YOU Season 4 Episode 5 Review: The Fox and the Hound
Seriously, how does Joe get himself into these situations?
We finally learn who the real Eat the Rich Killer is in the fast-paced YOU Season 4 Episode 5, and after many red herrings and segue ways, the truth is likely precisely who you’d expect: Rhys.
Rhys is far too clever for Joe, both calculated and righteous, which makes him a great adversary for a man who is very much the same.
Admit it, doesn’t a small part of you wish the two would team up and happily kill the wealthy and balance the scales a bit? They would both get to pretend that they’re doing good things while annihilating people left, right, and center.
The scenes between the two have always popped, and it speaks volumes that Joe found an instant kinship with Rhys well before he realized who he really was.
But before we got that fairly predictable Rhys reveal, Joe was left horrified and having flashbacks to Love when he saw Kate, a woman he’s developed some feelings for, sitting by Gemma’s body holding the murder weapon.
Joe: One thing, if we do this, once we start, we have to see it through together. Kate: As in, I don’t seize the first opportunity I have to pin it on you.
Joe: And I don’t abandon you either.
Joe Voiceover: And once I confirm it’s really you, I can do what needs to be done.
For a man with more bodies under his belt than balls, literally dropping a plethora of them in different zip codes, states, and now countries, he couldn’t even tamp down on his abhorrence.
But what Joe has in absolute abundance is audacity, gall, and gumption.
In moments like that, it hits you how much Joe genuinely tried to be good this time. Overall this season, it for once feels as if he was on a pathway to real change.
Can Joe ever be anything beyond what he inherently is? The season subtly explores this amid the whodunnit formula when everything since the second he left Marienne alone suggests that Joe could be capable of turning a new life.
Perhaps, that’s why it was much easier to root for him this season compared to others because we could genuinely acknowledge his efforts and how he got sucked into something beyond his control.
But isn’t that what often happens when your chickens eventually come to roost? They rarely come when you most deserve it, only after the fact.
A lot has gotten lost in the narrative this season as the murder mystery has taken over. Badgley’s nuanced performance of Joe was at its finest yet, and you can see growth and development with him in a way we haven’t witnessed before.
Joe isn’t a guy rationalizing his misdeeds to play hero as before. He’s conscientious about doing what’s right as best as possible with his situations and the cards presented to him.
Maybe he’s learning something now that the tables have turned, and he’s been experiencing what it’s like to be stalked firsthand.
Joe Voiceover: I’ve been here before. Of course, this would happen. Of course, this woman I’ve somehow fallen in with would be you.
Kate: I don’t know why I grabbed this.
Joe Voiceover: Can a sign of a corpse really still upset you? Or is this fun?
It was so interesting when he reacted as he did with Kate when he thought she was the killer. His interest in trying to protect her came from an earnest and real place for him, and the idea that she was the person behind it all the whole time messed with his head.
But it also didn’t take much for him to convince him that she wasn’t responsible for Gemma’s death, and he could believe that when he gave it the proper thought.
It’s a mark of growth that he didn’t fly off the handle or project all things Love onto Kate.
And when he came up with their plan to handle Gemma’s body, it was with a weariness of a man who is actually tired of this sort of thing altogether.
How are you this good at hiding bodies? Who are you?
But his most shining moment of the hour was how close to the truth he got when he made his case to Kate for why he wasn’t the killer as she initially suspected.
Kate has been an interesting love interest for Joe — though one where the chemistry isn’t quite there — because she isn’t one where it was rooted in the obsession that’s part of Joe’s more animalistic and baser instincts and urges.
He grew to care about her– and not just as some replacement or distraction from Marienne but rather a real development of feelings he didn’t anticipate.
The development of his relationship with Kate has been the most normal romance he’s ever had, dull even. His focus on protecting her has come from a genuine place, not part of some twisted delusion in his head.
Joe and Kate could actually be something real, in another life, another situation, another time.
With Kate, we’ve seen vulnerable pieces of Joe that feel real, not manipulative, strategic, or like bullshit.
That was real when he told her about his wife and how he had to leave his son. Sure, it lacked all the crazy details but stripped down bare, it was honest, and his feelings about that were genuine, too.
London really was supposed to be Joe’s fresh start. He left a child behind with the hopes that his son would have a much better life than he did growing up or Love. He left his son with a loving family so he’d have a real shot of nurture outweighing nature.
I’ve never met anyone like Kate Galvin. In another world, another life, I’d run after her, risk everything for her. But I can’t because I’m already in a relationship with you, Rhys.
