Quarantine Post #50: YOU

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Twitter is a great place for recommendations. My Twitter peeps were talking 2 years ago about all things YOU. I didn’t know anything about the show prior to heading to Netflix and turning it on. But when I saw that Penn Bagdley was involved… I was thinking… “Okay… I will give this a try.” (Easy A anyone?) This had to be the first show that I was pushed to watch that I didn’t research first. I usually try to research a bit beforehand to see if I think it will be something that will hold my interests. Sadly, it is because of that misstep that I went into it thinking that it was a rom com because it was airing on the lifetime network originally. Boy was I sadly mistaken. As is usually the case with my posts…. Spoilers lie ahead.

Doesn’t he seem pretty okay? Like he is trying to work up his nerve to speak to her. If you were just looking at this then you would think it is pretty innocent.

There was a bunch of talk on twitter on how good-look Penn Badgley is and how much they love and empathize with his character Joe. Obviously, this also led me down the wrong path. The great thing is that Penn was out there talking about how not great of a character Joe is. (Now that intrigued me.) Interestingly enough, there were no spoilers online.

So imagine my surprise that this was NOT a love story. You is an American psychological thriller television series. The first season is based on the 2014 novel by Caroline Kepnes.  Joe Goldberg is a New York bookstore manager and serial killer who falls in love with a customer named Guinevere Beck (an aspiring writer) and quickly develops an extreme, toxic, and delusional obsession about her. To feed his obsession, he soon turns to social media and technology to track her presence and eliminate any possible obstacles that stand in the way of their romance.The second season follows Joe as he moves to Los Angeles and falls in love with local heiress Love Quinn and the delusional obsession starts all over. There has been a lot of comparison between he and Dexter…. (shoutout to all the people who have seen both shows.) Later, we will get into why there is no comparison between the two characters.

 Netflix packs a bunch into 10 episodes. Season three should be starting soon. I think in this post… I just going to talk about some things that either super surprised or seriously alarmed me. Because if I went by episode, I would just be telling you all about all 20. Here we go in now particular order. So let’s get to it:

SEASON 1

There is actually a BUNCH that takes place in the very first episode that is disturbing. And it sets the scene for all of the characters… For the life of me… I couldn’t get what was likable about Mr. Goldberg from episode 1.

The first thing that stood out to me was the fact that in the bookstore, prior to Joe speaking to Beck, you see her from his point of view. And right off the bat, there is something not right with his inner monologue. (His inner thoughts can be funny at times… and there will be a bit about that later.) He seems to want to take possession of her right off the back. Something about it makes me extremely uncomfortable. His labeling her a “good girl…” that stays in my mind. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xyNYkd2kLHs) There is also a bit where she comes to pay for the book and does so with a debit card. Joe takes that to mean she wants him to know her name. Even writing that sends chills down my spine. I didn’t even want to think about when I had been doing the most benign thing and someone took it to mean something more. (*Shudder*)

Here’s a more creepy approach….

Joe has a load of characteristics that would win people over. He’s handsome, witty, well-read and charming. Maybe this is why a this story needs to be told. Everyone that may do you harm, doesn’t always “look” like a monster. I never understood what that meant anyway… His inner monologue tends to throw you off because he is so intelligent… but then it cuts to a scene where he is doing something dubious… and creepy. Then I remember he is not the knight in shining armor here. Thanks to this show though…. I have take several internet security precautions… (probably still not enough though).

The next thing that probably should have creeped me out… but then didn’t was the fact that he went home afterwards and looked up all of Beck’s social media. Social Media changed my life and the life of everyone I knew when I got Facebook in college. (Back when it was only for college students.) With the advent of social media, I think I have become accustomed to a certain level of stalking. It has changed social interaction (for the better remains to be seen.. but it is here.) You know more about people you have never met than you ever used to. It has gotten to the point where I’ve met people who think it is strange if a person has no social media. Don’t get me wrong the scene gets creepier but not because he looked at her Facebook, or Instagram. The information Joe finds there about Beck leads him to looking up where she lives… getting her address and ending up outside her apartment. (This was where I had to investigate my social media and be careful about what I post. Also had to make sure my security settings were strong.)

