Kaleidoscope is a TV series that landed on Netflix in January 2023. It received positive feedback from viewers already from the first days of vision for two main reasons: the protagonist, Ray Vernon / Leo Pap, is played by Giancarlo Esposito, the infamous Gus Fring from Better Call Saul; and the series is presented by Netflix with the episodes in random order, challenging the spectator to connect the events seen in each independent episode. We may want to recap quickly how the plot develops in chronological order, but first, let’s go to the main point: what happens in the series ending in the Pink episode and who killed Leo / Ray in the last scene. Let’s have everything explained.
You can watch the official trailer for Kaleidoscope here on Youtube, whereas here below you have the full recap of the Season 1 plot with all episodes in chronological order.
Kaleidoscope ending explained: the Pink episode
In Kaleidoscope plot chronology, the ending is the Pink episode, where the TV series has explained how the circle is closed. If you watch this episode after the white episode (where the heist takes place), you’ll discover something unexpected: Bob is not dead. Everybody thinks he’s no longer around; however, he’s still chasing his revenge. He visits Roger Salas in prison, asks for money, and his request is accepted with one condition: he will have to kill Leo / Ray.
This way, we know that Salas wants Ray/Leo dead, and that’s not a surprise: his life is over, he has to serve 20 years in prison, and everything he built in years is now lost. Ray/Leo has enemies and will discover them very soon: Bob hires two men to help and tortures Zanetti, Ava’s fence, after he reveals where Ava and Leo are. Then he shows up at their home, Ray/Leo is summoned, he will give Bob the money he has, but we discover that it isn’t just about money: Bob wants to know where he can find Stan and Judy, now that Judy decided to live his life together with Stan.
We see Bob showing up at the meeting with Stan and Judy, intending to kill Stan. However, Bob is killed by the FBI before getting closer to Stan. Stan won’t even know that he risked his life, but Judy will see Bob’s car, discover the money’s bag inside, and read his letters. In a few seconds, she takes her decision: she escapes with the car and the money, leaving Stan at that moment.
Meanwhile, Ava and her old nanny die at Ava’s home, shot by one of Bob’s accomplices. Ray/Leo succeeds in killing him and walks out alive from that home. We see him calling his daughter Hannah, who lives a peaceful and wealthy life with her newborn Lily, named after Leo’s dead wife. In the series final, Ray/Leo visits Salas in prison, as the end of the line: Leo knows his Parkinson’s is getting to its last stage, Salas will come out of jail in some years, but his life is ruined. That leads us to the final scene, which deserves a dedicated explanation.
Who killed Ray / Leo?
In Kaleidoscope’s Pink episode, the last scene shows Ray / Leo walking out of prison, followed by a mysterious guy. He enters the tunnel, the guy is behind him, and he takes out a gun; the screen fades into pink, and we hear the gunshot: we all assume that Ray / Leo is dead. But who killed him?
We surely know that Salas wants him dead, so we may assume the guy who killed him is a sicario hired by Salas from prison after Carlos died. But there is a detail that reveals the truth: the colorful shirt the guy behind Ray / Leo wears is the same one we see on Roger Salas’ son in the White episode, when the son calls his dad in the other room. You will recognize the shirt from the frame below.
With this fascinating detail, Kaleidoscope ending has explained two things to us: Roger Salas’ son killed Ray / Leo because he sent his father to prison, as a pure form of revenge, and Salas is not the one who commissioned Ray’s death (it’s hard to think that he asks his son to do that).
Is Ray / Leo dead or alive?
Of course, that’s the typical open question that remains after viewing a series like Kaleidoscope, which can still have a possible second season: Salas is alive and will eventually come out of prison. Hannah is fine, and her daughter will grow up. Judy flew away with the money, but she could still be back in the game. Stan will surely need answers. Bob, Ava, RJ, and FBI agent Abbasi are dead, but the plot can surely go on. So the big question is: is Ray / Leo dead, or is he still alive?
We don’t know if the shot was lethal. There is always a chance that he will survive. We can discover the truth only if / when Netflix confirms a possible Season 2. Until then, we can rely on the words spoken by Giancarlo Esposito, the actor playing Ray Vernon / Leo Pap, in an interview with TechRadar, expressing his desire:
“I want Ray to walk through that tunnel and see Hannah again. I want him to have that final hug. Parkinson’s is a devastating, uncontrollable disease, but you can fight it and Ray has that fight in him again. As he walks, you don’t know if he makes it but, at this point of his journey, he doesn’t want any more loss. He just really wants to live.”