The Night Of Finale: The Call of the Wild

The Night of
I have been so into this series and was so worried I would not be able to stay awake for the finale.  To be honest, I am still a bit worried I will nod off. Narcolepsy is a real issue for me lately.  Hopefully, my keen interest in finding out whether Naz is guilty or not will propel me to stay awake.

We start with the retired cop back in the precinct reviewing evidence of the murder. He sees the murdered girl on the street in front of her brownstone alone at some point. No idea what that means.

The defense attorney puts all the usual suspects on the stand. The guys on the street,and  the undertaker, come in willingly but John Stone has to seek out the step father in a dark alley to serve him with a subpoena.  The prosecutor does not cross any of them. The jury is present but Naz is not. Perhaps this is just voir dire. I’m confused. He should be able to be that for that as well. Why is he in jail cutting coke and coming up short? When the female attorney goes to see him to tell him she wants him to testify he asks her for a favor. She goes to buy condoms to smuggle him in drugs. This show is sort of falling a part for me with the interaction between the attorney and Naz. She buys the drugs right out on the street and there are video cameras on her.  She smuggles it in her vagina even though attorneys are not searched before meeting with their clients in jail. I hate this entire part of the story,

the-night-of Naz

When the prosecutor cross examines Naz on the stand. She sets things up in a such a way that makes it seem like he was not sure she was dead when he left. She implies she could have been saved but he left her to die. She asks him again if he killed her. He thinks for a long time, hanging his head and finally replies, “I don’t know.”

His lawyer cries and rests her case without further questions for the defendant.

John Stone tells her that when they started he thought they might have a ten percent shot. But now there is zero hope.  He tells her, “You just convicted him.”  He leaves.  The jury is dismissed for the weekend. In prison, Naz gets a neck tattoo of a crown.

John Stone takes the cat back to the kill shelter.

The cop continues to research the evidence. This time he goes through the phone records again. He finds a call from a Richard Halle. He seems to be trying to connect the case to a murder in a strip club. He watches another tape of the victim talking to a man outside a bar. He has gotten all the credit card transactions from that bar. He tracks down a guy that got shot in the crotch by a pimp in the strip club for beating up the strippers. The guy has a gambling problem and the cop accuses him of extorting money from her. He tells him that they found his semen on her bed. He rattled the guy and he left without his hat. Now he has a DNA sample.

The cop takes a ton of evidence on the guy to the prosecutor. She tells him, “We’ve got more on the kid.” He leaves with his evidence.

In jail, Naz has gone full on thug. But the dirty cop that watches over the jail shows one of the guys in his group some video. I’m guessing it might be the attorney passing him the coke. He gives the guy a CD of the video.

John Stone heads home to find an envelope on the floor outside his house. It’s the CD of the attorney kidding Naz. Stone goes to Naz and tells him that this is grounds for a mistrial.  Finally, I got something right.  Naz is worried about what will happen to her. The agrees to go forward with the CD. The judge refuses to grant a mistrial and instead insists that the amorous attorney take second chair and that John gives the closing argument. He freaks out because he was not expecting that. John threats to appeal his decision.

John tells the cop there is no mistrial. He is convinced that the cop dropped off the tape, but it really came from inside the jail. But the cop knows there is a better suspect.

The prosecutor is a horrible attorney. Her closing argument is pathetic. The cop sits in the gallery as she tells the jury that he was the only person in the house the night she was murdered. As she goes on saying that Naz was the only person in the house, the only one whose semen was in her bed, etc, etc, the cop dramatically walks out. The holds up the knife and says it is a knife to cut through meat. And that is what the defendant did with it, cutting through tendons, muscle, bone and the heart, twenty-two times. She stops talking. She seems to be thinking what I am thinking. If he was so drugged up, how did he manage such a laborious murder? She abruptly says, “thank you”and ends her closing.She tosses the knife back down on a table covered with bloody photos of the victim. I am distracted by the fact that the murder weapon is not in an evidence bag and that she is waving it around with no gloves on.

