The White Lotus stars break down that WTF ending in episode 5

Warning: this article contains spoilers from Sunday's episode 5 of The White Lotus.

Nothing is ever as picture-perfect as it seems on The White Lotus, but bet you didn't see that twist ending in episode 5 coming at all!

After Tanya (Jennifer Coolidge) and Portia (Haley Lu Richardson) spent the day and night with Quentin (Tom Hollander) and his nephew Jack (Leo Woodall) in Palermo, where they rolled out the red carpet for each woman in different ways, Tanya heard some mysterious noises coming from somewhere in their villa. When she went to explore what it was, she discovered Jack and Quentin in ... well, to put it mildly, a very inappropriate position for an uncle and his nephew. The episode ends on that WTF moment, with Tanya's very shocked face reacting to seeing Quentin and Jack sleeping together.

HBO is no stranger to portraying incest on its prestige dramas — lookin' at you, Game of Thrones and House of the Dragon — but this jaw-dropping development has us questioning if Quentin and Jack really are related or if Jack is actually a hired companion for Quentin and they've just been lying to Tanya and Portia about their relationship and arrangement. And Portia just dumped sweet Albie (Adam DiMarco) for a hotter vacation fling with Jack and she has no idea he's been sleeping with Quentin this whole time.

"Oh boy, Portia. Sweet Portia. Poor Portia," Richardson tells EW with a sigh. "Oh man, she was finally getting what she wanted, on paper, just to find out that he's f---ing his uncle. And its not what it seems. You never want to find out that the guy that you're dating and who has whisked you away is f---ing his uncle! You don't want to find that out."

The White Lotus
The White Lotus


DiMarco jokes, "I honestly hate when that happens."

Richardson laughs, continuing, "I hate it, it's too often. Like, again?! From Portia's perspective, it's a very extreme example of how you can't really rely on this external excitement or male-centered validation. Because he's going to end up f---ing his uncle."

DiMarco agrees, adding, "Yeah, you have to find true happiness and peace from within — because someone might be f---ing their uncle."

Both actors laugh again at the absurdity of how Portia is going to learn this valuable life lesson. "That's the moral of season 2: you've got to look inward, you've got to go to therapy, or else whoever you're f---ing is also going to be f---ing their uncle," Richardson says.

"I mean, people love Game of Thrones for this very reason," DiMarco quips.

Richardson laughs again before saying, "Oh my god, HBO loves something about uncle-f---ing!"

Revealing he has yet to watch the Thrones spin-off yet, Richardson quickly fills DiMarco in. "It's hot! I'm sorry, but on that show, House of the Dragon, it is," she continues, "and I'm sure Tom and Leo are also hot in [The White Lotus] scene."

Now that Tanya has discovered Quentin and Jack's scandalous secret, Richardson warns that the final two episodes of season 2 are going to get "way crazier, believe it or not."

"Yeah, it's a slow burn that gets kicked into high gear," DiMarco adds. "[Creator] Mike [White] is so great at crafting these slow burns and then at a certain point it just explodes and we're at that point now. It's just explosions everywhere, explosions at the fireworks factory."

This interview has been edited and condensed for length and clarity.

The White Lotus airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on HBO and HBO Max.

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