Review: You (Season 2)

Wonderfully creepy

Absolutely superb and leaves you wanting even more.

  • 10

The second series of the brilliant thriller series You arrived on 26 December, making for a fantastic boxing day treat. The new series is truly captivating and is one of the only shows you can truly focus, and binge watch for a solid 10 hours. This is due to its fascinating plot twists, cliff-hangers between episodes and the mind games played throughout. After the huge success of Season One, fans were awaiting the arrival of series two and it sure delivered above all expectations and was actually even better the first season.

Season one saw bookseller Joe Goldberg (Penn Badgely) stalk, woo and control Guinevere Beck, a wannabe writer trying to make it in the industry. At the end of the series he ‘accidentally’ kills Beck and frames the murder on her therapist. However, the season was left on a cliff hanger as Joe’s ex-girlfriend Candace (Ambyr Childers) who he left for dead arrives and seeking revenge. Joe attempts to escape Candace by moving to Los Angeles, changing the setting of the show from the gloomy streets of New York to the bright lights of LA. Joe Goldberg changes his name to Will Bettelheim as he attempts to change his ways as he doesn’t want to make the same ‘mistakes’ as he previously did. Making him feel love is something he is not allowed to feel as he cannot control his stalker tendencies. Ironically, Joe again falls for another woman this time named Love Quinn (Victoria Pedretti). Joe also attempts to rescue another neighbourhood child Ellie (Jenna Ortega) from Henderson (Chris D’Elia) a celebrity who abuses young girls and mirrors the grooming techniques of stories heard in the media.

This sounds oddly similar to series one of the hit show, however, it couldn’t be more different. This time around we delve into Joe’s childhood trauma and begin to understand him better and how he resulted in the way he is. It’s important to note that this does not mean his actions are justifiable or that he is redeemable: he is truly an unredeemable character. This is different in comparison to a majority of shows as we were meant to feel for the protagonist as we see their trauma, however, You reminds us that his actions are not justified no matter his own traumatic experiences. Penn Badgely plays an amazing Joe and mirrors the characteristics of Charles Manson, his ability to make the audience fall victim to his charms and while also being scared is beautifully done. Joe’s narrative itself is intriguing and full of deep denial, self-delusion and justifications for his actions, as we saw in season one. However this time we dive deeper into the delusions and see all Joe wants is to be a good man. Joe is still a villain, he is just not as one-dimensional as he was portrayed in season 1, he is a villain that has multiple different dimensions.

You brings issues such as abuse to the forefront this is seen as Henderson, a man that people aspire to be and see them as “the greatest man alive” as said by Forty Quinn (James Scully). Though Henderson (or Hendie as some people call him) seem amazing he is a true predator who justifies his actions as he believes the girls do not “remember”. He prays on young girls who want to make it in the industry like Ellie, a 15-year-old girl who aspires to be a filmmaker. The way You dealt with this matter was sensitive and real as the victims like Delilah (Carmela Zumbado) were scared to come forward to Henderson’s abuse as he is a “powerful white man”. It also portrays the backlash victims receive when coming forward, when Candace tells people about Joe abusing her, she is labelled the “crazy ex-girlfriend” as how can someone as charming as Joe do something so evil?

Compared to the ending of series one there is a huge plot twist which changes the whole way the season is viewed, after re-watching you begin to see things you never saw on the first watch. No spoilers but the ending is one of the best twists I have ever seen in a television show. Season two of was absolutely exceptional and leaves you wanting more.

You Series 2 is avaliable to stream on Netflix now. Watch the season 2 trailer below:


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Editor 2020/21 and a History student with a Britney Spears addiction.

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