It is sad that in today’s society… finding out about people you meet online is not uncommon… but when does it become stalking?

So what does our main character psychopath do? He decides to show up to her house. For a woman that lives in NYC… why didn’t she have window coverings? (That is a thing that my friends point out in every horror movie…. WHY DO YOU LIVE IN A GLASS HOUSE????? WHY ARE THERE NEVER ANY SHADES???) But our creepy man character ends up outside of her apartment watching her have sex with her significant other, Benji. We watch through Joe’s eyes, the sad sexual encounter that leaves Beck wanting more… and taking it in her own after Benji leaves… We watch Joe pleasure himself while standing across the street peering into her window. It is all gross and voyeuristic. Joe’s obsession takes a turn when Benji arrives… Benji (who is admittedly not great…but there is not a character that is exceptional in the bunch…. maybe Paco.) ends up with a target on his back. He is who Joe sees as standing in his way of getting to Beck. The issue is Benji isn’t all that interested in Beck which anyone with eyes should have been able to see. They would have fizzled out on their own. But the flame is ignited…. and Benji doesn’t stand a chance.

Shades!!! Blinds!!! Something ma’am.

Joe also ends up following her around her college campus. (Those aren’t necessarily know for being super secure, which I didn’t realize until I watched him traipse around her all day.) People made jokes about how Joe’s character does very little to disguise himself and that a person should notice him following her. However, I am not entirely sure that I agree with that assessment. Joe’s ability to blend into plain sight was also unsettling. I think the thing that put me over the edge was him coming to her apartment (to break in, I am assured.) But meeting the handyman who allows him access to her apartment just by saying he was her boyfriend. SMH. So she is blocks away at work and on campus and has no clue there was an issue with her apartment or that someone is in it. He is in no hurry because he knows her schedule; he followed her around campus the other day. He stumbles onto her MacBook (and while I have Apple products… I am typing this post on my MacBook) I snapped to attention. He basically finds her MacBook. Apple people know that you can see texts with on most of your devices (from other apple people… I am too boring for someone to do this.) …. So here is Joe… in Beck’s apartment, reading all of her texts to her friends. Texts about him. Everything about the scene gave me the creeps…

Ugh…. it still gives me the willies.

Of course… Beck returns to her apartment… and feels that someone has been there looking through her stuff. I just want to scream at the tv. “HE’S STILL IN THE HOUSE!!!!!!” Joe hides in her shower… Luckily (Read: this is television so she’s not going to discover him….) she doesn’t see/find him. She is actually standing in the bathroom with Joe behind the curtain. She also reaches in and turns the water on him…. I felt great when she makes it out of there alive. I found it odd that her building manager… with today’s technology… didn’t inform her in some way that there had been an issue and people in place.

It was weird when he bumped into her on a drunk night out with her friends. What we know as the viewers is that it is no accident. He watches her interaction between them… the other odd thing is that while we know he is delusional…. there are periods when his thoughts on a subject… are correct. Beck’s friends aren’t great. Joe presents himself as being nearby offering to make sure she gets home safe. Beck falls onto the subway tracks, and he saves her. They decide to take a cab home and that is when Joe strikes by stealing her phone. (Here is where the creepy settles in again. Joe can anticipate her next move… she will buy a new phone and automatically assume that her old phone will be shut off. Joe, in his inner monologue disputes this. We find out…. and forgive if you already knew this because I did not, but her old phone is not disconnected from the cloud. (SHE NEEDS PASSWORDS!!!! I am not sure how much that would have helped. It is really the last resort in my mind.) Essentially, Joe keeping her old phone gives him full access to everything she does with her new phone due to it automatically synchronizing with her old one.

