Kevin Hart’s Netflix series, True Story, isn’t based on a real story. It is a fictionalized drama that takes bits and pieces from Kevin’s dramatic life as a stand-up comedian. Creator Eric Newman creates a familiar character for Kevin and plots the protagonist in a tale filled with twists, turns, and threats. It keeps the audience engaged and gives Kevin a new skin to showcase his acting skills.
The 7-part mini-series follows a standup comedian, Kid, played by Kevin, who commits a murder and thus hustles to fix loose ends. His elder brother, Carlton (Wesley Snipes), becomes a partner in crime to help Kid. But will the two blood brothers find their way out of the maze? Let’s explore further.
‘True Story’ Plot Summary
In a personal interview, famous stand-up comedian and superhero movie star Kid (Kevin Hart) talks to the camera about human nature. Philosophically, he mentions that one can never really know what’s going on inside a person’s head or heart. Kid says that even though the audience loves him because he makes them laugh, they don’t know the real Kid. Or the hustle that put him on the big stage. In the ending byte, he outlines that a person’s true colors are revealed only when they are in a challenging situation where they can lose everything they struggled for.
The story moves back to a week earlier. After a glamorous interview on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Kid flies to his hometown, Philadelphia, for an upcoming show listed on his stand-up tour. He stays with his big brother, Carlton (Wesley Snipes), at the Four Seasons Hotel, where Carlton asks for more money from Kid to re-open his restaurant. Kid clearly states that he cannot afford to give 600K dollars to Carlton and avoids the conversation to prepare for the night’s concert at Wells Fargo Center.
Before the show starts, Kid overthinks about his older brother. He promises his manager, Todd, to talk to Carlton and request him to stay away from his life. After a successful show, Kid visits Carlton, who is partying with some of their common childhood friends. Kid tries to talk to Carlton, but he gets him drunk. Carlton invites some girls to party with them, and under the influence of alcohol, Kid ends up in bed with a girl, Daphne.
In the middle of the night, Carlton wakes up Kid, sleeping beside Daphne. He informs Kid about Daphne’s death. Kid panics, believing his career will be over if the news gets to the press. Will these two brothers be able to get out of this threatening situation?
Major Spoilers Ahead
What really happened that night?
Kid got heavily drunk that night, and when he woke up, Carlton informed Kid that Daphne had died of an oxy overdose. To save Kid’s image and mega-stardom career, Carlton suggested calling his Greek gangster friend, Ari Petrakis, to take care of Daphne’s body.
While Ari and Carlton disposed of the body, Kid slept peacefully in another room. Hence, he never knew what really happened to Daphne’s body.
The following morning, Ari demanded 6 million dollars from Kid to keep his mouth shut. Kid was extremely annoyed with people who exploited him for his stardom and blackmailed him for his money. In a fit of rage, he strangled Ari’s neck with a charger cable and killed him. Later, the two brothers, Kid and Carlton, sneaked out of the hotel room to dump Ari’s body in a dumpster. But to their worst luck, someone followed them.
Kid’s crazy fan, Gene, recorded Kid and Carlton on video while they dumped Ari’s body.
Why did Kid kill Ari Petrakis?
One wrong move led to a series of wrong turns, and Kid found himself fixed in a situation. Kid never knew that he was capable of murdering someone. But when Ari blackmailed him, Kid found his back against the wall and feared that he would lose everything. Hence, to save his legacy, he mercilessly killed Ari.
Why did Carlton get Gene killed?
Ari’s gangster brothers, Savvas and Nikos, searched for their missing brother day and night. Carlton tried to trick the devil for a while, but he knew if the brothers kept their hunt on, they would, sooner or later, get to him or Kid.
To save their lives, Carlton orchestrated a plan. After Kid convinced Gene to delete the video, Carlton visited Gene’s motel room. In a friendly gesture, he gifted Ari’s Rolex Submariner to Gene. Little did he know that it was a trap set by Carlton. Moments later, Carlton gave a tip to Savvas and Nikos and convinced them that Gene killed Ari.
At first, Gene denied killing Ari. However, when Gene learned that Savvas and Nikos were going to harm Kid, he lied about killing Ari. He was a true fan and, to protect his star, he took the blame and sacrificed his own life.
Who Killed Daphne?
Daphne or Simone, played by Ash Santos, didn’t die of a drug overdose. Her death was an act set up by Carlton. When Kid refused to hand over 600K dollars to Carlton willingly, he tried to trap Kid in a situation.
