Ludicrous does not begin to describe Part 2 of Season 4 of You, which continues to stay on the side of absurd fun by the skin of its teeth. The show details the experiences of part-serial killer, part-book lover, and wholly sardonic Joe Goldberg (Penn Badgley) who has left the U.S. to cut a bloody swathe across England’s green and pleasant land. Joe is now an English Literature professor, Jonathan Moore, and deep in the toxic world of London’s swish set.
You Season 4 Part 2 review
Runtime: 46 – 52 minutes
Creators: Greg Berlanti, Sera Gamble
Cast: Penn Badgley, Tati Gabrielle, Charlotte Ritchie, Tilly Keeper, Amy-Leigh Hickman, Ed Speleers, Lukas Gage, Greg Kinnear, Brad Alexander
Storyline: Still in London, Joe is in a race against time to clear his head and name
Joe has feelings for gallery owner Kate (Charlotte Ritchie) who while reciprocating Joe’s feelings for her, is also desperately wishing to get away from her seriously rich and dreadfully controlling father, Tom Lockwood (Greg Kinnear).
Kate’s friends, who have not fallen prey to a serial killer who goes by the moniker of the eat-the-rich killer, are the quintessential bad batch. There is the sweetly batty Lady Phoebe (Tilly Keeper) whose dissipated American boyfriend Adam (Lukas Gage) is only interested in her money to bankroll his uniformly harebrained schemes.
Poor little rich boy, Rhys (Ed Speleers), whose memoir has created the perfect platform to launch his political career and sundry others sail by in a cloud of glitter and privilege. Paparazzi photographer Dawn (Alison Pargeter) has developed an unhealthy obsession with Lady Phoebe.
On the other side of the breadline is Nadiya (Amy-Leigh Hickman), Joe’s student, who channels her inner Hercule Poirot into uncovering the identity of the eat-the-rich killer—called so because of their fondness for the victims’ body parts. Nadiya realises her sparring with her classmate, Edward (Brad Alexander) is love actually and co-opts him as her Watson and supplier of ketamine.
Joe is being plagued by mysterious texts to do much murderous mayhem and he figures the only way out is to uncover his secret adversary. He is also troubled by visions/dreams/nightmares from former loves including Marienne (Tati Gabrielle), Beck (Elizabeth Lail), and Love (Victoria Pedretti).
The interior monologue, knowing jokes, bookish name drops, sudden violent deaths, shallow graves in the middle of nowhere, bone saws, drugs, sex and power play are all there but four seasons and 40 episodes later, it is all wearing a little thin. While not exactly a slog, (the episodes move by smoothly enough), You is beginning to feel like more of the same.
Having diverged drastically from Caroline Kepnes’ novels that the series is based on, You urgently needs to find some fresh territory to cover. Badgley’s comments on a new direction for the show, just like Joe’s beard-and-baseball cap disguise, flatter only to deceive.
You is currently streaming on Netflix
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