Extinction on Netflix: Who were the Aliens and Ending Explained

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Extinction Netflix

Just finished watching Extinction and looking for some answers? We’ve got everything you need to know about the ending of Extinction plus some other key questions you may have after finishing the latest Netflix sci-fi.

It should go without saying at this point that this article is going to be pretty spoiler heavy so we suggest if you haven’t seen the movie already to click away now and come back later. If you want to know more about the movie now you’re finished watching including the soundtrack, cast list and what the critics made of it, view our after you watch guide.

The Big Plot Twist

Of course, the big twist in the movie is that the invaders aren’t exactly alien. Instead, they’re humans trying to take back their home planet. The other big plot twist is that everyone currently living on Earth aren’t humans, instead, they’re artificial intelligent synthetics.

Why didn’t they know they were synthetics?

This is one of the only questions we cannot answer. When Alice gets opened up towards the middle of the movie, Peter is dumbstruck to see what his wife is. Miles asks Peter if he really didn’t realize what he was.

In some of the flashbacks, we find out that Peter and Alice are synthetics tasked with menial jobs. Peter is an engineer and Alice is a cleaner. It’s throughout these flashbacks we begin to learn of the rising tension between the humans and the AI’s. It’s also around this time we know that the synths are evolving to develop emotions and free-thought. To begin with, Peter is relatively robotic and lifeless but as the movie progresses he becomes more human-like.

Who shot first?


The reason why humans had to leave Earth was that of the civil war which took place because of the humans growing suspicious of the synthetics. A violent war took place with the genocide of humans and the last remaining humans evacuated entirely to Mars.

How far into the future is the movie set?

While we don’t know the exact timing of the movie, it’s safe to say it’s plenty of years in the future. AI hasn’t quite progressed to the level seen in the movie here. What we do know regarding the timeline is how far into the future the invasion of Earth happened. Miles revealed that the humans had retreated to Mars where they set up colonies and trained to come back to Earth. Miles said his grandfather was involved with the evacuation.

Why couldn’t they remember their previous lives?

It’s revealed that most chose to start fresh and have their memories wiped. In the case of Peter, his old memory was still there but fragmented. David (Mike Colter) referred Peter to a doctor, he was actually getting him to go back and get his memory wiped.

Why did the humans have weird suits?

Miles spoke about how they didn’t even know if they’d be able to breathe in the atmosphere again. The suits look to be thick made out of resources most likely found on Mars. They’re also equipped with several breathing pods too. The guns they used seem to be modified versions of existing guns with fingerprint technology. That’s something Peter was unfamiliar with because the synths probably don’t have fingerprints.

Let’s talk about the ending

In the end, most of the synths have escaped on the train and retreat into the wilderness destroying the train tracks. It’s likely now going to be several years until they mount another offense to take back.

One thing Peter did suggest is that the synths were evolving and even Miles suggested that the two species could live in harmony.

Have we missed anything regarding Extinction? What did you think of the movie let us know in the comments.

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Founder of What's on Netflix, Kasey has been tracking the comings and goings of the Netflix library for over a decade. Covering everything from new movies, series and games from around the world, Kasey is in charge of covering breaking news, covering all the new additions now available on Netflix and what's coming next.

 Poster Rating: N/A
Language: English
Genre: Sci-Fi, Thriller
Director: Ben Young
Cast: Lizzy Caplan, Michael Peña, Israel Broussard, Mike Colter
Added to Netflix: July 27th, 2018