The Ozark season 4 part 2 finale brought the story of the Byrde family and their dealings with the Navarro cartel to an end.
When part 1 finished, the Byrdes were in a tight spot. They’d just managed to wrangle a new deal between the FBI and Javier Elizondro (Alfonso Herrera), but Ruth Langmore (Julia Garner) was intent on murdering the newly minted cartel boss as revenge for the death of her cousin Wyatt (Charlie Tahan). That’s quite the problem to deal with, and the issues just keep coming in part 2.
So how does it all end for the Byrdes? We break down every twist, turn, and murder in Ozark season 4 part 2…
Ozark season 4 part 2 ending explained *spoilers*
The season starts with a bang when Ruth makes good on her threat to kill Javi, and shoots him dead in front of Clare Shaw (Katrina Lenk) and Marty and Wendy Byrde (Jason Bateman and Laura Linney). Omar Navarro (Felix Solis) takes the blame to appear strong and in control from behind bars.
With the FBI deal with Javi now gone, the Byrdes fall back on Navarro again, but for their plans to work the cartel boss can’t be in prison. They attempt to get him removed from a government list that prohibits him being extradited to Mexico. From there, he’d be freed and resume control, which means the deal with the FBI is back on.
But, Navarro’s sister Camila Elizondro (Verónica Falcón) – the mother of Javi – tries to have her brother killed after the death of her son. Navarro survives, though Camila’s presence gives the Byrdes another opportunity. They eventually decide to have her take over instead when the problem of freeing Navarro proves too complicated. The FBI make a deal with Camila, and the plan for Navarro is to transfer him to another prison – and kill him en route.
Things are made more complicated by the fact that Ruth and a returning Rachel (Jordana Spiro) have executed a hostile takeover of the Missouri Belle casino. For the deal, the casino must continue laundering money, which Ruth and Rachel agree to do since they’d be committing the crime with the permission of the FBI.
Meanwhile, Wendy’s father Nathan Davis (Richard Thomas) almost succeeds in getting the Byrde kids Jonah and Charlotte (Skylar Gaertner and Sofia Hublitz) to move away with him. In the aftermath of a court hearing, Wendy checks herself into the same mental health facility that her brother Ben (Tom Pelphrey) spent time in and says she won’t leave until the kids come back.
Marty blackmails Ruth into helping get Charlotte and Jonah away from Nathan by threatening to tell Camila what happened to Javi. After revealing Nathan’s true nature, Ruth succeeds. The kids reunite with Wendy in the facility, and she speaks honestly with them about Ben.
Together again, the Byrdes travel in their car – if this scene looks familiar, it’s because we saw it back in Ozark season 4 part 1. This time, though, the entire car crash plays out. All the Byrdes escape relatively unscathed, although Wendy is briefly unconscious.
Everything comes to a head at a fundraising event for the Byrde foundation. While being transferred, Navarro is indeed shot dead, and Camila approaches the Byrdes and Clare to find out what exactly happened to her son. Clare originally sticks to her story that she knows nothing, but a particularly terrifying threat from Camila breaks her and she admits Ruth killed Javi. Camila then threatens the Byrdes and says if they try to warn Ruth, she’ll have them and their children killed.
Out of moves, the Byrdes decide to do nothing. Ruth makes it back to the former location of the Langmore trailers and is confronted by Camila. While she’s held at gunpoint, Ruth says she’s not sorry, and Camila shoots her dead.
The Byrdes return home, and all seems well until they notice some broken glass. Private investigator Mel Sattem (Adam Rothenberg) has been on the hunt for the truth about Ben’s death, and not even the Byrdes manoeuvring to have him accepted back into the Chicago police force has stopped him. He figured out that Ben’s ashes are in the goat-shaped cookie jar and broke into the house to find them. It turns out Marty didn’t do a good job cremating Ben, which means the remains are identifiable.
