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Animal Kingdom Fans Are Still Processing Their Series Finale Feelings

Warning: Spoilers for the series finale of "Animal Kingdom" follow.

The series finale of TNT's "Animal Kingdom" aired on August 28 and, true to form, the episode contained its fair share of shocking moments. Season 6 was expected to bring the drama and certainly delivered on that, as the main characters' fates reached some unexpected conclusions. As in all the best TV crime dramas, the Cody family's misdeeds as they struggled to hold onto their illegal enterprise against both law enforcement and rivals unfolded with plotlines from earlier seasons coming back to haunt the criminals. Ever since the death of matriarch Smurf (Ellen Barkin) in Season 4, the fractured Codys have traveled a shaky path where the dominoes fell one by one.

"Animal Kingdom" was a show that took an unflinching look at characters who chose to live their lives defined by crime. So one thing that Season 6, Episode 13, titled "Fubar," achieved was to show how transgressions that harm others for financial gain never truly pay in the grand scheme of things. Even though we may have sensed that this is where things were headed with the Codys, fans are still processing that gut punch of a final episode.

The bleak Animal Kingdom series finale left fans in awe and disbelief

On the "Animal Kingdom" Reddit forum, Redditor u/ladfrombrad kicked off the series finale discussion thread. J's (Finn Cole) deception of his two uncles Craig (Ben Robson) and Deran (Jake Weary) was one moment that managed to catch some fans off guard. In the episode, J murders Penny (Stevie Lynn Jones) and ultimately betrays Craig and Deran, in a twist that was shocking but not without some potential existential consequences for the character. Redditor u/ronindog commented, "J gets his revenge, but as others say, ultimately he is now alone, having betrayed his brothers and murdered Penny."

J may have come out on top in the end, in terms of acquiring the family fortune and now being in charge, but his final scene was telling in terms of the ultimate destruction of his soul. Redditor u/brosfranothermother pointed out that J was "cold and alone, with the money, but no family, and wearing those sunglasses staring into the swimming pool."

Another staggering moment from the finale was the death of Pope (Shawn Hatosy), following a shoot-out with police after being freed from jail by Craig and Deran. Speaking about Pope's death, in an interview with Yahoo News, showrunner Daniele Nathanson revealed, "You don't get away with it [Pope's crimes]. You shouldn't. And even he knows." Whether by death, incarceration, or the destruction of their souls, the Codys met their grim fates in one way or another.