True Detective: What Happens to Navarro in the End? Does She Die?

Image Credit: Michele K. Short/HBO

In HBO’s ‘True Detective: Night Country,’ Evangeline Navarro is haunted by the murder of Annie K, a case that remains unsolved for six years. Then, a group of scientists from Tsalal Arctic Research Station go missing, and when the disappearance is somehow connected to Annie, Navarro has hope again. She might crack the case yet. However, things are not so easy, and apart from the bureaucracy and the corruption in the system, she is also flooded with personal problems and cannot seem to catch a break. By the end of the story, Navarro has barely anything left to hold on to, and for Ennis, she disappears just as mysteriously as the scientists did in the beginning. But her ending is more hopeful. SPOILERS AHEAD

Does Navarro Leave Ennis?

Evangeline Navarro came to Ennis with her mother, who returned to her hometown to turn over a new leaf with her daughters. However, her mother was a troubled woman, and one night, she walked away and never came back. Her dead body was found, but the murderer was never caught. Apart from this, her mother also suffered from mental illness. She saw and heard things that weren’t there.

Image Credit: Michele K. Short/HBO

Later, her younger daughter, Julia, also suffered from the same thing, and it cost her her life. Considering that her mother and her sister had met a similar end, Navarro worried that she was heading towards the same fate. What made matters worse was that she, too, heard and saw things. But she couldn’t tell if it was mental illness or if it was her ability to tune into the other side, to see the supernatural, as people often did in Ennis.

There were only two things keeping Navarro in Ennis—first, her sister. Navarro thought having Julia close by, having her at home where she grew up, would help her find some semblance of stability. Navarro was also a police officer, and being in a position of authority, even though seemingly minuscule in the bigger picture, she felt she could keep Julia safe here. Here, she knew people, they had a community that would watch out for them. Navarro really thought they could make it work.

Even if Navarro wanted to leave Ennis with Julia, she couldn’t bring herself to do so because that would mean giving up on Annie’s case. The brutality of Annie’s murder and how the powerful people of Silver Sky mining buried it made Navarro angry. As the case was shut down and Navarro was transferred, the town seemed to have moved on. Navarro felt like she was the only one fighting for Annie, which is why she couldn’t let go of Ennis.

By the end, Julia is dead, Annie’s case is solved, and the murderers are brought to justice. This leaves nothing for Navarro to keep living in Ennis any longer, so she walks away. In the final scene, we see Danvers going to Navarro’s place and finding it empty, with only a teddy bear and a phone with Raymond Clarke’s confession of Annie’s murder left behind. She also leaves behind the Spongebob toothbrush that she stole from Quavvik, indicating that she is leaving behind her ties to Ennis and doesn’t really plan to return.

Image Credit: Michele K. Short/HBO

In one scene, we see her walking into the barren ice in front of her, but that scene is accompanied by Danvers revealing that Navarro will not be found on the ice, which means that she hasn’t accepted her sister’s fate. She didn’t leave everything behind and walk towards her death. The men interviewing Danvers ask her if she believes the sightings of Navarro are real. In a show that has dabbled in the supernatural with dead people being seen around town, the “sightings” of Navarro make it feel like her ghost is visiting Ennis. But then, maybe it’s just Navarro visiting her friends from time to time. Or maybe she didn’t go far enough.

Danvers says that no one really leaves Ennis. In an earlier episode, Quavvik said that Alaska girls always come back. So, perhaps Navarro left Ennis, but Ennis never left her. In the last shot, we see Danvers in a house by the lake, and Navarro appears next to her before the credits start to roll. While one could argue that this is the ghost of Navarro, there is a greater possibility that it is the real Navarro, who is done with her previous life and is living a solitary existence like Rose Aguineau. Or perhaps she’s just visiting Danvers, and saying her goodbyes before leaving for someplace else.

Read More: True Detective: What is Navarro’s Inupiaq Name?