March 3, 2024

To the excitement of their subscribers everywhere, Netflix released season two of the limited series “You” Dec. 26, 2019. Ever since its initial release on Sept. 9, 2018, the exciting crime drama has drawn a large audience of binge watchers.

The second season of “You” continues to focus on the main antihero, Joe, an obsessive stalker whose victims are always his girlfriends. This time he discovers a new love interest: a woman named Love, who also falls victim to his stalking in a whole new city.

While season one takes place on the East Coast in New York City, in this season Joe chooses to travel all the way to the sunny West Coast and live out his life of normalized deception and crime in Los Angeles.

Throughout the course of the series, Joe’s stalking and violent tendencies remain barely hidden from the other characters on the show, and the suspense of him being caught fuels the majority of the plot. 

The television show’s story continues its use of narration from Joe’s perspective, which causes the viewer to subconsciously root for him—a smart and engaging choice that adds a complicated element to the dynamic plot.

Although this change of scenery and atmosphere provides the show a brilliant opportunity to venture into new territory with a fresh setting and characters, the second installment of the show falls somewhat flat. 

The slightly repetitive plot of season two feels annoyingly similar to that of season one and, although a few changes have been made, viewers may find several of the beginning and middle episodes have a slow, plodding pace to them as there is little progress made until the final episodes.

This is not to say that “You” season two is completely void of some bright spots-—one of the best being the brilliant performances of lead actor Penn Badgley and lead actress Victoria Pedretti. Both Badgley and Pedretti take a mediocre script and shine through with convincing and often chilling performances in the Netflix thriller. New characters are also added throughout and they help advance the story in many  interesting ways. 

In addition to this, the show also ends on a high note with a dramatic and surprising final episode, which almost redeems the show. Sadly, this is not quite enough to make up for the previous episodes.

As Netflix prepares to renew the show, viewers can only hope they continue the strong acting and good plot twists that worked for this season and the one before it. 

However, it may be beneficial for everyone if they ditched the repetitive formula that can quickly cause the constant narration of Joe’s voice to fade into nothing but background noise throughout.

Elijah Hickman | CBU Banner

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