‘Halt and Catch Fire’ Had A Hopeful, Heartbreaking Vision for Women in Tech

The following contains some mild story spoilers for the final episode of Halt and Catch Fire.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/article/8x59xp/halt-and-catch-fire-hopeful-future-women-in-tech
1 Like

Hi Danielle,

I, too loved the show, and all the characters, esp Donna and Cameron. The series finale was brilliant, Donna’s speech was on point, but what do you think Donna’s big idea was? Some kind of Itunes mp3 setup? Also, where Joe ended up didn’t fully ring true with me. I mean, I can see him getting more spiritual in the later episodes, but to make the leap to where he was in the final scene rang a bit hollow. What does everyone else think?

As for their idea, I came across an interview with the show creators,

Do you actually know what idea Donna wants to pursue, or did you leave that open for yourselves as well?
ROGERS: That’s a question that’s coming up a lot and may come up for time immemorial. I think if you’re looking closely, there are a couple little nods to what the idea might be, but I also think there are a couple different answers that one could arrive at given the pieces there. We didn’t want it to be the end of The Sopranos where it was like the guy in the Members Only jacket and like “did the cop kill him?” — like where there are lots of competing theories and one is right. I think when you’re ending a series, sometimes the sweet spot is to suggest some possibility that the audience can kind of fill in the rest of, and I think Donna and Cameron’s idea might fall in that category. Is Joe going to stay in that school forever? Is this the real Joe? Have we finally arrived, or is this just another iteration of that guy? I think that you bring that answer to that scene. In that same way, I think Donna and Cameron’s idea and the viability of it going forward is a thing I’m happy for the audience to fill in at this point.

I’ve heard someone say it might be wifi. The cash register shot might mean some sort of paypal, ebay, or amazon type thing.

When the show first came out they made some spotify playlists that fit each character. Worth checking out if anyone liked the vibe of the show.

1 Like

I started with Black Mirror and Blade Runner and Mackenzie Davis and Canada, but now I’ve found myself watching this show. I regret thinking of it as “that thing after Mad Men and even still in the season 1 doldrums I feel the potential.

This is exciting and hopeful. (Is the show exciting and hopeful?)

I don’t think it had anything to do with tech. I think that they are gonna open a diner somewhere, because people have to eat. It’s hinted all throughout the series finale. Donna begrudgingly goes back to work with a new promotion, and Cameron is out of ideas. The only people left in this industry are the young people.

Which is very much the truth, albeit a cliche.


I really like this read. I think the main weakness of this show was how much you had to suspend your disbelief while the same four people kept developing all of these major innovations in tech. Donna and Cameron are simply out of groundbreaking ideas after having so many and are well aware how working together on new tech project isn’t going to be great for their friendship. I love the idea of Donna going to Cameron outside that diner and just saying “I have an idea. Let’s open a diner and sell some great pancakes.” They work on the diner together and it has its ups and downs but it’s sustainable, both in terms of business and relationship. Tech is still part of their lives, Cameron makes small freeware games that develop a small but passionate audience and Donna occasionally repairs the computers of friends and loyal customers, but their friendship is more important than once again finding the next big thing. Or the next big thing that gets you to the thing.

1 Like