YOU Review: Robots are NOT Joe's Friend

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Bloody. Hell.

Pardon the pun, Henderson. R.I.P, and enjoy hell.

It didn't seem possible, but YOU Season 2 Episode 3, and YOU Season 2 Episode 4 were at a faster pace than the previous installments.

New Neighbors  - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

The series is darker and twistier than ever, but no less entertaining and admittedly hilarious, too. Joe has no right being so funny, but his voiceovers will make you chuckle a bit each time.

Family appears to be at the forefront of these latest installments. We delved right into the codependent bordering on toxic relationship between the twins, not to mention the almost paternal/fraternal role Joe has taken with Ellie, and to some degree, even Delilah.

What the second season has done so far, however, is given us more background on Joe's childhood. Via his dreams and flashbacks, we get to see, for lack of more sensitive terminology, the making of a monster.

Dad Friend  - YOU Season 2 Episode 2

The series is giving us a better understanding as to how Joe ended up so screwed up in the head. What's more interesting is the people who have sussed it out and read him well.

It takes like-minded souls or those who have experienced traumatic experiences in their life to figure Joe out, and it's a wonder it has taken him so long to find others who see through him.

Will, you are 100 percent unqualified to give me relationship advice.


No, he doesn't make himself the most accessible, but have those around him before not paid attention?

It remains amusing that as much unadulterated hatred Joe has for all things LA. Ironically, he loathes it and those there for being inauthentic, as if he's walking around as his true self. However, there is a level of genuine realism that he was unprepared for and catches him off-guard.

Bonding with Forty  - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

It's refreshing to have him sidetracked with other tasks and not solely devoted to every facet of Love's life. It almost gives the illusion that he's capable of being in a regular relationship.

It's an enjoyable kind of chaotic and harried as he attempts to maintain his new relationship with Love while engaging in other batshit crazy things.

The world of YOU has broadened delightfully with all of these other characters and things happening, and it suits the new direction Joe is attempting to head in.

Welcome to LA - Tall - YOU Season 2 Episode 1

It did not ring true when Joe claimed he was trying to start a new leaf and be a better person. His words about not wanting to engage in a romantic relationship with Love didn't match up with his actions of stalking her.

But, credit where it's due, he was trying to avoid engaging in a romantic relationship with her. He settled for being her platonic friend, so it's not as if he went cold turkey, but he fought off anything sexual or romantic for a bit.

It's not that I don't want you. We have a connection something deep, but the last time I loved someone, well, I can't risk repeating history. So really this is me protecting you by being your friend.


He couldn't fight off her advances, though. Unlike his previous situation, Love is the one who fell hard and fast for Joe and wanted to pursue something deeper almost instantly.

Despite his many warnings that he wasn't ready for a relationship, or that he wouldn't be good for her, she insisted. For Love, everyone is a little bit broken, but it doesn't stop some pieces from fitting together.

Love and Joe - Tall - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

She has no way of knowing that Joe's kind of broken is murdering people, including the women he loves.

Joe's a fascinating study. He's not a good guy, murder and stalking withstanding.

He's an asshole. But then, with the right motivations, he's capable of being good or at least appearing like it. He's mostly self-serving, but he often positions himself as one of the good guys.

Becoming a better person is way more aggravating than I thought.

Joe Voiceover

He's on this quest to be a better person, and he's trying to prove to himself (and to Love) that he's not some evil monster.

Hey  YOU  Season 2 Episode 2

I think, and maybe it gets lost in all of the Penn Badgley thirsting (which is fair) or the obsession with dark characters (which can be dicey), but that is why Joe intrigues people so much. It's easy to write off a person who does bad things as someone terrible.

Joe possesses a normacly that makes him all too real and familiar. He's not inherently evil. He has layers and depth, and it makes him all the scarier.

I would follow your brother, but I think you'd agree, I need to follow the unprotected 15-year-old first. 

Joe Voiceover

You can run into a Joe every day. And it's easy to get wrapped up in the non-threatening parts of him, that the dark qualities fade away into obscurity until they boldly confront you out of nowhere.

Lurker  - YOU Season 2 Episode 2

It's what makes the series a great, comical psychological thriller.

Even while engaging in grotesque actions, you can lose sight of how awful he is until it smacks you in the face again.

The misadventures of Joe resulting in him accidentally killing someone distracts you from the creepy, stalker guy who currently has a pair of his girlfriend's panties in a treasure chest buried in the wall with God knows what else now.

The robots are not our friends.

Joe's Voiceover

He put up a bit of a fight with Love. He enjoyed being in her proximity, and her showering him with affection, and sweet treats. Hell, she's a woman after my heart too, if she left me pastries in my locker every day.

