Review: You

January 25, 2019

 

It is apparent that Netflix knows what they’re doing when they title their new show You. The series is primed to go viral with its creepy narrative and the witty relevance of telling your friends I’m watching ‘You.’ Penn Badgley revives his stalker tendencies (spoiler alert Gossip Girl) playing book store manager Joe Goldberg, on the surface he is sweet and friendly but digging deeper we find something much darker indeed. He falls rather quickly for creative writing student Guinevere Beck played by Elizabeth Lail. Things go south when he begins showing up at her apartment, looking through her windows and taking her underwear, in which time our opinion of him suddenly becomes very confusing.

 

In the meantime, we learn a lot about Beck, who is a lost creative writer struggling to make her way in bustling New York. Everyone else seems to have their lives together, including her best friend Peach (Shay Mitchell) who’s controlling demeanour is slightly troubling. The equation quickly becomes clear, Beck is cute but too fumbling to catch our attention.  Joe narrating the show doesn’t aid the fact that we’re supposed to be repulsed by him, instead we fall for his boyish charm and he quickly becomes our favourite stalker. Everyone loves an unreliable narrator, or anti-hero in some sense. Besides, rooting for the bad guy is much more fun than rooting for the good—it creates more drama for us to sink our teeth into.

 

Adapted from the novel of the same name by author Caroline Kepnes the series is also brimming with millennial relevance, which is great for Netflix’s most active audience. It does however somewhat parody the lives of young people on social media. At times it can stray into the realm of unbelievability, when the lazy disguise of a hat and jacket is enough for Joe to become completely unrecognisable to Beck despite being only a few feet away. Additionally, Beck herself is inattentive to the point that it’s not surprising she is none the wiser to the hat wearing individual following her everywhere she goes. It is, however, important to check our omniscient viewer privilege whilst watching the series, before becoming completely consumed in wanting to shake her by the shoulders and tell her to pay attention.

 

If anything, apart from being a ridiculously binge worthy series, You makes you contemplate how much of your own information is out there for the world to see. How easy would it be for a real-life Joe to find out about you? Every bit as creepy as it is addictive You might make you want to close the doors on all your social medias, shut your windows, and stay inside. Luckily for us Netflix have confirmed the show for a second season, so at least you’ll have a way of keep yourself entertained whilst in hideout.

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