This article contains spoilers for the ending of Rough Diamonds Season 1 and the events of Rough Diamonds Season 1 Episode 8.
Rough Diamonds, an eight-part crime drama on Netflix created by Rotem Shamir and Yuval Yefet, is on some level your quintessential streaming story – a tale of family and legacy against the backdrop of a gritty underworld.
But the underworld here, the Diamond District of Antwerp, Belgium, and the cultural specificity of the ultra-Orthodox Judaism at its core, help the show to stand out in an oversaturated marketplace. The plot might be straightforward – though worthy of explanation, as below – it’s the rich detail found in the setting and characters that set the whole thing apart.
Rough Diamonds Season 1 Ending Explained
The events are kickstarted by the suicide of Yanki, the youngest son of the Wolfson family, leaving the Wolfson Diamonds family business in disarray and summoning his estranged brother, Noah, back to Belgium.
Noah had previously abandoned his family’s staunch orthodoxy and built a new life elsewhere. He returns with his more moderate values and also a son, Tommy.
Why did Yanki commit suicide?
We learn that Yanki was a gambling addict who killed himself to preserve his family’s honor and standing.
Noah has little problem violently dealing with the men Yanki owed, but the family situation, both professionally and personally, proves to be much more complicated than he anticipated.
The Wolfsons are in debt to the tune of millions. They’re at the mercy of an Albanian mob that they turned to out of desperation. Because the stolen diamonds they were intending to sell never arrived, their debts mounted. Noah and his mother-in-law Kerra are forced to make a deal with the Albanians.
What deal does Noah offer Jo Smets?
In a roundabout way, this brings us to Jo Smets, a prosecutor investigating the Albanian mafia and corruption in the Diamond District. Principled and dogged, she’s initially reluctant to take the deal Noah offers her to sell out the Albanians. When she’s instructed to drop the case, though, she comes around to the idea.
The deal is this. If Smets drops the charges and stops looking into his family, he’ll give her the stolen diamonds and the Albanians. However, thanks to a tipoff he’s unable to deliver either of these things, so he offers something else instead: His mother-in-law, Kerra, who received a portion of the haul back in London – certainly enough to make headlines and open a case.
With Kerra facing substantial time inside, she gives up the Belgian lawyer who had connected her to the Albanians, who is persuaded to enter witness protection in exchange for testifying. However, he’s promptly assassinated by the Albanians.
Do Noah and Gila end up together?
Yanki’s widow, Gila, was once engaged to be married to Noah, who left before the nuptials could take place. They clearly still have romantic feelings for one another, though, and Noah’s intention was to bring his business in Antwerp to an end so that he could return to London with Tommy, Gila, and her kids.
However, circumstances conspire to keep him in Belgium, again and again, until Gila eventually decides to leave for New York. Noah and Gila do not end up together.
In the end, Noah didn’t get a thing that he wanted and inadvertently got everything that he didn’t. He saves his family business, just about, but loses the remainder of his family in the process. After selling out his mother-in-law, losing Gila, and watching Tommy begin to adopt the Jewish Orthodoxy he had sworn to leave behind lest he become like his father, Noah realizes that he is in some sense at the head of the table, but in another has become exactly what he most feared to be.
You can stream Rough Diamonds Season 1 Episode 8 exclusively on Netflix. Do you have any thoughts on the ending of Rough Diamonds Season 1? Let us know in the comments.
17 thoughts on “Rough Diamonds Season 1 Episode 8 Recap and Ending Explained”
The juxtaposition of the central Yom Kippur confessional prayer with gangster images was amazing.
It would have been better if the show had detailed the steps from the arrest of Kerra to the recovery of the stolen diamonds held by the Albanians. It was all rushed at the end. How did the police locate the Albanians and their lawyer? How did they find the rest of the diamonds? Why didnt the mole in the police department warn the Albanians again?.Are the Albanians all in jail? Is Noah safe from.assassination and retLiation? These are unanswered questions.
I found the show so interesting but the subtitles on all the Netflix show are too quick and sometimes it’s difficult to read everything which is a hindrance to understanding things fully. Please go a bit slower on the subtitles! But the show was terrific and I was looking forward to another season….but it appears it’s not going to happen.
I love a love story but I’m so glad Gila had the good sense to look out for her and her kids’ future and go to New York to marry Yehuda. She may not know it but she would be happier in the long run than if she had taken Noah up on his offer. He had no job, a shady past, made lots of mistakes and promises which there were no guarantees he could keep. He’s cute though.
Watching Rough Diamonds, I couldn’t help but draw a comparison to the Corleone family in the GODFATHER, where Noah is like the reluctant Michael who commits murder to save his family and becomes the reluctant head.
I wish Noah had taken care of his enemies (the Albanians) with the same methods Michael did on the day of his son’s baptism. What do you all think of the “Corleones / Wolfson” family solidarities ?
In both stories the question is “what would you sacrifice for your family?
I meant “SIMILARITIES “
Not really like Michael Corleone at all. Unlike Michael, Noah was ALREADY a hardened criminal when we meet him.
Also, Noah didn’t have an Mafia army to deal with the Albanians. It was just him.
Agree – we have to guess at a lot at the end!
The Jewish “Ozark” family business
I really enjoyed this. Super family dynamics, gold insight into the orthodox Jewish relationships interwoven within family and community. Excellent in bringing in the underworld of finance and the impure diamond trade. Exactly what netflix is now for – to open our eyes to another culture we know so little about. Absolutely superb. I hope season 2 is created and these dynamics are explored further.
We enjoyed it and would definitely watch a second season.
Well at least in the final episode, the subtitles do not say that the men in the synagogue are praying in Yiddish. That was so written a couple of times before in previous episodes. The language coaches did an excellent job of teaching Yiddish to various non-speakers thereof, but whoever wrote the subtitles was ignorant of the indubitable fact that Yiddish-speaking men NEVER pray in Yiddish. In the series they are praying with an Ashkenazic Hebrew accent, used not only by Khasidim but by other hyper-orthodox Jews; thus “Elokeyni” instead of “Elokeynu,” (our God)
I loved the series but I was disappointed that it had to end so quickly and wasn’t properly finished
I like the blend of godfather Ray Donovan and family business. I so enjoyed the film.
I like the Michael Corleone analogy excpt instead of hardening Noah refinds hus roots and goodness
I wonder if the Albanians kill their banker is Noah really safe
We get the message: Noah was trying to save his family and maybe redeem himself. But it’s a big fight that he’s fighting on his own and that can’t help his case. We needed closure but all we got were loose ends, so season 2 is very much needed. I’m still rooting for Noah, something has gotta give!
Excellent series. I agree with other comments, it was rushed at the end. Another episode or 2 at the most would have provided the time necessary for a better non-rushed conclusion whether or not a second season is planned or not.
The scene at the end when the confessional prayer Ashamnu is recited while the cops make arrests and the potential witness is assassinated is a direct homage to the Godfather baptism scene.