The Byrdes try to bribe their way out, but Mel tells them they’re not going to win because the world doesn’t work that way. “Since when?” Wendy asks, then Jonah gets Mel at gunpoint. The Byrdes look pleased, Jonah closes his eyes, and we cut to black at the sound of a gunshot.
What happens to Marty and Wendy?
Despite everything, Marty and Wendy Byrde make it out of the series alive. It seems they’re going to pay for Ben’s death when Mel Sattem confronts them right at the end of the final episode, but a shotgun-wielding Jonah arrives on the scene and gets them out of one last tight spot.
The Byrde family foundation is a huge success, and Camila has made a deal with the FBI – meaning the Byrdes are free to go to Chicago, and they’ll even have the influence and political power Wendy has been dreaming about. For the Byrdes, this really is a happy ending.
Does Jonah shoot Mel Sattem?
Ozark ends with Jonah holding Mel at gunpoint after the private investigator makes it clear that he intends to make the Byrdes pay for Ben’s death. Jonah shuts his eyes, and the screen cuts to black before we find out just who he shot. But a gunshot can be heard, so there’s no doubt that someone was hit… but who?
We don’t see Jonah waver or move his aim before he squeezes the trigger, so we can assume he shot Mel. Marty and Wendy even look over to the PI right before the screen cuts to black. From that range, it’s unlikely Mel could survive. Plus, now that the Byrdes know Ben wasn’t properly cremated, we can assume they’ll cover their tracks properly – and get away with everything.
Is the truth about Ben discovered?
Nope. Ben is still considered a missing person, and Nathan returns home without ever finding out what happened to him. Of course, Mel knows Ben is gone… but Jonah kills him before he can expose the Byrdes. It seems the truth dies with Mel, and the world will never know what really happened to Ben.
Are the Byrdes free of the cartel?
In part 1, Marty and Wendy agreed with Navarro that they could be free of the cartel if they procured a deal for him with the FBI. That worked out until Maya Miller (Jessica Frances Dukes) arrested him, so the Byrdes re-negotiated a deal – but this time between Javi and the Bureau. But Javi ends up dead thanks to Ruth, so the Byrdes try again with Navarro. This time, though, they’ll need to get him transferred to a Mexican prison first. There, he could be freed and resume control of the cartel.
That proves very difficult, so once again they switch tactics and arrange a deal with Navarro’s sister Camila and the FBI instead. When the series ends, she’s still alive and Navarro is dead – which means the Byrdes are free to go.
Does Ruth kill Javi?
At the end of Ozark season 4 part 1, Ruth ferociously avowed that she would kill Javi as revenge for the murder of her cousin. But when part 2 begins, there’s some doubt over whether she’ll really do it. She seems to be weighing her options, and Three (Carson Holmes) even tells her that Wyatt wouldn’t want her to do this. Marty also does his best to convince her to stop. He thinks she won’t be able to kill Javi because she doesn’t know what he looks like or where he is – but Charlotte and Jonah give Ruth all the information she needs.
Ruth threatens Marty, Wendy, and Clare to get them back to Clare’s office, then orders them to get Javi in the building. Wendy calls him and lures him over, later reasoning to Marty that it was inevitable anyway. Javi arrives, and Ruth shoots him dead. She leaves Marty and Wendy to clean up.
This comes back around eventually, though. Javi called Camila before heading over to Clare’s office, so, once she finds out Navarro didn’t kill her son, the new cartel leader is very suspicious. When she questions Clare over what happened, the pharmaceutical boss sticks to the story that she wasn’t meeting Javi, but Camila is still unconvinced. Ultimately, a particularly nasty threat makes Clare give in and tell Camila that Ruth killed her son. Naturally, Camila wants revenge…
What happens to Ruth?
After shooting Javi dead, Ruth initially gets away with the murder as Navarro claims he was the one who did it so he can solidify his power with the cartel. But that doesn’t last for very long. After Clare gives in, Camila arrives to the (now demolished) Langmore trailers to confront Ruth. Rather than trying to escape her fate, Ruth says she’s not sorry, and challenges Camila to pull the trigger when she doesn’t immediately fire.
