Since its premiere in 2016, Animal Kingdom has consistently told the intricate and exciting story of the inner life of the Cody family. At the helm of the family is Janine “Smurf” Cody, who leads her children, Andrew “Daddy” (Sean Hatosy), Deran (Jake Weary), Craig (Ben Robson) and Barry “Buzz” Blackwell (Scott Speedman) into a criminal gang in Oceanside, California. Her connections in the area allow the boys to commit high-level crimes, giving them the opportunity to live their exciting lives. The family grew up with the appearance of Jay (Finn Cole), who quickly got used to his strange normality.
During the six years of the existence of the Animal Kingdom, the crime thriller has undergone many twists and disastrous consequences. These changes allowed each character to embark on their own journey, which often took place at the expense of others. Some of the Codis have remained at the same level, while others have become much better versions of themselves. For such a series as “Animal Kingdom”, such a development of events can become a tactic that allows you to bring the series to a heartbreaking finale. Of all the characters, Deran and Pope had the best development of the Cody clan, which can leave a bitter taste in the mouth of Animal Kingdom viewers by the end of the last season.
When Animal Kingdom began, Deran and Pope were the two cutest characters in the series. Upon returning from prison, Pope did not receive the warmest welcome from his family. They walk around him on tiptoe, afraid that the wrong word or action will irritate him. They are trying to plan their next robbery behind his back, which is why everyone is worried about Pope’s tendency to stay in the shadows. Smurf tries to keep him in line by crushing drugs and putting them in food, while Baz tries to distract Pope from his own moral misdeeds. Despite the fact that he had a child with Catherine, the former lover of the Pope, he also has a relationship with another woman in Mexico. Baz has almost no regrets about his relationship with Catherine, although he and Pope have never talked about it openly.
Season 4 gave some insight into Pope’s childhood and the factors that led him to develop some habits that many called strange. Smurf met Colin, Pope and Julia’s father, after she got into the underworld. Colin was the head of a successful criminal gang, but he was very similar in character to Pope. Colin is killed in a shootout with the police before Smurf gives birth, but she raises her children in the same criminal ways. As children, Julia and Pope are pickpockets, and Pope’s unpleasant behavior is already becoming obvious. The sixth season of Animal Kingdom showed how far Smurf was willing to go to save her family. She lies to Julia about the exclusion and discredits their interests outside of their sphere of activity. Every time Pope mentions that he needs help with his behavior, Smurf is quick to say that the only people who can help him are his family.
Like Pope, Deran experiences stress when the Animal Kingdom begins. His close relationship with Craig often makes most of their family look at them with disbelief. Craig’s heavy partying doesn’t make him the most reliable, and by association Deran is considered just as unreliable. Smurf or Baz rarely give him any important task, which upsets him. Also at the beginning of the series, it turns out that Deran did not tell anyone from his family that he was attracted to men. Jay finds out about this by accidentally visiting Deran, which creates a strange break in their promising relationship.
However, from the very beginning of the show, both Deran and Pope became leaders in the Cody family. Despite the fact that most of his family still considers him strange, Pope has grown significantly in how he takes care of himself and others. Even as a child, Pope tried to take care of his sister and protect her from evil within his family. He now cares for his brothers and nephew with much more compassion than he once did, and has become an active participant in the family’s criminal operations. He took care of his niece after the death of her parents, put aside his own wishes for her well-being and placed her in foster care. Pope took care of Angela, Julia’s friend, who becomes a hurricane of trouble, and was the only person to whom Smurf told about her cancer diagnosis. While he may not be as reckless as he once was, Pope struggles to control his violent outbursts from time to time. Nevertheless, Pope has become an indispensable part of the Cody family.
Between himself, Deran, Craig and Jay Pope, he is capable of the most compassion, even if he has a strange way of showing it. The only other Cody who showed empathy was Deran. Since the appearance of the “Animal Kingdom” Deran has completely changed.