Ozark Season 3 Ending, Explained


Marty and Wendy did it again. Despite all odds, they managed to make it out alive. While this doesn’t come as a surprise, simply because they are the protagonists of the story and won’t die so easily, it is a feat that seemed impossible to accomplish considering how many failures they had to face in this season alone. The first two seasons were about how incredibly gifted they are with the whole politics and the machinery of finance. The third season, in its entirety, sums up their failures.

The empire, or a part of it, that they had given their sweat, tears and blood to in the previous seasons comes treacherously close to falling apart. In fact, after a while, it seems like it doesn’t even matter that much anymore. The casino and even the FBI fade away into the background, as other, more personal problems come to the fore. In the end, however, they come up with a trick that just lands itself at their door and saves the day, but it also means that there is absolutely, in no way whatsoever, no turning back for them. If you haven’t yet caught up with the show, head over to Netflix. SPOILERS AHEAD

Plot Summary

Before you scratch your head about what exactly happened in the end, here is a quick recap for you. Despite Marty’s wishes, the Byrdes stay back in the Ozarks and continue with their operations. Wendy wants to start a legitimate business, especially considering the cartel war going on in Mexico that could cost Navarro his life and he might want to leave behind something for his children that the Feds can’t touch.

Marty isn’t too happy about it and this leads to some problems between him and Wendy. The condition is exacerbated when Wendy’s brother, Ben, comes to live with them, and the son of Frank Cosgrove of the KC mob makes Ruth’s job difficult. One thing leads to another and the whole group falls apart, leading to some bloodshed, and Marty and Wendy finding themselves trapped in the life that they so desperately want to leave.

The Ending: What it means for the Byrdes?

Helen had made all preparations of throwing the Byrdes under the bus and take the Byrde Enterprise into her own hands, but the last-minute move of them saving the boss from the war by ending it slipped her notice. Ben’s death and the FBI’s move against the rival cartel lead Navarro to make a decision between the Byrdes and Helen.

Considering all that has happened, they have proved to be more of an asset than a liability. Time after time, they have come up with one crafty plan after another to either save the cartel or simply save themselves from the cartel. What makes them even better is that they work exceptionally well under the threat of their own lives. The boss values that more than the services provided by Helen. He can always get another lawyer, I guess!

By getting a statement from the FBI, Helen was trying to put the final nail in the coffin of the Byrdes. She wanted to give yet another reason to Navarro to kill them, but before that could happen, he put a bullet in her head instead. Now, even though her death means the life of Wendy and Marty and their children, it also means that they are in much more danger than they were ever before.

If a person like Helen, who had been with the cartel for god knows how long is disposable, then they, too, are disposable. Only another ingenious couple like them needs to come along and their worth would diminish considerably. Should they fail to secure the business of the cartel in the future, they know how it is going to end for them. No warnings, no tip-offs.

This brings us to the next of the many problems on their agenda. After Ben’s death, Ruth found it impossible to be around them so Darlene poached her. When the Byrdes return to their nest, how will they handle the situation of their best player being on the other side of the line now? Not only will they be in professional rivalry, but everyone who is against them now has a personal agenda. Everyone hates them, and working around that is never an easy, if at all possible, task. Ruth and Darlene, and not to forget the KC mob, working together means a whole lot of trouble for the Byrdes, especially because they all know how the Byrdes function and just what their weak points are.

The dangers on the outside can be handled. If they succeeded in convincing a Mexican drug cartel leader to spare their lives over that of his lawyer, they can surely find a way to keep the local enemies satisfied. But what about the challenges that are closer to home? Ben’s death also affected Jonah. The poor boy made two friends in all, both of them now dead. Buddy died the night he helped Wendy burn the Snell poppy fields and now Ben’s dead because Wendy okayed the hit.

In both these cases, his mother comes out the suspect and from the way it looked, Jonah is not in the mood to forgive anyone anytime soon. But does that mean that he will cross over to the other side and join hands with the enemies to bring down his own parents? Perhaps, it won’t go that far but he surely will create a lot of problems for them. Not to forget Sam’s arrest, which could give the FBI an upper hand on the Byrdes. Is he the next CI for the agency? In any case, on their return from Mexico, Wendy and Marty have a lot to take care of.

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