Netflix’s You season two review

A review of the second season of the Netflix TV series You.


Devyn Irvin

As I sit down to watch Netflix, I get a call from a friend. They ask what I’m doing and I reply that I am watching Netflix. “What are you watching?” I get asked. “You” I respond. I am met with an uncertain chuckle on the other side of the phone. This experience is not uncommon for fans of Netflix’s TV show You, which premiered Sep. 9, 2019. The direct name of the show sets viewers with an eerie feeling before they even begin to watch the show. This creates the suspense of the series, making it successful, and bringing fans back for season two.  

When season two of Netflix’s You dropped Dec. 26, 2019, it was one of the top trending topics on Twitter throughout the rest of the week. Fans were eager to see where the story would continue from the first season.

The end of season one set up the return of Joe’s ex-girlfriend Candace, who he allegedly killed, and left fans wondering about her and Joe’s history. Throughout season one, it was believed that Joe’s ex Candace was dead and killed by Joe. However, in the final minutes of the show, it revealed that Candace was not dead, and was now back to confront Joe. The end of the season also ended with Joe murdering Guinivere Beck and framing her therapist for the murder. He proved that he was capable of killing a woman who he had claimed to be in “love with”. 

Season two started with Joe Goldberg living in Los Angeles and using the alias to escape being found by Candace. Even with the excitement of the last season, and the anticipation for season two, the first few episodes of the season were somewhat uninteresting. It did not feel like a continuation of the first season, rather an entirely new series. While the first few episodes gave a different perspective and focused more on Joe, and his motives, they did not do much to answer fans’ questions about Candace and Beck.

This season is more focused on Joe, and his backstory. His past with his parents is shown for the first time when it is revealed that he was close to his mother, and endured an abusive father. Different from season one, viewers can sympathize with Joe and his tragic past. His relationship with his mother could be his motivation to stalk women in an attempt to “fix” them.

Even though it started slow, season two was not a disappointment. After the first few episodes, the show quickly picks up, when fans are introduced to Love, Joe’s new fixation, and eventual love interest. He convinces himself that he will not decide to stalk Love, just as he did to Beck in season one. However, he quickly fails and we’re shown that he is obsessed with the idea of being in love with any woman who he does not know. Joe does not see himself as having an obsession. He does not recognize that he is doing anything wrong because he believes that he’s doing it out of love.

As the season progresses, he continues to kidnap, murder, and stalk relentlessly. But we’re still rooting for him somewhere deep down in our subconscious. Most likely due to constantly hearing his inner monologue and justification for his illegal behavior. It was no surprise that another character was introduced that Joe could form a connection within an attempt to humanize him. Taking on an unwanted older brother role to his neighbor, Ellie proves that Joe is a compassionate and complex character, who is not entirely evil.

The surprise twist that Love was stalking Joe from the beginning, and that she was the one who killed Delilah and Candace was shocking and unexpected. Setting up Love as Joe’s equal forces him to confront the evil of his actions. 

Joe is quick to turn on Love once he realizes how similar he is to her, shows that he was never in love with her, but rather the idea of her that he made up in his mind. The end of season two follows the lead of the first season, ending with fans wanting to know more. Joe and Love are expecting a child, and have bought a house together. But just as we think they’ve found their twisted version of happily ever after, Joe’s obsession with the idea of a woman he doesn’t know, leads him stalking his next victim, his next-door neighbor. 

Love’s quickness to kill Delilah and Candace proves how far she would go for love. So, finding out about Joe’s new fixation may just be the exciting drama needed to bring fans back for season three.