Mayor of Kingstown season 3 episode 3 recap: Mike and Konstantin face-off

Yorick van Wageningen and Jeremy Renner in Mayor of Kingstown
Yorick van Wageningen and Jeremy Renner in Mayor of Kingstown (Image credit: Dennis P. Mong Jr./Paramount+)

Mayor of Kingstown season 3 episode 3, "Barbarians at the Gate," opens on a homeless man discovering both Tatiana's (Gratiela Brancusi) dead body and her crying baby.  

At the scene of the crime, Ian Ferguson (Hugh Dillon), Kyle McLusky (Taylor Handley), and Mike McLusky (Jeremy Renner) are appalled by the depravity. With two more of Milo's men discovered dead, they all agree this is the work of Konstantin Noskov (Yorick van Wageningen) looking to fill the void.  

Mike's mind immediately turns to Iris (Emma Laird), worried that she's been targeted, too, especially as she hasn't been seen for a while. Mike immediately drives to the strip club to confront Konstantin, beating several of his men in order to get to him. When they're face to face, Mike says Konstantin now has his attention but he warns him he doesn't want to see any more dead bodies. Konstantin is already aware of Mike and his reputation. The police arrive to break things up and as Mike departs he says, "Welcome to Kingstown."

How to deal with Konstantin?

Later, Mike is followed and chased by a member of Konstantin's gang. They get into a fight, with Mike ultimately stabbing and killing him. He takes the victim's phone, calls the last number, which one of Konstantin's henchmen picks up. Rather than going after Konstantin immediately, Mike is worried there are too many other problems for him to deal with right now, so he decides to back off. Much to the annoyance of Ian, who wants to take Konstantin out because he knows he wouldn't hesitate about doing the same. 

Eventually, Mike goes to visit Konstantin at the club again, where they have a sit down. Mike tells Konstantin he doesn't know who or what he's dealing with; Konstantin admits he underestimated Mike. Mike makes the case that Konstantin actually needs him, as he's the guy who will make his life possible in Kingstown. Konstantin calls Mike the mayor. 

But that doesn't mean Konstatin is going to play nice. Toward the end of the episode, as Ian and fellow officers leave the police station, all of their cars explode.

Raphael barely survives

Raphael (D Smoke) tries to make a deal with the Colombian gang's leader Roberto (William Guirola) over a new supply of dope, but they keep raising the prices. They're going to keep doing so, too, as Raphael needs them more than they need him. Without his product, Raphael is in danger. Raphael promises more dope is coming and that it's clean and pure. He says he'll be in a place to help the Colombians, as long as they help him now. Raphael finally makes a deal with the Colombians, but at an extra cost of $5,000.

After Merle (Richard Barre) saw his negotiations with the Colombians, Raphael is attacked by the Aryan Brotherhood and barely escapes with his life. 

Bunny (Tobi Bamtefa) tells Mike about the attack on Raphael. Mike says he'll tell the guards to protect Raphael, but he should be fine now after they failed to kill him. Bunny is the one to tell Mike Merle is now leading the Aryan Brotherhood, adding that Gunner — the previous leader — was killed even though he was in protective custody. Bunny accuses Mike of being out of the loop.

Prison politics

Richard Brake in Mayor of Kingstown

Richard Brake in Mayor of Kingstown (Image credit: Dennis P. Mong Jr./Paramount+)

Merle has a private meeting with Kareem (Michael Beach), explaining he moved to Kingstown from Millhaven because he has a niece nearby. Kareem doesn't believe him, as the Aryan Brotherhood are already getting behind Merle. Kareem warns Merle to keep quiet. But Merle has already made peace with his fate, even if that means dying in his cell or in the yard. He asks Kareem if he can say the same about his own destiny. 

Merle is visited by an associate of Konstantin, who says that he's a wealthy admirer of Merle's work. She hands Merle Konstantin's number.

Later, Ian and Mike look over footage of Sharon's (Naomi Terrell) murder. When Kareem walks in he demands Mike leave his prison. Mike insists they're on the same side, but asks why Kareem didn't tell him about Merle coming to the prison. Kareem reminds Mike he doesn't report to him and says he's going to run the prison his way. Mike reiterates they need to work together, as what Kareem does in the prison echoes on the outside. 

Kareem isn't going to risk his career to help Mike play fixer. Mike reminds Kareem of his own past indiscretions and says they can't fight on every little thing. Kareem agrees to segregate Merle, as the pair agree he's clearly in Kingstown for a reason. They're just not sure what it is yet. 

Mike warns Evelyn

Evelyn (Necar Zadegan) visits Captain Walter (Rob Kirkland) and screams at him for Robert Sawyer's (Hamish Allan-Headley) continued heavy-handed approach with the SWAT team. 

Mike tells Evelyn she needs to stop burning bridges and be smarter with her approach. But Evelyn is not going to stop because she knows Robert either killed or had Morrissey killed last season. Mike tells Evelyn if she keeps pushing she's going to cross a line, at which point Mike can't help her. Evelyn admits that scares her, but she's willing to die doing the right thing, just like Morrissey. 

Iris' secret 

Mike eventually finds Iris and visits her in prison. She thought she could get herself out. Mike tells her to just give the police her prints, but she can't, as they're connected to other crimes. 

Ian promises to help Iris by covering up any crimes she's linked to. She doesn't trust Ian, but he convinces her they're friends. Ian finally gets the information on Iris and tells her it'll never see the light of the day. She tells him that Mike can never know.  

On the drive home, Iris asks Mike if he was hoping she'd be gone for good. Even though she has nowhere to go, Mike just wants her to be anywhere but Kingstown.

New episodes of Mayor of Kingstown season 3 premiere Sundays on Paramount Plus.

Gregory James Wakeman

Born and raised in England but now based in Philadelphia, Gregory Wakeman has written for the BBC, New York Times, The Guardian, GQ, and Yahoo Movies UK, all while defiantly trying to keep his accent.