Twin Problems - Tall - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

She confided in her friends that she was probably coming across desperate and shameless. She pulled out all the stops wooing Joe.

Someone chasing Joe instead of it being the other way around is unsettling. Love is a smart, beautiful woman who willingly walked into a trap she didn't know existed.

I'm definitely walking the line between desperate and shameless.


And he warned her off as much as possible, too. But, it's easy to see how their "friendship" would seem imbalanced. She showered him with all the love -- Love's love language is giving gifts, yes?

But then she wasn't getting what she wanted in return, so she was upset about it. It should've been so transactional, but it did put Joe in a weird spot.

Love  - YOU Season 2 Episode 2

He wanted to take care of the caretaker, so to speak, but in doing so, it gave her mixed messages.

It's almost like she was the one to wear him down, and his resolve gave, and given his history, it's bizarre that he got a taste of what he typically does.

His turning point was their first sexual encounter together. All it took was some light BDSM, and it convinced him Love has a dark side too, and she can handle him.

You're a different kind of woman, Love. This time will be different. I will never hurt you. If anything, we can heal each other. I will never take your cooking for granted again, and I will try my hardest to accept being in a damn thruple with your brother.

Joe Voiceover

He's not as afraid of hurting her anymore, and maybe if he did a little, she'd like it.

Love has been through some shit, and it's enough to convince Joe she can handle him, and he can put up with her baggage too.

And she comes with some baggage, but in such a raw way that it isn't overwhelming. Love is such a sympathetic character.

Her codependent relationship with Forty is a lot to deal with, but that and the rest of what she has going on makes Joe feel like a white knight when he's with her.

Love: It's Forty.
Joe: Can if wait?
Love: No, I ignored him three times last night. 

After everything that happened in NYC, he can hide behind Love by convincing himself he's on the path toward being a decent person. The crazy thing about it is, he's earnest in his attempts.

Jealously - YOU

He's trying.

It's captivating how he adapts to the person he's with and their needs. He hasn't projected as much on Love or assumed he had her all figured out, but he feels like she can save him from slipping into darkness.

Joe: You deserve better than another broken soul. 
Love: We're all a little broken, yet some pieces manage to fit together.

He's reliant on Love to keep him on the straight and narrow without her even realizing that's what her place is in his life.

He's right; Old Joe would have plotted to have Forty removed from Love's life. Instead, he knows that his relationship with Love will also include her obnoxious twin brother.

Bonding with Forty - Tall  - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

The line about being in a thruple was amusing because of the accuracy of the situation. Forty inserts himself into everything.

He's an expert cockblocker, and he's the combination of a child and a puppy. He's a lot of work.

Love alluded to a past where their au pair did something sketchy to Forty, and their parents must not be reliable. Love has been taking care of her brother for their entire lives.

Your brother is a sycophantic fame grubbing, Hollywood grabbing, has been.

Joe Voiceover

The codependency is disturbing, though. Forty is fond of Joe because of how Joe indulges him and helps, but he's also territorial of his sister.

Twin Problems - Tall - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

It can turn on a dime at any point in time. Joe had to come up with a plan for a weekly Sunday brunch with Forty and a group beach day once a month just to appease this man-child.

Forty gets upset when he's not included or informed on every aspect of his sister's life, and Love hovers over him like it's her job to keep him sober and OK.

You are one magnanimous mother fucker, and we're going to make one hell of a team.


The rest of their family dynamic should be interesting.

Joe has taken on Love's role as a caretaker for Forty, too. An inebriated Forty nearly derailed Joe's mission to dig up dirt and takedown Hendy.

Bonding with Forty  - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

We haven't found out yet what made Hendy tank his party to help Joe remove Forty. He was dodging Forty all of this time, so why did he care enough to do it?

Hendy is gone now, but there is more to the story with him. It almost seemed like Forty was involved in Hendy's sexcapades in his dungeon. So far, we know Hendy was into underaged girls, but who's to say he wasn't into guys, too?

Did this guy just tank his own party to make forty feel better about leaving?

Joe Voiceover

What if Forty saw something when he was down there? Hendy was willing to indulge Forty too much for it to mean nothing.

And Forty showed a violent streak with his outburst during the surprise meal with Love's friends.

Joe was right about Love colluding with her friends to get him to meet them. It was a Beck move.

She got away with it this time, but nothing good can come from Joe making any sort of comparison between Love and Beck.

Joe's flashbacks were informative. His behavior made sense after finding out the origins.

As the saying goes: monsters aren't born; they're made.

You're old enough to know that sometimes your mom accidentally tells a little lie, but I know you always tell the truth. Come here, Joey. Come here. Pain makes people truthful.