Let’s go back to the target on Benji’s back. He is the first “obstacle” in Joe’s way. So to speak. But Benji doesn’t view him and Beck as being in a relationship. (I had serious questions about this… like… Is he being unfaithful? Or was Beck just knowingly along for a ride that she knew was going nowhere.) Big mistake. You would think that would help him but it seems to just upset Joe more. Joe wanting to know why Benji doesn’t appreciate the gem that is Beck… (Since this is the first episode… Joe has only bumped into her twice. So he knows absolutely nothing about her.) We all know the feeling of digging someone from far away and then getting to know them is a total letdown. Joe lures Beck’s philandering boyfriend Benji to the basement of his shop, hits him in the head with a mallet, and locks him in a plexiglass book vault. Joe is not sure what to do with Benji, who is a drug-addicted trust fund baby and desperate to be freed. After obtaining a video of Benji hazing a fraternity pledge to death, Joe gives him a coffee laced with peanut oil, and Benji dies from an allergic reaction. I really thought he was going to let Benji go.

Joe’s plan to win Beck over doesn’t go according to plan right away. Joe doubles down on his efforts to convince Beck that he is “the one” for her after finding out that she is still having sex with other men in order to get over Benji. Joe overhears Beck telling her friends that she is not completely sure about Joe, calling him a “maybe”. Enter Peach, a friend of Beck’s… the next obstacle for Joe. So to speak.  Beck’s wealthy friend Peach is suspicious of Joe. The dynamic of the power struggle between Joe and Peach took me by surprise. It was wild to realize that Beck (unknowingly) is the object of affection between two psychopaths. When you listen to the inner monologue of Joe…. his thoughts about Peach are SPOT ON…. but you also get that he is familiar with dangerous and crazy because he lives at that intersection. Joe sees that Beck has made weekend plans with an older man she calls “The Captain” and lies to her friends about it. A jealous Joe follows her to a Charles Dickens festival in Nyack and soon learns that the man is her father, Edward, who she had previously said was dead. It is Peach who learns that Joe is in Nyack, which forces him to reveal himself to Beck. BECK, THIS IS THE SECOND TIME THIS MAN HAS SHOWED UP AT A PLACE HE IS NOT SUPPOSED TO KNOW YOU’D BE. Peach continues to be suspicious of Joe and manages to get in between Joe and Peach.

Joe seeks a way to neutralize her. Peach makes a show of introducing Beck to a famous literary agent, but when he hits on Beck and tells her the negative things Peach said about her, Beck blows up at Peach. Peach fakes a suicide attempt and while Joe can see right through it but can’t get Beck to see the same. (If she could, she would be more suspicious of Joe.) In accessing Peach’s laptop Joe comes to realize she is infatuated with Beck. Knowing that Peach will always win Beck’s attention, Joe follows Peach on her morning run in Central Park and hits her over the head with a rock. (Prior to this… we see Joe don his signature stalker cap…. and try to follow Peach on a run… He is out of shape and can’t keep up. You wonder if he gives up on the idea but no.) Later, Joe learns that Peach is alive.

SMH…. Yeah man… This scene is rife with what seems like acknowledgements of the kind of person Joe is.

A recovering Peach is staying with Beck and she banishes Joe. Joe explains to Beck that Peach is in love with her and trying to keep Beck dependent on her. Joe secretly follows when Peach whisks Beck off to the Salinger family estate in Greenwich. Peach invites her and Beck’s old friend Raj over. They all ingest MDMA and Peach attempts to initiate a threesome with Beck and Raj. Beck turns down her advances and leaves the room to text Joe. Joe, however, is on his way there. Beck confronts Peach about the kiss and leaves, after which Peach discovers Joe in the house and pulls a gun on him. She accuses him of stalking her, and Joe reveals all that he knows about her. They wrestle for the gun, and Peach is killed. Joe types a suicide note on Peach’s computer, leading detectives to believe that Peach shot herself. He gets away again!!!!

