Ghostbusters: Afterlife ending and post-credit scenes explained

Ghostbusters: Afterlife posters

What happens at the end of Ghostbusters: Afterlife? Spooks and spectres better keep an eye out because the Ghostbusters are back. After more than 30 years, the original team are once again chasing something strange in your neighbourhood. Directed by Jason Reitman, Ghostbusters: Afterlife picks up 30 years after the original comedy movie.

In the intervening years, the original team have gone their separate ways after seemingly after Egon went mad and fled to a small farm in a town called Summerville with the team’s equipment. After Egon’s death, his estranged daughter Callie (Carrie Coon) moves her kids Phoebe (Mckenna Grace) and Trevor (Finn Wolfhard) to the one-horse town. While there, though, strange earthquakes begin to plague the town, and the kids soon learn the truth about their grandfather.

He hadn’t abandoned his friends. He was trying to save them. It seems Ivo Shandor had a backup plan in case things went wrong in New York, and the return of Gozer, the villain from the first film, is inevitable. Egon had managed to delay the ancient deity by trapping the Gatekeeper. But when Phoebe and her teacher Greg (Paul Rudd) accidentally free the ghoul, it’s not long before the Gatekeeper and the Keymaster manage to summon Gozer once again into our dimension.

What happens at the end of Ghostbusters: Afterlife?

Knowing that Gozer will bring about the apocalypse unless they stop it, Phoebe and Trevor come up with a plan to stop the Sumerian deity in its tracks. Using equipment hidden in Egon’s lab, they tool up and drive the Ecto-1 down to Ivo Shandor’s mine where the manifestation of Gozer has built a new temple to itself.

Lounging on its throne and flanked by the Terror Dogs, Gozer arrogantly assumes it’s won and that no one can stop it now. Unfortunately, it didn’t bet on the kids who manage to capture Gatekeeper in a ghost trap and flee back to Egon’s farm. Weakened but enraged, Gozer and the Keymaster are quick to follow knowing if they can free Gatekeeper again, no one can stop them.

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Poor Gozer didn’t realise who it was dealing with, though, and upon arriving on the farm, finds itself blasted by the new generation of Ghostbusters. In its weakened state, it seems just one proton pack is too much for the Destroyer. Just as they activate Egon’s final plan – he’d hidden hundreds of ghost traps in his fields – things go wrong. The farm’s generator blows, allowing Gozer the chance to free Zuul and return to full strength.

Just when it seems that Gozer has won, it’s struck by a blast from three proton packs. As the camera pans, we see the remaining three original Ghostbusters in their flight suits, ready to stop Gozer once and for all.

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Using the same tactic that defeated the Destructor in 1984, they once again cross the streams and blast the Sumerian god back to hell. Or that was the plan, at least, because the power of three streams wasn’t enough to stop the god who quickly incapacitates the original team with not even Venkman’s charm enough to save them.

Gozer underestimated Phoebe, though, who’d put on her grandfather’s proton pack and was ready to bust the god. As Phoebe’s stream clashes with Gozer’s lightning blasts, the original team get a chance to catch their breath and join Phoebe in trying to subdue the demonic deity. Even then, though, it doesn’t seem like the Ghostbusters can win, but Phoebe is then joined by the ghost of Egon, who steadies her aim and moves her to stand with his old friends.

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As the proton streams flay Gozer apart atom by atom, the kids manage to get the Ecto-1’s onboard proton pack working, and Trevor lets rip, shooting the farm’s generator. Now fully charged, the traps hidden under the farm start to glow, and Callie hits the button, activating them. As the traps start to open, Gozer and the Terror Dogs are pulled in, ending the threat of the destroyer once and for all.

His work done, Egon’s spirit starts to dissipate but not before reconciling with his old team and saying goodbye to his family.

The Ecto-1

What happens in the Ghostbusters: Afterlife post-credit scenes?

Reitman clearly knew that Ghostbusters are greedier than Slimer after a hard day of haunting and gave us not one but two post-credit scenes. The first stars Murray and Sigourney Weaver, reprising the role of Dana Barrett, in what we presume is their home.

The two are conducting the same ESP experiment that Venkman was when we were first introduced to him in the 1984 movie. Incredibly, though, Venkman seems to have gained psychic gifts, and is able to guess the cards with terrifying accuracy.

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Dana clearly knows Venkman better than us, though, as she immediately spots he’s marked the cards and gives him a shock to punish him. Karma for picking on that student all those years ago!

The second post-credit sting teases the future of the Ghostbusters franchise. It sees Janine meet with Zeddemore, now rich from working in finance. The two are reminiscing about their time as Ghostbusters, with Zeddemore saying he’ll always be a Ghostbuster.

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As he does so, we cut to the old Ghostbusters firehouse, now an abandoned ruin. The doors suddenly open, and Zeddemore steps in, followed by the Ecto-1. As he looks around, it’s clear that he has plans for the old business. Although what they are, we’ll have to wait to find out.

Ghostbusters: Afterlife is in cinemas now. If you want more ghostly action check out our interview with director Jason Reitman.

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Tom Percival

Editor

Updated: Nov 19, 2021


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