We owe the creative forces behind YOU a huge apology for questioning their craftsmanship this season by making the murder’s identity so obvious.
In the first half of the season, we were all like, we guessed it, we knew it was Rhys, that was way too easy to solve—but that was the whole point! YOU Season 4 Episode 8 put everything into focus, offering up a twist that many of us likely did not see coming, though, if we were paying close attention (as we all claimed to be) and followed the breadcrumbs, maybe we would have figured it out sooner. For those of you that are reading having cracked the case, or, at the very least, considered the turn of events, I’m impressed!
In short, Joe has been the murderer all along because Rhys, though a real person in this fictional world, is a figment of Joe’s imagination. His IMAGINATION. He’s a delusion that his mind conjured up after Joe became so committed to his new “good guy” identity that his conscious just rejected it and created Rhys.
It’s a lot to process for those of us who thought Rhys was real this whole time, including Joe, as the revelation finds himself questioning his sanity. He seems to have flat-out lost it—compartmentalized, blacked out, and forgot that he’s been murdering people left and right.
The episode was hands down the best in the series, with both Penn Badgley and Tati Gabrielle bringing their A-game to every twist and turn. And it was so masterfully executed that my head was spinning.
The reality is that there’s always been two Joe’s having an internal fight with each other, but this time, we’re simply seeing it happen outside of Joe’s head.
Looking back, the signs were clear as day like Rhys managing to go undetected around the city and sneaking into Joe’s house, Rhys not joining the group at the country club, Joe never speaking about his connection to Rhys with others, no one in the group ever speaking to Joe directly (and when he did talk to Rhys in front of them, he was so high that no one even questioned it), and most importantly, Joe always falling asleep or getting knocked out before someone was murdered so that his “other self” could take over. It also explains why Rhys has no idea who Joe was or what he was talking about!
It also makes so much more sense, especially the lingering questions of why Rhys would be so desperate to team up and go on a killing spree with Joe. Rhys is wealthy and has access to anyone in the world so why would he ever choose Joe let alone obsess over him? The truth is that Joe’s mind likely chose Rhys because they both have the same traumatic upbringings and yet one of them was able to fight through that pain and turn it into a positive while the other has never been able to get rid of those demons. Rhys is the man Joe has wanted to be, so he disassociated with the parts of himself that he disliked and turned the hero into the villain of his story.
I know this is a show, so getting into the mechanics isn’t exactly something anyone wants to do, but while jaw-dropping, the twist has some holes. It’s hard to believe that Joe would have the energy and mental capacity to simultaneously be the man lusting over Kate and prove that he’s a good guy, the dude trying to crack a murder mystery, and the man kidnapping Marienne and locking her up in a replica of his glass cage (where did he find the time and materials to build that?), all while somehow making it to all of his classes as Professor Jonathan Moore without anyone realizing that something was completely off with him. At this point, Joe Goldberg is a high-functioning sociopath that had everyone fooled, including himself. I’m exhausted just thinking about getting all of that done.
In the end, the reason Joe couldn’t shake Rhys is because you simply cannot escape yourself.
As it turns out, killing your wife, abandoning your child, and losing the love of the woman you’re chasing across Europe can do a number on you and, oh, I don’t know, break you and put you on a dark path.
As can kidnapping the woman you promised to keep safe and looking her up in a replica glass cage. Joe’s biggest fear was history repeating itself, but he was the one responsible for constantly getting into the same situations.
He did something so terrible to Marienne that he couldn’t live with it, so he had to block it out by creating this alter ego to embody the parts of himself that he hates.
The episode revealed how Joe has been slipping in and out of lucidity as he battled multiple personality disorder/dissociative disorder, so while the first half of the season was definitely Joe as Jonathan, there were parts we didn’t see where he became Joe, the man who kidnapped Marienne and locked her up and then forgot about her… and where he hid her.
Joe’s like a ticking time bomb, and when it all comes to light, Rhys is the vessel that’s laying it all out on the table for Joe, informing him that running from himself is going to be his demise. If he wants any shot at redeeming himself and saving her, he needs to fully accept himself.
It’s easy to get caught up in the twist, but it’s also important to note that in this whole maze, Joe did actually kill Rhys Montrose, the mayoral candidate, which he’s now going to have to find a way to cover up all while trying to undo the mess he made with Marienne.
