The Fall of the House of Usher ending explained

Gabriela Silva
Bruce Greenwood in The Fall of the House of Usher as Roderick UsherNetflix

The Edgar Allen Poe-inspired Netflix series by Mike Flanagan has everyone on the edge of their seats, as The Fall of the House of Usher ending finally reveals the dark truth about the Usher fame and fortune.

Flanagan’s newest horror series takes one of Poe’s most gothic storylines and turns it into a riveting mystery thriller. Roderick Usher (Bruce Greenwood) and his twin sister Madeline (Mary McDonnell) rose from poverty to fame and fortune as the CEOs of Fortunata Pharmaceuticals. But how?

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It’s the grand mystery of the series as each one of Roderick’s children dies a seemingly explainable yet gruesome death. What secret are Roderick and Madeline hiding that causes the family to crash and burn with no more legacy?

At the heart of the tragedy is a mysterious woman named Verna (Carla Gugino). By The Fall of the House of Usher finale, all is revealed and what the two siblings did to reach the top. Warning: Spoilers ahead!

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Roderick and Madaline made a deal in The Fall of the House of Usher

The Fall of the House of Usher ending revealed Roderick and Madeline made a deal on New Year’s at the start of the 80s with Verna. The deal was to never get caught for what they did to Rufus Wilmot Griswold (Michael Trucco) and live a privileged life.

Bruce Greenwood in The Fall of the House of Usher as Vera and young MadelineNetflix

Throughout the series audiences see flashbacks of what led to each of the Usher children’s deaths. As well as the current timeline of Roderick telling the truth to C. Auguste Dupin (Carl Lumbly). At the heart of every story is Verna, the mysterious woman no one can explain, but only Roderick and Madeline can. The series also includes flashbacks to Roderick and Madeline’s rise in Fortunato, and ultimately the crime they committed.

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In the finale, it’s revealed that they both entrapped Fortunato boss Rufus Wilmot Griswold behind a brick wall in the basement of the company. All the while there was a dressed-up New Year’s party happening upstairs. Looking for an alibi, they go to a bar they have never seen before and meet Verna. They become chummy by the end of the night, and Verna makes them an offer. She can guarantee that they will never get caught for what they did and live a lavish life. In return, every Usher bloodline will depart together.

The reason each Usher child has died is because of the deal with Verna. She’s a form of demon/devil incarnate. Her deal has run its course and the Usher family must pay the price. All of Roderick’s children will die, along with his granddaughter. The reason why Roderick sees his dead family isn’t only because of his illness but guilt from the deal.

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Do Roderick and Madeline die in The House of Usher ending?

The Fall of the House of Usher sees the chaotic and grisly death of Roderick and his sister Madeline, ending Verna’s deal.

In The Fall of the House of Usher ending, the storyline goes back further before Auguste meets Roderick at his childhood home. Madeline comes to drink with him in the basement and soon realizes it’s been spiked. Hellbent on preserving his great sister, he uses mummification artifacts to send her off like a Queen, similar to the Egyptians. But amid his current talk with Auguste, there are sounds coming from the basement.

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Auguste questions if she really is dead, and Roderick realizes she’s likely not and probably inherited their mother’s illness. Relishing in the reality of their wicked ways, Madeline appears with her eyes gauged out and attacks her brother. The scene mimics the start of the series and how their mother rose from the dead and attacked their real father, the founder of Fortunato.

Their childhood home crumbles around them, ending the Usher bloodline. In the aftermath, Juno (Ruth Codd) inherits the company, dissolves it, rehabs from Ligodone, and opens a rehabilitation organization. Arthur Pym (Mark Hamill) is arrested for all the dirty deeds the Ushers and the company have done over the years. In the end, all the Ushers are dead, and the series ends with Verna visiting their graves.

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You can read more Netflix content in our hub here, Dexerto’s review here, and if the series is connected to The Haunting of Hill House here.

About The Author

Bachelor's degree in Journalism from Fordham. Senior TV and Movies Writer for Dexerto covering Netflix, Disney+, K-Dramas and everything in between. Previous TV Writer for Showbiz Cheatsheet and List Witer for Screenrant. Any inquiries email at gabriela.silva@dexerto.com