and mentions how “memory addicts” experience similar symptoms due to the damage to their neurons. When Stuart continues to play innocent, Otto finally blames him outright for being a memory thief.
Otto then reveals that he is one of Stuart’s many victims, who had the memory of his mother stolen by Stuart many years ago. After initially protesting the accusation, Stuart finally caves in and admits to stealing sixty years worth of memory from Otto and his mother. He, however, justifies his actions by saying that he stole the memories to bury his grief. After giving Otto details about his mother, which was the reason why he came looking for Stuart in the first place, the aging memory thief begs Otto to leave him with one memory.
However, Stuart is unable to decide which memory he wants to keep. In the end, Stuart shares a “motherly” hug with Otto and decides to keep that memory with him while all the rest are agreed to be removed by Otto. Though it seems most likely that Otto will stick to his word and remove all of Stuart’s memories (barring the one they mutually agree to let him keep), what happens to the extracted memories remains to be seen.
The fact that Otto traveled so far for the memory of his mother and that Stuart spent a large portion of his adult life-stealing memories means that they are very valuable. This is true even more so for Otto, who expresses sadness because he cannot even remember his dead mother as a result of Stuart stealing her memory from Otto’s brain when he was a child. Hence, it seems obvious that Otto would extract his mother’s memory from Stuart’s brain and keep it for himself. However, from what we can tell, that is not how the transfer of memories works.
Our biggest clue that Otto does not get his mother’s memory back is how earnestly, almost hungrily, he asks Stuart for details about his mother. With Otto’s disdain for Stuart so apparent, it would seem strange that he would listen to Stuart describe the memories if he could just take them for himself. The reason Otto listens to Stuart’s descriptions of his mother so intently is that that’s the only way he will ever get to know about them. Hence, in all likelihood, Otto does not get back his mother’s memory and will only ever have Stuart’s descriptions of them to hold on to.
What Does it Mean to be a Memory Addict?
Otto blames Stuart for being a memory addict, which is responsible for the latter’s memory loss. Though we are not given too many details, we do learn that Stuart stole hundreds of memories from people to bury his own remorseful memories of his dead son. Considering he stole sixty years’ worth of memories from just Otto and his mother, the total volume of memories stolen by Stuart is mind-boggling. However, it seems like memory addiction is similar to other addictions in the sense that it is also a form of escapism.
As Stuart mentions, his addiction to memories stemmed from him wanting to escape from his sorrowful reality. Whilst being injected with stem cells, we also briefly see Stuart’s scarred arm. Since the device Otto uses leaves a similar scar, it seems that the devices used to administer stem cells and stolen memories are similar. Stuart’s addiction, therefore, is hinted at near the beginning of the episode when Otto looks at Stuart’s arm and identifies him due to the very same scars.
What Will Happen to Stuart Now?
Stuart’s fate seems to be in the hands of Otto in the closing scenes of the episode. After agreeing to leave Stuart with a singular memory — that of the two embracing just like Otto’s mother used to hug him — it seems unlikely that Otto will change his mind. Though he seems compassionate about Stuart’s sorrow, he also holds a very significant, long-standing grudge against the man that robbed him of every memory of his mother. Otto even states as much, saying that Stuart does not deserve any favors.
Stuart’s hushed descriptions of what it’s like to be left with a severely failing memory paint a truly dark and hopeless picture of the man’s situation before the revival of his memory by Otto. Therefore, at worst, if Otto, for some reason, decides not to grant his wish, Stuart will return to his hellish existence inside the fog of forgetfulness. However, left with the singular memory of his hug with Otto, though not ideal, is most likely how Stuart will live out his remaining days. It is especially fitting — considering that Stuart regretted not being loving towards his son — that Stuart’s sole memory is that of him hugging Otto as the latter’s mother would.
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