SPOILER ALERT: This article contains details about the season 3 finale of Lethal Weapon.
Earlier this month at TCA, Lethal Weapon creator/executive producer Matt Miller said that the season 3 finale ends with “a little bit of a cliffhanger”. He wasn’t kidding. In fact, it was more of a huge cliffhanger that informs what could happen in season 4.
It has been a rough journey for Fox’s action drama. With a very problematic exit of Clayne Crawford and Damon Wayans’s announcement that he was going to leave after the third season, there has been a dark cloud of uncertainty hovering over the show. Even so, Miller and the Lethal Weapon crew managed to persevere and deliver an action-packed third season with a new co-lead in Seann William Scott and the assurance that Wayans was not going to leave (for now). That said, the finale ended with a bang and left the door open for the possibility of a game-changing season 4. Whether or not Wayans would stay put is another question, but based on the episode, it would be nice to see him if the show is renewed — and Miller agrees.
Fox Entertainment chairman Charlie Collier didn’t discuss any renewals at TCA, but he indicated indirectly that the reboot still has some life in it. He was complimentary of Lethal Weapon‘s performance and hinted that any production issues with Wayans may have been resolved, stating repeatedly that everyone is “working in lockstep.” After this episode, he may want to consider another helping of Murtaugh and Cole.
The episode begins with Andrew and Natalie’s wedding. The problem is, Natalie is nowhere to be seen. Cut to Murtaugh being wheeled out of a high-rise on a stretcher and Natalie looking gorgeous in her wedding gown — and its accessorized with a bomb. Cole is there with her and as the bomb counts down they join hands and jump out the window. This is the moment where there would be a record scratch and a voiceover of Cole saying “You’re probably wondering how I got into this predicament.” From there, we recount the days leading up to this exact moment.
After Cole finds out that Natalie, Maya and Andrew are leaving to go on a Doctors Without Borders mission, he is bummed. So bummed that he reconnects with his old CIA buddy Barnes to partake in some questionable work — and what a coincidence! Murtaugh is approached by the FBI to wear a wire and spy on Cole to see if he is still working for Barnes. He agrees. After a fight at Andrew’s bachelor party, Cole realizes that Murtaugh followed him there and is willing to snitch on him. Things aren’t looking good for Cole at this point….or for Murtaugh for that matter.
Cole goes on a mission for Barnes and learns that a South American assassin is after Andrew — days before their wedding. Cole kills the assassin but Barnes is not happy. He wanted him alive so he could have a huge payout. The money ends up at the LAPD and Barnes kidnaps Natalie on her wedding day and demands $10 million.
Cole and Murtaugh make nice with each other (as much as they could) and go to exchange the money for Natalie. Things seem OK but as soon as they turnaround, Barnes, being the punk that he is, shoots Murtaugh to ensure that no one will chase him. As a doctor, Natalie could help him, but she can’t move or else the bomb will detonate. Plus, a wedding dress isn’t exactly the kind of outfit you want to get blood on. Nonetheless, she and Cole cauterize Murtaugh’s wound (ouch!) as a temporary fix until the EMTs come. This brings us to the scene at the beginning of the episode.
Because Natalie moved, the bomb counts down and she and Cole leap out of the window as it explodes — and with one of the most bonkers action stunts, they survive! They hang off a rope and miraculously survive because, you know, it’s TV magic.
After the dust settles, two weeks have passed. Natalie has decided against marrying Andrew and she and Maya are back with Cole. Murtaugh has recovered and is having a barbecue at his house. It turns out that Barnes has fled to Ecuador. Cole and Murtaugh think they don’t need to chase him and they just want to live their best lives. All is well and it’s a very happily-ever-after ending…or is it?
In what could be considered the coda of the season finale, we see Trish and Murtaugh board a plane to Ecuador for a “romantic getaway”. As soon as they step on the plane, they see Cole and Natalie who are also on a “romantic getaway”. The women figure out that this is not about a vacation but about tracking down Barnes — but Murtaugh did not know Cole’s plans and vice versa. If season 4 does happen, it looks like the gang will be headed to South America.
During TCA Miller said: “Something gets resolved with a bit of a propellant element. He added, “I will tell you that the finale is hands-down the biggest episode of this show we have ever done, including the pilot. It’s the biggest episode of television I’ve ever been a part of.” After watching the finale, all are facts.