It’s John’s turn. He has the night to prepare. His psoriasis is flaring up. Not just on his feet this time, but everywhere. He has an asthma attack. He is a hot mess. He goes to the ER covered in welts and wheezing.  He shows up to court the next day with welts and psoriasis all over his face, neck and everywhere else the jury can see.

His closing is very good.

The cop waits alongside the prosecutor for the verdict. Both defense attorneys and the parents wait.  There was no verdict reached and deliberations will continue the next day.

John goes to the pharmacy for the latest psoriasis medicine. They have Viagra back in stock. John says he doesn’t give a fuck about Viagra anymore.

Back in the jail, Naz gets high with his thug mentor. The guy says that Naz smells like innocence.

The jury is back. The jury is hung. They say they are deadlocked and will not be able to reach a verdict. The foreman says the count is six to six and it is not going to change. They are done. The judge has to declare a mistrial.

The prosecutor declines to retire the case. Naz is free to go. His buddy avoids the goodbye. He manages to get his copy of The Call of The Wild to the releasing officer to give him.

The cop takes a job as a campus security officer. The prosecutor tells him she wants him to go get her the real killer.

Back at home, things are awkward with the family. Naz accuses his mother of thinking he was guilty. He goes out into the night.  He meets with John Stone. as they are talking, a guy comes in and they exchange a long look. At first I thought it was the new suspect, then I thought it was one of the kids he tutored, but I finally settled on it just being someone who recognized him from TV and assumed he was guilty. John Stone tells him that everyone has their cross to bear. To just get out there and live his life.

We see John Stone back in sandals scratching his feet with a stick people looking away in disgust.

Naz sits by the water smoking crack think about his time there with the dead girl.

John Stone is home watching a crime show. I am hoping it is the kid from the shelter telling him to come get the damn cat before he is killed but it’s a new client.

And then a commercial comes on about all the animals that die in shelters. John puts on his gloves and goes out the door to go to the jail to bail out his client. He closes the door.

And the cat walks across his apartment floor.

The End.

So will they make another series about the real killer? Or no? It was supposed to be a one time thing. But the series was very popular. I’d watch season two.


Filed under Entertainment News, HBO

33 responses to “The Night Of Finale: The Call of the Wild

  1. Barbara R

    Except for the cat, the ending was pretty depressing. Naz is out of jail but now he is a drug addict with prison tattoos. His family is screwed up. His dad is never getting his cab back because he sold his share of the medallion. His brother looks terrified of him and the family is losing their house. The neighborhood is not embracing him with open arms and that was his best friend in the restaurant who walked away. If he had gone to the damn party with him none of this would have happened. Thank god for the cat!

  2. Jackson

    The guy Naz locked eyes with while he was having coffeewith John Stone was the friend from school that was suppose to drive Naz to party “the night of” but cancelled at the last minute, causing Naz to steal his father’s cab setting off the chain of events that him meet Andre Cornish, who we found out from Dennis Box was being followed by her confidence artist and degenerate gambling financial advisor boyfriend and most likely stabbed her to death while Naz was asleep in her kitchen. The final scene when we found out Stone spared the cat’s life regardless of his own health was my favourite part.

    • Jackson

      Meant to write “Andrea Cornish”.

      • JKW

        The kid was also the one that testified against him for selling him adderall. The financial guy is also the one that gave John Stone the info on the stepfather. So he tried to implicate the step father. The reason the prosecutor stumbled around her final arguments is because Box ( the cop ) walked out. It seems she was also not certain that Naz killed Andrea.

  3. I watched the entire the season and what started as a crime drama turned into a prison drama then into a court drama. Mostly I think it the story was a commentary on how the prison system & surviving it turned an “innocent” guy into a thug.

