Afterlife Reveals What Happened to the Original Ghostbusters

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Ghostbusters: Afterlife, now playing in theaters

Ghostbusters: Afterlife largely focuses on the rest of the modern generation of the Spengler family, specifically Callie (Carrie Coon) and her children Trevor (Finn Wolfhard) and Phoebe (Mckenna Grace), but it eventually dives further into the history of more than just the Ghostbusters' technology and ideology.

Ghostbusters: Afterlife reveals the ultimate fates of the original four heroes from the first Ghostbusters, suggesting that some of them found surprising happiness outside of the team, while one of their core friendships fell apart in a tragic manner.

RELATED: Ghostbusters: Afterlife Includes Unintended Commentary on Modern Science Skepticism

What Happened to Egon in Ghostbusters: Afterlife?

Egon Spengler (Harold Ramis) was the most technically brilliant of the original Ghostbusters and (along with Ray) invented most of their ghost-capturing technology. Lacking nominal social skills, Egon eventually started a relationship with a woman off-screen, resulting in the birth of his daughter Callie. However, Egon eventually discovered hints that Gozer would one day return. Despite no one believing him, he stole the remaining Ghostbusters technology and relocated to Summerville, Oklahoma, discovering a temple for Gozer hidden in a nearby mine.

He spent decades alone containing the ghosts within the hidden temple -- until an attempt to seemingly seal away Gozer's Terror Dogs proved to be only somewhat successful. Although he caught one and contained it, the others successfully followed him and killed him in his home, setting off the events of Ghostbusters: Afterlife. Egon's spirit remained on the farm, however, and served as a ghostly guide to Phoebe as she learned more about his history. He even got the chance to stand alongside his fellow Ghostbusters one more time when they fought Gozer and eventually faded away after the group was victorious.

What Happened to Ray in Ghostbusters: Afterlife?

Ray Stantz (Dan Aykroyd) was a leading doctor of parapsychology, and in the original Ghostbusters, was the most committed to the idea of investigating the supernatural forces in New York. The "heart" of the group and an expert on paranormal history, Ray's spirit was seemingly crushed when the Ghostbusters business fell apart, and Egon disappeared with the rest of their supplies and funds. Ray initially condemned Egon from afar and found life working in a small occult shop, continuing his fascination with the supernatural.

RELATED: Ghostbusters: Afterlife Tries to Be The Force Awakens, But Fails Its Landing

It's clear that the years hadn't been kind to Ray when he was reintroduced halfway through Ghostbusters: Afterlife. He was initially resistant to Phoebe's request for help. He threatened to hang up as soon as she mentioned the Ghostbusters. Still, he ultimately reassembled the rest of the original team to help fight against Gozer. The film ended with Ray making peace with Egon's spirit as it passed to the next realm of existence -- and finding an unlikely friend in Podcast (Logan Kim) as it turned out he was the boy's one consistent subscriber.

What Happened to Venkman in Ghostbusters: Afterlife?

Peter Venkman (Bill Murray) was the unofficial leader of the original Ghostbusters and a smooth-talking flirt with the tendency to make things worse with jokes. Like the rest of the original Ghostbusters, he lost faith in the group after the events of the first film, with Ray recalling how Venkman believed they'd "done their job too well" and effectively solved any potential ghost crisis by defeating Gozer. After Egon abandoned the others, Ray returned to his original profession in academia and became a college professor.

In Afterlife, Venkman dropped everything to come to assist Ray and Winston, rejoining his friends and even buying the group time during the fight with Gozer by distracting the dark god with a series of jokes and insults. Notably, Venkman also seemingly confirmed to have maintained his relationship with Dana (Sigourney Weaver) from the original film, with one of Ghostbusters: Afterlife's two credits sequences showcasing the pair together.

RELATED: Ghostbusters: Afterlife Clip Reveals Info About the Film's Slimer-Esque Ghost

What Happened to Winston in Ghostbusters: Afterlife?

Of the original Ghostbusters, Winston Zeddemore (Ernie Hudson) proved to be the most successful outside of the first film. Originally not even a scientist like the others but just an average New Yorker who took the job to make some money, he ended up incredibly motivated after the events of Ghostbusters. Winston turned his attention toward a separate business venture. Within a few decades, his two-man operation had grown to become an international conglomerate -- with Winston even quietly providing the funding for Ray's occult store.

