You Season 3 Ep 1 Review: Penn Badgley & Victoria Pedretti's blood curdling series starts off on a deadly note

Updated on Oct 17, 2021 12:47 AM IST  |  274.7K
You Season 3 Review
Penn Badgley reprises his role as Joe Goldberg in You Season 3.

You Season 3

You Season 3 Cast: Penn Badgley, Victoria Pedretti

You Season 3 Creators: Greg Berlanti & Sera Gamble

Streaming Platform: Netflix

You Season 3 Stars: 3.5/5

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"And They Lived Happily Ever After..." is ironically the title for You Season 3's first episode because diehard or even casual fans of the show are well aware of the red signals galore in store in this psychodrama series. This time around, the stakes are high for Joe Goldberg (Penn Badgley) as giving him a tough competition in the 'creepy stalker turned serial killer' department is the love of his life, Love Quinn, now a Goldberg (Victoria Pedretti).

Taking off months after where the previous season left us, Joe and Love are now married with a newborn son named Henry "Forty" Goldberg-Quinn in You Season 3. The 'few screws loose' couple are trying to live a "normal" life for the sake of Forty... we mean, Henry, and hence, have moved to a luxurious yet stuffy suburban home in Madre Linda, Northern California. Surrounded by judgy mom-influencers and successful, brashy neighbours with secrets of their own, Joe and Love are riddled with one too many responsibilities. Add in Joe's neverending lust for stalking tendencies, which rake up to 100 quite instantly in the third season when he's left infatuated by his next-door-married neighbour Natalie Engler (Michaela McManus).

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While before, Joe found it relatively easy to be a watchdog to his potential conquests, even with a cheap baseball cap disguise, the stakes, as I mentioned before, are multifold because even more intuitive to his actions is his "lovely" wife. Moreover, it also doesn't help that Joe finds it difficult to establish a relationship with his son, owing to his wound-fully troubled mommy and daddy issues from his childhood traumatic years. On the other hand, besides juggling a newborn and her philandering husband, Love is yet to properly grieve her darling brother, Forty's death, which isn't made easier by her always interfering mother, Dottie Quinn (Saffron Burrows).

Unsurprisingly, Penn and Joe are really a match made in cinematic heaven as the Gossip Girl alum brings in righteous levels of squirms to satiate our guilty pleasures. Hearing Joe say, "And then, there was you..." will never not irk you and in a third time's a charming moment, Badgley really plays the part to a t. The narration in season 3 continues to be as depraved and unsettling as you'd imagine in your head. In the final few moments of the premiere episode, there is one particular one-sided conversation Joe has with baby Henry which shows off our titular bats**t crazy protagonist's multi-faceted range of emotions along with the darkness screaming to be consumed and Penn does a fabulous job in making us understand Goldberg's frustration that's just a smudge away from a gory explosion.

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On the other hand, Victoria plays the juggling act with finesse as Love really has way more to deal with than Joe, simply because, I assume it won't be easy to well, deal with Joe. Pedretti interlaces Love's calm 'masked' demeanour with eventual spurts of anger as the concurrent match to Joe, probably even more scarily dominating. Moreover, Penn and Victoria's volatile chemistry is top-notch and even more flammable than the previous season. You're in tune with the utter madness of You, because of Joe and Love. And the irony behind Joe judging Love for her axe-induced tendencies is a cynical, witty metaphor.

As for the new players in You Season 3, we were introduced to Sherry Conrad, a famous mom-influencer aka "Never trust a Queen B" (a nice GG reference!), who acts as the perfect whistle to blow Love's carefully sealed lid off with her judgemental personality. However, the real game-changer comes in Natalie Engler (Michaela McManus), who is more straightforward than Joe's previous conquests and it makes sense why Joe would so intimately be attracted to her at such a fast pace. As for baby Henry, the only innocent being in the lot, it would definitely be one heck of a journey being born to serial killers.

ALSO READ: Penn Badgley's You gets RENEWED for another part ahead of Season 3's release

What made You such a must-watch is how creators Greg Berlanti and Sera Gamble have no intentions of subtlety when it comes to serious issues like cyberstalking and the damning effects of social media. They want you to understand the consequences which come from actions of privilege and how everyone isn't as happy and hunky-dory as they may seem or act out. In You Season 3's first episode, they're all axe hammering, especially with the 'deadly' conclusion which promises utter chaos in Joe and Love's life with cataclysmic consequences.

With such a blood-curdling beginning, we can expect nothing short of monstrous mayhem of bloody proportions in the rest of the 10 episodes of You Season 3. And to think books, libraries and handsome, gorgeous people were meant as a sweet escape! Oh, how "bloody" wrong we were!




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