‘The White Lotus’: Hidden Clues in Those Opening Credits Explained

HBO comedy-drama The White Lotus is rapidly making a declare for having a few of the greatest opening titles on the market. Along with the provocative Renaissance-style photos that make up season 2’s title sequence, Emmy-winning composer Cristobal Tapia de Vere is again with a remix of season 1’s eclectic ear worm. (Check out his soundtrack to 2013 British collection Utopia for extra electrifying tunes.)

Season 2’s decadent, but more and more sinister opening credit have been created by Katrina Crawford and Mark Bashore, who’re additionally behind the present’s season 1 credit. The pair do not plant overt clues to the a number of deaths on this season, as an alternative drawing symbolic meanings to every character’s journey. Let’s dissect these meanings based mostly on the 5 episodes of season 2 which have already aired and try and predict what salacious excessive jinks are to return.

Warning: Spoilers forward.

The conventional lovers

The first picture we see in season 2’s opening credit reveals a person bowing to a curtseying girl — a scene of what seems to be conventional Renaissance lovers (the fashion of artwork that emerged in Italy within the late 14th century). Here, titles creators Crawford and Bashore are establishing the themes of the Sicily-set second season: Where season 1 targeted on privilege and colonialization, season 2 explores themes of male heterosexuality.

In the underside left nook, a protect reveals two rings linked by wholesome branches. In the opposite: two marriage ceremony rings run via by a dagger. These rings appear to characterize the 2 central marriages in season 2: the crumbling solidarity of Harper (Aubrey Plaza) and Ethan (Will Sharpe), and the accepted duplicity of Cameron (Theo James) and Daphne (Meghann Fahy).

Then the digital camera zooms in and divulges a lady spying on two lovers. This might be one other signal of infidelity (in episode 3, Cameron sleeps with intercourse employee Lucia), in addition to reflecting Harper’s curiosity within the secrets and techniques behind Cameron and Daphne’s loving entrance (additionally in episode 3, Daphne reveals she’s conscious of Cameron’s infidelity).

Four holidayers standing on a boat clinking wine glasses

And every thing began so properly.

Fabio Lovino/HBO

The girl and the chained monkey

The digital camera pans as much as present a blond girl holding a sequence connected to a monkey. This might be interpreted in some ways — if the girl is supposed to characterize Tanya (Jennifer Coolidge), then the monkey might be her husband Greg (Joe Gries), who feels indebted to Tanya after she paid for his medical payments and primarily saved his life. The monkey may be a logo for Tanya’s assistant Portia (Hayley Lu Richardson), pressured to go on trip together with her boss.

The harmless man, the infants and the sphinx

Crawford and Bashore have even layered in that means when an actor’s identify seems within the opening credit. In an interview, they revealed that the coinciding picture when an actor’s identify seems displays the traits and journey of their character. The subsequent scene reveals a person taking part in music for a lady with a happy-looking canine close by. Here, actor Adam DiMarco’s identify seems — DiMarco performs the honest and naive Stanford graduate Albie, who appears intent on appearing like a gentleman towards girls, in contrast to his father.

Next, we see actor Meghann Fahy’s identify seem over an ornate picture of two bare child boys. When not on vacation, Fahy’s character Daphne is a stay-at-home mom. In episode 5, it is revealed these boys may not be Cameron’s youngsters, however these of the non-public coach Daphne sees whereas Cameron is tied up at work.

Then actor Beatrice Grannò’s identify seems with a gold sphinx — her character Mia, an aspiring singer, resists her buddy Lucia’s makes an attempt to introduce her to intercourse work… till episode 4, when she chooses to have intercourse with pianist Giuseppe in an effort to additional her musical profession. In Greek mythology, the riddle of the sphinx references three levels of man: child, grownup and outdated. It’s not exhausting to infer which three males are being referenced right here in The White Lotus — the Di Grassos. Mia and her buddy Lucia have many encounters with all three Di Grasso males.

A young woman in a red top talking to an older man at a pianoA young woman in a red top talking to an older man at a piano

Mia accepts Giuseppe’s proposition.