The shocking thing is… Joe’s relationship with his neighbor’s son, Paco. Paco is a character that doesn’t exist in the books. But that doesn’t stop his story from being hella interesting. Paco lives with his mom, Claudia, and her boyfriend Ron. Just like Peach, there is not a lot that is likable about Ron. He verbally and physically abusive to both Claudia and Paco. Joe is great with Paco which is jarring. Paco spends a lot of time with Joe either at the bookstore or on the steps outside his apartment. Claudia and Ron are usually heard arguing in the background. But he also sees through Joe’s facade.  Ron knows that something’s wrong with Joe. He often calls Joe “sick” and “a freak.” Paco is at the end of his rope… when he decides he is going to drug Ron. Joe revives him, but the unhinged Ron beats him up pretty badly… Ron doesn’t want Paco to have anything to do with Joe. (I was annoyed with Claudia… because this man is in your house belittling your child about liking to read. I wanted her to do something before he killed her… and left Paco to deal with this maniac.) Claudia in the hospital, and Joe kills him to protect Paco. And while Ron was pretty detestable (I didn’t shed a tear over his death…) that doesn’t make Joe a great character….

Beck and Joe’s relationship is on again off again mostly because of his jealous nature. Since I am older, I understand that Joe places people on a pedestal. (Aside from being a delusional, killer.) I remember finally getting a guy that I had adored from far away… when I got in the relationship…the rose colored glasses come off. I had to view him as a person that had flaws. And I needed to remember that I had to deal with them realistically. In Beck’s case… it becomes dangerous when Joe realizes that she’s not perfect. (I mean… he met her at the bookstore… and deemed her perfect because of an author she is looking for.) Beck starts asking questions about Joe’s past relationship… and I knew he didn’t wake up and start offing people…. he had done it before. Joe doesn’t want to reveal anything about his past relationships or his ex girlfriend Candace. We are told through a flashback… Candace cheating on him with Elijah, whom Joe subsequently impulsively pushes to his death from a building after confronting him. Beck does her own recon though but it turns up nothing… She disappeared off the face of the earth and there is no one that heard from her again. Joe discovers that Beck did have an affair with Dr. Nicky (her therapist after Peach’s death), which she finally admits before telling Joe she loves him.

Clued in by something Paco says, Beck discovers Joe’s hiding place in the bathroom ceiling. She is horrified as she finds her old cellphone as well as Benji’s and Peach’s, in addition to other disturbing mementos which he has kept. When Joe realizes what Beck has found, he locks her in the book vault.

Joe explains to Beck his reasoning for murdering Benji and Peach, and relates it to his childhood mental abuse at Mooney’s hands. She appears to empathize with Joe and seems grateful for his actions. Beck lures Joe into the vault and manages to lock him in, revealing that it was all just an act to get him to open the door. Still trapped in the basement, she calls out to Paco, who thinks she knows about Ron and leaves. (I wonder… what effect his time with Joe has had on Paco? Or Ron for that matter. I am not sure. ) Joe escapes the vault and kills Beck. Four months later, Joe has used Beck’s writing to frame Dr. Nicky for all of Joe’s murders. Claudia and Paco move to California. Joe is stunned when Candace comes into the bookstore, telling him they have unfinished business. (Blew my damn mind… and his too since he thought she was dead.)

Season 2

In the second season, Joe moves from New York to Los Angeles to escape his past, and starts over with a new identity. But old habits die hard. I know that there were a lot of people that were pulling for him to suddenly turn over a knew leaf…. He meets a series of people, including his neighbors Delilah and Ellie Alves, and Forty Quinn. (Forty having been my least favorite person in this season….) When he meets avid chef Love Quinn, sister of Forty, Joe begins falling into his old patterns of obsession and violence. As Joe attempts to forge a new love, he strives to make his relationship with Love succeed at all costs, to avoid the fate of his past romantic endeavors. Using the name Will, he secures an apartment and gets a job in the book café of a trendy family-owned grocery store, Anavrin. There he meets Love Quinn, a bubbly local who works in the kitchen. A nervous Joe resists her advances while befriending Ellie Alves, his 15-year-old neighbor. After Ellie coaches Joe to create an authentic social media presence, Love takes him on a food tour of the city to get to know him, and he finds himself very attracted. In the first episode, everything seems fine mostly. (which for me…. was a red flag in itself.) But things don’t go that well with Love at first…

