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    Reacher Season 2 Just Made A Major Change From The Books

    At every chance “Reacher” gets, the show expands and complicates its source material. In the book, the mysterious A.M. (Ferdinand Kingsley) goes on a fairly uneventful road trip; the scenes where he kills a doctor and then a police officer are inventions of the show, meant to build him up as a more serious villain. We’re not sure what he’ll do in the season’s final two episodes, but odds are he’ll play a much bigger role than he did in the book’s finale. Every show character has had more to do than their book counterpart, after all, and A.M. seems like no exception. 

    Likewise, making Swan (or perhaps another missing Special Investigator) the surprise villain gives the show a chance to improve on the book’s biggest weak spot: that the Mauney reveal is kind of lame and underwhelming. Detective Mauney wasn’t a memorable character pre-reveal, so his betrayal meant little to Reacher and even less to the readers. Mauney’s also pretty forgettable post-reveal, as Reacher takes him down with ease and Mauney doesn’t put up much of a fight anyway. We don’t know how a Swan vs Reacher battle would shake out, but we know a fellow Special Investigator would make for a far more compelling showdown. 

    Maybe the show won’t go there. Maybe it’s a little too blasphemous for the show to turn one of the famously noble, unbreakable Special Investigators into a bad guy. But after all those flashbacks to young Swan and all the arguing on Reacher’s team, this sort of twist definitely wouldn’t be out of left field. “Reacher” season 2 has been a bold, exciting bit of TV so far; a final big twist like this would be the perfect way to cap it off. 

    The penultimate episode of “Reacher” season 2 premieres January 12, 2024, on Prime Video, followed by the season finale on January 19.

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