Exploring Ghokan’s Fate in the Ending of ‘Kubra’ Season 2

By Jonathon Wilson
Published: June 8, 2024
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Kubra Season 2 Episode 8 Recap and Ending Explained
Kubra | Image via Netflix

WARNING: THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS MAJOR SPOILERS

The problem with heralding someone as a messiah is that, inevitably, it’s going to be revealed that they’re no such thing, and the ending of Kubra Season 2 cements Gokhan’s downfall with not just the collapse of his mystical reputation but also his death. Episode 8 marks the end of his downward spiral, which the entire second season was devoted to exploring.

It’s only right, then, that the season began with him at his highest, fresh off the ATM heist at the end of Season 1. Gokhan’s followers still believed him to be a prophet in direct communion with Allah, and he leaned into the illusion with the help of Kubra’s founder, Berk.

Gokhan’s Denial Is His Undoing

The first of Gokhan’s followers who begins to turn is Ali Riza, Merve’s father, and this begins a continuing trend of things going wrong and Gokhan making them worse by trying to overcorrect. When Gokhan’s treatment of Ali Riza and some of his other followers stokes suspicions in Merve, she follows him to a meeting with Berk, and he’s forced to confess what Kubra really is.

A big part of Kubra Season 2’s climax is Gokhan’s utter denial. He tries to frame his partnership with Berk as training Kubra to help the marginalized and punish the corrupt and greedy, but it’s obvious to everyone except him that he’s being manipulated.

Merve’s Death

Merve does the thing she feels is right by ratting him out to Inspector Kara, and then to Gulcan, who catches her spying on Gokhan. Gulcan is appalled by what Gokhan is doing, but when she confronts him he reaches a new personal low by slapping her. His efforts to track her down using Kubra when she left the underground camp isn’t much better, being a complete violation of privacy and all, but the subsequent set-up reveals to him that Merve sold him out.

Following a police raid of the camp which results in the deaths of Gokhan’s followers and his mother, a power and revenge-mad Gokhan kills Merve in the place where they met.

Kubra Is Shut Down

Because of all the kompromat that Kubra can provide on senior officials, the police have no real choice but to allow Istanbul to descend into complete chaos, with Gokhan at the helm.

However, Gokhan still has a weakness. After losing his mother and wife, Gulcan is the only family he has left, and it’s through her that Kara is able to entrap him. However, this whole thread shows how far Kara has fallen too; he’s willing to torture Gokhan’s few remaining followers to force Gokhan to confess, which he eventually does, leading to Kubra being shut down by the police.

Gulcan and Berk’s Deaths

As if things couldn’t get any worse for Gokhan, Gulcan dies after a tussle with a manic Berk, who accuses her of betraying her brother and collaborating with the police in his arrest. Berk has been driven half-mad by Kubra’s shutdown, and Gulcan fatally falls trying to run away from him. It is only after this that Berk realizes Kubra is still active on devices where it is downloaded.

The pack mentality that leads to this moment is quietly terrifying, and a damning indictment of how belief at scale can quickly morph into anarchy. Trust, relationships, even morality fall by the wayside when the collective is emboldened. Former allies become enemies. What was once unacceptable becomes desirable. The perils of this kind of groupthink have thwarted Gokhan again and again, but here we see how they can backfire on him.

Needless to say, Gulcan’s death is the final straw for Gokhan. It shatters the illusion he had allowed himself to believe in, revealing to him that his staunchest ally was only ever out for himself. Gokhan kills Berk in revenge.

Gokhan Meets His End

As I said in my review of Kubra Season 2, Gokhan was perfect for Kubra because he was arrogant. He believed himself to be special, and he was quick to believe anything that reinforced that notion. He made himself a messiah because, on some level, he believed it. This is why, even after he discovered what Kubra really was, he continued to convince people – including himself – that he was special.

Gulcan and Berk’s deaths show Gokhan that he’s not special. They allow him to see the damage that he has done by believing his own lies and trying to force others into complicity. He realizes he has lost his entire family for nothing.

The ending of Kubra Season 2 is also Gokhan’s ending; his efforts to atone by stopping the spread of the AI and disseminating a video confession that compels his followers to surrender themselves. With those altruistic actions completed, Gokhan intends to take his own life, right where he killed Merve, but Kara’s men gun him down instead. Gokhan promises to look after Kara’s son in the afterlife, which can’t be much consolation given everything he has gotten up to in the last two seasons.

Kubra Lives On

Gokhan believed he was unique and special. Kubra relied on the fact that he wasn’t to manipulate him. The inevitable outcome of this is that Kubra can live on, because there will always be arrogant, delusional people like Gokhan to exploit.

Selim and Adem, finally in control after Berk’s death, revive Kubra. The AI continues to search for unwitting targets like Gokhan whom it can manipulate to its own ends.

There will always be an army of the faithful waiting to unite under the banner of a prophet. It scarcely matters who the next one will be, just that there will always be another. And another. For as long as we have faith, that faith will be taken advantage of, one way or another.

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