In the third season finale, Bob Lee Swagger (Ryan Phillippe) thinks multiple times that he is done with Atlas, only to find that Atlas and its former members aren’t quite done with him, with heartbreaking consequences. With Nadine Memphis (Cynthia Addai-Robinson) injured and Isaac Johnson (Omar Epps) planning his next move, Swagger finds that just because they cut the head off the snake doesn’t mean he’s safe from the venom.
Jack Long sticks to his mission, even without an Atlas
After the explosion at the Supreme Court, Johnson goes to the hospital with Memphis. Harris Downey (Jesse Bradford) helps Swagger get access to the court building, where they find Justice Gibson’s driver, bound and gagged in the bathroom. Gibson (Rhea Pearlman) is evacuated to Arlington by Jack Long with a gaggle of other dignitaries. Swagger steals a cop car and hightails it to Arlington. When he arrives, he fights his way into the house, where Gibson is ushered down to a locked bunker in the basement. Long retrieves an explosive belt from his car. He attacks a security guard inside, then fires on Swagger, but misses as he advances. Long creeps down to the basement and hacks into the bunker door control, but one dignitary whacks him with a fire extinguisher, giving Swagger enough time to close the ground to Long. Gibson and the dignitaries run upstairs as Swagger and Long grapple at the bunker entrance, with Swagger getting a piece of his ear. With Long off balance, Swagger gives him a final shove into the now-empty bunker and slams the door shut just in time for Long’s explosives, and Long, to detonate safely behind the blast doors.
With Atlas’ final mission over, Team Swagger moves on
At the hospital Memphis is stable and lucky; the bullet grazed her carotid artery. Johnson waits at her bedside for her to wake up, then tells her he wants to help shape things by taking over Atlas, good guy-style. The last time Memphis and Johnson saw eye to eye on methods was when they conspired to kill Atlas figurehead Sen. Addison Hayes, but they again find common ground for the greater good. Swagger drops by the hospital and declines their job offer, saying he’s going to focus on saving his marriage instead of saving the world. Meanwhile, Harris Downey has started a new job as the president’s deputy chief of staff. One of his first acts is to hand Red Bama Sr. (Gerald McRaney) resignation papers. Bama blusters and threatens, but Downey points out Bama’s fresh out of Atlas allies.
Back in Texas, Swagger tries to pick up the pieces
Bob Lee comes home to find Julie (Shantel VanSanten) in the middle of moving out. He assures her it’s all over, but she’s not sure how to trust him. Still, Julie and Mary accompany Bob Lee as he says a graveside good-bye to both his father and Sam Vincent, the two men who raised him. The Swaggers are heading to their car with Sheriff Brown when Red Bama Sr. pulls up. He tells Swagger he’s selling the cattle company and leaving, but he wants to make sure he won’t have to spend his life waiting for one of Bob Lee’s bullets. Swagger tells him to leave Texas, then turns to rejoin his family but finds they’ve left without him. Back at the house, Julie is halfway out the door. Bob Lee tries to talk to her. He swears he’s done, but she thinks he’s itching to go after Bama. She wants a break, but not necessarily a divorce. He suggests he’ll leave so she and Mary can stay in the house. He insists he be the one to talk to Mary, so she doesn’t think anything is her mom’s fault.
Rising from the Atlas ashes
In D.C., Johnson and Memphis set up the new incarnation of Atlas, which they’re calling Prometheus. She’ll handle politics; he’ll handle the missions. They’re surprised to find a gift box waiting for them containing the hard drive from the Atlas campus. It looks like Carlita Cruise made it out alive.
Bama Sr. closes up the cattle shop, prepares to settle his final beef
At Bama Cattle, Red finishes signing the paperwork to sell his company then transitions seamlessly to talking to an assassin about a contract on Swagger. Bama insists on no witnesses. Swagger is getting ice cream with Mary and trying to explain the separation when Sheriff Brown calls to warn him a helicopter just landed near his house, where Julie is. Swagger leaves Mary with her aunt, then grabs a rifle from a parked car, leaving cash, and races home as a team of six assassins closes in on his house.
Julie Swagger stands her ground
Inside the house, Julie sees a laser light on her chest and drops just before the windows and walls explode in a hail of gunfire. She crawls to the gun safe and gets her weapons as Bob Lee pulls up down the road and the assassins approach. He gets in position and takes out one from distance, closing in. Julie hits one from inside as he passes by the window and Bob Lee gets another as he reaches his house perimeter. Julie hits another as he enters the front door, but she takes a bullet in the shoulder. The man she hit at the door has a bulletproof vest on and stands up and looms over her. He is reaching for his gun when Julie pulls out a handgun and shoots him in a private part not covered by the vest. Bob Lee races across his front yard to his house as a series of explosions detonate inside, chasing Julie down the hallway until she safely dives into the tub. Bob Lee finds her there, rattled, but alive. They’re both full of apologies and tears, grateful to be safe and together. They’re making their way toward the door when we see Red Bama, set up on a hillside looking through the lens of a long gun. He’s targeting Bob Lee, but when Bob Lee turns to grab his father’s gun in the rubble, Julie is left standing in the crosshairs. Bama’s bullet cuts her down instantly and Bob Lee’s world comes crashing down around him as he screams and cradles his wife’s body.
Three months later
After Julie’s funeral, Mary is still staying with her aunt and no one has seen Bob Lee. Harris pays Memphis a visit at Prometheus headquarters with a new haircut and a top-secret file on a Nazi who’s helping ISIS. The President wants Prometheus to deal with him so it won’t have U.S. fingerprints on it. Memphis keeps it to herself.
Swagger keeps his word
Out in the snowy wilds of Savage Lake, Canada, Bama is in hiding at a remote cabin when he gets a call from Swagger, ready to make good on his promise. Swagger reminds Bama that he warned him he’d come if anything happened to his family. The time has come. Swagger lines up on the Black King and takes his shot, ending things with Bama, once and for all. He walks away from the snowy hilltop, about as isolated, but free, as a man can be.