Joe struggles to resist his attraction to Love, he befriends her self-absorbed twin Forty, an aspiring writer/director/producer who plays at managing Anavrin. Joe’s attempt to reconnect with an icy Love backfires, and she argues with Forty about his career aspirations. (Forty was fucking shiftless…. I couldn’t stand him.) There is a mysterious visitor that comes to his apartment and prompts Joe to visit the real Will, whom he has locked inside a plexiglass vault in a rented storage unit. Joe recalls how seeing and then stalking Love led him to find an apartment near hers and get a job where she works. So right off the bat… he is back up to his old tricks. Joe recalls his arrival in LA, and meeting with Will, a man who sells clean identities. Joe knocks out Will, locks him in the vault and assumes his identity. Will’s visitor, Jasper, cuts off the last joint of Joe’s pinky finger when he does not have the $50,000 Will owes him.

YOU LIED TO US!!! SAID YOU WOULD BE BETTER!!!! LIES!

Joe spies on a lunch between Love and her three friends: Lucy, a Hollywood agent; Sunrise, Lucy’s girlfriend; and Gabe, Love’s pansexual best friend. Love catches Joe in a lie and is upset, but they later mend fences and agree to be friends, as Joe is genuinely afraid he will hurt her. Joe lures Jasper to the storage unit and kills him, and a guilty Joe apologizes to his vision of Beck. After having his finger joint reattached, Joe dismembers Jasper’s body in the Anavrin kitchen and puts him through the meat grinder. (I almost couldn’t take it. SO GROSS.)

Joe’s blossoming relationship with Love is challenged by Forty’s neediness, but Joe at least manages to win over Love’s friends. I understand that Love and Forty are twins but goodness…. he seems to have no boundaries and not care that she has a significant other… even if it is Joe. (And I have hung out with plenty of twins that don’t do this.) Joe accompanies Love to a wellness retreat organized by her parents for their anniversary. Forty arrives with Candace, who is hellbent on exposing Joe for the psycho he is. We actually get to see what it was Joe did to Candace. Candace recalls attempting to leave Joe, but then finding herself his prisoner. Thinking he accidentally killed her, he buries her in a shallow grave, but she later awakens and crawls out. Candace’s presence puts Joe on edge, which is not helped by Love’s dysfunctional family dynamic. 

Candace puts Joe on notice, and he soon learns that Candace has convinced Forty to adapt Beck’s book into a screenplay. (OMG). I am sure it won’t be long before people figure out what really happened to Beck and her friends. After catching Candace in a small lie, Love hires a private investigator to follow her. Candace appears at Joe’s apartment while he is out, so he goes to her place at night to eliminate her. Meanwhile, Candace breaks into Joe’s apartment, but Love is waiting for her. Love has learned Candace’s identity and troubled history, and Candace counters with the truth about Joe’s past. Love confronts Joe, who convinces her that he fled New York to get away from obsessive Candace, and that her darker accusations are lies. Love breaks up with him anyway, but Forty insists Joe keep his job. After breaking up with Joe, Love rebounds with Milo, her late husband’s best friend. Joe tries to get into the dating game by downloading an app for book lovers, only to get disappointed with flawed dates. (Lucky for those girls.)

