The fate of the world is at stake once again in Pacific Rim Uprising. 10 years after defeating the Kaiju and their alien makers, the Precursors from the Anteverse, the threat has returned, and once again it's time for Jaegar pilots to depend on the scientific edge only Dr. Newton Geiszler and Dr. Hermann Gottlieb can provide. But before fans of the scientific duo get too excited, know that what happens to Newt in Pacific Rim 2 might put an end to the Newton-Herman ship for good.
Spoilers ahead. When Pacific Rim Uprising begins, Newt, like the rest of the world, has left the Kaiju threat behind. It's been a decade since the last attack, and, despite his budding science bromance with Hermann, Newt has moved on from the Kaiju. In fact, he's moved to Japan to work for Shao Industries, a Chinese company set on replacing Jaegars, large robots that require two pilots in the field, with drones that can be piloted by only one person remotely. Seems like a pretty cool and smart new venture for the lovable Newt, right? Wrong.
It turns out, Newt has been infected by the Precursors, and for the last 10 years has been working on a plan to open breaches along the Pacific Rim, leaving the world vulnerable to one final Kaiju invasion. Put simply: Newt is the villain of Pacific Rim Uprising.
It's easy to get lost in the many subplots of Pacific Rim Uprising, so for fans left wondering how exactly Newt turned evil in the Pacific Rim sequel, allow us to explain. In Pacific Rim, Newt connected his mind with a Kaiju brain, drifting with it in an attempt to figure out how to defeat them. It was this connection that revealed the location of the breach and the existence of the Precursors, intel that eventually led to their defeat. However, drifting is a two way street, and Newt also accidentally gave the Precursors access to his mind, access that did not go away once the breach was closed. In Pacific Rim Uprising, it's revealed that over the past 10 years Newt has found a way to recreate Kaiju DNA, cloning his own personal Kaiju brain, named Alice, and muscle tissue to infect the Shao drones and make them Precursor weapons.
Though Newt's relationship with Alice is never truly explained, it's clear that Newt has been drifting with it for a while. Alice lives in a giant tank in his bedroom; she is who he comes home to every night. His mind is so warped by her and his connection to the Kaiju that he mentions introducing Hermann to her when they reunite — "You can finally meet Alice," he says when he invites his fellow scientist to dinner. It's unclear how exactly his nightly drifting sessions with Alice have helped him connect with the Precursors, or how she may have accelerated the Precursors' infection of him. During a confrontation with Hermann late in the film, it's clear that Newt's mind has been taken over by the Precursors hive mind when he speaks about Newt in the third person, suggesting that the brain in charge is not actually Newt.
At the end of the film, Newt is taken captive by the good guys after failing to help the Kaiju end the world, but just because the plan failed doesn't mean the Kaiju have reliquished their hold on him. The last time we see him, in a pseudo Pacific Rim Uprising post-credits scene, he is yelling about how the Precursors will never give up on destroying Earth. But, does this mean that Newt is evil for good? Or can he still be saved?
If the franchise does get a Pacific Rim 3, it's guaranteed to include Hermann desperately trying to fix Newt and expel the Precursors from his mind. If successful, Newt's knowledge of the Kaiju and the Precursors could be the thing that gives the humans an edge in fighting this extra terrestrial threat. Or maybe Newt will be condemned to the alien hive mind for all of eternity. Either way, the Hermann and Newt relationship has been changed for good in Pacific Rim Uprising.