‘Special Ops: Lioness’ Episode 2 Recap & Ending, Explained: Did Joe Torture Cruz?


We witnessed the potential that Cruz had in the very first episode of Special Ops: Lioness, and we had no doubt that she was going to be an exceptional agent. It wouldn’t be wrong if we said that Cruz was gifted, and she was better than most, but still, Joe wanted to test her limits and know how much she was able to take in before reaching her breaking point. Joe knew that it was not something that was done quite often, but still, this time she wanted to be sure what kind of person she was dealing with. Joe wanted the odds to be in her favor, but she also knew that the risk was huge. So, let’s find out what happened in the second episode of Special Ops: Lioness between Joe and Cruz.

Spoilers Alert

What Was Happening In Joe’s Family?

Joe knew that a lot of times, she took her family for granted and wasn’t able to be with them as much as she should. As a result, her daughter Kate had become a different person altogether, and she had grown to despise Joe. Joe knew about it, and as much as she wanted to change the equation she had with her daughter, she didn’t have the bandwidth to do that. Cruz Manuelos had been introduced to Aaliyah, and Joe knew that now they had to amp up their game and get a step ahead of the ISIS leaders. Joe met Kaitlyn Meade and told her that she wanted to put Cruz on the grinder.

Kaitlyn didn’t understand what Joe was up to, and he told her that Cruz had already been through the Survival Evasion Resistance Escape (SERE) training program. But Joe was of the opinion that the kind of mission Cruz was going to undertake required her to be strong from within. Joe knew that the ISIS leaders would subject her to the kind of brutality that she had never imagined in her life. More than her body, her spirit needed to be strong, and Joe wanted to prepare her for that. Joe knew that Cruz would hate her for life if she was made to face such torture in her training, but she still wanted to go head-on with it. Kaitlyn told her that Cruz was her operative, and she was free to do whatever she deemed to be the best course of action.

Joe went back to her house to find that her daughter Kate had said some very mean things to Neil, who was having a tough time. Earlier that day at work, Neil had to tell a small girl’s parents that her tumor had metastasized and that the chances of her making it through were negligible. Neil had to tell her parents that if he were in their place, he wouldn’t go ahead with the treatment because it was extremely painful. The father had lost his temper and assaulted Neil. Neil felt guilty. He couldn’t imagine how life could be so unfair. He couldn’t do anything about it but being in that helpless situation agitated him. Neil got a call from Kate’s school that she had been in a fight, and he had to go and pick her up. Kate went to the extent of saying that Neil wouldn’t understand anything considering he was a white man.

Neil felt really hurt, and he took Kate’s phone and asked her to go sit quietly in her bedroom and contemplate what she had done. Joe came back to her house and found Neil in a miserable condition. Dealing with teenagers is hard, but Joe knew that Neil needed her support. She went and talked to Kate and gave her a reality check. She told her how privileged she was and how she had hurt her father. Joe knew that making her daughter understand anything was going to be an uphill task, but she couldn’t shy away from her responsibilities. Both Joe and Neil had extremely hectic lives, and probably that was one of the reasons that made parenting even more difficult for them. They had professional obligations, and amidst all that, they were not able to spend some quality time together.

Why Did Joe Torture Cruz?

Cruz Manuelos had this belief that she was unbreakable, and Joe in Special Ops: Lioness episode 2 wanted to break her illusion. Joe was very well aware of the fact that Cruz would start considering her an enemy if she went ahead with her plan, but Joe was fine with it. She knew that making her an enemy was much better than losing her on the battlefield and then regretting not knowing her limits. Joe wanted to conduct a very risky experiment where she wanted to see for herself the extent to which Cruz was capable of going. Cruz was a restless soul, and after she woke up early in the morning, she just wanted a way to spend all her energy. She decided to go for a run when she was kidnapped and taken to an unknown location on a ship. Cruz was put through torture, and she had no clue what was happening to her for the longest time.

After being tortured for a while, she was given clothes to wear, and Joe came to talk to her. That’s when Cruz got to know that it was all a training program. Obviously, Cruz was infuriated, and at that moment, if her hands were not tied and she had the energy, she would have killed each and every operative present there. Joe told her upfront that she was not done with her yet, as she still wanted to shatter her pride and make her ready for what she was about to face in the future. After really testing her limits, Joe dropped Cruz off at Fort Bragg, where she was supposed to stay with her team. Seeing Cruz in that state, even Bob and others were surprised. When Bobby got to know that it was not the usual staff training program, she got agitated. She took everybody to the bar so that they could teach those guys a lesson. Boby, Cruz, Toes Cups, and others entered into a brawl with the people who had tortured Cruz, and they were a bit taken aback when they got to know that it was Joe who had ordered it.

Meanwhile, Cruz got a call from Aaliyah, who told her that she was in Atlanta and was flying to Chesapeake, Virginia, the next day. Aaliyah called Cruz to come along, and she obviously agreed. It would be interesting to see what happens when Cruz finally meets Asmar Ali Amrohi and if she is able to get into their inner circle and win his trust, as she did with Aaliyah.

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Sushrut Gopesh
Sushrut Gopesh
I came to Mumbai to bring characters to life. I like to dwell in the cinematic world and ponder over philosophical thoughts. I believe in the kind of cinema that not necessarily makes you laugh or cry but moves something inside you.

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