Why Fans Think Quentin and Greg Are Working Together to Scam Tanya on “The White Lotus”
The finale of “The White Lotus” season two has to do a lot in just one episode. It needs to tie up the dramatic storylines of the central two couples (Aubrey Plaza, Theo James, Will Sharpe, and Meghann Fahy); resolve whatever’s going on with Lucia (Simona Tabasco), Albie (Adam DiMarco), and her supposed pimp; and reveal who dies – and it needs to confirm what’s really going on with Quentin.
Viewers were introduced to the smarmy Quentin (Tom Hollander) halfway through the season when he’s spotted eyeing Jennifer Coolidge’s Tanya across the White Lotus dining room. He quickly sweeps Tanya off her feet by comparing her to the tragic heroine of an Italian opera and easily manages to persuade her to come with him to his lavish villa in Palermo with her assistant, Portia (Haley Lu Richardson), in tow.
From Quentin’s first moments on screen, viewers have been suspicious of his motives. But over the course of the past three episodes, fans have steadily honed in on one theory about what Quentin is really up to.
Is Quentin Scamming Tanya on “The White Lotus”?
From the get-go, Quentin clearly isn’t telling the truth about everything. Firstly, there’s the fact that his supposed “nephew,” Jack, definitely isn’t his nephew – as Tanya finds out at the end of episode five when she catches them having sex in Quentin’s bedroom. Instead, Jack is most likely a sex worker, which makes it seem like his nascent relationship with Portia might actually be an effort to distract Tanya’s assistant from paying attention to her boss. Tanya warns Portia about Jack in a roundabout way, telling her, “When you’re empty inside, and you have no direction, you’ll end up in some crazy places, but you’ll still be lost” – though she doesn’t seem to realize she might be in danger as well.
At the end of episode six, Jack has one too many beers and winds up saying a few things that make it clear Quentin is scamming Tanya. He tells Portia that his uncle nearly went broke after spending all his money on refurbishing the villa and throwing elaborate parties but says he’s coming into money soon. The question is, are more people involved in the scam than just Quentin and Jack?
Is Greg Involved in Quentin’s Scam on “The White Lotus”?
Quentin gives the clearest hint about his possible true motivations in episode five, when he asks Tanya if she’d be willing to “die for beauty” and tells her he’s only ever been in love once – with a straight cowboy from Wyoming. Fans immediately began speculating that the cowboy might be Tanya’s husband, Greg, who we know works for the Bureau of Land Management in the western United States. In episode six, Tanya discovers a photo that seems to show a young Quentin alongside a man in a cowboy hat who looks suspiciously like a younger Greg, indicating that her husband may indeed be the cowboy Quentin fell in love with all those years ago.
Greg, of course, departs from his vacation with Tanya early after claiming that he has urgent work business back in the United States. He promises to be back in two days – which is a very unrealistic timeline, though Tanya doesn’t seem to realize this. Even before that, the show began stoking suspicion about Greg, starting when Tanya overhears him describing her as clueless in a secretive phone call (though the fact that he has the nerve to criticize Tanya for eating too many macarons at the start of the show was also a major red flag for many). Some fans even believe Greg has been plotting against Tanya from the moment he met her in season one, when he tells her he was on vacation with a group of friends who go deep-sea fishing every year. We never actually see the friends, though, and he seems immediately taken with Tanya, whose room just so happens to be next to his.
Directly after Greg’s sudden departure from Sicily, Quentin conveniently shows up and makes a beeline for the lonely, gullible Tanya. Because of all this, fans believe Greg may have hired Quentin to swindle Tanya out of her vast fortune, either by persuading her to cheat so their prenup might be annulled by a potential infidelity clause – or by killing her. At the end of episode six, Quentin does successfully get Tanya to cheat by setting her up with an Italian man (who may or may not be in the mafia) and a whole lot of white powder, making it seem like the former scenario might be the case.
Along with his longtime love for Greg, Quentin’s lack of money and his love for his beautiful villa and opulent lifestyle give him a pretty solid motive for pursuing Tanya’s fortune. This also explains why Greg was so angry that Tanya brought Portia along with her in the first episode. Jack successfully manages to get Portia far away from the villa on the night of the party, where Quentin introduces Tanya to her new Italian lover, so the possible plan seems to be going smoothly. Given Tanya’s ominous dream and even more ominous tarot reading from earlier in the season, things do seem to be headed in a dark direction for her.
However, both Tanya and Portia appear to be getting more and more suspicious in the final scenes of the sixth episode, and while we’re no closer to knowing which bodies will wash up on the shore in the finale, it seems that an explosive ending is inevitable. Ultimately, like so many other White Lotus guests, Tanya, Portia, Quentin, and Greg’s thirst for beauty – and the distraction it offers from their own inner emptiness – might be any or all of their downfalls.
The finale of “The White Lotus” season two airs on Dec. 11 on HBO.