One of Netflix’s most significant hits returns for Season 4 in You. Based on Caroline Kepnes’ best-selling novel of the same name, the show has always asked the question, “What would you do for love?” We first met Joe (Penn Badgley), a brilliant bookstore manager, when he crossed paths with aspiring writer Guinevere Beck.
The answer was clear: He had to have her by any means. Using the internet and social media as his tools to gather the most intimate details and get close to her, a charming and awkward crush quickly becomes an obsession. This was because he quietly and strategically removed every obstacle and person in his way. Over the last three years, we have taken quite a journey with Joe. His previous life ended in flames when we last left him.
Joe Goldberg has fled to Europe to escape his “messy” past, adopt an entirely different identity, and pursue true love. But Joe soon finds himself in the strange new role of reluctant detective as he discovers he may not be the only killer in London. His future depends on identifying and stopping whoever is targeting his new group of wealthy socialites.
Out of respect for the show’s fans, I aim to keep this review short and sweet. Season 4 This season also gives us a far more self-aware Joe, now Jonathan the Professor, and I wonder if that’s also why the show’s charm has slightly diminished this season. His delusions about love and relationships were part of what kept you hooked. Although he still has his moments, this ‘healthier’ Joe might be less entertaining for some.
The bad guy is far less there, and for some, it might seem like effective character development. However, it’s different from what some expect from You. Thankfully, Penn Badgley’s performance knocks it out of the park. He knows the character inside out and has perfected the spaced-out look whenever we hear Joe’s iconic narration.
The writers focused more on the show’s suspenseful aspects this season instead of the psychological exploration of Joe’s character. This shift may cause some viewers to feel frustrated, as it has taken away some of the show’s unique edge. It’s more of a writing choice than a director or acting choice, and it pans out in the show’s final run.
Furthermore, watching Tilly Keeper, Charlotte Ritchie, and Ben Wiggins give exemplary performances is a pleasure. While some fans find it disappointing that the season is split into two parts, it worked.
Final Grade: B
Part 1 Of Season 4 of You arrives today.
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