In the TV mystery/thriller/science fiction series Wayward Pines (based on the Trilogy), can anyone explain why Agent Ethan Burke's wife Theresa's car was kept and if so, why it looked like it did?

In episode 3, While attempting escape in the "Fine International Foods" delivery truck, Ethan finds his wife Theresa's car in a garage including personal effects. However, why would the group running Wayward Pines have any incentive to keep the vehicle. Too, given the reveal in episode 5

That the car has been sitting there for 2000 years

how in any way could it look at good as it did?

Even in an inert atmosphere (the garage looked like it may have been airlock sealed), the tires would still have rotted away. Yet, the tires looked like they still had air, the interior was not decomposed, etc. Even the personal effects pictures would have faded out after just 50 years or so, let alone 2000. In fact, the entire car would have probably been mostly gone after such a time.

Does the book offer any other explanation of why those vehicles were kept and why they would be in such relatively good condition? Some looked practically drive ready.


  • The town as a whole has many items familiar from our time. They must have had a way to preserve metals/plastics etc. I believe they said the town was built in 2 years. That couldnt also include manufacturing nails and electrical outlets and copper water pipes from scratch. They must have brought those raw materials forward with them. The delivery van and other vehicles as well. Now, why bring her car? That's still a mystery. – Geoff Jul 7 '15 at 17:09
  • @Geoff The cars were brought to hide the "accident" in the past. Everyone of the inhabitants simply disappeared. If no evidence of foul play is found, it is hard for authorities to do anything about something that may or may not have happened. – Dave Johnson Aug 12 '15 at 18:50
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    @Dave. That is an interesting speculation. I think that ties in with what Doresoom wrote below when she mentions there's less evidence for the authorities. I think this is as good an answer as we are likely to get. Thanks for everyone's contribution/thoughts on this. – beichst Aug 13 '15 at 2:08

In the novels,

Pilcher explains that the food stores and raw materials have been kept in a massive vacuum sealed warehouse while the residents of Wayward Pines were kept in suspension for 2,000 years. On a side note, the delivery truck stowaway/garage scene sequence never takes place in the books.

I found it hard to believe the same points about preservation issues that you point out, and I think it was mainly glossed over in the books.

As for a motivation for the vehicles to be kept,

Pilcher wanted to create a sense of normalcy in the town. Including instructing some residents over the phone to simply drive around town for a few hours just to create the illusion of having cars on the streets going places. It also helps to have a stockpile of spare cars. In the novels when one vehicle is wrecked, another shows up just a few days later.

And why not keep someone's car once you've kidnapped them, as long as you've got the storage space? You get a free car, and there's less evidence for the authorities to track you down with.

Although that point seems kind of silly when you consider that Pilcher has spent in the range of millions to billions of dollars building the facility and preservation technology. You'd think he'd want a cookie-cutter fleet of cars to go with his cookie cutter town.


Many of the key concepts in the novels and the show are the same, but the details diverge significantly. For example, the process by which Ethan makes his discoveries about the town and it's support structure are entirely different. The reason his wife and son end up in Wayward Pines is different. The subplots relating to who is "good" and "bad" are wildly different. To the best of my recollection, there is no analogous scene in the novels to the one from the show.

  • This doesn't answer the question. – Doresoom Jul 10 '15 at 20:44

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