In flashbacks, we saw Joe drug her at the train station rather than just letting her go free as he promised. He brought her back to some secret hideout before transporting her to the bomb shelter where he recreated the glass cage, where his love and care for her slowly dwindled as he battled with himself, the darker parts eventually taking hold.
Marienne attempted to hold it together as best she could for her daughter, and honestly, it was gut-wrenching to watch. Tati’s performance gave me chills as I could feel every emotion—every fleeting moment of happiness washed away and drowned with immense sadness and even greater fear, along with the hallucinations, hopelessness and mental deterioration that come with lack of food, oxygen, and contact with others.
Finally, she saw a light at the end of the tunnel when Nadia came down there having uncovered Joe’s big secret, but as much as I appreciated her for trusting her gut about the professor and pursuing the lead, I couldn’t help but think about the danger she was putting herself in if Joe happened to catch her. He’s already suspicious of her, and I really don’t want Nadia to end up in the cage right beside Marienne. No one has ever gotten out of there unscathed.
A part of me still has hope that the “good” Joe will do the right thing by both women, but that’s wishful thinking. The situation is too far gone at this point—they both know too much, not to mention he’s also pretty freaked out by the realization that he’s been living this double life unknowingly. It’s a lot to wrap your brain around.
The second half of YOU Season 4 has been quite a wild ride, and with two more episodes left, I can’t wait to see how they wrap it all up, including Joe’s relationship with Kate. I couldn’t help but let out an audible laugh when she suggested he was the only sane person in her life. Girl, you have no idea. Kate has been very different than the other women Joe has fallen for and pursued in the past—she’s outspoken, observant, level headed, so I expected a lot out of her, but she, too, fell for his charms.
As for the Eat the Rich killer’s motivation? It wasn’t self-preservation this time around. Instead, he believed each of the victims deserved it—Malcolm talked badly of Marienne (and treated Kate like crap), Simon was a fraud who was terrible to an artist while Gemma was onto “Jonathan,” so he felt as though she needed to be eliminated. It’s actually surprising that he spared Roald, especially after setting the fire himself! While some may question why Joe chained himself up and threatened his own life, it’s actually kind of brilliant if you think about it because it gives him an alibi and clears him of any wrongdoing. No one would actually consider that he’s the killer after seeing him nearly die as a victim as well.
If I were to guess, Joe’s next kill is likely Adam, who has tried to take advantage of vulnerable Phoebe, upsetting Kate in the process. She clearly wants Phoebe to think everything through and get the necessary help, but she’s been swept off her feet by a manipulative man who is taking advantage of her fragile state. If Joe kills him, I don’t think anyone would be mad— Adam has it coming, though his death would absolutely destroy Phoebe.
What happens next? How much longer can Joe bury the parts of himself before it all begins to unravel? Will people piece together that the nexus for the murders is Joe?
And how will he handle things with Kate and her father? The one thing I don’t want to happen is for Kate’s dad to offer Joe protection, or, essentially, yet another free pass. Joe has created plenty of messy situations before, but this has got to be the messiest and deadliest. The dude went on a killing spree, so he doesn’t need another “get out of jail free” card.
And it’s concerning how chill Tom is about the idea of a killer dating his daughter. Based on Joe’s track record, there’s no doubt in my mind that eventually, Kate would be his next victim once the “bliss” wore off and she began to uncover things about him that threatened his bubble. After all, look how much he cared about Marienne, and yet, she wasn’t spared from the cage, no matter how many times she reminded him that Juliet needed her and begged him to do better this time around.
The fact that he coldly informed her that “this isn’t Joe” was telling of his mindset whenever he slipped into that “other” person. But even after kidnapping her, he still cared enough to take care of her at first, so why did he go nuclear and stop feeding her? Is the severity of his personalities affected by Joe’s state of mind and stress levels? He remembered killing Adam’s bodyguard, so does he only have those recollections when the deaths are justified and in the name of self-defense?
I have so many questions.
And what will happen to Nadia? What’s her insane plan? The poor girl is bound to be collateral damage.
- I love how much Joe hates Joe. It’s almost as much as Penn Badgley hates Joe.
