Review: YOU

Netflix’s original series YOU continues the adventures of Joe Goldberg, now going by a new identity, across the pond in England. After murdering Love Quinn and faking his own death, Joe goes after Marienne in hopes of being with her and her daughter thus creating the perfect, loving family he so desperately craves. From that set up, we get the standard series with Joe finding a new woman, Kate Galvin, to obsess over while trying to convince himself that he has changed and will not follow his usual pursuits. Of course by noticing this new potential paramour, Joe falls into another group of rich, privileged assholes who annoy him to no end, and they all begin to be killed, as is expected.

There is a twist, or at least the tease of a twist, this time around. Someone else is the one actually killing the rich asshats. Someone who seems interested in Joe and his past exploits. This “mystery” in which Joe tries to find and reveal the ‘Eat-The-Rich’ killer’s identity as this mystery man is blackmailing Joe threatening to reveal his identity and destroy this second chance at life Joe has managed to arrange for himself. The first half to seven episodes of the new season plays out pretty much like the previous ones. Joe becomes obsessed with a new woman, her life gets in the way of them hooking up, bodies start falling around Joe, rinse and repeat. Eventually, even the attempted shift to a new killer or obstacle is revealed to be just a manifestation of Joe’s broken psyche.

Around episode eight, we learn that Joe has actually been the ‘Eat-The-Rich’ killer the entire time. He had a full on mental breakdown resulting in a hallucination of an entire another person in his mind. This break comes from him kidnapping Marienne after promising to finally leave her alone and having a personality split because of it or at least exasperated by those events. While I found the majority of the new season to be more of the same bland annoyance, the last three episodes were genuinely intriguing.

We are finally shown in explicit detail that Joe Goldberg is basically an irredeemable, psychotic, obsessive killer through his choices and actions in dealing with Marienne and the loose ends and obstacles that remain in his path of being with Kate. For a moment, there was even the legitimate possibility that Joe would simply kill himself in an act of mercy and understanding that he can only be stopped by his own hands. Of course, this is all undone by the end of the season as Joe survives his suicide attempt and is reunited with Kate but no longer holding back about his past or predilections. And since Joe’s interferences resulted in Kate inheriting her father’s vast, vast empire, she gladly and fully accepts him. The end of the season suggests that Joe and Kate are now some sort of power couple in which Kate will try to make the world a better place through her money while protecting Joe’s murderous tendencies which are used to further Kate’s agenda…somehow.

If you have enjoyed YOU up to this point, you will like this season four though there is considerably less sex and/or nudity on Joe’s (Penn Badgley’s decision) part. I will admit I am mildly curious what exactly the plot would be if the show continues. Not enough to watch when it premieres, but would put it on my queue…probably.

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