6 Ways That Bonkers ‘Clickbait’ Ending Made Absolutely No Sense
The latest Netflix thriller that has crime fans obsessed is Clickbait — and it’s as enthralling as it is baffling.
The eight-episode series begins with a viral video being circulated online of family man, Nick Brewer: a married volleyball coach and father of two. In the clip, he flashes signs which contain the admission that he abused and murdered a woman, along with the threat that once the video’s view count hits five million, Nick would be killed.
Every episode explores a different aspect of Nick’s backstory, with plenty of skeletons coming out of his closet as it appeared that Nick had countless dating profiles to lure in women, which were discovered by his wife Sophie, sister Pia, and the detective on the case, Roshan. But things are not what they seem and with a show title like Clickbait, you’d expect some kind of deception under the surface.
This post is obviously filled with spoilers, so if you haven’t watched the final Clickbait episode and plan to, then you best be closing this browser window right about now.
OK, so the final episode is A LOT. Every single suspect floated throughout the previous seven episodes ended up being a red herring, as the person behind the dating profiles and Nick’s murder was actually…his receptionist, Dawn.
So, how did we get here from that viral video?! It gets rather complicated.
The person who abducted Nick and made him film himself holding incriminating flashcards was actually a random man named Simon, the brother of Sarah: one of Dawn’s victims. The murdered woman that Nick was forced to claim responsibility for was Sarah, a mentally unstable woman who thought she was online dating Nick, but was actually speaking to Dawn — who convinced Sarah to take her own life.
Overcome with grief, Simon discovered the dating profile, tracked down Nick, injected him with a sedative, and locked him in the truck to film the video. It wasn’t until he was interrogating Nick that Simon realised something was amiss. Nick had never heard of Sarah and when Simon showed him a photo of Nick and Sarah together at the beach, Nick recognised it was a photoshopped image of himself and his wife, Sophie.
This led to Simon letting Nick go. Then for some reason, Nick ran to Dawn’s house upon realising the only person who would have had his private photos to forge the dating profile would have been Dawn. Nick confronted Dawn and in turn, her husband Ed… murdered him with a hatchet??
There’s also a whole other storyline involving one of Nick’s volleyball coach colleagues, Matt, being involved in threatening a player with revenge porn, but that’s largely glazed over by the time the series comes to a confusing end.
Tbh, there are a lot of parts about Clickbait’s ending that are completely unexplained and here are some of the most baffling…
Here are 6 ways that Clickbait ending didn’t actually make sense:
1. Why did Dawn’s husband, Ed, kill Nick?
First of all: who is Ed? For someone who turned out to be one of those most sadistic characters in the series, the show gave him zero backstory — meaning he had no motivation for doing anything. He liked model trains, he worked at Costco, and was upset to find out his wife was speaking to women online. That’s about it. If anything, it would make sense for Ed to feel sympathy for Nick, as he knew Dawn had been stealing his identity.
The entire show’s mystery hung on the identity of Nick’s killer, so to dedicate so little time to Ed was a massive oversight. Are we meant to think that Ed killed Nick to protect his wife, Dawn, from being prosecuted for catfishing? Identity theft is a minor charge compared to murder, what was the thought process there?
That’s not really enough of a reason to kill Nick, and then go on to kidnap his child, Kai. In contrast, someone like Nick’s coworker, Matt, would have much more of a motive, due to the revenge porn allegations that could endanger his coaching career.
2. Why would Nick go to Dawn’s house after escaping?
I don’t know about you, but if I finally escaped almost being murdered, I don’t think I’d run to the person who put me in danger in the first place. This is just not how survival mode works. Sure, you might want revenge but you would make sure that your wife and kids know that you’re alive first.
Nick knew that not only did Dawn steal his identity to catfish innocent women, but her actions led to Sarah’s death, so surely she is not someone to be trusted. Visiting a stranger’s house would be safer than Dawn’s.
Another nonsensical detail that isn’t explained is how Nick even knew where Dawn lived. They were close at work, but we were never privy to seeing Dawn and Nick interact outside of the office, and it’s a bit random for him to have memorised the address of a random coworker.
3. Why is Nick already on a dating app?
This has to be the series’ most baffling plot hole. The entire show initially paints Nick as a serial cheater — who is on a bunch of dating apps to date multiple women behind his wife’s back — however, this turns out to be a lie as it was Dawn behind the profiles. This could be a satisfying conclusion if it wasn’t for one problem: Nick was already on a dating app, even before he met Dawn.
This was revealed on Nick’s first day at work, as Dawn was syncing his phone and a home screen notification came up from a dating site called D8R. A flirtatious message from a woman named Mandy appeared, showing that Nick had previously complimented her bikini photo.
This doesn’t look great for Nick. When Dawn logged on, we copped a better look at Nick’s full profile, which included a section that suggested he was there to make friends. Under what Nick was looking for, he wrote “Fun, Friendship”, but if this profile was just an innocent place for Nick to find friends, then why would he sign up under Nick Chabot, a fake name.
Also, if he was all above board then why is he pretending to be an architect from San Jose? And why do his wife and kids not feature in any of the profile pics? Nick was trash!
Some viewers might suggest that the profile was made after Nick found out about his wife’s infidelity — but the timelines don’t match up. Pia discovered in an earlier episode that the profile was created in 2018, which was long before Sophie told him about her affair six months before his disappearance. The only explanation I can think of is that Nick made the dating app on a whim, but only messaged Mandy after hearing about Sophie’s cheating.
This would be fine — I mean, just because you have a dating profile doesn’t mean you’re using it to actively cheat — but Nick maintained that he did not have one. When he was being interrogated by Simon over his sister’s death, Nick told him that he’s “never even had a dating profile”, which is simply untrue. Did he forget? Or did the writers forget about this line?
4. Why wouldn’t Nick get notifications that Dawn is messaging random women using his account?
Another matter is that when Dawn was messaging Mandy using Nick’s D8R profile, wouldn’t Nick be getting notifications, therefore catching on that someone has hacked into his account? In the scene when Dawn is syncing his phone, D8R banners appear on his phone (rookie move for a married person on a dating app lol), so therefore it’s safe to assume that when Dawn messaged Mandy that night and she responded, Nick would have gotten an alert on his phone.
In addition to this, I’m confused about how Dawn just stumbled into Nick’s D8R account. How did Dawn know Nick’s secret username? Nick Brewer’s username on D8R was Nick Chatbot, but this wasn’t something shown when Dawn entered his messages with Mandy while in the office.
Yet, Dawn typed in the secret username without a second thought. The woman is hardly a tech whiz — at one stage she deleted files by moving into the rubbish bin, but not actually emptying the bin’s contents — so, how did she just magically guess Nick’s secret username?!
5. Why did Emma and Sarah not find it creepy that Nick photoshopped them into beach snaps?
I understand that Emma and Sarah were not mentally sound people, but this is still seriously weird. Why would they not only accept these creepy photoshopped images, but in the case of Sarah, she acted like the image was legit — even after learning that Nick was dead.
6. But wait, why did Pia keep reloading the video in episode one?
This wasn’t covered in the finale and was just one of many (see above) loose ends that were never addressed. There’s a very sinister scene at the end of episode one when Pia is seen reloading Nick’s video to drive the view count up to five million views — the number which will cause Nick to be murdered by his captors.
Umm… what was that about, Pia?
Make it make sense.
Relive the madness by streaming Clickbait on Netflix.