“You” may scare you

Arcadia Hinton-Cooley, Copy Editor

Viewers of season one of the Netflix original series “You” had just begun to recover from the first ten episodes, a horrifying portrayal of the inner workings of the mind of a stalker, when season two came around. But the new episodes brought no relief, instead keeping its audience engaged through even more grotesque, disturbing, and brutal details of Joe Goldberg’s twisted life. 

The show initially left the events of the previous season untouched, with Goldberg living in a new city and focused on a different female that he obsesses over. The New York City background that was integral to season one is gone, and new characters naturally illicit a certain hesitance from viewers. However, details from season one slowly weave their way back into the storyline as Joe struggles to maintain his relationship with Love and goes down a darker and darker path as he does so. Season two goes even deeper into his complicated mind and life as a stalker and murderer. 

Viewers are drawn in through its horrific scenes that make them so disgusted that they want to keep watching, such as Joe’s finger being cut off and him putting a body through a meat grinder. This could be considered a fatal flaw of the new episodes– they gain substance through shock value rather than through the actual content. However, they also make season two perhaps more thrilling than season one, which could hardly be considered a drawback. 

The new episodes successfully craft Goldberg into the perfect antihero. His character is presented as a loving partner, attractive, smart, and above the superficialities that plague the world around him. However, he is also capable of great cruelty and commits heinous crimes time and time again. Viewers hate to love him, tied between rooting for him to get away with his crimes, yet also being disgusted by the injustice of them. 

“You” season two follows Joe through a series of gory murders that he just barely gets away with. The thrill of the chase is what keeps viewers watching, and this is both the reason for, and the weakest aspect of, its success.