The second season of Ozark continues to follow the Byrde family almost immediately after the events of the first. The core group continues to become splintered as they work against tightening cartel enforcement and pinching opposition from multiple new sides. This season is largely focused around the creation of their "legal" cartel funded casino which was the ending point last time around. With this shift towards a different business setup while being established in the local area, the scope of the series has expanded.
Marty (Jason Bateman) continues to work on the books and business side of things whereas his wife Wendy (Laura Linney) has expanded into the local political scene. Ruth (Julia Garner) continues to support Marty while being joined by her returning father for a larger build of that character. She has to make tough choices while having her decisions directly impacted by multiple individuals. With this being a larger in scope season the group has direct contact and interaction with the cartel while also having to deal with many local factions. It can be quite a situation balancing everything and that helped keep the pacing rolling throughout. There wasn't a wasted moment in any episode despite some gorgeous gloomy cinematic moments.
The general story was definitely better developed this time around yet I still found many segments to be overly predictable. In almost every situation you could see their solution immediately after being given a problem or even prior to that issue appearing. There was also a lot of balancing across the expanded cast and I wasn't a fan of the how the younger individuals were handled with most decisions just being perplexing given their current situations.
It was definitely an improvement over the first season as everything was settled and this felt like the next natural step of progression for the main characters involved. The new additions were a mix of great and mostly unsettling. They really aimed to tie things off this time around while again focusing things moving forward. The acting was fine and visually it feels the same as the first time around with the gloom settings placed to max.
Ozark Season 2 is a solid continuation of the first season expanding the scope of enterprises while becoming even darker along the way. They really did go all out in terms of providing a very dark atmosphere. They never held back which was great and that helped build an element of surprise as you never knew when things might take a turn for the worst. No one was ever really safe.
The acting was fine and while some characters improved, I found others took a step back. The setting felt nice and familiar while carrying that gloom look over. I don't typically like that style of look for shows, but it works perfectly here and helps build out the aesthetic of the environments. This was a good season and an improvement over the first. It was an interesting development for a certain character and I look forward to where they build this venture next.
Ozark Season 2 Review at Home with Streamed Viewing
Screening was Provided by Netflix