The donkey and the lovers

Actor Jon Gries’ identify seems subsequent over a picture of a person and a lady driving a donkey — a donkey virtually shiftily wanting over its shoulder towards us. This may symbolize Gries’ character Greg, who could also be dishonest on his spouse Tanya with one other girl. In episode 2, Greg leaves Tanya alone on the resort, saying he has to fly again to Denver for work.

We then see the names of actors Tom Hollander and Sabrina Impacciatore over women and men separated on both sides of a room. This appears to level to how Hollander’s character Quentin, a rich homosexual British expat, is on vacation together with his associates. Meanwhile Impacciatore’s character Valentina, the resort supervisor, appears to disclose emotions for receptionist Isabella (Eleonora Romandini) in episode 4.


The cracked fresco, a large statue and preventing birds

In an intriguing fresco set on the water, we see a person bowing down earlier than a youthful man and a lady who drops a necklace into the ocean. Actor Michael Imperioli’s identify seems right here — his character Dominic, a intercourse addict and father of Albie, is likely to be begging forgiveness from each his son and spouse, who’re disgusted by his affairs and betrayal. In episode 4, he buys his spouse a bit of jewelry as a present.

Next we see actor Theo James’ identify over a large bare statue of a person — in episode 1, James’ character Cameron intentionally undresses and exposes himself to Harper. Here, we additionally see a canine peeing on the statue — a present of disrespect towards every thing it represents.

Above, we see two birds at battle with one another, alongside actor Aubrey Plaza’s identify. The pecking birds may characterize the autumn and destruction Plaza’s character Harper faces after discovering her husband Ethan lied to her about what he and Cameron actually obtained as much as whereas Harper and Daphne have been away on the fancy palazzo in Noto.

Three generations of men standing on a boat before a hotel managerThree generations of men standing on a boat before a hotel manager

The three generations of Di Grasso males.

Fabio Lovino/HBO

The sacrificial lamb and the providing

In the following scene, alongside actor Haley Lu Richardson’s identify, we see what appears like a lamb and a maid sitting on the bottom. Richardson’s character Portia is at her boss Tanya’s beck and name, so possibly the maid represents her low standing. It additionally appears just like the maid has her again turned to the lamb — possibly the lamb is meant to characterize Albie, the person Portia discovered overly mild, harmless and unexciting compared to Quentin’s charismatic and cheeky nephew Jack (Leo Woodall).

The subsequent scene is a tad complicated — it reveals a person making an providing to a regal-looking girl, with actor Will Sharpe’s identify. Is this Sharpe’s character, Ethan, serving Harper an apology? Or is that this to characterize his newfound wealth that he is sharing together with her?

The cat and the aggressive males

Next up: a small cat with leopard spots and a little bit chicken in its mouth, slinking round a column. Actor Simona Tabasco’s identify seems right here — she performs native hustler and intercourse employee Lucia, who exclaims in episode 4 that she turned her beforehand conservative buddy Mia right into a monster. Maybe Mia’s innocence is meant to be the little lifeless chicken within the cat’s mouth.

Actor Leo Woodall’s identify seems subsequent, alongside a picture of 1 man standing over one other. On the one hand. it appears like a threatening state of affairs: the previous’s foot is positioned in a reasonably perilous positing between the latter’s legs. Could there be a nasty confrontation within the playing cards for Woodall’s character Jack? On the opposite hand, we be taught in episode 5 that Jack is participating in sexual acts together with his “uncle” Quentin.

The burning constructing and the white swan

As the beat of the music ramps up, the photographs develop into much more specific. We see:

  • A hotel-like constructing burning within the distance — no prizes for guessing the that means behind this one (issues are about to metaphorically go up in flames at The White Lotus).
  • Two males engaged in sexual exercise on a seashore.
  • Goats additionally engaged in a sexual act.
  • Three round holes within the aspect of a wall — which may characterize the three generations of the Di Grasso males and their behaviour towards girls following a round sample.
  • General scenes of violence and blood.
  • A lady being seduced by a swan — this appears to be a transparent reference to the story of Leda and the swan in Greek mythology, the place the god Zeus transforms right into a swan and rapes Leda, the queen of Sparta.
  • A fountain rising — a phallic picture.

Two episodes of The White Lotus, season 2, stay. So, with these clues, there’s nonetheless time to place in your deerstalker and deduce the twisted fates of the not-so-picture-perfect company at The White Lotus.

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