Joe is in another situation where he is taking care of a neighbor and a younger child, Delilah and her sister Ellie. Ellie’s older sister Delilah, a reporter, tells Joe that she was drugged and raped at age 17 by the well-known comedian Henderson. Joe catches Ellie hanging around with Henderson, and vows to protect her from the predator, having already surreptitiously installed spyware on her phone. Looking for dirt on Henderson, Joe bluffs his way into the comedian’s house party. Forty tags along to pitch a project to Henderson, but has a drug-fueled meltdown. Joe sees kindness in Henderson before he takes Forty home with him and summons Love.  Forty tells Joe about a kinky secret room Henderson has in his house. From the vault, Will helps Joe break into Henderson’s house. In the secret room, he finds Polaroid photos of unconscious women, including Delilah. He takes them with him and then leaves them at Delilah’s doorstep for her to find so she can expose Henderson. Joe learns that Ellie has discovered and disabled his spyware, and is going over to Henderson’s place. From the other room, Joe watches Henderson drug Ellie’s drink, so he doses Henderson as well. Joe tries to elicit a confession, but accidentally knocks Henderson down the stairs and kills him. (Again… as with Ron… I am not sure I felt any type of way about Henderson’s death… but I mean…. this still doesn’t make Joe/Will great. The group attends Henderson’s funeral and later Joe comforts Delilah, who is upset that Henderson’s transgressions will never be made public, and they have sex. Though initially determined to be a suicide, the police now believe that Henderson’s death was a murder.

Delilah thanks Joe for suggesting she write an article about her experience with Henderson, and they end up drinking, having sex on the street and being arrested for it. Fincher, Delilah’s cop “friend”, refuses to help them, so Forty uses his connections to bail them out. e. Fincher’s suspicions about Joe’s involvement in Henderson’s death prompts Delilah to search his apartment. She finds the storage unit keys, and is taking pictures of the vault when Joe arrives, tipped off by his nanny cam. He locks her inside, but says he will let her go the next day after he has safely left town. Forty arranges a self-kidnapping (my goodness do I hate him…. and like I get that he is a victim but he is just unbearable), and he and Joe are locked in a hotel room to polish Forty’s script, assisted by Ellie. Joe is uneasy but realizes that he will only leave on time to escape before Delilah’s release if he helps them. They go over the script, and Ellie suggests they rewrite it from scratch. Forty gets frustrated and escapes from the room. Joe follows him into a bar, and Forty drugs him with LSD to help the creative process. (I was like…. WHAT??????????? You drugged someone… WTF.) Love finds Joe’s farewell letter. Joe tries to stay sane while Forty works on the script, but hallucinates and loses time. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5MwLJjMJ7M&t=2s)

This episode has a lot of fun or humorous things… but there are still things that are disturbing.
It is sad because I believed that Delilah was going to get away. I really believe that he was going to let her go… like Will.

Joe reconciles with Love, who convinces him to stay in LA, and Forty finally finishes the script, deducing correctly that Beck’s ex-boyfriend killed her in a crime of passion. Forty confesses to Joe that as a teen he blacked out and murdered his au pair lover. The next morning when he wakes up, Joe races to Delilah before the handcuff timer can go off, only to find her dead inside the vault. Joe tries to retrace his steps while under the influence because he does not believe he murdered Delilah. Suspecting Will, Joe calls him in, but he is in Manila as promised. Joe learns from Calvin that he came to Anavrin with Forty to get some groceries. Joe learns from Forty that he dropped Joe off to “visit Delilah” and then Forty called Candace. Candace and Forty argue, but in examining her video call from Forty, Candace sees Joe and the location where he was dropped off. She arrives at the storage unit to find Joe standing over Delilah’s body in the vault, and locks Joe in. She calls Love to prove to her that Joe is a very dangerous man. Love arrives and Joe, believing he is a murderer, confesses everything to Love, and apologizes to Candace. Love then murders Candace and professes her love for Joe. Love reveals to Joe that she made him fall in love with her by meticulously studying his past. She also admits to murdering both Forty’s au-pair and Delilah. Joe’s image of Love is shattered as he understands that he is “her Beck”.

This turn blew my mind…. and I am sad, that I did not see this coming.
The fact that Joe’s ideal woman was shattered… even though she is just like him… also BLEW ME AWAY..

Love then explains that she has a plan to give them and Forty a way to build a real family: she will implicate Ellie in Henderson’s murder but then have the Quinn family lawyers get the case closed, and also stage Delilah’s death as a suicide caused by the backlash from her article. Joe is tempted to kill Love but stops after she reveals she is pregnant with his baby. Joe finds Ellie, reveals Delilah’s fate, and sends her away with money before Child Protective Services can come for her.  Convinced that Joe was Beck’s real murderer, Forty tries to save Love from him. . Forty confronts Joe with a gun at Anavrin but is shot and killed by Fincher. Love uses her family’s connections to clear the way and gets Forty blamed for Henderson and Candace’s deaths. Joe and Love move into a new house, and Joe’s obsessive patterns resurface when he reveals his interest in their new female neighbor.