- Joe’s favorite Indian place was Rhy’s favorite takeout spot. It’s eerie how obsessed he was.
- Joe truly needs psychiatric help, but Marienne knows him well enough to know that he always weasels his way out of things.
Joe versus Joe seems to be the endgame. I guess, may the best Joe win… if that’s even a thing.
Who Is Rhys Montrose on ‘YOU’ Season 4?
YOU Season 4 introduced a plethora of new characters as it revamped the series with a murder mystery format.
*Warning – stop reading if you haven’t finished YOU Season 4 – Spoilers Ahead *
The shakeup made sense considering Joe Goldberg (Penn Badgley) uprooted his life following the fiery events in Madre Linda that killed Love Quinn and started over in London, assuming the identity of Professor Jonathan Moore.
Rather quickly, he got pulled into an elite group thanks to his co-worker and neighbor, Malcolm Harding (Stephen Hagan), who was the season’s first victim. Joe/Jonathan naturally despised Malcolm’s group, though he did find Rhys Montrose (Ed Speleers), an author running for Mayor of London, to be a bit of a kindred spirit. They came from the same broken background and shared many of the same views.
As the first half of the season unraveled, Joe sought out advice from Rhys on a handful of occasions, engaging in plenty of long heart-to-hearts with him, so it was kind of shocking when it was revealed that Rhys, as audiences have come to know him, was never real.
Rhys Montrose existed, yes, but he was never friends with Joe, nor was he the Eat the Rich Killer. The version of Rhys that Joe bonded with was a hallucination conjured up by his subconscious to protect himself and eliminate his darker, more deranged thoughts.
For much of the season, we saw Joe desperately trying to set himself free from Rhys’ grasp. At first, he saw him as public enemy #1, who somehow figured out Joe’s real identity and roped him into a murder spree by threatening to frame him for the deaths if Joe refused to participate.
However, once Joe realized that Rhys was a figment of his imagination, he began to look for ways to silence the evil little voice forever, while also trying to figure out a plan to cover up the death of the real Rhys Montrose.
Joe was tasked with killing the mayoral candidate, who he assumed at the time was the Eat the Rich Killer, by Kate’s (Charlotte Ritchie) father, Tom Lockwood. When he arrived at Rhys’ secret countryside hideout and tied him up, he was infuriated that Rhys claimed not to know who he was, nor would he admit to kidnapping Marienne (Tati Gabrielle). Eventually, Joe’s rage and anger took over, and he “accidentally” killed Rhys, which is when fake Rhys showed up and revealed that Joe was having a semi-psychotic break.
In the end, Joe’s suicide attempt ensured that his hallucinations were forever gone, though he did embrace the darkness he was trying so hard to snuff out, making him more dangerous than ever.
As for the real Rhys Montrose’s killer, he pinned it all on poor Nadia (Amy-Leigh Hickman), a fan of Rhys’s from the beginning, who flew too close to the sun in her attempts to bring down Joe Goldberg. If only she just listened to Marienne’s advice.
A huge congrats to the YOU team for pulling off yet another jaw-dropping twist, and to both Badgley and Speleers for completely immersing themselves in their dual characters.
Coffee Table News
Will There Be a 5th Season of ‘YOU’?
As YOU wrapped up its fourth season run on March 9, fans couldn’t help but wonder whether a fifth season was in the works.
And while there hasn’t been an official confirmation that YOU Season 5 is happening, the odds are definitely working in Joe Goldberg’s favor—what else is new?
The fourth season of the Lifetime-turned-Netflix thriller basically hit reset, throwing audiences for a loop with a murder mystery format surrounding Joe’s new life in London as Professor Jonathan Moore.
The action really ramped up in the second half of the season as Joe’s lies and secrets began to unravel and catch up to him, threatening his “European getaway” and any shot at happiness.
It’s actually quite amazing what the writers have been able to accomplish. They’ve managed to keep Joe’s character consistent yet provide several unique seasons that continue to keep audiences in suspense and shock with numerous well-executed twists.
And it definitely seems that there’s much more where that came from in terms of a fifth season. Again, there’s no official word that an additional season was greenlit, YOU Season 4 left the door wide open with possibilities, and Netflix would be a fool to get out now.