Winston reunited with the original Ghostbusters at the end of Afterlife and took part in the final battle with Gozer. He also found himself not just touched by seeing Egon once more but being reunited with Ecto-1, the franchise's iconic car. The final post-credits scene even saw Winston get the car from the Spenglers and drive it back to New York. He even seemed to believe there was a place in the world for Ghostbusters again, as the final post-credits sequence had him seemingly purchase a building similar to the original Ghostbusters HQ (which Ray indicated had been converted into a Starbucks), with a final shot hinting that a new generation of Ghostbusters might have their work cut out for them.

To get caught up with the original team, Ghostbusters: Afterlife is in theaters now. 

KEEP READING: A Grim Ghostbusters Theory Makes the Sequel More Terrifying

Jennifer Lawrence Takes Some of the Blame for X-Men: Dark Phoenix's Poor Performance
Related Topics
About The Author
Brandon Zachary (4204 Articles Published)

Brandon Zachary is an Associate Writer with Comic Book Resources and has written for CBR since 2018. He covers breakouts on comics, film, television, video games, and anime. He also conducts industry interviews, is a Rotten Tomatoes certified film critic, and knows SO MUCH about the X-Men. For requests, comments, or to hear his pitch for a third Avatar series that incorporates robots, you can contact him through [email protected].

More From Brandon Zachary

You May Like Also

  • the ultimate fates of the original four heroes
  • Ghostbusters: Afterlife Includes Unintended Commentary on Modern Science Skepticism
  • his fascination with the supernatural
  • Ghostbusters: Afterlife Tries to Be The Force Awakens, But Fails Its Landing
  • Ghostbusters: Afterlife's two credits
  • Ghostbusters: Afterlife Clip Reveals Info About the Film's Slimer-Esque Ghost
  • A Grim Ghostbusters Theory Makes the Sequel More Terrifying
  • Spider-Man: No Way Home Lays the Foundation for Peter Parker's MCU Exit
  • Spider-Man: No Way Home Might Not Give Doc Ock an Upgrade After All
  • Batgirl: J.K. Simmons Teases Commissioner Gordon Will Play a 'Significant' Role
  • Henry Cavill Still Wants to Play Superman as a True Hero
  • Lord of the Rings: What Happened to the Orcs After Sauron's Defeat?
  • 101 Dalmatians' True Sequel Is Too Bizarre for Disney to Ever Adapt
  • From Halo to Spider-Man: No Way Home, Here Are This Week's Best Trailers
  • DC's Robins #1 Comic Review
  • Marvel's Star Wars Life Day #1 Comic Review
  • Marvel's Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #1 Comic Review
  • DC's Superman Son of Kal-El #5 Comic Review
  • Marvel's Hulk #1 Comic Review
  • Marvel's Darkhold: The Wasp #1 Comic Review
  • MCU Theory: Forget the Baxter Building & Oscorp Tower - Avengers Tower Will Become [SPOILER]
  • Lord of the Rings: How Gandalf & Saruman’s Epic Battle Differed in the Books
  • Prisoners’ Most Heartbreaking Arc Isn’t Its Sadistic Kidnapping
  • Star Wars Boss Confirms Logan Director Was Never Developing a Boba Fett Movie
  • Star Wars' Kathleen Kennedy Teases More Projects Featuring Sequel Trilogy Characters
  • Jennifer Lawrence Takes Some of the Blame for X-Men: Dark Phoenix's Poor Performance
  • Evil Dead's Bruce Campbell Explains Why He's Done Playing Ash
  • Leaked Spider-Man: No Way Home Spot Shows More Lizard, J. Jonah Jameson
  • The Batman Fans Are Ecstatic About Barry Keoghan's Rumored Villain Role
  • Jurassic World: Dominion’s Prologue Pays Homage to Iconic Jurassic Park Moments
  • The Matrix 4's Keanu Reeves Would Be Honored to Join the MCU
  • Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City Provides an Origin for a Terrifying Enemy