Note: This recap contains mentions of racially motivated violence against Black individuals that can be disturbing or triggering. For a deeper look at the historical basis that provides context for the events described and shown in the series, you can listen to HBO’s Lovecraft Country companion podcast Lovecraft Country Radio, hosted by Ashley C. Ford and Shannon Houston.
After 10 episodes, the finale of Lovecraft Country delivered on some answers while creating new questions. There are plenty of loose ends for a potential second season, but “Full Circle” could also function as a series finale due to the way it ends the story arc of the first season. With time running out to stop Christina, the group must band together to cast a spell. But what does the spell require, and does Tic have the ability to complete it? Find out what happened in our recap.
Leti, Montrose, Tic, and Hippolyta manage to make it home with Dee and the Book of Names. Tic recites a spell to unbind the book as they carry Dee upstairs. The book opens as Leti and Tic pass out, hitting the floor as we see that the mark in the book matches Tic’s birthmark. In an alternate world, Tic is back in the Sons of Adam lodge. He finds Hanna, who managed to escape the burning lodge. She cast a spell to keep her and Tic’s blood hidden from their magical pursuers. Hanna managed to tame her fiery anger and create a peaceful ancestral realm, passing on the gift of her magic to Tic.
Leti, meanwhile, is with Hattie in Dora’s childhood house. Hattie reveals that the ancestral space was created by Hanna, who believed she was in Hell after opening the Book of Names for the first time. Hanna was trying to find a way to close it for good when she died. Hattie tells Leti that it is now Leti’s job to protect the Book as Hattie’s family has done. She also ominously warns that Leti must be careful not to make the same mistakes Hanna did. Tic asks Hanna how to save Dee, but she’s cryptic.
Tic ends up in his father’s apartment where his mother is waiting. Tic collapses and cries in her arms as Dora tells him she knows that Hanna asked him to sacrifice himself to stop Christina’s plan. Tic doesn’t want to die, but Dora tells him he has to stop Christina no matter what it takes, that it’s destiny. She tells Tic that Hanna’s spell will fix everything that’s wrong. They go to Hattie and Leti, who has just learned to read the Language of Adam. They all cast a spell meant to save Dee as we see Hippolyta and Montrose desperately trying to wake Tic and Leti up back in the real world. Hippolyta notices Dee is healing, and all three suddenly wake up. Dee’s arm is still injured from the curse.
Montrose is against Tic completing the spell, remembering that the Book predicted Tic would die. Tic lies to his father and says the book is wrong and he won’t die. They need Tic, Titus, and Christina to be bound by a blood tie so they can turn the connection back on her. Leti and Tic go to the house to get Titus’ blood by summoning him in a resurrection. Hanna reveals the plan to kill him in a fit of anger, and Titus escapes the salt circle Tic and Leti made. He ends up in the street, where he causes Ruby and Christina to crash their car. Titus tell Christina that Tic has the Book before being pulled back to the circle. Tic manages to stab Titus and take some of his flesh, completing one part of the spell and causing Hattie, Hanna, and Dora to vanish.
Hippolyta talks with Dee, who is angry with her mother for leaving her. Hippolyta tells Dee that though she did leave Dee, she found out who she was meant to be. At the end of all her adventures and her journey to find herself, she knew that at her core she was Dee’s mother. That is how she came back to Dee. The group needs a sample of Christina’s blood, which Leti believes Ruby can get for them. Montrose thinks Ruby is too friendly with Christina. Christina then arrives, seeking the Book. She coldly tells Tic his death is just a casualty of the spell she needs to cast. There’s no way for it to work otherwise unless she has the Book. She says she’ll leave his family alone if he hands it over, but he refuses. She takes away Leti’s protection charm and leaves.
Looking for help, Tic meets Ji-ah. He tells her that the relationship they had was real and he was just too scared to admit it. He was afraid that he’d make his future real if he recognized their bond for what it was. Ji-ah tells him her mother just died and that she can’t feel anything. Tic tells her grief is a normal human emotion before telling her she is his family. Ji-ah reveals what the shaman told her about her destiny and Tic’s death, but Tic still thinks there’s a way out.
Leti meets Ruby, where she reveals that the reason she didn’t attend their mother’s funeral was because she was in jail. Ruby says no matter what she may have done, Eloise was their mother, but Leti tells her family isn’t just blood relation. Leti shows Ruby the book and explains that they need her to get Christina’s blood, but Ruby tells Leti she’s tired of Leti wanting to be sisters only when she needs something from Ruby. Dee and Hippolyta talk about Emmett Till’s murder and the murderers’ acquittal. Dee fears she’ll never draw again because of her arm, but Hippolyta leads her to another room where mechanical noises are heard.
Ruby and Christina talk about Christina’s spell, with Christina worrying that if it fails, she will have killed her family for nothing. Ruby reassures Christina and kisses her. Meanwhile, Tic and Leti both get baptized, with Leti telling Tic that God will look out for them and their child. The group leaves for Ardham, with Ruby arriving with a vial of Christina’s blood. Tic is able to complete the ritual but is brought to Christina. Leti and Ruby are trying to complete the binding triangle, but Leti realizes “Ruby” is really Christina in disguise. Christina tells Leti that Ruby was trying to steal her potion and that she killed her. Leti goes after Christina, who throws her off the watchtower. Montrose, Hippolyta, and Ji-ah are surrounded.
Tic is tied to the altar as Christina enters, holding the book. She tells him she knew about his plan and that if it weren’t for Ruby, it would have worked. Montrose, Hippolyta, and Ji-ah are brought to the room, and Tic realizes that Leti is dead. Christina successfully steals Tic’s life force as Leti runs towards the lodge, having survived the fall due to still bearing the Mark of Cain. Leti stabs Christina, who is unharmed due to her new immortality. But Leti recites the spell anyway, producing a dark cloud. Realizing what she must do, Ji-ah uses her tails to connect Christina and Tic. We see both of their memories, Christina caring for a comatose Ruby while casting a new invulnerability spell onto Leti. The tails make the spell work, causing a huge explosion of magic energy.
In the confusion after the explosion, Montrose finds out that Tic is dead. Hippolyta gives him a letter Tic wrote before the spell was cast, apologizing for lying to Montrose about the spell but explaining it was the only way. The group brings Tic’s body back to the car as Christina wakes up under the rubble, unable to cast a spell. Dee finds Christina, showing her the new robotic arm she has. Instead of saving her, Dee chokes the life from Christina as the episode ends.
All episodes from season 1 of Lovecraft Country are now streaming on HBO and HBO Max.