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Four Scenarios to Explain the Events of 'Cairo' on This Week's 'The Leftovers'

By Dustin Rowles | The Leftovers | August 22, 2014 |

By Dustin Rowles | The Leftovers | August 22, 2014 |

Scenario Number One: The Straightforward Version

In a Damon Lindelof series, the straightforward scenario almost feels like the least likely, but we still have to consider it, right?

That straightforward scenario is this: Kevin fell asleep after dinner, slept-walk to a bar, grabbed some drinks with Dean, drove Dean home, stumbled upon Patti, knocked her out, and drove her five hours to Cairo, where he and Dean tied her up in a cabin. At that point, Kevin woke up in his car only to discover that his missing white shirts were also in Cairo, suggesting that he’d had many sleep walking episodes before that took him to Cairo.

There, Dean attempted to kill Patti, Kevin saved her life, and Patti — after admitting that she arranged to have Gladys killed, and that Laurie would soon be martyred — committed suicide with the intention of pinning her death on Kevin.

Evidence in Support: Kevin clearly did leave his house, because when Jill woke up, Kevin wasn’t there. He also left a message on Nora’s answering machine while he was gone. Moreover, the previous week he made a bet with Dean that he could civilize a feral dog that he and Dean had apparently picked up during another one of Kevin’s sleep-walking episodes.

Scenario Number Two: Dean Doesn’t Exist

Is Dean one of the voices Kevin’s father told Kevin would be sent to him? In other words, is Dean actually a hallucination, or possibly, a Fight Club-like multiple personality? If that is the case, then Kevin basically acted alone — under the advice of the voices in his head — in taking Patti out to the cabin.

Evidence in Support: The truck with no tags or registration that was mysteriously purchased for Kevin. The fact that Patti could find no record of Dean’s existence, and the fact that Patti called him a Ghost, although Dean acknowledged that he was a “guardian angel.”

The fact that very few people have witnessed his existence, although one of those people is Jill. But could Jill also see the same voices that her father/grandfather saw?

On the other hand, Dean witnessed the body of Gladys and gave a statement to the police. He also appeared at a city council meeting. And Patti could apparently see him.

Scenario Number Three: Dean and Patti Are in Cahoots: Dean is part of a Guilty Remnant conspiracy. I mean, it makes sense: Dean is always popping up around Kevin. He just happened to be out there shooting dogs after Gladys was killed? And he just happened to be at the bar that Kevin allegedly sleepwalk to? But why is Kevin sleepwalking? After all, he threw away his pharmacy of pills the week before. Or is it possible that he did sleepwalk to the bar, and that’s where Dean roofied him?

How did Kevin’s shirts get all the way out to Cairo without him noticing? Asleep or awake, if you take a 10-hour round trip 9 times (there were nine shirts), someone is going to notice, and you’re not likely to neatly hang your shirts in such a fashion.

Is it possible that Dean and Patti are trying to make Kevin think he’s crazy. We’ve seen how far the GR will go to f**k with people’s lives. Maybe Dean is the higher-up? Maybe he’s Patti’s boss. Maybe Patti and Dean are trying to drive Kevin to his own death, so that Laurie will be able to secure his life insurance or the house, money which would go into the GR coffers.

Did Dean have a hand in the escape from the mental institution of Kevin’s father?

Here’s the clincher, though: After Dean attempted to kill Patti, and Kevin saved him, Patti began groaning and, as Dean walked out the door, he mumbled — seemingly to Patti — “Oh, shut the fuck up. I tried.” Does that, in some way, confirm a conspiracy between the two?

Scenario Number Four: Cairo was all a dream — There’s some interesting connections we could make here, and if it were a David Lynch show, I’d be more inclined to believe this. But I’m not sure.

That said, a dream would explain the logistics of driving that far and back. In a dream, Patti could be representing Laurie. There was also an Otis Redding song at the beginning of the episode about dreams. Maybe he’s wrestling with his subconscious, which has taken the form of Dean in his dreams. His subconscious is also likely to choose a place to set the events of his dreams like Cairo because it was an important memory from his childhood.

The most compelling evidence here is the National Geographic magazine. Things from it keeping popping up in Kevin’s life, including and especially THIS. That feels like another piece of Kevin’s subconscious. Otherwise, how does that end up in Cairo, unless there is some supernatural f**kery going on here, right?

Wildcard Elements

— Has Kevin actually slept with Aimee during one of his blackouts?

— What are the clearly human teeth marks on Kevin’s hand from?

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Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.