  4. Robin

    This series is a stealthy, quiet masterpiece. Beautifully nuanced and developed portrayals. John Turturro’s courtoom closing scene should get every award out there. Turturro, Riz Ahmed, and Amara Kaman were a freakin’ trifecta of brilliance. Michael K. Williams has always knocked it out of the park as well, loved him in Boardwalk Empire. I find it much more appealing when actors play it subtly, and there wasn’t a frame of scene-chewing here. Understated perfection. Oy, let me stop gushing. So grateful I got to see this show and for the excellent writing, casting, direction, and performances in it. Poignant that this was James Gandolfini’s final labor of love, a project he was desperate to get made and seen. Every moment of it was a gift.

    And OMFG what a finale. I was initially suspicious of the shady stepdad, but it felt too easy somehow for him to be the killer, or the only killer. I had begun to suspect Ray the advisor simply because he kept appearing. He had to be more relevant than he seemed. I was still surprised by the big reveal and run down delivered to him by Detective Box. WOW. What a shit prosecutor for ignoring that evidence, but I get it and I know it happens IRL every day. In that moment I really hated her through and through. Glenne Headley’s bigtime lawyer was hateable too. Ugh, what a bitch. Was that final out-processing and walk to freedom not the longest, most suspenseful freakin’ few minutes or what? I was waiting for something terrible every second. I swear I didn’t breathe until he reached his father.

    I agree this was depressing. The depiction of the terrible ripple effect few seriously consider every time a criminal case is made, what it can mean to a family, a neighborhood, even touching strangers. All stemming from choices that seem stupid but not necessarily selfish or malicious in the moment. It’ll take me a day or two to recover from The Night Of. What a ride!

    • Sali

      @Robin – beautifully and eloquently put! I agree with every word. It was depressing but definitely something that happens in the criminal “justice” system more than we are aware of.

      One bad choice changed and ruined this young man’s life and that of his family and community. I also expected his final walk to freedom to have some gruesome turn of events. And even though he was free, he was still going to be perceived as guilty probably as long as he lived. His addiction to drugs was just another sad ramification of his one choice on the night of.

      I’m on the fence about a 2nd season. The acting was spectacular and I’d love to see what evolves as they go after the CPA, but I’d hate them risking ruining this masterpiece. One last thing, John Turturro is PHENOMENAL. I realize that James Gandolfini was to play the part and I would’ve loved to see what he would’ve done with the character, but the part seemed like it was made for Turturro. I love that he loved and saved the cat despite his severe allergies to it. This was a dark, haunting story told so tragically beautiful.

    • I was sure he was going to be shanked on the way out of the jail. I suspected that the guy in jail was setting Naz up for something the whole time.

    • CoBe

      Robin, perfectly stated!!!

      Nobody in the criminal justice system is spared. Not the attorneys, not the judge, and especially not the accused.

      The only way for any of them to survive is to turn off their feelings and do the job they are supposed to do.

      I could have done without the entire Chandra kissing storyline, but Turturro’s incredibly moving closing argument was everything. I wanted to take Naz home, bake him cookies, and hide him away forever in my spare room.

      I really hope for a season 2. I don’t care how they do it or what they do with it, but this group of people has to continue to make this type of good TV. It is truly rare to find good drama anymore, so when it happens, it is like finding a unicorn (to use an analogy from the show).

      The good guys are not so good and the bad guys (which is something Naz will be branded for the rest of his life) are, or WERE, innocent.

      Now I want to find out what happens with Freddy. Maybe that could be our Season 2? And will Naz help him out?

      This may have been the best drama I’ve ever seen. I don’t like cop/lawyer/trial shows (too trite), so why I began watching this one I’ll never know. I only know that I’m glad I did.

      • Jackson

        The Chandra kissing storyline was a plot device to get John Stone promoted to “first chair” after his mistrial plan failed. That way Turturro could give his soon to be Emmy award winning performance in front of the jury during closing arguments.

  5. pollypocketrocket4

    We saw the (now presumed) killer in the first episode– Ray was standing next to an officer at Andrea’s brownstone right as Detective Box walked onto the scene. I posted an image here:

    I think that as we assume Ray is the real killer, we are supposed to learn not to go down that rabbit hole just yet as law enforcement did with Naz (why did I catch myself from writing “Adnan?”).

