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Colter Stevens takes over the body of Sean Fentress for every 8 minutes. Every time Sean Fentress (possessed by Colter Stevens) dies, he wakes up in the program, but he is able to change the past by avoiding death and he permanently resides in the Sean Fentress's body. After the past is altered and Colter Stevens living in Sean Fentress body gets killed somehow what would happen? Will he wake up again in the program?

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First, look at the features of the Source Code program:

  • The machine allows its user to experience another compatible person's life within an alternate timeline. By user, it is meant whose brain is hooked to the computer system.
  • Stevens regains consciousness inside an unfamiliar cockpit (the place you think of program) whenever he dies. The cockpit is the mental projection of his own brain to cope with the experience (it was said by Goodwin).

In the end, Goodwin disabled the life support of remains of the body which terminated Stevens' life. And, without a living brain, he couldn't wake up in cockpit after death in another timeline because he was no longer a user of Source Code program & there was no alive brain here to project anything. He became fully disconnected from this world.

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I was under the impression that it was permanent at the end of the movie. I think if he died then he would not wake up in the machine again. He would be dead.

But now that I think about it, I have the same question as you. It's been a while since I saw the movie so I have no data to back up my theory.

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One prevailing theory that I have, which I have zero official data to back up, is that the source code machine does not actually send him backwards in time, but instead injects Colter Steven's consciousness into several alternate universes.

Thus, when he dies on the train, his conciousness there is actually annihilated along with the body of Sean Fentriss, and the portion of his consciousness that exists in the program simply wakes up.

In the instance wherein he does NOT die, he continues to exist in that new alternate universe, but, because the portion of Colter Stevens that remained in the program was shut down (with the death of his mutilated body), his consciousness simply "woke up" within the mind of Sean Fentriss, creating a permanent move from one universe to the other.

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