Saturday, December 28, 2019

REVIEW: 'You' - Joe Finds Clarity About His Obsession with Love While Juggling a New Threat in 'Ex-istential Crisis'

Netflix's You - Episode 2.07 "Ex-istential Crisis"

To soothe heartache, Joe turns to ancient remedies, modern technology and drinking with Delilah. But one small slip-up could have major consequences.

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of Netflix's You.

"Ex-istential Crisis" was written by Kelli Breslin and directed by Shannon Kohli

Any relationship Joe has with someone can change in an instant. The moment that he perceives a threat to his carefully crafted narrative he will take serious and severe action to cut it off. His survival is all that really matters to him. He hasn't been perfect. In fact, he keeps a running tally of all the potential threats that could come back to haunt him at any moment. When he is arrested for having public sex with Delilah, he fears that everything will change if the police collect his fingerprints and DNA. That could then trace him back to so many crimes - namely Peach's murder. That is at the forefront of his mind. Before that moment, he is focused solely on trying to figure out what's best for him. He has long associated love with personal happiness. He has always figured that if he had love in his life he would actually feel whole. As such, it's a huge rejection of his entire sense of identity and self worth when Love, Beck and Candace try to escape. He has to take drastic action to prove that this is a functional relationship even though that reveals his true colors. They may learn too late. Love is warned that Joe is a killer. And yet, there remains the potential for him to be redeemed for his lies. Forty is still on his side and supports him much more than Love's rebound, Milo. Love's friends know the truth about Joe now. They know that he lied about his identity. They understand why Love broke up with him. However, they are still engaging with him on a personal basis. Gabe guides Joe on a spiritual journey in the hopes of getting to the root of his obsession with love. That goes much deeper than either of them was expecting. Joe is forever afraid of letting his guard down and exposing his truth to the people he wants to form lasting connections with. He doesn't want anything to disrupt what he hopes to build with his new life in Los Angeles. He is protective in that way. It comes from a sense of abandonment as a child. Again, that can't excuse his horrifying behavior. It may prove that he had no role models for what a healthy relationship looks like. Love and Forty don't exactly have that either. They may be quite dysfunctional because of their codependency. They have to admit that to themselves in order to even entertain the notion of finding personal happiness. Love may have had that once though. Everyone says that Joe has made her feel things she never did with James. That props up just how special all of this is. But again, all of it can turn in an instant. One moment, Joe is talking about just how incredible Delilah's piece about being raped by Henderson is. And then, the episode concludes with Delilah being locked inside a cage. Sometimes, it has to be staring Joe right in the face in order for him to recognize the threat to his standing in the world. Candace has to be at the wellness retreat with Forty or Delilah has to be standing in his storage locker seeing everything that Joe truly holds dear. Again, things may be closing in on Joe. Fincher recognizes that it's clearly suspicious how Joe was acting the night Henderson died. That's what prompted this investigation by Delilah. She always knew that Joe was weird. She saw that right away. Some people simply have no tolerance for Joe's lies. He has a lot of practice getting away with a lot. Some buy into it easily. Others know that they can't believe anything that he says. Joe still got close with Delilah and Ellie. He has helped them even though it has been an awkward dynamic as well. It was always abusive because he was spying on them and trying to be the parent he perceived they needed. And now, Delilah realizes just how dangerous the man she slept with is. She calls out for help and no one is there. That is tragic. It may show that the pattern is inescapable for Joe even with Candace out of the picture now. It's always inevitable that he will turn to murder the moment that his life is threatened. The body count only continues to grow as he risks it all just to preserve some ideal of what love could be. Delilah is still alive. Joe hopes he can make a clean break from this life just like he did in New York to ensure that he doesn't have to kill her too. It may not be that easy though.