Deliver Me Ending: Does Mehdi Go to Prison?

In Netflix’s ‘Deliver Me,’ the tragic death of a young boy opens Pandora’s box of all the wrong things happening in the city, especially with teenagers. While the cops try to get to the bottom of the truth about what happened to Bilal, aka Billy, they are faced with many tough choices, with their focus being the safety of the kids involved in the case. With all the bad things that happen in the story, it is natural for the cops as well as the families of the victims to want someone they can blame, which raises several other questions.

Is the person who pulled the trigger the same as the person who instigated the chain of events that led to the murder? How far back should one go if they are to trace the origins of all that has happened? The answers to these questions are complex, but one thing is clear. Someone has to pay for Billy’s death, and the blame turns toward Mehdi. SPOILERS AHEAD

Did Mehdi Have Any Involvement in Billy’s Death?

Douglas, aka Dogge, was Billy’s best friend. He was also a young man going through a very difficult time with his father’s death and his mother’s descent into depression. He was a lonely kid who didn’t know where to go when he realized that he had landed himself too deep in trouble when he got involved with the gang of Mehdi Bah. He was scared and alone, and he had no one to fall back on, unlike Billy.

By the time Dogge got a gun in his hand, Billy was the only person he had left. But Billy, who had decided to walk away from the life of crime, prioritized his family over Dogge, something that irked an already devastated teenager. When Dogge discovered that Billy was leaving for Nigeria because he and his family knew that Mehdi would never let him just walk away from the gang, Dogge asked if he could accompany Billy. This was, of course, out of Billy’s hands, and he also knew that it would be impossible for his family, financially struggling as they were, to take on Dogge as well. He gave Dogge an honest answer when he said Nigeria wasn’t an option for him. But to Billy’s best friend, it felt like he was being abandoned.

What further enraged Dogge was that Billy had disposed of the grenades that they were supposed to use to kill a target. By doing this, Billy had put both himself and Dogge in danger. But while Billy had the option of running away to Nigeria, and he had a family covering for him, Dogge had no one. He also knew this was too big of a deal for Mehdi to let it slide. If he had beaten up him and Billy for losing his gun, then what would he do to Dogge if he found out about the grenades? With Billy gone, the brunt of the punishment would fall entirely on Dogge.

All of this combined lit a fire in Dogge’s mind. He felt abandoned and betrayed, and in a moment’s lapse of judgment, he turned around and shot Billy multiple times. He immediately regretted the act and even called 911, hoping that Billy would be saved. But the wounds were fatal, and when Billy died, Dogge was wracked with guilt. A child as he was, he tried to shift the blame somewhere else to survive the massive wave of guilt he was already under. He tried to justify his actions, mostly to himself, by dumping it all on Mehdi when the truth was that Mehdi never told Dogge to kill Billy.

One could also call it an act of self-preservation on Dogge’s part. He knew Mehdi would want to kill Dogge and Billy for what happened with the grenades. To save himself, Dogge shoots Billy, thinking that he could later take this to Mehdi and explain the situation of how Billy was the one who messed up and how Dogge killed him to make him pay for it. For the teenager, it was a way to get in the good graces of Mehdi, hoping that he wouldn’t be killed for the mistake Billy made.

So, while technically Mehdi had nothing to do with Billy’s murder, one can’t completely relieve him of guilt. He is guilty of roping teenagers into his criminal world, making them commit crimes, and putting them in situations where they aim guns at each other. He was guilty of putting Dogge and Billy in that position where they had to choose between killing someone else or dying for not doing it. Still, at the end of the day, in the eyes of the law, Mehdi was not responsible for Billy’s death and should not have gone to prison for it.

Is Mehdi Convicted of Billy’s Murder?

With Mehdi’s criminal history and the cops, especially Farid, harboring hatred for him, the odds were stacked against him. What started the chain of events that would lead to his arrest was Dogge’s confession that it was Mehdi who asked him to kill Billy. This, of course, wasn’t true, but considering the things he had been asked to do, it wasn’t totally out of place for Dogge to imagine that he would be asked to kill his best friend. Due to Mehdi’s criminal past, the law was already biased towards him. All that was needed was one strong testimony that would seal the deal. By the end, it didn’t matter if the testimony was true or false.

With Billy gone, his family realized they were in even more danger now. If they talked to the cops, they would be terrorized by Mehdi’s crew. If they didn’t help the law, Mehdi would walk free and make their lives hell. Initially, Billy’s mother decides that it’s not worth it to put the lives of her living children on the line, but when she realizes that they might also be killed, she decides to do whatever it takes to save them. Meanwhile, Dogge’s death rattles Farid and makes him even more adamant about putting Mehdi behind bars. He asks Billy’s little brother if there is anything he can remember to incriminate Mehdi. However, when nothing substantial is found, they create evidence on their own.

It is an ethical dilemma. Should they lie to put a bad man behind the bars? If he cannot go to prison for the crimes he has committed, should he go for the ones he didn’t? It would have bothered Farid in the beginning. But by the end, he is so blinded by his desire to make Mehdi pay that he doesn’t bother thinking about it until after it is done. Billy’s mother and brother, despite their fear of the law, decide that they’d rather do away with the constant fear of Mehdi and his crew looming over them and start anew somewhere else.

When Tusse gives the false testimony, Mehdi is, at first, enraged. But by the next day, he has calmed down enough to understand that there is nothing he can do to prove that the young boy who lost his brother and was terrorized by Mehdi’s gang is lying. The lie is so easily mixed up with the truth that it doesn’t stand out to spark any doubts in the minds of the jury. In the end, it is revealed that the verdict will be announced one week later. The show never takes us there, and we don’t find out what the actual verdict is. But seeing how the final hearing went, where Mehdi kept his mouth shut and didn’t answer a single question from the prosecution, it’s clear that he has given up. He knows, as well as anyone else, what the verdict will be, and he also knows that there is no way around it. An appeal can be made further, but considering everything, it is safe to say that there won’t be any reprieve for Mehdi. He is going to prison, which is worse news for him than previously imagined.

While Mehdi may have been the local thug, there are more powerful forces above him that threatened his life, just like he threatened Billy and Dogge’s. He was given grenades to kill a person, a task he delegated to Billy and Dogge. When they failed, Mehdi failed, which wasn’t something his superiors were ready to forgive. He owed them half a million dollars, and he probably could have come up with the money if he didn’t go to prison. But now that it’s clear that he would be found guilty, his employers wouldn’t take it as a good sign. They are already angry about the whole grenade debacle and the money he owes them.

His being in prison also makes him a potential risk, as he could try to make a deal with the cops by giving up information about the people who hired him, thereby endangering them and their business. To stop this, their only solution would be to have Mehdi “taken care of” within the prison walls. So, no matter what sentence is levied upon him, it is safe to assume that Mehdi will never come out of prison alive.

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