‘Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities’ Lot 36 Ending, Explained

Welcome to the Ending Explained for Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities Episode 1, titled “Lot 36”. The episode comes from an original idea by Guillermo del Toro, and the script is written by Guillermo del Toro along with Regina Corrado, who is most famous for having worked on the fantastic HBO show, Deadwood. Now, Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities arrives on Netflix to bring a good dose of terror to the audiences in this Halloween season.

The episode is directed by Guillermo Navarro, a director, and cinematographer who has worked previously with Del Toro in many of his films. Including their collaboration on Pan’s Labyrinth, for which Navarro won an Oscar for Best Cinematography. The episode also stars Tim Blake Nelson, Sebastian Roché, Demetrius Grosse, and Elpidia Carrillo. The episode tells a story dealing with themes such as greed, racism, and more. The episode really allows Tim Blake Nelson to shine with a character that is truly an awful person.

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The following paragraphs contain spoilers for Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities Episode 1, “Lot 36”. Read at your own risk.

What Is Inside Lot 36?

The episode begins with a cold opening. There we see a very old man living alone in his apartment. The man eats the same old food every day, and he seems to have no family at all. After he finishes his meal, we realize that the episode is set in the early nineties, so there were no cellphones around as we have now. The old man steps into the kitchen and starts cutting an animal’s carcass. The head of the animal falls to the ground, and when he tries to pick it up, he suffers a heart attack and dies.

Next, we are introduced to Nick, the episode’s protagonist. Nick is an awful person. He is angry all the time, he is rude, and he seems to blame everyone for his own misery. We see him listening to right-wing propaganda as he gets closer and closer to the storage depot where most of the action will take place. We see that the managers of the depot sell the storage units and everything that is inside of them to other people. Some of the original owners of the units have died, divorced, or are in debt. Nick buys one, which is, of course, Lot 36, which belonged to the old man, now dead.

Nick is in debt with some very dangerous people, and so it is revealed that he has a deal with the storage depot manager. Nick sells what he finds inside the storage units, and the manager gets a cut. Nick needs money and needs money fast, so he gets ready to search Lot 36 for anything of value. The manager shows him a tape of the old man visiting the unit. The old man used to go inside the unit with a bag full of something, and then come out with an empty bag. The old man did this for decades. Nick is not interested and goes inside the unit.

In the unit, Nick finds all sorts of antiques, furniture, tables, cases full of clothing, and more. As he works in the unit, Nick clashes with a woman who owned one of the units he bought in the past. She wants his help to see if there is anything left in that unit. She has family photos and other memorabilia in there. However, Nick is a jerk and doesn’t help her. He only gives her the padlock for her unit. Nick also gets attacked by a repo man for the people he owes money to. Nick’s life is a complete mess.

What Is The Dark Secret of Lot 36?

Nick complains to the manager as he believes Lot 36 is way smaller than all the other units. The manager dismisses this comment and says that it is just because Lot 36 is very old. Nick continues to search for something of value in the unit. He finds a golden candelabra, and also a round table with the design of a pentagram on one of its sides. Nick reveals the discovery to the manager, who gives him an address, to the store of a woman named Agatha. The manager asks Nick to be gentle because Agatha is a good woman.

At Agatha’s store, Nick discovers that the table could be valuable. They also discover a secret compartment with three books. The books are written in Latin and have illustrations of demons and things of the sort. It is all very creepy. Agatha says she has a client that could be interested in the table and the books. The client arrives at the store. His name is Roland, and he seems very knowledgeable about the table. When he sees the books, he gets excited and asks if there could be a fourth book at Lot 36. Roland says that for the complete collection, he could pay $300,000.

Nick and Roland go back to Lot 36 to see if they can find the last book. On the road, Roland reveals he knows all about the family who used to own Lot 36. He tells the story of the family, how they were very rich in Europe and then moved to America after World War II. Roland says that the old man was truly evil, probably a Nazi and that he summoned an entity from hell, and offered it a body so that it could stay on Earth. The body was that of his sister, a young woman named Dottie.

When they arrive at the lot, they search and discover that one wall in the unit is hollow. Nick celebrates that he was right about this unit being smaller. They find a secret passage and inside they discover a rotten body with no face on the ground surrounded by a magic circle. Inside, there is also the book. Nick wanders in and pays no attention to Roland’s warning. The circle is broken, and the demon stands, eating Roland with its tentacles. Nick runs, but the door to the depot is closed. On the other side of the door, there is the woman he didn’t help with earlier in the day. She leaves without helping him.

As Nick turns his head, the tentacles grabbed him, killing him, and finishing the tale.

  • Nelson loves all things related to storytelling. He has spent most of his life studying narrative, applied across all mediums; film, TV, books, and video games. Mulholland Drive is his favorite film.