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So What Does the Ending of ‘John Wick 4’ Mean for John Wick?

Keanu Reeves walking in a church in John Wick 4

John Wick: Chapter 4 has finally hit theaters and that means fans are seeing how good the fourth installment in the franchise is. Keanu Reeves stars as John Wick, an assassin who, briefly, thought he had escaped this life when he found love. That is, until his wife died and then some Russians killed his beagle, Daisy. Since then, we’ve gotten a new dog (Bubba the pitbull) and we’ve seen John facing off against more foes in the world of the assassins.

Spoilers ahead for John Wick: Chapter 4.

At the end of John Wick: Chapter 3, though, John became excommunicado and Winston (Ian McShane) had to (non-lethally) shoot his friend. In the fourth movie, John is calling on those he trusts (which does include Winston) to help him fight the Marquis De Gramont (Bill Skarsgård), who has taken control of the High Table—the council of 12 crime bosses who control all of the assassins. And it is a bloody battle to try and get John his freedom from the Table.

Which brings us to the end of the movie: John realizes that the only way the Marquis will stop (and the only way he can gain his freedom) is through a duel. During the duel, Marquis chooses John’s friend and fellow assassin Caine (Donnie Yen) as his proxy, forcing John to shoot his friend. At the end of the duel, Marquis moves in to take the kill shot. What he does not realize is that John chose to not shoot his gun in the final round, leaving a bullet for John to use against the Marquis, killing him and winning his freedom.

But John did take some hits in the process, so he’s bleeding and in pain, and asks Winston (who was his second in the duel) to take him home. John asks Winston to take him home, we’re left to presume that he died in Paris after the duel. Or so we think

Bubba knows something

So what we saw at the end of the movie gave everyone pause, right?

If there’s anything I can take away from Winston saying goodbye to John, it’s that moment with Bubba the pitbull. When the Bowery King (Laurence Fishburne) is standing at John’s grave with Bubba and Winston, the moment is a somber one. That is, until Bubba looks off into the distance in the midst of them talking about John.

To me, that’s a clear indication that the idea of John Wick is dead. This assassin who is constantly on the run from those in power has finished his duty and he’s been laid to rest. But the actual man—the living and breathing John Wick—is still around. At least, that’s how I am reading the scene. Does that mean he’ll show up in Ballerina or some other movie down the line? I hope so.

But for now, we have Bubba looking on to give us some hope. I’m honestly not ready to say goodbye to John Wick after how amazing John Wick 4 was. We need more action-packed movies where Keanu Reeves just falls down iconic and historic stairs, please! Bonus points for more Donnie Yen.

(featured image: Lionsgate)

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Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. A writer her whole life but professionally starting back in 2016 who loves all things movies, TV, and classic rock. Resident Spider-Man expert, official Leslie Knope, actually Yelena Belova. Wanda Maximoff has never done anything wrong in her life. Star Wars makes her very happy. New York writer with a passion for all things nerdy. Yes, she has a Pedro Pascal podcast. And also a Harrison Ford one.