If social media is anything to go by, pretty much everyone watched Netflix’s The Woods over the weekend. And, while the Harlan Coben adaptation has certainly divided viewers, one thing seems abundantly clear: that twisted cliffhanger of an ending has left people with a lot of questions about Paweł Kopiński’s sister.
A lot of questions.
With that in mind, then, Stylist’s Kayleigh Dray has done her best to unravel the mystery below.
Warning: this article contains spoilers for Netflix’s The Woods. Proceed with caution…
As fans of The Woods will no doubt remember, the very first episode of the Polish thriller opened with a flashback to that fateful night in 1994.
Paweł, then a summer camp chaperone, is seen leaving his teenage charges alone in order to spend some time alone with his girlfriend. However, it isn’t long before he and Laura are interrupted by a bloodcurdling scream.
We learn later that Pawel’s sister, Kamila, disappeared in the woods that fateful night. That no less than three other teens also went missing. That, while the bodies of Monika and Daniel turned up not long after the alarm was sounded, Kamila and Artur’s remains had never been found.
That the case has laid dormant, but not forgotten, for almost three decades.
The Woods finale: what really happened that night in the woods?
Naturally, it isn’t until the final episode in the bingeable TV series that we learn it was Kamila who screamed that night… albeit not for the reasons we suspected.
During her time at the summer camp, Kamila begins dating fellow campmate Daniel. Paweł’s best friend Artur, meanwhile, forges a relationship of his own with a girl named Monika.
On the last day, though, one of the older chaperones, Wojtek, reveals that Daniel and Monika have actually been sleeping together the entire time. And he knows exactly how a heartbroken Artur and Kamila should enact their revenge, too: by luring Daniel and Monica to a remote spot for a skinny dipping session, before stealing their clothes and forcing them to walk back to camp naked.
The teens follow Wojtek’s advice to the letter. The plan hits a wall, though, when Monika refuses to be shamed. Instead, she begins hurling insults at Kamila, prompting Pawel’s sister to hurl herself at her love rival, grab hold of her neck, and squeeze as hard as she possibly can.
When Kamila eventually staggers to her feet, Monika is unresponsive, but it’s unclear if she’s dead or alive.
Much to the others’ horror, though, Wojtek makes things 100% certain by taking a knife and slicing the unconscious girl’s throat. And, when the obviously disturbed camp counsellor begins waving his knife at Kamila and the other teens, they take off and scatter into the woods in a desperate attempt to escape.
Artur arms himself with a knife of his own in order to defend himself and the others against Wojtek. But, when he finds himself lost and alone in the forest, the teen lashes out fearfully when an unidentified figure comes up behind him. He stabs the person multiple times.
And he realises, far too late, that it’s not Wojtek he’s killed, but Daniel.
The Woods finale: so, what happened to Kamila and Artur?
With blood on both of their hands, Kamila and Artur somehow make it back to camp and tell their mothers what happened. The older women are shocked, but quickly decide that the police won’t believe their children are innocent of any wrongdoing.
Their plan, then? To send the teens into hiding, at first for 24 hours, but then forever.
It works, at first: Wojtek is held responsible for the deaths of both Monika and Daniel, as well as for the disappearances of Kamila and Artur (both presumed dead by police).
But here’s where things get complicated. Even more complicated, anyway.
The Woods finale: what happened to Pawel’s mother?
Paweł’s mother did not tell him or anyone else that Kamila survived that night in the woods. Instead, she spirited her daughter away in the night, and made plans to flee Warsaw with both of her children soon after.
Tragically, she never gets the chance. Because when her abusive husband learns of her plans, he kills her and disposes of her body. Pawel assumes, wrongly, that his mother has abandoned him. And Kamila? Kamila loses her only familial connection to her old life.
The Woods finale: is Kamila still alive?
It isn’t until Artur is found dead 25 years later (murdered by Dawid, the camp president and Laura’s father, who was romantically involved with Wojtek) that Pawel learns the truth about his sister’s whereabouts: she was hidden away in a remote nunnery all those years ago.
And, if the final scenes of the series are to be believed, she is still alive.
“Kamila?” asks Pawel, as he approaches the woman he believes to be his sister. Before she turns around, though, the camera cuts away – leaving viewers unsure as to whether or not he’s finally tracked Kamila down or now.
Will there be a second season of The Woods?
It’s doubtful: there’s only one book, after all, and Coben has said himself that he prefers to serve up all the answers in one go.
However, Coben fans needn’t despair: El Inocente, an eight-part series based on another of the author’s books, is due to be released on Netflix later this year.
The series tells the tale of Mateo who, nine years ago, interceded in a fight and ended up becoming a murderer. Now he’s an ex-convict who takes nothing for granted. His wife, Olivia, is pregnant, and both are about to get the house of their dreams. Until, that is, an unexpected phone call destroys Mateo’s life for the second time.
Sounds juicy, right?
When will El Inocente be released on Netflix?
While the release date has yet to be announced, fans can expect the show later this year.
Kayleigh Dray is Stylist’s digital editor-at-large. Her specialist topics include comic books, films, TV and feminism. On a weekend, you can usually find her drinking copious amounts of tea and playing boardgames with her friends.