Those looking for a tidy ending to the third season of FX’s “Fargo” have two problems. First, tidy is a word rarely associated with this series. And second, Wednesday’s finale — directed by Keith Gordon and written by series creator Noah Hawley — ended with not just a note of ambiguity, but practically an entire symphony. Below, read our “Fargo” recap that details the Top 5 moments from Season 3, Episode 10, titled “Somebody to Love.”
Nikki plays her trump card — Nikki (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) lures Varga (David Thewlis)– and a small army– to a remote storage facility supposedly to collect her money (In reality, she has already delivered the dirt on Varga to IRS agent Larue Dollard, played by a perfectly-cast Hamish Linklater). She leads Varga and his men to different storage sheds, ultimately separating Varga from his army. Suddenly, Mr. Wrench (Russell Harvard) emerges and Varga retreats behind the elevator, leaving Meemo (Andy Yu) and the others to their fates at the hands of Wrench. As he descends in the elevator, we hear Wrench’s bullets above and a shotgun below. Nikki has eliminated the rest of Varga’s men, and waits patiently for the elevator to open. But Varga has escaped through the elevator shaft. Wrench enters carrying the money, but Nikki only takes a handful and gives the rest to Wrench. She wants Emmit.
A black “widow” — Meanwhile, Emmit (Ewan McGregor) is having a really bad day. After showing a moment of courage and standing up to Varga, Meemo knocks him unconscious. He wakes to find Varga– and all traces of him– erased from the house. He goes to the office, only to find that his name is being removed, and that the widow Goldfarb (Mary McDonnell) has acquired his company for a measly $100,000. The widow has a different air about her now, more conservative and severe. Emmit realizes that the widow works for Varga. She assures Emmit that his personal wealth is carefully hidden, but that he should immediately file for bankruptcy. He is then swiftly escorted from his own company. McDonnell’s brief, but chilling performance in the scene left me wondering– does Goldfarb work for Varga or could it possibly be the other way around?
Duel — After losing his family and his company, you would think that Emmit couldn’t lose anything else. But he still has to answer for Ray’s death. Cue Nikki, the avenging angel. Emmit runs out of gas in the middle of nowhere, leaving Nikki the perfect opportunity to exact her revenge. She asks if Emmit is at his lowest point, intending to strike once Emmit has hit rock bottom. Nikki mocks the way Emmit was played by Varga, and immediately begins reciting the Bible verse dictated to her by Paul (Ray Wise) in episode 8. But just as she is about to shoot, a police officer arrives. With both Emmit and Nikki acting cagey, the tension mounts until Emmit signals to the officer that Nikki has a gun. The officer pulls his gun on Emmit, while Nikki goes for her shotgun. The two shoot at each other and both fall dead. The camera pans over both bodies– and we hear the familiar theme music from the film version of “Fargo”– and Emmit escapes, leaving two more bodies in his wake. We then see Gloria watch as Nikki’s body is taken away, as she looks off to horizon, resigned to the horrific conclusion of this case. “OK then,” she says.
The last five years — We jump five years ahead, and we are told that Emmit declared bankruptcy and served two years probation for tax fraud, but that he potentially still has millions of dollars hidden away in off-shore accounts. Emmit has reunited with his wife and family, and even Sy (Michael Stuhlbarg) is shown having somewhat recovered from his poisoning. All seems well with the Stussey family. But everyone faces a reckoning eventually, and Emmit’s comes in the form of Mr. Wrench, who shoots Emmit in the back of the head in his own kitchen.
A final face-off — Gloria, now working for the Department of Homeland Security, is summoned after authorities have apprehended Varga. Finally, heroine and villain are face-to-face. Varga engages Gloria in a discussion of one of the season’s recurring themes: perception vs. reality. Varga launches into his Trump-ian views on the value of a person being measured by their wealth, arguing that Emmit’s death was more tragic than what he calls a “wasteling,” a person living off of welfare. The two then present opposing scenarios. Gloria posits that Varga will be arrested, taken to prison, and face justice for his crimes. But Varga says that he will be released and will disappear into the world. The season ends with a close-up of a clock ticking away, and we are left to wonder which scenario will come to fruition.
It’s a finale that leaves us with more questions than answers, possibly a reflection of the uncertain times in which we live. But even so, there are certain questions that deserve answers. Does Varga face justice for his crimes? Why did Mr. Wrench wait five years to execute Emmit? Who, or what, was Paul and what ever became of Yuri? And most importantly, after cryptic comments both from Hawley and FX President John Landgraf, will “Fargo” return for a fourth season?
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