Adapted from Tony Hillerman’s Leaphorn & Chee book series, AMC+ has introduced one of the most gripping American thrillers in recent years, Dark Winds. Its first season aired in 2022, taking us into the world of Navajo tribal people and their encounters with death and crime. However, in season 2 of Dark Winds, the mystery surrounding this Navajo reservation deepened as dead bodies started mounting up. Amidst the crimes, the honest and most hard-working Lieutenant, Joe Leaphorn, is determined to delve into the murder mysteries to find the perpetrator and discover his motive behind the killings.
What Happened In Season 2?
Set in the 1970s, the first season of Dark Winds unfolded within a Navajo tribal community, where two mysterious murders took place. Lieutenant Joe, accompanied by new deputy Jim Chee and courageous local sergeant Bernadette, teamed up to crack these perplexing murder cases. The first season explored the mythical underpinnings of Navajo culture while also focusing on investigating puzzling murder cases.
Continuing in the same vein, Season 2 drew inspiration from Hillerman’s novel People of Darkness and kept its spotlight steady on the bone-chilling murders committed by a psychotic killer. The second season began with the mysterious death of a local Navajo man, Emerson Charley, who was already suffering from terminal cancer. His vehicle was set on fire, resulting in his unbelievably excruciating death. The killer, Colton Wolf, was introduced from the outset of the season, but Leaphorn and Chee learned about him only after surviving a direct assault orchestrated by Colton.
As Leaphorn delved deeper into Emerson’s murder, it was revealed that the Charley family had connections with the Vines, who currently owned the Drumco Oils drilling site. Years prior, a massive explosion at this very site claimed numerous lives, including that of Leaphorn’s son, Joe Jr. Consequently, the murder investigation took on a profoundly personal dimension for Leaphorn. Simultaneously, following Emerson’s death, his son Tomas fell victim to Colton’s hands. While safeguarding Tomas’ young child, Leaphorn learned from the child that his grandfather, Dilon Charley, a former employee of the Vines, had informed him about a blond-haired man (referring to Colton) responsible for the Drumco Oil factory explosion.
Leaphorn became determined to find Colton and bring him to justice. However, as a lawful investigator, Leaphorn wasn’t driven solely by revenge; he wanted to understand what compelled Colton to commit such a heinous act. He was determined to uncover the puppeteer pulling the strings behind the scenes. But the journey to uncover the truth was far from easy. As the second season of Dark Winds neared its conclusion, Leaphorn managed to apprehend Colton, only for the cunning criminal to elude his grasp once again. Meanwhile, the young investigator Jim Chee, who had resigned as deputy in season 1, became a private detective. He was about to uncover the mysteries surrounding the cult People of Darkness, led by B.J. Vines. In the season finale of Dark Winds, it is anticipated that Chee will uncover the secrets tied to B.J. Vines’ involvement with the cult, while Leaphorn will succeed in bringing Colton to justice and forcing him to reveal the truth. Let’s discuss what we might expect from this season’s finale.
Will Joe Be Able To Take Revenge?
Joe Leaphorn’s son became the victim of a tragic situation. He wasn’t the intended target of the attack, yet Leaphorn and his wife had suffered an irreparable loss. So, when Colton was apprehended, instead of handing him over to the Feds immediately, Leaphorn intended to uncover what drove Colton to commit the murders of six men, including his son’s. Colton’s statement about hating “Indians” piqued curiosity about whether he had experienced past traumas involving Native Americans.
In episode 5, we learn that Colton lost his family after his mother shot her husband and daughter to death. The sound of a gunshot suggested that Colton killed his mother, yet the show left many details unclear. The reasons behind Colton’s mother’s actions and Colton’s specific hatred toward indigenous people remained unknown. It’s possible that this hatred stemmed from the long-standing conflict between the European settlers and the Native American people. Since the colonial era, the Native American people have endured a long history of exploitation and assaults by European settlers. The story is set in the 1970s, a challenging period when social acceptance wasn’t universal, as seen through the experiences of individuals like Colton and B.J. Vines.
However, Leaphorn’s pursuit of justice took an unexpected turn when, even after apprehending Colton, he managed to slip away during his transfer to the Feds. In the upcoming episode, we’ll see Joe resetting his quest to bring Colton into custody. But this time, instead of relying on white justice, he’ll struggle to administer Indian justice to the murderer, as advised by Joe’s father, Henry Leaphorn.
What Was B.J. Vines’ Role In The Murders Taking Place In The Rez?
We still don’t know the exact role B.J. Vines played in the murders of the Charleys. Speculation suggests that B.J. Vines might have recruited Colton to orchestrate the explosion at the drill site, aiming to buy the land at a lower cost. However, neither Leaphorn nor Chee have found strong evidence to support this theory. Meanwhile, in episode 5, it’s perplexing to see white individuals dressed in indigenous costumes attending the cult, People of Darkness, led by Mr. Vines. Rosemary might emerge as a rebel, standing against the potential criminal activities linked to Vines. Her actions could assist Chee in uncovering B.J.’s true involvement in the crimes on the reservation. In the upcoming episode, we can anticipate the storyline taking a darker turn as it explores the heinous deeds committed by B.J. Vines and Leaphorn’s pursuit to put him behind bars.
Will Gordo Sena Survive? Where Is Linda Madox?
Considering the severe injuries endured by Gordo Sena after Leaphorn found him in the desert, it’s reasonable to expect that in the upcoming episode, Gordo might end up in the hospital. This experience could lead him to finally realize how dangerous Colton truly is and the lengths to which he would go to protect himself and his employer.
As for Colton Wolf’s mother, Linda, it’s highly likely that she is deceased. However, the reasons behind Colton’s determination to find her once again, going so far as to hire private detectives for the task, remain unclear. Is there a connection between Linda’s death and the Indian people, or was it all part of a manipulative scheme planned by Colton? This is a question to which we will undoubtedly seek answers in the upcoming episode.
What Will Be The Fate Of Bernadette? Will Mary Landon Publish Her Story?
Bern was still torn between the decision to stay on the reservation and accepting a new position in the Border Patrol. Similar to how Chee had moved on from the local P.D. to embrace his newfound identity as a private investigator, Bern might choose a similar path. However, this decision might not sit well with Leaphorn, who wishes to have his skilled investigative partner stay on the reservation and continue their work. Nevertheless, in the interest of Bern’s happiness and aspirations, Leaphorn, acting as a father figure to her, would support whatever opportunity she pursues.
One of the most concerning aspects raised in Dark Winds season 2 was the inappropriate sterilization practices imposed upon Native American women, who were afraid to raise their voices against the perpetrators. American journalist Mary Landon decided to expose the truth and bring this issue to light before the U.S. government, hoping that necessary steps would be taken to prevent such incidents. However, Emma Leaphorn feared that this issue might become another scandal surrounding their community with limited government intervention. Yet, since we saw her welcoming Mary into her group discussion in episode 5, we could anticipate that she would grant Mary permission to publish her story on this sensitive matter to raise awareness about it. To make this happen, Emma and Mary would need to build a bond of trust so that Emma realizes that Mary is not going to exploit this matter and will actively seek a resolution.
Will There Be A Third Season?
It’s possible that Dark Winds might return for another season following the ending of Season 2. This time, the series could either continue with the same storyline or introduce a different mystery, drawing inspiration from other books in the Leaphorn and Chee series by Tony Hillerman. As of now, Season 3 remains a distant subject, with fans eagerly awaiting a gripping finale for Dark Winds.