Joe's Dad

His father was an abusive, obsessive, possessive prick, so it makes sense that Joe simultaneously tries not to be anything like him while also exhibiting some of his traits.

Killer Joe - YOU

Joe thinks he treats women better than his father. He's no less threatening to them, and we've seen it. He has his father's violent streak when pushed to a certain point, and he also has the obsessive and possessive qualities too.

But his mother, while an abuse victim, was a philanderer and liar who likely slept with men for money. She was neglectful of Joe, too.

Now we get why he doesn't trust the women he's in relationships with, and why he assumes they're cheating on him all of the time.

Growing up I felt unsafe. Powerless.

Joe's Voiceover

It's something Will would rattle off to him if he were still in the picture.

Will was the laxest prisoner ever. What in the name of Stockholm had him so relaxed in a cage? He was unfazed by most of what Joe was doing.

He bided his time, never panicked, and instead earned Joe's trust bit by bit, reading him well, and manipulating him into releasing him.

Will: You do bad things when you feel trapped, or key, to protect someone, which we all hope we would have to courage to do that. To me, that makes you more good than bad. I think you're a good man. You can kill Henderson, but you're letting justice take its course. That's what a good man would do.
Joe's Voiceover: He's biased, but I hope he's right.

It was rather impressive. Will's smirk as he left with fake passports, and money, was telling. He seems like he's going to pop back up again at some point.

He spent his entire tenure in the cage, figuring Joe out well enough to worm himself out of the captivity alive. His observations were astute, and they did form some odd kinship/friendship.

New Dungeon  - YOU Season 2 Episode 2

Will served as a therapist and friend to Joe, and Joe took good care of Will considering the circumstances.

He called Joe out on his desperate attempts to be good. Joe's vigilantism entertained him, and he knew the real reason he was doing it.

He told Joe everything he wanted to hear, and it was true.

Will, listen to me closely. If you don't quit the faux shrink bullshit right now, I will know you are a bad person, and I have no trouble doing bad things to bad people


Will's skillset came in use when Joe embarked on his mission to take down Hendy. Joe claims that the only reason he's trying to save Ellie from Hendy is because of his need to be the type of person Love believes him to be.

Sister, Sister  - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

However, his treatment of Ellie isn't much different than Paco. He likes her, and he relates to younger people with troubled pasts. What he's doing for Ellie and Delilah is something he would've done on his own.

For all of Delilah's warnings against Joe spending time with her or her sister, she has still managed to accept him as someone in her life.

I'll just have to do the parenting myself.

Joe Voiceover

His failure to disclose information about Ellie and Hendy pissed Delilah off. She told him to "fuck off," but she still expects him to look after her sister.

New Neighbors  - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

It's an odd relationship they have; it's almost sibling-like.

She confides in him, and for his part, he doesn't judge her as harshly as you'd expect from a guy who makes you laugh out loud with his judgments of others.

It was not surprising when he felt the need to take on a parental role with Ellie, nor was it when he put spyware on her phone.

Delilah: It's only a matter of time before I Harvey the shit out of Henderson. I have rumors, and sources, and eventually, I'm gonna have evidence.
Joe Voiceover: Her heart is in the right place, I just wish I could trust Delilah to protect her own sister. More importantly, I wish I could trust Ellie. Full disclosure, I put some family-friendly spyware on the phone I gave her to protect myself. Crazy the lengths parents have to go to keep an eye on their kids these days. Now it'll help me protect her.

He took it upon himself to watch out after her, and it's these types of moments and this quality in him that balances out his bad with the good.

Ellie - Tall  - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

It's how he remains such a multi-dimensional character.

The ease with which Joe could insert himself into Hendy's world and his apartment is surreal. His awareness of how much he can get away with as a white guy is amusing. It's something almost all of the white males have pointed out multiple times: Will, Joe, and Hendy.

It's like Hendy's Id ate too much candy and porn and threw it all up.

Joe Voiceover

Hendy's kink room wasn't as horrific as it sounded, but the pictures of passed out girls he left under a stone was vile.

Joe's knack for getting into trouble and it escalating to the worst possible scenario is engaging. He started off trying to get enough information to give to Delilah so she can ruin Hendy as she swore to do.

Unfortunately, taking the pictures from his home bungled up the situation.

Delilah was right. He's a bad man who deserves to be punished. It's only fitting that she be the one to break the story wide open.

Joe's Voiceover

It was a relief to learn her cop friend did give the information to the sex crimes unit as promised. He seems shady, and when she gave him the information, I thought he would bury it.

Henderson - Tall - YOU Season 2 Episode 2

Joe tried to keep his hands as clean as possible, but his gestures weren't working. In true Joe form, he graduated to something more extreme.

