The Leftovers (2014–2017)
11 user 16 critic

The Prodigal Son Returns 

Matt helps Kevin through his crisis and Patti continues to haunt Kevin; The GR executes their plan, causing chaos and grief throughout the city; Tom is left in a difficult situation with Wayne's baby.


Mimi Leder


Tom Perrotta (based on the book by), Damon Lindelof (created by) | 3 more credits »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Justin Theroux ... Kevin Garvey
Amy Brenneman ... Laurie Garvey
Christopher Eccleston ... Matt Jamison
Liv Tyler ... Meg Abbott
Chris Zylka ... Tom Garvey
Margaret Qualley ... Jill Garvey
Carrie Coon ... Nora Durst
Emily Meade ... Aimee (credit only)
Amanda Warren ... Lucy Warburton
Ann Dowd ... Patti Levin
Michael Gaston ... Dean (credit only)
Max Carver ... Adam Frost (credit only)
Charlie Carver ... Scott Frost (credit only)
Annie Q. ... Christine
Scott Glenn ... Kevin Garvey, Sr.


An unexpected ally helps Kevin get out of a jam near the town of Cairo. Meanwhile, an elaborate Memorial Day initiative by the Guilty Remnant plunges Mapleton into chaos. Written by Jiilo_Kim

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Fantasy | Mystery


TV-MA | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Matt only appears twice in the book, and never evolves beyond his obsession with distributing his toxic newsletter. Tom Perrotta said that he initially envisioned Matt as a bigger part of the book. On the show, Matt evolves into a much more compassionate, nuanced character over the course of the season. See more »


Nora Durst: Dear Kevin, I need to say goodbye to someone I care about, someone who's still here, so I'm saying it to you. You were good to me Kevin, and sometimes when we were together, I remembered who I used to be before everything changed, but I was pretending. Pretending as if I hadn't lost everything. I want to believe it can all go back to the way it was, I want to believe I'm not surrounded by the abandoned ruin of a dead civilization, I want to believe it's still possible to get close to someone. ...
See more »


Features Perfect Strangers (1986) See more »


Nothing Else Matters
Written by James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich
Performed by Apocalyptica
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User Reviews

Season One
30 June 2019 | by zkonedogSee all my reviews

Created by Damon Lindelof of "LOST" fame, "The Leftovers" is the type of show that sets its sights very high...and generally hits the mark. A compelling mystery is at it's core, but the real hallmark of the show is the writing and crafting behind the characters (both reminiscent of LOST, too). Though the show may lose a few viewers with a number of disjointed episodes in the early goings, those who stick around and wait for the payoff will be richly rewarded for their patience.

For a basic plot summary, "The Leftovers" picks up three years after a momentous event: 2% of the world's population has suddenly vanished with no apparent explanation. As the show begins, it focuses on Sheriff Kevin Garvey (Justin Theroux) and teenage daughter Jill (Margaret Qually), who are trying to make the best of things after wife/mother Laurie (Amy Brenneman) leaves. Laurie wasn't one of the departed, however...she joins a cult-like group called the G.R. (or Guilty Remnant), led by Patti (Ann Dowd), that makes life generally miserable for the town inhabitants by refusing to allow them to move on with their lives. In a separate storyline, a mysterious man named Wayne (Paterson Joseph) is seemingly able to cure people of their inherent sadness with a simple embrace...a helpful skill in a world that still hasn't moved on from the 2% disappearing.

Other key characters in the show include...

-Preacher Matt Jamison (Christopher Eccleston), who also lost something very important to him and is trying to figure out what to believe and where he stands. -Nora Durst (Carrie Coon), a woman who lost her entire family and is really struggling to cope. -Meg Abbott (Liv Tyler), a lady new to town who shows viewers the inside workings of the G.R.

Did you follow all of that?! Like I said, "The Leftovers" is a very ambitious project. All of these plotlines/characters are thrown at you in the first 4-5 episodes, and to be honest it can be a bit overwhelming at times. After five episodes, I found myself wondering "what is going on and why do I care?". Luckily, from that point on Lindelof focuses on a character an episode and things really start to tighten up, producing some of the best drama I've seen in a TV show in quite some time. You just have to have some patience and be able to trust that things are indeed going to start making sense.

I hate to continue the LOST comparisons, as the shows are just as much different as alike, but one more is apt: Remember those early episodes of LOST when the backstories of the characters were revealed and it felt like you were really getting to know them? That is what the six really good episodes in this season (#3, #'s 6-10) remind me of. Really, the only difference is that while in LOST they started fleshing out the characters right after the Pilot, in "Leftovers" they take 3-4 episodes to get their feet wet. Again, patience.

Overall, though, I very much enjoyed this show for both its mystery components and the great cast of interesting characters. I can't give it the full five starts because a few too many episodes (in a season of only 10) failed to truly hook me, but on the whole I become invested in pretty much everything by the time the curtain came down. This is a show that will appeal to a certain type of viewer in that it isn't going to enthrall anyone with over-the-top action, witty one-liners, or other whizz-bang things of that nature. This is a mystery/drama through and through, though of the highest order. As I've stressed multiple times in this review, a little patience WILL be needed, I think, by even those (like myself) who really want to give the show a chance. Once you let it play out, however, you'll find that it will have you watching multiple episodes in a sitting.

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Release Date:

7 September 2014 (USA) See more »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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