The Gladers have escaped the Maze and made it through the Scorch, but in Maze Runner: The Death Cure, a band of heroes still has to face the oppressive organization WCKD while surviving a harsh future ravaged by solar flares and a vicious virus called the Flare.
After two films we’ve still got a lot of questions about just what is going on in the world of the Maze Runner, and it’s time to refresh before The Death Cure hits theaters on January 26. Many big questions from the first movie were answered in the second (such as "why didn't the helicopter just land in the Glade?") but there are plenty of mysteries left.
So we’ve got big questions that should be answered by the time the credits roll on The Death Cure. Note that we’re coming at this from the perspective of a movie-oriented audience, so if you haven’t read the books this is for you.
1. The key question remains: Is WCKD actually good?
Ava Paige (Patricia Clarkson), the leader of the World Catastrophe Killzone Department, says “WCKD is good,” and indeed the organization claims to be intent on finding a cure for the virus that turns people into zombie-like monsters. But she achieves that goal by literally draining an antiviral solution from kids held in stasis, so we’ve got our doubts about her humanitarian ideals.
And WCKD has double-agents all over the world, seemingly within any group of people that might possibly oppose their ideas. That doesn’t sound like the sort of thing a genuinely good organization would do. Plus, come on, that name is a bit of a tip off.
2. How did the Maze get built?
The world is in tatters, civilization is on the verge of collapse, and even WCKD – the dominant economic and military force in the area – doesn’t have enough resources to go around. So how did the Maze, which must have cost an insane amount of money and features ridiculous technology, get made in the first place?
3. Speaking of, what about the Grievers?
We saw young Grievers in vats in The Scorch Trials, but we still don’t know much about the development and growth of these bio-mechanical hybrids that haunt the Mazes. Are they related to the kids that WCKD farms for antidote to the Flare? Maybe used-up kids become Grievers? Or is the story even more messed-up than that?
4. What happened to everyone left behind in the Glade?
The Glade from the first movie wasn’t totally depopulated at the end of that film. One person, Gally, made it to the end of the Maze in time to cause some trouble right at the end of the movie. Did the others who had stayed behind with him remain in the Glade? Maybe they helped Gally get through the Maze, and were sacrificed in the process? Honestly, the Glade seems like a pretty great place to live compared to every other location we’ve seen in the movies as long as Grievers aren’t tearing through it, so hopefully they’re chilling in peace in the green space.
5. What’s up with the relationship between Thomas and Theresa?
The two knew each other before being dropped in the Glade, and by the end of The Scorch Trials they’ve suffered an idealogical split over how to face the future. Their ability to reconcile might depend on how strong their past bond still is – but we don’t even know all that much about their pre-Glade days.
6. Will Brenda live?
New ally Brenda took a bite from a Crank, one of the virally-mutated former humans, but was given enough enzyme-based medicine to keep the Flare at bay for a few months. We know the third film takes place a year after The Scorch Trials, and that Brenda is around, so she's still healthy enough to fight. Really, this lines up the last big question.
7. Is there actually a cure for the Flare?
Here’s the other thousand-dollar question. Can the Flare be cured? For that matter, is it a naturally-occurring virus, or did WCKD somehow create it? The question of a cure, and what Thomas might have to sacrifice in order to find it, is paramount for this third and final film. We'll get answers on January 26.