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Darlene Snell And Wyatt Langmore's Relationship On Ozark Explained

"Ozark" Season 4, Part 2 hit Netflix on April 29, wrapping up the hit series with seven action-packed episodes. By the time the dust settles, it appears that Marty (Jason Bateman) and Wendy Byrde (Laura Linney) survive to continue wreaking havoc on central Missouri, having left many ruined lives in their wake. Throughout everything audiences see, no family in the Ozarks suffers the wrath of the Byrdes quite so dreadfully as the Langmore clan. 

In Season 1, Ruth (Julia Garner) murders her uncles, Russ (Marc Menchaca) and Boyd (Christopher James Baker), in order to prevent them from killing Marty. In Season 2, Wendy has Ruth's father, Cade (Trevor Long), killed after he clumsily attempts to rat the Byrdes out to the FBI. By the end of Season 4, Part 1, the evil deeds of the Byrde family begin to impact even the youngest generation of Langmores, ultimately costing Wyatt (Charlie Tahan) his life. Of course, it should also be noted that Wyatt's death is not entirely the fault of the Byrde family. 

Indeed, it could also be said that Wyatt makes his own bed by willingly inviting another frequent agent of death into it. Throughout the series, local heroin farmer Darlene Snell (Lisa Emery) proves time and time again that she is an agent of chaos. Whether we're talking about a loose-lipped cartel handler or even her own first husband, Darlene is cold-hearted and quick to violence, often inspiring the expected amount of fear in those around her. 

However, despite Darlene's proneness to violence and the sizable age gap between she and Wyatt, the two quickly bond over their respective losses. Interestingly, a closer look at Darlene and Wyatt's relationship shows why this unlikely couple actually makes perfect sense.

Darlene and Wyatt's relationship from her perspective

Despite her stubbornness and unpredictability, Darlene is fiercely loyal to those who remain in her good graces. Evidently, when she isn't aiming down the barrel of a shotgun or preparing poison, she proves quite protective of some Ozark locals. For example, Darlene shoots Frank Cosgrove Jr. (Joseph Sikora) in the groin after he assaults Ruth. In Season 4, Episode 1 ("The Beginning of the End"), Darlene bails Wyatt out of jail and offers him a job and a cabin. When making her offer, Darlene says, "Langmore stock is as good as any around here — don't let anybody tell you different." 

As for what Darlene sees in Wyatt, it seems likely that she is attracted to Wyatt for a number of reasons. In addition to being quite young, Wyatt is smart, hardworking, and respectful. Importantly, he also shows an outwardly paternal side to Darlene's adopted son, Zeke. His lack of relationship experience would also seem to be a plus for Darlene, who prefers to mold others to the form that best suits her needs. Although so many obvious factors tell audiences that these two are not a good match, Darlene's relationship calculus is actually much more straightforward. Wyatt is a good business partner and parent to her child. Importantly, he is also a local bloodline to whom she can leave her land and fortune.

Darlene and Wyatt's relationship from his perspective

For a plethora of reasons, Wyatt is perhaps the most tragic character in all of "Ozark." Like the rest of the Langmore clan, Wyatt's history is marked by countless examples of tragedy. As he grows up, the only strong woman in his life is his younger cousin, Ruth. Sadly, not even that close bond is left unmarred by the arrival of the Byrde family.

Throughout his life, people around Wyatt see great potential in him, something that can be both inspiring and paralyzing. His life on the Langmore property is filled with struggle and loss, and he strives to find something better than the life his parents offer him. Indeed, Ruth even aims to see Wyatt leave the area, attend college, and move on to bigger and better things. However, he ultimately finds a new life quite close to home. After moving in with Darlene, Wyatt tells Ruth, "I have a good home here, a real job on the land ... I'm happy now."

Despite their many differences, it's actually not all that difficult to see why Wyatt chose Darlene. The elder heroin farmer offers Wyatt a number of things he never had in his life before. In addition to a powerful female presence, Darlene offers Wyatt a steady and healthy income, in addition to a house that can't be knocked flat by a stiff wind or loaded onto a flatbed and driven away. He responds to Darlene's loyalty with some of his own, lying under oath on her behalf at her family court hearing. Her words of gratitude turn into a hug, then a kiss, and eventually more. Unfortunately, the combination of forbidden thrill and unprecedented stability is simply irresistible to Wyatt.

Darlene and Wyatt's relationship was full of red flags

It doesn't take much looking online to realize that many "Ozark" viewers have mixed emotions about the pairing. Some consider the relationship the worst thing Wyatt ever did and others simply believe their on-screen love is awkward

In a thread on the r/Ozark subreddit, a number of "Ozark" fans sounded off on the unlikely couple. More than a week after watching the episode where the two consummate their relationship, u/shannybananny123 wrote, "I am still traumatized from this." Similarly, u/xeroshogun wrote, "I've watched the most gory sh** and not blinked an eye, but that made me very uncomfortable." 

Notably, some Redditors had more nuanced views of the romance. "It works well for them because Darlene visualizes herself as a nurturer and mother-earth type," u/Off-With-Her-Head wrote. "She longs to 'shape' young people. Wyatt has (apparently) been motherless for a long time... Darlene is a port in a storm." Unfortunately, Darlene's short temper ultimately proves her to be more "storm" than "port." 

Although he is imminently aware that Darlene is dangerous, Wyatt only ever briefly considers leaving her. In fact, when posed with the opportunity to depart, he is quick to choose Darlene instead. When the latest plot by the Byrdes threatens to take Zeke away from her, Wyatt chooses to marry Darlene on the spot in order to keep the family together. Unfortunately, Darlene's history of making enemies comes back to haunt her at just the inopportune moment. Navarro cartel leader Javi Elizonndro (Alfonso Herrera) murders both Wyatt and Darlene only shortly after the couple's wedding.