Ozark Season 3 Review

March 27, 2020 at 8:36pm
By Jason Stettner

This is a Netflix Original series that follows a family as they continue to get deeper with their cartel drug boss. Things are particularly bad in that regard this season as a war has been growing behind the scenes which creates extra pressure for the family to deliver. It’s an interesting dynamic, but not necessarily the focus here. Things take a weird shift despite starting out strong, and instead focusing on a new addition to the cast. This is Wendy’s (Laura Linney) brother Ben (Tom Pelphrey).

I thought it was just straight up bizarre that amidst everything going that they would dedicate a massive part of the plot to that character and integrate him into every element of the show. It was odd, felt forced and took away from what was interesting plot developments. There’s a double pressure on the couple, and Marty (Jason Bateman) is taking the brunt of it. Extra pushes from both the cartel boss and the growing FBI presence in the area. It’s a neat balance to play, and it also seems like the younger aspect of the family is somewhat cast aside.

They definitely have smaller roles with Charlotte (Sofia Hublitz) almost having nothing to do. It’s weird that they expanded the cast outwards instead of focusing on the strong core group as they attempt to navigate many problems. I also hated how they directed Ruth (Julia Garner) in this season as she had strong points and then they took her in such a weird direction. It was just some stilted narrative decisions quite honestly.
Ozark Season 3 Wallpaper
Aside from the shift characters wise, they also somewhat leave behind elements of their business. They focus largely on just the casino aspect, and expansion. It would have been neat to see more of a balance for the other properties and things they have their hands in.

I did find the acting to generally be great, and I liked the moments of conflict here. They have clear, well setup points that cause certain situations to occur. You can see that build-up, and why it happens. That being said, some of the ending positions were just straight up bizarre and I’m actually not looking forward to where it heads next.

I can see what they’re going to do, and it really doesn’t make sense considering the past seasons. It’s a sequence of weird situations, and honestly some were puzzling. The conclusion will certainly provide a bit of a shock, I’m sure many will be surprised by what does end up happening. Oh, and the whole therapist side plot was fun and I thought that was worth mentioning here.

The Conclusion

Ozark Season 3 focused too much on Wendy’s brother while side lining key characters and sending them in bizarre directions. I still liked what I was watching, and I was engaged with it. I just generally found the direction of the brother focus to feel random, and almost derail what the actual focus of this is supposed to be.

It feels almost fabricated as a distraction from the much more interesting events going on. It’s weird as there was so much they could have done with others and even possibly have not had this inclusion. I thought the performance he presented was fine, it’s more the narrative structuring behind it. I get the extra sort of distress it creates, and a lot of the plot lines in this season felt awkward. It was strange, as they have interesting characters to play around with, and they failed to do that effectively here.

The deeper integration of the lawyer was interesting, and they could have played with that more. Still, I liked individual character progression and the shift in what’s going on. That being said I’m not necessarily too excited about what’s to come as I feel they left things in a weird way while still delivering an excellent ending for this season.

Ozark Season 3 Review at Home with Streamed Viewing
Screening was Provided by Netflix

Rating Overall: 6.5

Gamerheadquarters Reviewer Jason Stettner