Ozark Season 2 — References To The Bible (Book of Jonah)

Lance Mason
3 min readJan 21, 2022


The Book of Jonah is a story about a prophet who rebels against God. The show Ozark has several references to the Book of Jonah. The first being a character who has the same name.

If the use of the name Jonah isn’t enough to bring attention to the reference, this camera shot from S2 E1 is.

His blanket is covered in blue and white whales.

Jonah is the name of a prophet in the Old Testament and his appearance in the Bible is different from all of the other prophets.

The Bible Project — a nonprofit ed-tech organization and animation studio — says that the Book of Jonah is unique because typically God’s words are spoken through the prophet, but this book focuses on a story about a prophet.

God tells Jonah to preach against evil and injustice in Nineveh. Instead of going east to Nineveh, Jonah goes in the opposite direction, and finds a ship that will go as far west as possible to Tarshish.

Jonah gets the sailors of the ship to throw him overboard and it’s at this point that he is swallowed up by a whale. The whale spits Jonah back onto land and he walks in the direction of Nineveh to preach a sermon.

Over the course of this story, Jonah expresses anger because God loves his enemies.

The narrator in the Bible Project video says:

“God’s questions [in the book of Jonah] are actually addressed to the reader. . .the book is trying to mess with you.The Book of Jonah is meant to hold a mirror up to the reader.

In Jonah, we see the worst parts of our own character magnified, says the Bible project. Which leads to gratitude that God puts up with the Jonah in all of us.

Wendy and Marty’s frustration and confusion with Jonah’s behavior is an example of how their own character is magnified.

When Wendy Byrde tells Jonah that Marty “launders money for a Mexican drug cartel” their life becomes a parable.

That sentence is the yeast.

The effect it has on Jonah is the leaven.

“The Kingdom of Heaven is like yeast, which a woman took, and hid in three measures of meal, until it was all leavened."”

Did you find this interesting? We created a book that explains more references to the Bible that we found in the show Ozark. Here’s a trailer about the book:

Here’s what the book looks like:

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Lance Mason

This blog is discontinued. All future posts will be on lancetmason.Substack.com