The central question on Ozark, a Netflix original series that premiered last year, is how far will people go to protect their family and themselves. After financial planner Marty Byrd (delicately played by the always great Jason Bateman) gets caught up in a money laundering scheme that goes horribly wrong, he relocates his dysfunctional and fragmented family from a prosperous suburb of Chicago to a rural vacation spot in the Ozarks. His hope of keeping his family alive is complicated greatly by the town locals, drug cartels, FBI agents, and his family barely keeping everything together. As season two approaches, catch up on how all this intense drama ended last year.
Marty Thinks Quick
With the drug-dealing Snell family proving to be dangerous foes and the cartel closing in, Marty and his family try to flee. Initially stopped by one of the cartel’s enforcers, they sneak away thanks to their live-in roommate Buddy (Harris Yulin), only to have Marty separated from them and tortured by the ruthless crime lord Del (Esai Morales). As Del is ripping off Marty’s toenails, Marty convinces him to get the cartel involved with the Snells to distribute heroin and launder money on Snell property with a casino. The Snells agree at first, but then kill Del after he uses a racial slur against them, thus endangering everyone, since the cartel will not be happy with such a high profile member going missing.
The FBI Struggles to Make an Arrest
Stopped by an agent on the way home, Marty lays on the ground as the agent frantically searches for Del. Unable to produce him, they let Marty go, but it’s clear the agents will not let up in their hunt for members of the cartel.
Pastor Mason Commits to Jesus
After finding out that the Snell family had been using his “church on the water” to distribute heroin, Pastor Mason (Michael Mosley) refuses to preach on the lake and aid them. As a retaliation, the Snells kill his pregnant wife, leaving her baby on Mason’s doorstep. In a moment of desperation and hope, he baptizes the child.
Ruth Steps Up
While the dangerous and intelligent Ruth (Julia Garner) initially started working for Marty in the hopes of killing and robbing him of his money he was supposed to launder, over the course of the season, she begins to respect him enough to where she doesn’t want him dead. After being made the manager of the strip club where he was laundering money, Ruth helps Marty run his businesses. At the end of season one, she suspects that her uncle Russ (Marc Menchaca) is an informant for the FBI and has intentions of killing Marty. Worried that she’ll get blamed for it, as well as her having some compassion for Marty now, she instead kills Russ and her other uncle Boyd (Christopher James Baker).
Marty’s Family Comes Back
After a heartbreaking phone call with his wife Wendy (the perfect Laura Linney), Marty urges his family to run away and save themselves. As she starts the car, her kids convince her to turn back so that they can be together as a family, even if it means they’re all in danger.
Marty will likely enter season two stuck between a deadly rock and an even deadlier hard place. The Snell family plans to hold him to the deal that they struck together to build a casino, and use his cartel connection to deal heroin. However, with the death of kingpin Del, that relationship will be tricky to negotiate. The FBI agents on his case are unlikely to let up any time soon, especially considering the deaths of Russ, Boyd, Garcia, and Del. Still, Marty and his family have to repair their relationships with each other, and that will certainly not be easy in this rural and dangerous town. If the trailer is any indication, sh*ts about to get real for Marty.
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