    So many lessons in this great limited series.

    I’d love it if they surprised us with a special episode that did explain what happened the night of, and an update on the characters now.

    I feel numb inside after the finale, just as we should in real life. There really is no closure for anyone involved, I guess.

    I will be haunted by the image of Nasir smoking H on the bluff, dreaming of images of Andrea.

    Thank goodness for the cat!

  6. Dee

    Tamara, really good recap!! Your writing is so good, I can “see” the story in your words, thank you!

  7. Barbara

    This was an acting master class. I hope it takes all the awards. Grim. Such a powerful statement about the Justice system. For many, it is just The Job. Finally understood the excema was an analogy to the horror of being trapped inside the system. It makes life intolerable, it never goes away, yet one can survive and wait for the moments when it has temporarily abated.

  8. Shae

    I was very happy with the finale, I really thought nas was going to get screwed, despite Det. Box’s newly uncovered information. It was pretty disgusting though, that the prosecutor had enough doubt in her mind about Nas being guilty to decline to re-try him after the hung jury. 5 minutes prior to that she was prepared to allow this kid to go to jail for his entire life, jury comes back deadlocked, and “oh, nevermind, we’ll go after the other guy”. That is terrifying.

    Disturbing how quickly Chandra threw her life/career away. She got so arrogant and stupid, dismissing John and putting Nas on the stand. He was 100% right- no good was going to come of it. And kissing Nas? Jesus.

    This does go to show you, doesn’t matter if you’re innocent, you get accused, thrown into jail, and your whole life and your families lives, will either end or be forever changed regardless of outcome. Without Freddy, Nas would’ve been dead in Rikers. Now he’s out, but his brother was thrown out of his school, his family’s house is being lost, the medallion is lost, and the neighborhood thinks he’s a killer still. Very sad.

  9. Would You Like Some Tea??

    This finale was extremely emotionally taxing, to say the least. Wow! Not sure if I can handle a second season.

    Nas has absolutely no future, his family is ruined and his young defense attorney ruined her career at a great law firm. Everyone is f****d!

  10. quincygirl

    This was a phenomenal series. I was hooked. I actually thought something was going to happen to Box because of him checking the “Ordinary death” box on his payout on his retirement papers. I had down to the guy Trevor was with Duane Reade or the financial advisor, Ray. The others were too obvious. Naz is now in prison hell.. just out in the real world. John Torturro was Excellent! I was wondering if they were trying to say that Chandra was Naz’s first girlfriend at first. But that didn’t come up. I need another “The night of” series, just a different story. This one is gonna be hard to finish. When Box left during the closing statements.. he let the attorney know they had the wrong guy without saying a word. I think it’s why she stopped abruptly during her closing statements. The feet… ugh the feet. Lol it would have been a 4 show series without the feet involved. But it showed how eccentric he was. The poor mother never believed her own son, and she still doesnt. The closing statements by Stone was RIGHT ON and he almost put tears in my eyes by listing their crimes that night. But, he nailed it. I need more of this show. It took away from RHONJ. Lol

  11. G.

    I really loved the series. One of the many things I appreciated was the issue of being held and having to survive Rikers, innocent or not. Folks not in NYC may not know that there have been a number of high profile scandals, including the suicide of Kalief Browder who should have been in an adolescent facility, that the writers were drawing on here — including the length of time people are held there which is evident in Naz’s transformation. I wish they would have talked about that as a legal issue briefly beyond what we say in the discussions about bail. Some reforms are currently being implemented but they’re insufficient.

    Michael K. Williams performance as Freddy seems central to the show’s credibility; a lesser actor who could have overplayed those scenes and made this much less successful. Let’s all have a bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios to toast Williams.

    The cat w/ the soundtrack and the commercial: such an excellent counter-balance to showing the grim reality of what Naz would face after prison.

    • Sosueme

      Fantastic series. Raising a bowl of Cheerios to Michael K Williams and cast. As another commenter remarked, “no scenery chewing,” an ensemble of measured nuanced performances.