In his defense, you were firmly on his side when he broke into Hendy's house after Ellie went there alone.

I can still be good. I just had a setback. Everyone can have a setback.

Joe's Voiceover

Hendy was a real slimeball. He knew how to manipulate young girls into thinking they were safe because of it being their idea to spend time alone with him.

It came right out of the pedophilic playbook. These last two installments were edge of your seat suspenseful, and the scenes at Hendy's house were evidence of it.

I found myself holding my breath when Ellie was at his home. Sure enough, he was dosing her juice with GHB, and when the only hero you have is a guy who isn't one at all, it's a total mindfuck.

No, no this isn't me. This isn't me anymore. I didn't do that. I didn't want to do that!

Joe Voiceover

You were rooting for Joe to take Hendy down to protect this teenage girl. It was a mini-celebration when he dosed Hendy, too.

He dragged him into that dungeon, and you knew that no matter what Joe's intentions were, his temperament would get the better worst of him -- it usually does -- and Hendy wasn't making it out of that room alive.

It's sad how abuse victims can recognize others like them, but in this case, it was those capable of darkness who saw themselves in each other and didn't like it.

Hey  YOU  Season 2 Episode 2

Joe wanted to get Hendy to confess, but Hendy went on about his terrible childhood and traumas that made him what he is as if it excused him being a pedophile.

He recognized the same in Joe. It was probably his attempt at getting Joe to release him (similar to what Will successfully managed to do), but instead, it triggered Joe.

Being attracted to really smart women is a double-edged sword.

Joe's Voiceover

He's terrified of being a monster, and he couldn't fathom being compared to a sexual predator.

I mean, he is one, but he's no pedophile. Once he ripped off his mask and revealed himself to Hendy, there was no way he'd be able to allow him out of that room alive.

Hanging Out with Forty - Tall  - YOU Season 2 Episode 4

Once again, he didn't intend to kill Hendy, but the result would've been the same. It's incredible how quickly Joe's mind works, though.

He effortlessly slipped into cover-up mode. He jumped to someone assuming it was a suicide attempt, and he went into action removing his DNA.

Last time, a jar of pee almost ruined him, and this time, it was a damn nosebleed.

The robots are not our friends.

Joe's Voiceover

The dark humor of this show is out of this world, and Penn Badgley is so gifted as this character, for whatever that compliment is worth.

He's creeptastic, but he also has a natural gift for physical comedy and exceptional comedic timing. Nothing should be funny about a dead pedophile, but the Roomba rolling through the blood pool mixing Joe's blood droplets with Hendy's was hilarious.

No matter what Joe does, he always gets himself into these insane situations and whatever could go wrong, usually does.

He's the worst killer ever.

Becoming a better person is way more aggravating than I thought.

Joe Voiceover

But he's savvy enough to barely pull things off. Like, how most of this took place with Ellie asleep on Hendy's couch upstairs, and how he had to get her out of the house to finish covering it up.

Ellie - Tall  - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

If anyone catches on to his role in the Hendy situation, it's going to be her. The girl is whip-smart, but then again, so is her sister.

Then, once again, he narrowly escaped being discovered when Delilah's cop friend stopped him for jaywalking.

The cop is still suspicious. Did he just happen to be patrolling Delilah's neighborhood? Who stops someone for jaywalking in the middle of the night? It's bizarre.

I can still be good. I just had a setback. Everyone can have a setback.

Joe's Voiceover

He has resolved the Hendy situation, for now. Something tells me they won't buy that the guy killed himself, and if it gets out that Ellie was there the night he died, and Delilah was one of his victims in that photo, Joe might have unwittingly made the sisters suspects in his murder.

Delilah - Tall  - YOU Season 2 Episode 3

But now, he has to deal with Candace's arrival. I'm betting she saw those pictures people were snapping of Joe trying to get drunken Forty out of Hendy's house, and she tracked him down that way.

It's no coincidence she has charmed Forty. She's inserted herself into his life as his new girlfriend. Am I the only one who thought Forty was gay?

Maybe his sexuality was intentionally ambiguous, so this moment would shock the hell out of us.

Candace's Return - Tall  - YOU Season 2 Episode 1

We won't be nearly as shocked as Joe when he comes face to face with her.

You Season 2 is positively THRILLING, and I'm enjoying the hell out of this ride.

Over to you, YOU fanatics! What were your thoughts on these two installments?!

You can watch YOU online here via TV Fanatic!

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Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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YOU Season 2 Episode 3 Quotes

I'm definitely walking the line between desperate and shameless.


It's not that I don't want you. We have a connection something deep, but the last time I loved someone, well, I can't risk repeating history. So really this is me protecting you by being your friend.