The premise of the show You constantly tackles one main question; What will you do for love? The series takes place in contemporary New York City and centralizes around one main character, Joe Goldberg (Penn Badgley), a brilliant bookstore manager living a simple yet fulfilling life. In the first episode, Joe comes in contact with Guinevere Beck (Elizabeth Lail), who is an aspiring writer and MFA student in the city. They briefly flirt at the bookstore, and Joe becomes instantly attached to Beck, focusing on her wit, beauty, and charm. He begins to stalk her online, spy on her while standing outside her home, follow her when she goes out, steal her phone, and eventually figures out ways to destroy the people closest to Beck in order to get closer to her himself.
The ten-episode series follows Joe on his journey to date Beck as he manages to grow closer and closer to her without her knowing who he really is. The show also weaves reference to his ex-girlfriend, Candace, in and out of the plotline. Candace had suddenly disappeared to Italy. Her character provides the audience a bit of background on Joe and how he handled his last relationship and the guilt he felt toward it. As the episodes progresses, Joe does more and more digging into Beck’s life and successfully manages to win her love and affection. Little does Beck know any of the disturbing things Joe has done to her and her own friends.
In general, the series is not like most media that involves stalking or murder. The show is filmed from Joe’s point of view with his own narration, resulting in the viewer feeling bad for him while rooting for the pair to end up together. After seeing the steps Joe takes to destroy the people around Beck, the viewer may feel torn regarding how they feel towards Joe. Personally, I feel that the way in which the show is constructed makes it more difficult for the viewer to feel sympathy towards Beck since the show uses Joe’s thoughts and point of view to stringalong the plotline. The series was creepy and disturbing but wonderfully executed. The series’ unpredictability and ability to keep the viewer alert for action kept me hooked. The end truly shocked me and left me feeling a little restless after finishing the entire series (in a good way!). I 100% recommend You if you are looking for something eerie to binge, and if you are ready to be surprised. You is a Lifetime series and is now available for streaming on Netflix.