      • Shae

        Michael K. Williams is sublime in every role he’s in, I can’t say enough about him. Also, the transformation of Nas from start to finish, physically and in the role, is amazing. The acting was just top notch- to see Nas enter the jail he looked nerdish, frail, terrified…by the time he’s leaving he’s a swaggering, tatted thug of some heft. He pulled it off, well.

        Excellent acting all around on this show.

  12. Rose

    I didn’t like the finale. How was it so easy for Box to all of a sudden so quickly and easily find the new evidence? Weiss ignoring Box’set new evidence pissed me off but I’m sure it happens in real life all the time. Chandra getting drugs and being a drug mule for Naz was unnecessary. However, as much as I hated Chandra putting Naz on the stand because it was so risky I do think it helped return the 6/6 verdict. I couldn’t breathe during the jail out processing…that whole scene gripped me. Sadly I did want one final scene with Freddy and Naz before he processed out but their last scene together when Freddy told him he smelled of innocence was very satisfying. When Naz left his parents home after dinner to meet with Stone I was terrified he would be killed after leaving the restaurant since his whole community hates him. The guy who came in the restaurant and walked out was his friend who was supposed to take Naz to the party and bailed and also the guy who testified he bought Adderall from Naz. I did want it to end with Ray being arrested and charged with the murder so at least Naz would be freed from his own personal doubt. The series was excellent and I still say reminds me of American Crime where you see the ripple effects of the impact on multiple lives from one wrong decision. Like life, the finale for these types of shows isn’t always satisfying. I’m sad Stones health deteriorated and suspected he got the cat back when he broke out in hives and had his ER visit but then thought not when the commercial came on. So then I was happy to see he already had the cat. The series is a one and done just like Gracepoint was a one and done of the British series Broadchurch. I would love to see a John Stone spin off including Chandra redeeming herself and partnering as a lawyer with Stone.

  13. tamaratattles

    I can not express the (mostly) fantastic comments and reviews I am reading here today. I’d really like it if we could have more dramatic shows discussed here. Thanks to everyone for participating in this.

    • Rose

      Thank you TT for giving us a forum to discuss dramatic shows and not just the Bravo shows. I didn’t think you would be recapping this show and was so glad to see you do so!

    • Shae

      I would like that too! I love being able to talk about more shows than just the basic reality tv on here. Your Walking Dead blog was great, as is this one :)

  14. Amy V

    Yesterday I binge watch The Night Of but this wasn’t my intention. Just wanted to see what all the buzz was about. Like Naz doing crack I couldn’t stop watching. Wow!!!

  15. lala rochelle

    I binged watch all last week and then watched the Finale. I think the show would best be like “American Crime” where each season is a different case. I would like to see Stone and Box return though. I think they wrapped the show nicely and no need to have a season 2 about Naz

  16. Wando Girl

    I think Stone got the cat back prior to his hospital visit. When I saw the cat walking freely through the apartment, I realized his flare up was from sleeping with the cat. That also explained his response to to the pharmacist regarding the Viagra availability.

  17. 2Cents

    I liked the show but didn’t love it. The writing was mediocre. Acting…Superb.

    1. When Naz was first arrested he had no blood on his body or clothes. After stabbing someone 22 times, he would be covered in blood. How could the writers miss this? Such a huge oversight. I kept waiting for the cops/Detective or lawyers to bring it up. Never happened. This means the writers didn’t catch it either.

    2. The Chandra / Naz kiss completely jumped the shark and the vaginal drug smuggling killed the shark. Completely, unbelievable and absurd. Too bad.

    Best crime show I’ve seen is THE FALL on Netflix. It stars Gillian Anderson and Jamie Dornan. Really great.

  18. Blooshter

    I have just rewatched the original British version and it is good but this was miles better, endings are quite different.

    There was a season 2 of the U.K. version but it was completely different characters – if I recall correctly The plot was a victim of domestic violence who murders her husband, who happens to be a top barrister…

    the FALL is brilliant and season 3 is imminent here in the UK and I can’t wait

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