‘Ozark’ Season 4 final episodes preview: Jason Bateman, Laura Linney and company cement its place among Netflix’s best

Perhaps foremost, the series has consistently tested the extent to which Marty (Jason Bateman) and his wife Wendy (Laura Linney) are willing to go to survive, as they try to navigate landmines that include drug dealers and the Feds in order to shed their dirty money-laundering business and buy their way back to Chicago.

Through the years, Marty has defined himself as the guy who can talk his way out of any situation, or at least try to, while Wendy has become increasingly ruthless, in a manner that has finally risked alienating their not-entirely-grown-up kids (Sofia Hublitz, Skylar Gaertner). In the “Who can you trust?” department, the Byrdes since the beginning have added each other to that calculus, but the question of whether they’re working together out of love or necessity seems particularly acute now.

Julia Garner and & # 39; Ozark. & # 39;
Similarly, the bifurcated season has explored the Byrdes’ fractured alliance with Ruth (Julia Garner), while providing necessary reminders of the collateral damage done in their gradual descent into this world of illegality. It has also developed ancillary characters, like drug kingpin Omar Navarro (Felix Solis), with a complexity that demonstrates what could be stock threats can be oddly charismatic, though it’s never wise to turn your backs on them.

The performances are, again, sensational, with Garner standing out in a home stretch that showscases just how tough and determined Ruth can be. Richard Thomas also plays a more significant role as Wendy’s estranged father, who has come back into her life and, like almost everything else in “Ozark,” complicated it.

After four seasons viewers surely have their own ideas about whether the Byrdes could plausibly find a way out after sliding so far down this rabbit hole, and if it’s truly possible to get clean again after all the damage that’s been done.

“Ozark” deftly builds toward that answer, delivering it in a thought-provoking way that cements its place among Netflix’s finest dramas. Having already shown itself to be one of those addictive series that pushed the boundaries of serialized thrillers, its full-throttle race to settle accounts in this final flurry of episodes officially closes the deal.

“Ozark” begins its final run of episodes April 29 on Netflix.