Ozark season 2 finale recap: Marty plans his exit strategy

In “The Gold Coast” season 2, episode 10 of Ozark, Marty prepares a getaway, Darlene makes a power play and Langmore tensions come to a head.

Ozark season 2 draws to a close with the surprising and slower-paced finale “The Gold Coast.” The action wasn’t as intense as last season’s closer, but there might just be even more troubling questions to consider this go-around. Strap in.

The action begins with Marty prepping to leave the country. He shows Ruth where his money is hidden, all whoppin’ $43 million of it. He reminds her that she can handle it.

Afterward, an unsuspecting Helen congratulates the Byrdes on the significance of pulling off a self-sustaining crime center. She wants to talk five-year plans, but Marty pushes for her to simply get the operational account up and running instead.

Meanwhile, Cade continues to bug Petty to make a move on Marty, but Petty is too fed up to bite. In a moment of rage, Cade hits Petty. He beats him mercilessly, finally dumping his body in the lake. What?? Like with Jacob’s death this season, I find myself surprised to see Petty departing under these circumstances.

Speaking of Snells, Darlene swings by the Byrde home to tell Wendy that Jacob “passed away” and that his dying wish was to stop the casino. Wendy pushes back; she knows something is up. Darlene proposes that the Byrdes let her adopt Zeke and then she’ll stand aside.

Meanwhile, Cade comes to Ruth in need of an alibi. He confesses that he killed Petty, but she doesn’t want to help. You tell him, Ruth!

Marty is exploring options for Zeke. The adoption folks don’t think they can get him placed for ~8 weeks, but he’ll need to rehome him sooner if he hopes to go on the run.

Darlene thinks she has the solution. She picks up Jonah while he’s out biking and shaves off large chunks of his hair. It’s a clear message that she wants Zeke.

Later, Darlene entertains guests who have come to mourn Jacob. Marty surprises her by showing up with Zeke in tow. The state has temporarily approved for her to foster Zeke. Marty makes the exchange under the condition that Darlene will never touch a Byrde child again. Of all the trauma this poor baby has gone through, this might be the worst.

Lakeside, a cop finds Cade’s car and asks him to leave. Cade is upset that the cop may pin him to Petty’s disappearance. He comes home livid and demands that Ruth help him. He threatens to tell Wyatt what happened to Russ if she doesn’t cooperate.

Ruth takes matters into her own hands and tells Wyatt that she killed Russ. He doesn’t take it well and the scene is heart-wrenching. He’s the only thing in the world she’ll ever love, she says. Please don’t hate her, Wyatt.

Wendy comes home to the Byrde house and realizes what Marty did with Zeke. In a moment of weakness, he finally tells her his plans to leave. Later, he preps his getaway plane.

Helen stops by the house while he’s away to tell Wendy that Jacob is dead. They make casual conversation, with Helen emphasizing how impressed her employer has been with their casino.

In what will likely prove to be the first important question for next season to tackle, Frank Cosgrove stops by Marty’s office, upset about the union deal. Despite Marty’s reassurances, Frank doesn’t think that Marty is taking him seriously.

Meanwhile, Charlotte returns to the Langmores’. There Cade approaches her wanting to know where Marty’s money is. He drags her by the hair, but Ruth saves her at the last minute. She brings Charlotte home and Marty insists that she stay the night there, too.

Wyatt calls Charlotte at the house. He tells her that he’s confirmed that Marty never killed anyone. Afterward, he communes with the spirit of his father once more. He still loves Russ, despite his dad’s sins. Maybe there’s room for forgiveness for Ruth there, too.

The Byrdes discuss what to do about Ruth’s situation. They reach no big conclusions and the next day goes on as planned, with Marty reviewing the getaway plan with Ruth after breakfast.

Wendy has taken the Langmore situation into her own hands, it would seem. She brings Cade half a million in exchange for his leaving town immediately. He takes the money, of course, but when he tries to leave town he is gunned down.

There’s no suspense waiting for his killer to be revealed. After a subtle nod from Helen at the casino site, it’s seemingly confirmed that she and Wendy plotted to have him offed.

Wendy has made another big decision without discussion: at the unveiling, she tells Marty that she and the kids won’t run. She tells him that he’s been acting out of emotion and that staying put is the more logical choice.

She paints a picture of opportunity in the Ozarks, of Helen’s boss being eternally grateful for their work. Is the Byrdes’ success going to be a (perhaps brief) part of season 3? Their successes could prove just as interesting as their conflicts.

Of course, there are many questions to consider as we leave season 2 behind and head for new territory. “The Gold Coast” closes with some particularly haunting images. Darlene sings to baby Zeke. Cosgrove torches Marty’s office. Ruth says goodbye to her father’s body. And to end things? The Byrdes take the grimmest family photo of all time. There’s a lot going on in these troubled waters. We’re only just breaking the surface.

The Gold Coast Ozark Season 2, Episode 10

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