The eighth episode of Lawmen: Bass Reeves showed us the final confrontation between Esau Pierce and Bass Reeves, and I will add that it was a hell of a showdown. The series tried to capture what Bass had gone through over the years and how he had been impacted by his circumstances, which changed him drastically. Jennie could no longer recognize what Bass had become, and Bass needed to deal with Esau to be able to understand that himself. Before Bass had become a Deputy U.S. Marshall or a free man for that matter, he was a slave, but destiny had something else planned for him. He went through some harrowing situations but ultimately became a free man and started his family. Now that the miniseries has come to an end, it’s clear that dealing with Esau Pierce was the most challenging task of Bass’ life, which is why this chapter of his life was left for us to witness in the final episode of Lawmen: Bass Reeves.
How Did Bass Find Out Where Esau Lived?
Esau was nowhere to be found, and he was a man who jealously guarded his privacy. There must have been attempts made discreetly to find where he lived, but Bass knew that giving the authorities any hints about his mission would spoil it all. So, Bass had to be a lawless citizen for the time being. Deputy Lynn didn’t have any qualms about the criminal nature of the mission. He was on board with the idea that they might have to hurt some men to get to Esau. Such a man was found in Checotah, who was seen by Bass the day Esau had taken Jackson Cole (the prisoner) away. Esau had killed Jackson, as far as Bass was concerned. Bass had received fifty dollars less than if Jackson had been delivered alive. So there was that ‘debt’ that Bass had to settle with Esau. But that was just a pretext for Bass to engage Esau in a conversation.
The man Lynn, Bass, and Bill Crow kidnapped was unwilling to tell them about Esau’s whereabouts. He ratted him out only when Bass put a gun to his privates. Now that Bass had got what he wanted out of him, he was willing to let the man go. He suggested that Lynn take away his boots, though, so he wouldn’t be able to make it to the authorities in the harsh terrain. Lynn was of the opinion that Bass was ‘going soft’ and hence proceeded to shoot the man. This did not sit well with Bass, and he warned him that if he were ever to do such a thing again without his permission, he would arrest him and send him to Judge Parker. Lynn had to laugh at such resolve, as the whole mission was unlawful.
Why Did Rachel Come To See Jennie?
The political climate in the country was changing for the worse. After the Civil War, it was assumed that slavery would never return, as it was unthinkable, but it was coming back in rather nasty, more sympathetic forms. George Reeves, the slave owner Bass was under several years ago, had a wife named Rachel, who had once helped Bass find Jennie. She wasn’t a cruel woman or didn’t seem like one, but when she came to see Jennie, it was clear that she was an enemy after all. She hadn’t shed the sense of being a slave owner and was not willing to do so, even now. Rachel told Jennie that George, who had become a politician, was fighting to bring back slavery and that she, being a caring woman, didn’t want Jennie or Sally to work on the farms. That is why she wanted to offer her a job at George’s house; otherwise, there was a chance that they might end up on another man’s plantation, toiling to death. For such ‘kindness,’ only a slap was warranted, and Jennie didn’t miss out on the opportunity. Jennie met Esme after this episode with Rachel and understood that what she was saying about solidarity among black folk was the need of the hour.
Why Did Bass Go Alone?
The trio of Bass, Lynn, and Crow had come close to finding Esau’s place. But Bass knew that if they all showed up at once, there would be trouble right at the gates, and he wouldn’t get a chance to settle things with Esau. So he ventured forth alone, but he wasn’t truly. Lynn and Crow were hiding nearby. He used the pretext of getting his fifty dollars back to make it appear that he had come with no intention to harm Esau. Esau was ready for Bass, and he wasn’t enough of a fool to not understand his true plan. He knew that Bass was not there to just collect the money but to figure out if he truly was Mr. Sundown. When that conversation began, Esau behaved in a nonchalant manner, telling him what the myth of Mr. Sundown was all about.
Why Did Deputy Lynn Commit Suicide?
All the black folks who were said to have disappeared were working in Esau’s backyard, toiling themselves to death. He saw them as thieves and criminals who were fit to be his slaves, and that was their destiny. Mr. Sundown was just a figure he had created that got blown a little out of proportion, in his opinion. Bass saw Jackson Cole held as a prisoner, and he figured Esau had turned in his boots to make it look like he had been killed. But he was being tortured, and Esau, seeing Bass’ growing discomfort, asked him to unshackle him. Esau had not magically had a change of heart, but he wanted Bass to stand where Jackson stood. If it wasn’t for Lynn and Crow, Bass would be done for. Lynn and Crow arrived just in the nick of time, and a chase began. Esau’s men perished, and Bass killed Esau in the chase.
There were a lot of traps near Esau’s place, and Lynn put his foot in one of the leg-hold traps. Crow tried to rescue him, but the old man knew he wouldn’t survive after the blood loss. Lynn knew that he had fulfilled his purpose; he used his own gun to commit suicide. The people kept prisoner by Esau were freed, and Bass relieved Crow of his duties, giving him a diamond he had found in Esau’s estate. Bass wanted Crow to settle in Checotah and marry the girl he liked there. He had done his duties and dealt with Esau the only way he could. Esau represented the intellectual monsters who would justify their cruelty using the twisted logic of destiny and freedom. Bass was closer to God now, and he seemed at peace when he returned to Jennie. Their next fight, rather political in nature, was going to start soon, and Bass seemed ready for the next chapter of his life.