by: Grace Whitman ’22 A&E Staff
The psychological thriller You premiered its second season on Netflix on December 26, 2019, and it has already drawn in millions of viewers. You’s main character, Joe, played by Penn Badgley, is a reserved bookstore manager in New York City during season one. Over the course of the season, it is revealed that Joe will go to any length to get the girl he wants. This all occurs while he is convincing himself his disturbing deeds are committed in the name of true love. Joe meets a beautiful girl named Guinevere Beck (Elizabeth Lail) at his bookstore and starts to obsessively stalk her via her social media accounts. You brings to light the dangers of social media, reminding you that it might be a good idea to turn your Instagram account onto private mode.
Even after a gruesome first season, millions of viewers have already tuned into season two. In the new season, Joe moves to Los Angeles, changes his name to Will and falls in love—although it is more like an obsession—with another girl named Love Quinn, played by Victoria Pedretti. Home to celebrities and countless wannabe Instagram influencers, LA was the perfect spot for Joe to dive into his victim’s life through social media.
As the first season ended, many viewers naturally hate the stalker and murderer Joe, but as fans begin season two, they root for Joe even though they know he is a serial killer. The fact that the show is from Joe’s point of view and depicts him as genuinely wanting to avoid any violence makes him more likeable to the audience. The way that he narrates the story for himself makes viewers feel more of a connection with him. Joe wants to change, and as humans, we root for a person who wants a second chance. You intentionally portrays Joe as a genuinely good and respectful guy, similar to how Love and Beck both saw him.
When first offered the role, Penn Badgley was hesitant to take on Joe Goldberg. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, he said, “I didn’t want to do it—it was too much. I was conflicted with the nature of the role. If this is a love story, what is it saying? It’s not an average show; it’s a social experiment.” It takes a whole new kind of method acting to tap into the mind of a serial killer on the screen.
If you are looking for a slightly scary yet thrilling drama, You is the show for you. On top of that, season two ends on a cliffhanger, leaving fans suspecting a season three is coming.