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Do we ever see Julia in Animal Kingdom?

Julia was an important character in the early seasons of Animal Kingdom, however she has not been seen on the show since season 2. Many fans are curious to know if Julia will ever return or make another appearance on the TNT crime drama.

Who is Julia?

Julia was first introduced in season 1 of Animal Kingdom as the mother of main characters Baz, Pope, and J. She is the matriarch of the Cody crime family and established the criminal enterprise. In flashbacks, it is shown that Julia took the boys in after they were abandoned by their mother Janine “Smurf” Cody, who did not want to raise her children. Julia raised Pope, Baz, and J into a life of crime, teaching them how to steal, manipulate, and survive. She groomed them to take over her operations one day.

Julia was a complex character – caring towards her adoptive sons but also ruthless when it came to building her criminal empire. She was highly intelligent and strategic in running illicit jobs. Julia had an on-again, off-again romantic relationship with Smurf’s brother Andrew, and it is suggested Andrew may be the biological father of Julia’s sons.

Julia’s Last Appearance

Julia was last seen in the season 2 premiere episode “Eat What You Kill.” In a flashback set 15 years prior, Julia executes a risky robbery of a church. When Baz expresses hesitation about the job, Julia slaps him and forces him to go through with it. The heist results in the death of an innocent woman. Julia is angry at Baz for his mistake and punishes him by exiling him from the family. This flashback shows Julia’s harsh leadership style.

Later in the episode, Julia appears in another flashback taking place after her death. Pope and Baz stand over her grave discussing Baz’s return to the family now that Julia has passed away. This scene confirms that Julia died sometime between the two flashbacks, though the exact details surrounding her death are unknown.

The flashbacks featuring Julia in season 2 provide more context about the Cody family history. However, Julia has not been seen or mentioned since her brief appearance in the premiere. Over 5 seasons have aired since then without any hints about Julia’s fate.

Will Julia Return in Future Seasons?

Fans have long speculated if Julia could reappear someday in a flashback or memory. It is unlikely the show would bring her back from the dead, but there are a few possibilities where Julia could return in some capacity:

  • More flashbacks showing Julia alive interacting with her sons or running jobs
  • A newly discovered video or message left behind by Julia before her death
  • Dream sequences or hallucinations where one of the characters imagines talking to Julia
  • Visiting Julia’s grave and recalling memories of her

Any of these scenarios would shed more light on Julia’s character and her dynamic with the Cody family. Her presence still looms large despite being gone from the show for so long.

Reasons Julia May Not Return

While fans would welcome seeing Julia again, there are also several reasons why the show may continue to keep her off-screen:

Reason Explanation
Limited information about her past Julia’s backstory and connections were never fully explored before she died. The show may not have enough established details to revisit her character.
Focus on the current Cody family New characters and dynamics have been introduced over the seasons. Bringing Julia back could shift the focus away from the present-day storylines.
Her death is a fixed event The show has established that Julia died sometime before season 1. They are unlikely to retcon or change that piece of history.
Actress availability The actress Jacqueline McKenzie may not be available to reprise the role due to scheduling conflicts.

Ultimately, Julia’s limited screen time and unknown fate make it challenging for the writers to incorporate her again in a meaningful way. Unless they can develop a logical reason to revisit her character, she will likely remain a mysterious figure from the past.

What Happened to Julia?

So what exactly happened to Julia that led to her death? Here are some theories and speculation about her demise:

Killed by Smurf

One popular theory is that Smurf murdered Julia at some point to remove her from power. Smurf reclaimed her role as head of the family after Julia’s death. She would have had clear motivation to orchestrate Julia’s murder and get revenge for ‘stealing’ her sons years earlier.

Killed by a Rival

With dangerous rivals and enemies, Julia may have been killed by someone she crossed in the criminal underworld. Rival gangs or smugglers could have taken her out to expand their territory or get payback.

Died in a Heist Gone Wrong

Seeing how risky Julia’s robberies were, she could have met her end while carrying out a high-stakes job. The church heist flashback showed she was willing to put herself in harm’s way if it meant gaining money and power.

Health Issues or Accident

There’s a chance Julia passed away from natural causes like an illness or accident. Although given her dangerous lifestyle, fans think she must have died violently.

Hopefully the show will eventually reveal more definitive details about Julia’s fate. Her unresolved story still generates many questions from fans years later.


Julia was an impactful presence in the early days of Animal Kingdom, shaping the development of Pope, Baz, and J into criminals. But despite her importance, she has not directly appeared on the show since the brief season 2 premiere flashbacks. Many viewers are still intrigued by Julia’s character and hope to learn more about her history with the Codys. While her return is unlikely at this point, the potential still exists for the show to bring her back in creative ways through memories, videos, or other narrative devices. Until the series addresses her full backstory, Julia will remain one of Animal Kingdom’s most fascinating missing figures.