Camila then shoots Ruth and kills her in revenge for Javi’s death. It’s all the more tragic considering Ruth had her criminal record wiped clean, the trailers demolished to make way for a massive house with a swimming pool, and was in charge of the Missouri Belle. All her plans came to nothing in the end.
What happens in the car crash from part 1?
In Ozark season 4 part 1, the Byrdes are shown suffering a catastrophic-looking car crash. As it turns out, though, the crash isn’t that bad at all. Marty, Charlotte, and Jonah escape completely unscathed, but for a moment Wendy looks more severely hurt. Luckily enough, though, she’s also fine – just a few scrapes.
When they return home, Navarro’s priest (Bruno Bichir) gives Wendy some strong words of warning, implying that the car crash was a warning from God. But Wendy sees the crash as a different omen altogether: a sign that she’ll leave the cartel safely.
What happens to Navarro? Does Camila kill him?
Navarro is told he’s being transferred and is put in a prison van. One of the guards then kills the other, opens the door, gives Navarro a gun, and tells him to leave. It seems the cartel boss is being rescued and the Byrdes’ plans are once again about to fall apart, but it’s not that simple. The guard then cocks a gun, drawing Navarro’s attention, and the boss realizes his gun is empty of bullets and he’s going to be killed. He’s shot dead.
Why all the theatrics, then? Well, that’s because the guard is setting up the scene to look like Navarro tried to escape. He even handcuffs one wrist for extra believability.
What happens to Nelson?
Nelson follows Ruth when she goes to visit the sheriff, but is gone when she leaves. This sends her into a panic, and she calls Rachel and tells her that the cartel is coming. Rachel grabs a gun and gets up on the roof of the trailer. When Nelson arrives, she shoots him dead.
Ruth buries Nelson under the concrete of her building site (beneath the swimming pool, to be exact). Marty finds out what happened, but Navarro takes Nelson’s disappearance as evidence that Camila is going to try to kill him again. Nobody sets him straight on this, which means the blame doesn’t fall on Ruth or Rachel.
What happens to Clare Shaw?
Clare wasn’t happy about continuing to work with the cartel, but Wendy outmanoeuvred her, so she had to carry on. She was a witness to Javi’s death, and kept quiet until threatened by Camila, when she revealed the truth about who killed the former cartel boss. That’s the last we see of her, so she survives the series.
What happens to Maya Miller?
The last time FBI agent Maya Miller appears in Ozark, she’s talking to Mel Sattem about the possibility of him returning to Chicago to become a police officer again. She then calls the Byrdes to warn them that there’s still no escape if they succeed in getting rid of the PI because God will still know what they’ve done. They don’t listen.
Maya was blackballed by the FBI after deciding to arrest Navarro and ruin the deal – but she survives the season, at least.
What happens to Rachel?
Rachel is another lucky survivor of the series. She ends the show co-owning the Missouri Belle with Ruth – considering Ruth is killed, though, she’s presumably now in charge.
She’ll have to keep on laundering money for the Navarro cartel, though, as part of the deal with the FBI and Camila. But, with the Bureau’s official permission, she’ll never get in any legal trouble for what she’s doing.
What happens to Frank Jr.?
After Frank Jr. (Joseph Sikora) and Ruth put aside their differences in part 1, they had a much better working relationship – and in part 2, Frank gives Ruth the gun she uses to kill Javi, and Ruth then asks the KC Mob boss for some assistance moving heroin from Darlene Snell’s (Lisa Emery) farm. He helps her out, and that’s the last we see of him, meaning Frank Jr. is another lucky survivor.
If you’re all caught up on Ozark, check out our breakdown of who dies in Ozark season 4 part 2, and see our roundup of the best Netflix shows streaming now to fill out your watchlist.