Spoilers below—stop reading if you’re not caught up on the most recent season of YOU!!
By the end of season 4, Joe managed to come out on top, eliminating Nadia by forcing her to take the fall for Rhys Montrose and Edward’s deaths. He thought his Marienne problem was taken care of when he carried her lifeless body to a park bench, but little did Joe know, she was actually alive. He fell for the elaborate and insane escape plan that she concocted with Nadia.
And after a failed suicide attempt, Joe managed to silence the voices outside of his head, personified by the hallucination of Rhys, embraced his darkness, and found a kindred spirit—sort of—in Kate, who he believes is the love of his life.
The two promised that they’d keep each other on the straight and narrow, though for Joe, that meant simply accepting his desires to kill as normal. And with Kate’s protections in place, he’ll be able to continue on as Joe doing what Joe does.
And thus, Joe is more powerful and dangerous than ever. It would be a shame if the streamer didn’t let writers, and audiences, explore this new side of Joe—the one that’s completely content with himself and no longer running from the darker parts.
There are so many unanswered questions that would benefit from another season. Can he really be the man Kate wants him to be? Will he be content with Kate and tame his obsessive nature? Can he cover up additional murders? Does having Kate on his side make it easier or will she eventually begin to pry and wonder? What if he can’t control his temper? Will Kate end up in a glass cage just like the rest of them eventually?
Then there’s Marienne, who is a loose thread since she’s alive and well. I don’t think she’d actively risk her safety to take down Joe, but she does owe Nadia, who risked everything and went out of her way to help free Marienne, only to get caught in the crosshairs herself.
There’s a lot of story left to tell when it comes to Joe Goldberg’s new lease on life, and while I’m not exactly sure how much more audiences can stomach or how much more blood needs to be spilled, I think Netflix has a duty to the people to end this series the right way—with Joe finally meeting his match and dying an excruciatingly painful death just like all of his victims.
That didn’t happen on YOU Season 4 as he once again got away with murder, so it just means that YOU Season 5 is almost a guarantee.
We’ll update this article with renewal or cancellation news once it’s announced!
You can check out all of our YOU coverage in the meantime!
YOU Season Finale Review – The Death of Jonathan Moore (410)
It all comes up Joe Goldberg…. yet again. But are we even surprised at this point?
How is it that men like Joe continue to find ways to get away with murder? And not only did he get away with it—he flourished. Joe is untouchable now, and that kind of power and protection in the hands of a soulless monster is more dangerous than anything we’ve ever seen before.
Joe went through plenty of emotions during YOU Season 4 Episode 10, and honestly, part of me wishes that when he jumped into the water, convinced that the only way to break the cycle is to kill himself, he succeeded. There’s no other way to stop someone like Joe—and that became clear to everyone around him, including himself. The devil on his shoulder, personified by Rhys, kept trying to convince Joe that he wasn’t the problem, but when he found Marienne lifeless in the glass cage because of what he’d done to her, he realized that there was no reality in which he could protect the women he loved. Eventually, a woman’s body was going to end up in his trunk.
It was actually big of Joe to come to the realization considering his constant desire for self-preservation. He was ready to do the one thing that was necessary to make the world a better place… and then he got a second chance. From a writing perspective, it makes sense. If there’s no Joe, there’s no YOU. And while the series has become pretty far-fetched and wholly unbelievable, I’m watching to see how far the creative forces—and Joe—can take this thing. I’m on board till the very end. How many twists can they conjure up that will leave audiences in a state of sheer shock?
Despite Joe’s problematic actions and behaviors, audiences still found themselves continuing to root for the antihero (thanks a lot, Taylor Swift) simply to see how far Joe can actually go.
The Love Quinn twist was undoubtedly the best one, but season 4, though not as enjoyable, did redeem itself in the second half with some unexpected bombshell reveals that made my head spin. We, and Joe, know he’s the problem, but I never imagined that Kate would turn out to be so problematic—she’s an enabler, turning a blind eye to Joe’s crimes because of her need for love and her desire for power.
She made a pact with Joe that they would keep each other on the right path and accountable, but I don’t think she realized she was making a literal deal with the devil. And this coming from the woman who thought her dad was bad. She flat-out said she likes broken and tortured souls, and her willing alliance with Joe proves it.