So…. Earlier I mentioned there is no real comparison between Joe and Dexter… Both shows are about serial killers… yes… but that is really where the comparison ends. The one thing I find funny is everyone was clowning on You for using voice overs (Joe’s inner monologue.) Saying the show is not as dynamic without them. Funny enough, it is not the first show to do this…. and I don’t remember anyone saying it about Dexter. Dexter’s inner monologues… were really about the same… kinda creepy… and sometimes humorous.

Dexter is also coming back for another season after an 8 year run. Fun times. But lets compare the apples and oranges. From the outset of the show… Dexter lets us know about his dark passenger… and that he’s a serial killer. He leans into it. (He is a serial killer of other bad people….) but he is who he is and his inner monologue doesn’t shy away from it. There is no sugar coating about what he does or what he is. His job as a blood splatter analyst for the Miami PD allows him to scope out his next victims. And then he hunts them down. (I remember seeing an interview with Michael C. Hall… where he talked about the audience of Dexter is made to feel like accomplices in his actions… so they are constantly hoping he….. and by extension them… don’t get caught. I found this notion interesting.) Dexter’s killings come out of planning and calculation. There is nothing random about his attacks which is why he is able to stay under the radar for so long. At a young age, Dexter felt homicidal urges directed by an inner voice he calls “the Dark Passenger”; when that voice cannot be ignored, he “lets the Dark Passenger do the driving”.

Dexter considers himself emotionally divorced from the rest of humanity; in his narration, he refers to “humans” as if he is not one himself. He makes frequent references to an internal feeling of emptiness and says he kills to feel alive. He claims to have no feelings or conscience, and that all of his emotional responses are part of a well-rehearsed act to conceal his true nature. He has no interest in romance or sex; he considers his relationship with his girlfriend (and eventual wife) Rita Bennett to be part of his “disguise”.

Sometimes, I wonder what it would be like for everything inside me that’s denied and unknown to be revealed. But I’ll never know. I live my life in hiding. My survival depends on it.” -Dexter Morgan

Joe, on the other hand, doesn’t see himself as a serial killer… despite having a number of victims. Joe does know how to interact with others and unlike Dexter, his relationships are not all for show. He can navigate social situations and cues pretty well.  Joe can be selfless when it comes to his friends such as taking care of Paco and Ellie. But in the end, Joe is also extremely selfish and is more than prepared to hurt others to get what he wants. He commits many horrific crimes and takes and ruins others lives throughout the course of the series. There is no one in the series that he meets that is better off for knowing him. In the first season, whenever Joe would do something reprehensible, he would always think of a justification for his actions and excuse them with it. (I think this is why it is the most creepy. How many men have I met like Joe already….? SHUDDER.) This usually took the form of Joe telling himself that what he was doing was in Beck’s best interests for example murdering Beck’s boyfriend Benji and claiming it was because he was a very neglectful spouse. Joe also has extreme anger issues (usually his murders are emotional outbursts) as seen when he murders Elijah Thornton as revenge for Candace cheating on him. When Forty Quinn repeats what Beck said when breaking up with Joe he attempts to strangle him, just as he did Beck.


Sometimes we do bad things for the people we love. It doesn’t mean its right it means love is more important.
-Joe Goldberg

I can see why people would want to compare these two characters. However, I see Joe as a bit more dangerous… The way he wiped out everyone around Beck and then eventually Beck herself… all while telling himself it was what was best for her… becoming the judge, jury and executioner still weighs heavy on me.

… Yes… yes, you are.

Anyways… if you have seen the show… let me know your thoughts. I would love to hear them. If you haven’t seen You… (Or Dexter…) hop on that. Until next time folks.

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