The Gray Man Ending, Explained: Why Did Denny Carmichael Want to Kill Sierra Six?

The Gray Man, an action-packed espionage thriller on Netflix, takes viewers on a wild ride. Joe and Anthony Russo are the film’s directors. It utilises the well-worn plot idea of a rogue agent but adds some thrilling action sequences and intriguing twists and turns to keep the audience wondering until the very end. The movie contains a lot of action, yet it all feels like a setup for something bigger that has yet to be discovered.

The conclusion demonstrates that there is a lot more to the story than what is presented to us because it raises some intriguing concerns for the audience regarding the fate of the key characters. Here, we dissect the conclusion and examine what Sierra Six, his adversaries, and his allies might expect going forward.

Spoilers ahead!

The Gray Man Plot Synopsis

The Gray Man Ending, Explained: Why Did Denny Carmichael Want to Kill Sierra Six?
The Gray Man © Netflix

A man is rescued from a life of incarceration and given the chance to turn his life around by joining the CIA. His name is Sierra Six, and he is a participant in the Sierra program. Even the agency doesn’t retain a dossier on him due to his tight cover. This enables the agency to send him on tasks for which it doesn’t want to be held accountable. This also implies that it will be quite challenging to capture him if he runs away. Six flees after learning that he is being exploited by the CIA’s dishonest officials.

Only after his recruiter Donald Fitzroy and his niece Claire are kidnapped does he feel compelled to return. Six encounters some very ruthless adversaries while attempting to figure out how to save them, but he also makes some important allies. He makes an effort to remove Denny Carmicheal, who is in charge of all the current chaos. But in the end, he understands that his primary concern must be his survival.

The Gray Man Ending: Does Sierra Six Escape CIA and Rescue Claire?

The Gray Man Ending, Explained: Why Did Denny Carmichael Want to Kill Sierra Six?
The Gray Man © Netflix

Six might have easily eluded the CIA and lived out his days in anonymity somewhere they would never be able to track him out. Even though he is far from them, Six still runs the possibility of being captured for Claire. The two became close when Six was assigned with guarding her while Fitzroy was gone, as it is stated in the movie. They both determine that Fitz is their sole family and that they are also each other’s family as a result. Six grows to feel deeply about Claire, which is why he rushes back into the chaos of the organization he once worked for.

In the end, as he is being kept captive, Suzanne gives him the choice of accepting responsibility for Lloyd’s passing and going to jail. She also keeps Claire under her care to prevent him from misbehaving. Six is aware that allowing Suzanne this authority over him will only result in their continued captivity and the destruction of Claire’s life. The best course of action, in his opinion, is to save Claire and keep her with himself somewhere safe because he is aware of how dishonest and cruel Suzanne and her supervisors are.

Six manages to escape while Suzanne keeps him in the building’s safest area, once again demonstrating his resourcefulness. Additionally, he kills all of the agents who were assigned to watch out for Claire and then flees with her. Now, his main goal is to protect Claire and keep the CIA at bay. He poses a serious threat, so Carmichael and Suzanne are not going to give up so simply, though. Six will only have to go on the run for a little until trouble finds him again as a result of his escape.

Why Did Denny Carmichael Want to Kill Sierra Six?

The Gray Man Ending, Explained: Why Did Denny Carmichael Want to Kill Sierra Six?
The Gray Man © Netflix

Prior to Denny Carmichael’s decision to terminate the Sierra experiment, everything had been proceeding according to plan. He wanted to thoroughly eradicate it rather than just shut it down, which required executing every single person who had been recruited for the Sierra operation. When Sierra Four discloses that the previous numbers had also been eliminated in a similar way, he commands Sierra Six to kill her. Six wonders why Carmichael is going to such trouble to do rid of something that his predecessor so painstakingly established.

Carmichael is revealed to be utterly corrupt. Carmichael was employing the agency’s agents as his own team of hitmen, authorizing actions without adhering to the line of command, according to Four’s investigation into him. His actions were not only against the law, but they also blatantly exhibited contempt for human life, with victims dying left and right as a result.

Six witnesses this firsthand during the huge manhunt that is launched purely in an effort to apprehend him and which claims the lives of numerous innocent people. As it happened in the mission where Six is dispatched to assassinate Four, Six himself didn’t take to the assignment that required the killing of innocent people, which would have caused issues for Carmichael.

When Carmichael assumed power, the first thing he did was to get rid of Cahill and Fitz since he understood that they would also disapprove of his intentions. Additionally, he was aware of the Sierra program and their unwavering devotion to Fitz. He therefore decided that it would be preferable to remove these as well. He could justify his acts by arguing that they were nothing more than seasoned crooks. When Four gathered evidence against him, he had still more incentive to get rid of them. Six made the decision to do all in his power to track down and murder Carmichael after he gave him the disk holding everything that may ruin him.

Who is The Old Man in The Gray Man?

The Gray Man Ending, Explained: Why Did Denny Carmichael Want to Kill Sierra Six?
The Gray Man © Netflix

Everyone in “The Gray Man” is under someone else’s influence, which is one thing we discover quite early on. The agency, which controls Six, sends him on assignments without allowing him to inquire about them. When he challenges something, he is labeled a rogue and pursued. In a same vein, everyone hunting him is also acting on orders from a higher-ranking member of the food chain. In the movie, Carmichael is shown as being in charge of everyone, but it quickly becomes apparent that someone else is in charge of him.

Carmichael mentions “the old man” in his talk with Suzanne and seems quite concerned with what the old man would or wouldn’t want. Carmichael’s actions do give us a hint as to who this person is, however we never get to see them in full. Whatever the elderly man’s identity, he is a tremendously strong person with the ability to influence global politics. He manipulates Carmichael to carry out actions for his personal political advantage while using the CIA. Someone who worked for the CIA in the past or was somehow connected to the organization in order to be aware of its inner workings must have that much power.

Since The Old Man is no longer an employee of the CIA, he can now claim credible denial for all of Carmichael’s and the organization’s acts. Additionally, he avoids the spotlight because his situation would be better served by being anonymous. It is more plausible that this elderly man is a member of a covert organization with global control objectives. Regardless of the rumors, the sequel will be the only time his full identity and nature will be exposed.