‘Silo’: How Did Juliette Survive the Cleaning?

How did Juliette survive cleaning outside Silo
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The final episode of Apple TV’s ‘Silo‘ was just released, and the inevitable happened. Juliette was sent to clean due to her many transgressions. But, since she is also the main character, no one really expected her to die, especially since she managed to uncover the major conspiracy in the Silo. Bernard hoped that Juliette would succumb to toxicity, but this didn’t happen. Instead, she discovered that the world around her is truly as toxic as it was shown on the screen, and she managed to walk away from Silo farther than anyone before. We’re here to resolve the mystery, so let’s see how did Juliette manage to live through the cleaning and survive outside of Silo. 

  • Article Breakdown:
  • Juliette survived the cleaning and outside of Silo because her suit was sealed with proper heat tape.
  • Walker eventually figured out that the heat tape that the suits were sealed with was faulty and inferior to the ones that they used down in mechanical. This is because the heat tape for the suits is built to disintegrate since no one is supposed to survive the cleaning.
  • Even if the cleaners don’t remove the helmets on their own, the toxicity leaking into the suits will eventually get them.

Editor’s Note: Please beware that the following paragraphs contain heavy spoilers for the events that took place in the Silo Series of books that the show was based on. If you want to avoid spoilers, now would be a good time to stop reading!

What is the deal with heat tape in ‘Silo’? 

Ever since we’ve met Juliette, we know the higher-ups in Silo 18, primarily Bernard, hold the fact that she once stole heat tape from the supplies against her. It seems like such a minor and insignificant thing to hold against one of your best engineers, but Bernard was mad about the heat tape since this was the moment that Juliette started cracking through the conspiracy without ever knowing it.

The heat tape that Juliette got from the supplies was of much worse quality than the one that is made for the mechanical. In fact, in the books, Juliette even comments that the heat tape she stole was made “as if it’s supposed to fall apart.” And she was right. 

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The heat tape that is used to seal the suits is intentionally created to be utter junk since no one is supposed to survive the cleaning. The bodies that litter the area in front of the Silo sensors are there as a warning of what happens when you walk away from the Silo community and ‘The Pact.’ This is why cleaning is always unsuccessful and why nobody returns back to the Silo. 

Thinking about it, this doesn’t make sense. Silo has pretty advanced technology when we take everything into account. They should have suits that are able to withstand a few minutes of exposure to toxicity, radiation, and nanobots. 

Walker figured out that the protective suits were faulty at the last minute 

We know that Walker was Juliette’s best friend in the Silo. She’s known her since she was a child and often helped her despite the fact that it could have brought her into danger. In episode 10, when Juliette is finally apprehended by Bernard and the raiders, Shirley, one of Juliette’s friends from the mechanical, comments how everything that happened to Juliette is probably because she pissed the higher-ups by stealing the heat tape.

Walker then goes to inspect the heat tape, and a theory is born in her head, a theory that will result in the greatest display of bravery in the last couple of decades – Walker leaves her workshop and makes her way to the supplies. She visits her friend in supply, and they comment on the same heat tape.

walker holding heat tape Silo

Walker’s friend comments on how Juliette’s “stunt” brought the Judicial and Bernard down to the supply and how Juliette should never have stolen that heat tape because the heat tape created for mechanical is much better quality than what they’re getting. It doesn’t makes sense. Except it makes perfect sense. 

In collaboration with supply, Walker managed to ensure that Juliette’s suit would be sealed with real heat tape. And this gives her extra survival time.  

Bernard was shocked to see Juliette survive 

Juliette made a deal with Bernard that she would go outside willingly, and he showed her the tip of the iceberg when it came to Silo management. For those of you who read the books, you are aware that Bernard’s job is much more complicated and that he is, by no means, a two-dimensional villain as he seems to be in the show. 

Juliette protective suit

As soon as Juliette stepped outside and refused to clean the sensor, Bernard was praying to all gods that she would suddenly drop dead. He commented how “no one makes it past the tree.” 

Juliette was initially disoriented, but it didn’t take her long to figure out that what she saw on her helmet visor was nothing but a carefully orchestrated illusion, an image projected directly into her helmet.

Silo outside

Still, Juliette resisted the urge to pull down the helmet, and even though it seemed like she was about to die right in front of that tree on the hill where everyone usually dies, she managed to pull herself up and this is the moment that the image feed to her helmet was cut off and she saw the real state of the outside world. 

Juliette Walking away from the Silo

Bernard, at that moment, knew that ‘The Pact’ was over, and he knew that he had to start planning for a rebellion in the Silo. 

What happened in the books after Juliette survived outside? 

In the books, Bernard rushed to the server room to contact the real leadership of all Silos in existence, Silo 1. Juliette managed to discover the neighboring Silo, Silo 17. Silo 17 is in a state of complete disarray as rebellion broke out there decades ago, leaving only a single survivor, Solo.   

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Rebellion will break out in Silo 18. The general population will start looking for answers now that they’ve seen that it is possible to survive outside, and the whole status quo of Silo 18 will come into question. 

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