Joe went from a suicidal murderer to a hero in the eyes of the public in a matter of minutes, and with Kate by his side, they became a power couple. While it’s absolutely cringeworthy, it presents so many opportunities for coming seasons.
For starters, how much does Kate really know? How much did Joe confide in her?
Surely, she can put two and two together and figure out that her father was murdered right before her boyfriend confessed to being a murderer, right? And when he later framed Nadia for Edward’s death, faking the DNA results found on Rhys’ body which linked back to him, did she know she was framing an innocent girl? Or is she just that naive and desperate to believe that this relationship is what she wants it to be?
What’s even viler is that Joe came out to the public claiming to be a victim when he killed so many innocent women because of his obsessive tendencies. And what’s to say he won’t do it the same to Kate eventually? Though honestly, that’s on her at this point.
Following his failed suicide attempt, there was a turning point for Joe. He didn’t kill himself, but he killed Rhys, or rather, embraced himself fully—he’s no longer hiding and running from those dark parts, nor is he actively trying not to murder people.
Since the first season, we learned that Joe has always wanted acceptance—to love and to be loved—and he got that wholeheartedly with and from Kate. He opened up to her, divulged his deepest darkest secrets, and it brought them closer together, thus making him feel as though he wasn’t a bad person for his desire to murder. He fought so hard against them, but unfortunately, the inner battle was for nothing as, in the end, he’s just accepting and coming to terms with the fact that he is a murderer. And as mentioned before, and briefly seen in action, with Kate’s protections in place, it’s going to be a hell of a lot easier to get away with his crimes.
In what’s seemingly a full-circle moment this season, Joe shot up the ranks and became one of the elites that he so passionately despised.
However, that’s not even the most shocking part of the episode.
First off is the fact that Marienne is very much alive as she and Nadia somehow managed to pull one over on Joe. That’s a first… and likely a last.
Marienne was lucky in the sense that Joe cared about her deeply, so when he saw that she overdosed on pills, he was so distraught and immediately assumed the worst. His brain wouldn’t even let him consider another possible as the guilt washed over him.
While he was definitely onto Nadia in the end, I don’t think he ever pieced it together that Nadia helped Marienne devise an insane escape plane. The two of the pulled it off after realizing that if they can’t kill Joe, they have to kill Marienne. When Joe found her unconscious, she swallowed enough beta-blockers to slow her heart rate down and make it look convincing. And then once Joe moved her body to a park bench, Nadia ran up and gave her a dose of what I’m assuming was adrenaline to wake her up.
The moral of the story is that Marienne may be one of the few women to have escaped Joe! Though, I have no idea why she didn’t move far away with her daughter once she was finally free. What if Joe decided to check in on Juliette randomly and saw Marienne, realizing that she is, somehow, alive and well? Why risk it now?
Marienne and Nadia’s bond was so strong, I’m hoping that Marienne returns the favor and attempts to help Nadia in some way now that the poor girl fell victim to Joe, who forced her to take the fall for Edward’s death and Rhys’ demise.
The truth is, Nadia should’ve stopped while she was ahead because, as she said herself, Joe was an obsessive. It’s not entirely clear how he caught onto her—though she was super jumpy around him toward the end—though I’d guess it probably had something to do with the secret camera he placed in his apartment. Or maybe she just misplaced a few items which alerted him to an intruder.
Either way, Nadia’s caring nature got the best of her as she’s now spending life in prison. And there’s nothing she can say to plead her case as no one is going to believe a word she says about Joe, especially after he planted evidence—damning proof—in her apartment and became an international hero.
No matter what, Joe always finds a way to nab a clean slate.
He lives to see another day—but who will be his next victim?
We briefly touched upon what happened to Phoebe, and it turns out Adam’s death may have been the best thing for her as she moved away to teach and lived a fulfilled life. We don’t know what happened to Roald, and I’m kind of disappointed he didn’t play a larger role in the second half of the season considering the hell he created for Joe in the first half.
Did you enjoy YOU Season 4? Did you like the revamped vibe? Are you happy that we’ll see more of Joe’s shenanigans in the future or do you think the series should just end? Do you think we will see Nadia and Marienne again in the future? And are you more or less excited about the future now that he has Kate as a sidekick?
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