Deception Is Key In The Night Of Part 4, “The Art Of War”

Photo: Craig Blankenhorn/HBO.
The reoccurring idea in Sun Tzu's strategic and philosophical book, The Art Of War, is deception. A good leader will always overcome his enemy using deception. This idea of using deception to overcome power struggles, with both expected and surprising enemies, is central thread throughout this episode of The Night Of. In episode four, "The Art Of War," we see a shift in Naz. The doe-eyed college boy is starting to walk and act more like a steely eyed man. He's not necessarily acting like a criminal or giving any more of an indication that he is responsible for Andrea Cornish's brutal stabbing. Like in a war, he is starting to recognize who his allies are. We also saw a major development with attorney John Stone. After being dropped from the case, it seems his interest about proving Naz's innocence has skyrocketed. His feet are also worse, but maybe the flare-up is tied to his fervid quest for the truth. Oh, and Naz almost confesses. As I said in the weeks prior, this is a slow-moving show, meant to be an eight-part movie, so instead of summarizing the play-by-plays of each hour-long episode, we're plotting out all the new clues, suspects, and reemerging information. So, follow along every week for a collective brainstorm. We're also posting all our crazy theories here (and some that you submitted!)

Spoilers ahead.
New Suspects
Underneath a bridge, along a patch of the river that looks eerily similar to where Naz drove Andrea when they went to the "beach," we see a group of about a dozen people gathering for Andrea's burial. Stone, as predicted, can't stay away from the case and sits in the background behind headstones, watching the ceremony from afar. Afterwards, we see Don Taylor get into a heated, aggressive argument with a mysterious young man in a suit. Taylor screams at him, asking what he is doing here. The man asks the same, and Taylor responds, "I'm part of the fucking family!" Based on that comment, he can't be Andrea's sibling or relative. Since he doesn't look much older than Naz and Andrea, I'm guessing he's an ex-boyfriend, which makes him my new suspect of the week. To me, Don Taylor is still shady, but even he seems pissed off to see this guy. Inside Rikers, shit is going down. Naz clearly made a mistake when he dissed Freddy by not wanting to join his squad — and he has faced the consequences. Last week, it was the bed in flames. This week, it was a knife cut on his arm, as well as a serious burn from a some prison-made napalm on his other arm. It's unclear who stabbed Naz, but we all saw the man who severely burned him. Or...did we? I have a crazy theory to throw out there — that guy that was giving Naz all that prison advice, pep talks, and then attacked him? I think he's a figment of Naz's imagination. As in, he's Naz's Tyler Durden in this prison Fight Club. He created him out of fear, anxiety, and depression to cope with being in this violent, intimidating place. Why do I think this? No one has ever addressed the guy when Naz was with him. The guy quickly took over Naz's former tear-drop tattooed prison friend's bed, but we never saw him get assigned to it. The story of what happened to the guy's niece is similar to what happened to Andrea. And after seeing how all the men in prison treat each other, why would that guy be helping Naz so much? Wouldn't Freddy have beat up the guy by now for stealing his "care package"? That's just my take. Let's see if it holds up next week.
Debunked Theories
I wasn't able to totally debunk any of my theories. I'm hoping next week gives me a bit more closure. But we can use this section to talk about the most heart-pounding moment of the episode, when Naz nearly confesses to the murder. Thankfully, Chandra Kapoor, his soon-to-be defense lawyer, asks him the one question he needed to hear before taking the stand and agreeing to the lessened sentence that Allison Crowe had negotiated for him. She simply said, "I would ask myself if I did it." Since Naz is adamant, as am I, that he did not kill that girl, he knows what to do. He cannot accept the plea and will go to trial. In front of the judge and the district attorney, Naz explains everything that happened that night: “I left my parents' house to go to a party in Manhattan. I got lost and Andrea got into the back of the cab, thinking I was the real cab driver. We drove uptown. We talked. She gave me something — some pill. We went back to her place. We drank. She gave me something else — some powder. We went up to her bedroom. We had sex. And then, I fell asleep and woke up in the kitchen. I went upstairs to get my clothes and say goodbye. I went to her. And I saw that she was dead. I panicked. I ran. "That’s all I remember.”
I think having Chandra as Naz's lawyer will be a very good thing. So far, he has been dealt a bitchy headline-hungry Allison Crowe and a well-intentioned, but ring-ding John Stone. He needs someone that speaks to him like a person, like Chandra does. Let's hope she stays as pure as she seems and that the Khan family can afford her. The district attorney seems open to the idea of accepting the fact that Naz is not the killer. She has expressed that to Detective Box multiple times, even accusing him of not really thinking Naz was guilty, either. If Naz's former jail friend turned attacker is a real person, then based on the final scene of the episode where Naz finally asks Freddy for help, I think he'll get taught a very big lesson. He will think twice before messing with Naz ever again. If he's real, that is. Those pictures of Andrea's file from Invictus House, the rehab facility she visited multiple times, will come into play. It also shows that she ran with a shady crowd. How many crimes have been committed when drugs were involved? A ton. Even though Andrea is the victim, her backstory reveals a lot about the situation she was in prior to ever meeting Naz.

Recurring Things To Think About
The cat! Stone calls to check in on the cat. It's still alive. "I don't want it yet," he tells the rescue center employee on the phone. "I'm just checking." Does anyone else think this cat is gonna be the key to everything? Freddy's obsession with being intelligent, powerful, and the most deceptive seems to be his only weakness. Will Naz be able to hold his own and use that to his own advantage? Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.

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