Initially, Carlton believed that Kid would hand over the money to Ari, and the matter would be sorted. But Kid employed his survival instinct and killed Ari, which wrecked Carlton’s perfect plan. However, the tragedy brought the brothers closer. In an emotional state, Kid paid off Carlton’s debt of 600K that he owed to Savvas and Nikos and promised to revive Carlton’s shut restaurant.
But after Gene’s death, when Kid dropped Carlton off at his place, he found Simone’s text on Carlton’s phone. Later, when Kid confronted Simone or Daphne, she confessed that Carlton orchestrated the plan to take money from Kid.
Though Kid didn’t kill Daphne that night, Savvas later shot her in Carlton’s flat. Savvas and Nikos found out that Gene didn’t kill Ari and that Carlton tricked them. Hence, Savvas came looking for Carlton and shot Daphne/Simone instead.
Who killed Carlton?
Carlton’s plan might not have turned out the way he planned, but in the long run, he got what he wanted. Kid paid off his debts and invited Carlton to come to New York with him. Carlton believed that it was going to be an easy ride for him, but he didn’t know that Kid already knew about the grand ploy.
Kid invited Carlton to the Philadelphia 76ers’ basketball match. Inside the box, Kid calmly asked Carlton to move out of his life. Kid told Carlton that he was dead to him and didn’t want to look at his face anymore. As soon as Kid, Carlton, and Herschel walked out of the building, Savvas and Nikos ran towards them. The trio ran towards the back door, where Savvas and Nikos pulled guns on them and started firing.
The gangster brothers shot Herschel on the shoulder and damaged all the CCTV cameras to avoid suspicion. Kid picked up Herschel’s gun and ran ahead when Savvas and Nikos cornered them. At that moment, Carlton’s conscience weighed on him and he lied to Savvas and Nikos to save Kid. He confessed that he killed Ari and pleaded with them to leave Kid out of it. However, before Savvas and Nikos could understand the situation, Kid shot them both.
Carlton tried to become a responsible brother and said he would take the fall, but Kid had enough of his games. He took Savvas’ gun and shot Carlton in the chest. Kid needed to protect himself from his protector, his brother, and thus ended the chapter for once and for all.
What was the Story that Kid Sold to the Press and the Police?
When police arrived at the scene, Kid cooked up a story. Not a true story, but a fictional one. He swapped the guns and hid Carlton’s phone. Kid told the police that Savvas and Nikos shot Carlton, and Carlton lost his life in the act of defense.
Kid hid Carlton’s phone, so the investigators couldn’t find out that Carlton set up Daphne/Simone to blackmail him. Later, Kid told the press that Ari and his girlfriend were trying to extort him. Hence, to protect his younger brother, Carlton killed Ari. In the end, he didn’t frame his dead brother but instead portrayed him as a protector. Though it wasn’t out of love. Kid wanted to protect himself, and it was undoubtedly an act of survival.
‘True Story’ Ending Explained
Three days later, Kid prepared for a live interview with Don Lemon to share the tragic story with the world. However, before the interview, Herschel revealed that he overheard their conversation during the game and knew about Carlton’s web of affairs. In the presence of Todd and Herschel, Kid confessed and presented the true story except for its ending.
He told Todd and Herschel that Simone was Carlton’s girlfriend, and Carlton set him up to blackmail him. He didn’t like Ari’s threats and killed him in anger, and Carlton helped him dumb the body. His brothers killed Gene and then came for him and Carlton. When the Greek gangsters shot Carlton, Kid shot them back in self-defense.
Nevertheless, with so many versions of the true story, a stressed Todd wanted to put an end to it all. But Herschel demanded money to protect Kid’s secret. He wanted 6 million dollars that Kid promised to Ari. Kid agreed because he believed that it was Herschel who had saved him from dangers in all these years. He just wanted Herschel to stay loyal to him forever, like a brother, like the one Kid yearned for.
The film ended with the interview, the same scene that it began with. Kid paid his condolences to Carlton and Gene and told Lemon that he would continue with the tour. His brother and his fan wanted Kid to be successful, and he would fulfill the wish of the dead. Kid believed that if he grew into a better person, his story would have a happy ending. Well, his graceful acting did give him a happy ending. The emotional drama and the philosophical speech weren’t needed.
True Story is a 2021 Drama Thriller series created by Eric Newman. The mini-series streaming on Netflix stars Kevin Hart and Wesley Snipes in the lead roles.