After years of waiting, Bad Boys for Life finally arrived in theaters this weekend. Will Smith and Martin Lawrence reunited as Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett, respectively, for the first time since Bad Boys II hit theaters in 2003. But will this be the last time we see the iconic duo together on screen? If the mid-credits scene from the latest installment of the franchise is any indication, Sony has big plans for the future, as it's poised to become a family affair in Bad Boys 4.
Warning: massive spoilers ahead for Bad Boys for Life leading into Bad Boys 4. Those who haven't seen the movie yet and wish to go in clean would do well to turn back now. With that out of the way, let's proceed to the Bad Boys for Life mid-credits scene breakdown. The end of the movie sees a whole lot go down. We come to find out that Mike fathered a child with one of the movie's main antagonists, Isabel Aretas (Kate del Castillo). Her son, Armando (Jacob Scipio), as it turns out, is Mike's long lost son. Armando is oblivious to this fact, which is why he had no qualms about trying to kill Mike, as well as taking out so many of his friends and loved ones, throughout the movie.
However, during the movies' climactic battle, all is revealed. During Mike and Armando's fight, he learns the truth of his parentage. Isabel dies a fiery death, but Armando makes a bit of a dramatic character shift and helps Mike rescue Markus from certain death, while almost dying himself. Armando lives though, and he's taken into custody to answer for his crimes. The man murdered quite a few people, this includes Captain Howard. That's not the sort of thing that can be forgiven in the eyes of the law.
That brings us to the mid-credits scene itself. We see Mike making good on his promise to be a part of Armando's life, no matter how difficult that may be. Armando is locked in an isolated cell and, though not having an easy time, he says he's paying his debt. And it's a quite sizable debt. Mike brings with him news though, as he's holding a folder with contents that are never revealed and explains that there might be an opportunity for him to pay down some of that debt and asks if Armando would be interested. It appears that Mike has cut a deal of sorts that will see Armando cooperating with the law to fry bigger fish. That's the implication anyway.
So where does that leave us? Essentially, this sets up Bad Boys 4. Mike, Markus and Armando would team up to take down some bad guys. It's easy to see how this could become a large-scale action franchise and evolve into something quite new, much in the way the Fast and Furious movies did around Fast Five. This could very well be the tip of the iceberg, if all goes well.
Another element that will surely come into play in the seemingly inevitable sequel is AMMO. This division of the Miami Police Department was set up as a major fixture, but with Rita (Paola Nunez) now serving as Captain, someone will need to take it over. Perhaps that's where Mike and Marcus come in, and they bring Armando into the fold to take down a new threat alongside established AMMO members played by Vanessa Hudgens, Alexander Ludwig and Charles Melton. There is a big team element at play for the future of the franchise.
These plans are totally dependent on the success of Bad Boys for Life. So far, things are looking good on that front. The movie has earned better than expected reviews and it's looking to make a strong debut on its opening weekend at the box office. With that, it's not surprising that we recently learned Bad Boys 4 is already in development. We're likely not going to have to wait 17 years for the next one. Bad Boys for Life is in theaters now from Sony Pictures.