And that’s bound to have its effects on Joe, and that was one of the first instances where you felt the effects of that for him. It’s another layer to Joe.
Everything Joe told Kate at that moment was so honest, and it’s no wonder it put her at ease but also piqued her interest in him further. She felt she understood him, and she feels understood by him.
And he wasn’t wrong about the things he told her regarding Malcolm and what drove him to cover it up as he did. When Joe gives voice to all that, it reminds you how he truly got randomly screwed by chance for simply being with the wrong people at the wrong time.
It’s comically cosmic.
By the power invested in my by God and Empire, I hereby sentence you, Jonathan Moore, to death.
And that’s what makes his entire ordeal as the hour progresses stressful and has you firmly rooting for him to get on the other side of things.
Joe has done unspeakable things, but this season more or less has served as his redemption, so the moment he’s staring down the barrel of a hunting rifle with someone as sadistic as Roald indicting him or hunting him down (even when we’ve seen Joe do the same), it actually hurts to witness.
The scenes even prompt you to utter words along the lines of “Joe doesn’t deserve this,” which is crazy to even think about.
Ironically, Joe holds fast to a form of nobleness that is unexpected the entire way through. As awful as he finds this batch of socialites, he also doesn’t want any of them to die. He’s determined to catch the real killer and, somehow, keep them safe.
His reasoning for potentially considering murder was only directed at taking out the killer before they could expose him or kill anyone else. Those reasons were considered with equal weight.
Joe’s issue with the Eat the Rich Killer extended beyond self-preservation, which is an intriguing place for Joe to be when given thought.
For as much as Roald was a total and utter tool and bully, Joe never considered taking him out for the sole crime of being a douchebag, something he’d done with ease as with Benji in YOU Season 1.
Giving into Rhys’ request would’ve garnered him favor and been part of playing a long game, with Roald as the collateral damage. But Joe didn’t give in to that, even to his own detriment.
You really are the Eat the Rich Killer. You hate them.
And it would’ve been easy to leave Roald there in the dungeon, especially considering Roald nearly killed him three times for the sport of it, but he helped — and helped Roald ahead of himself when it came to escaping.
It’s like a part of Joe recognizes that people are complex and layered. He shifted his views of what constitutes a “bad person” and removed himself from his self-righteous position of deciding their fate or doling out retribution.
Joe has realized that it’s not his place with the minor things, maybe even recognized that who is he to seek redemption while denying others that possibility?
I imagine this entire situation with Rhys has hit that point home. Joe has spent this entire first half of the season proclaiming, “we are not the same.” And ironically, to one’s surprise, by this midseason, the conclusion that sneaks up on you is that maybe he’s bloody right!
Rhys feels that he’s what is best for London, and he’s starting a movement. It makes sense that he’s the person who is in the wealthiest circles and close to everyone but hangs on to his roots as someone who resents and loathes the upper class.
He’s a man of the people, a virtual chameleon in that regard who straddles these two worlds because of his experiences.
He hates the rich, and he’s going to extreme lengths to balance the scales. He’s gotten quite poetic with it, too.
Rhys didn’t anticipate Joe. He thought he’d use him as his fall guy for Malcolm until he saw the potential and even a kindred spirit in Joe after he got rid of the body and likely from their conversations.
Rhys is looking for a partner, and that’s something that tracks. But instead, he has a new foe. It’s incredible how four seasons into this series, Joe is now positioned as the ultimate antihero, protecting the very people he, himself, often loathes most.
He’s right about how perverse that is, but it’s engrossing, too.
Rhys has the money, power, prestige, favor of the people, and he knows the truth about Joe. How on earth can Joe go up against him and take him down?
He’s also on borrowed time since Rhys has enough information and skill to frame Joe for all his misdeeds and bring fire and brimstone upon Joe at a moment’s notice.
It’s Joe’s move, and he has to choose it wisely, but what could that be?
Rhys made his official bid for mayor of London, and Joe has all this information he can’t do much with, and his friends and the woman he cares about are still in danger.
It sets up a great battle between Joe and Rhys for the second half of the season. Although, there’s no way of guessing where things can go next.
Will Rhys continue to kill people close to Joe? Did Joe mention Rhys’ name when Kate had to save him and Roald from the secret dungeon?
What is Joe’s standing now that he’s pissed off Adam and broken Kate’s heart in his effort to protect her from his past and genuinely do what’s best for her?
The Joe, Kate, and Rhys portion of it all is set up nicely, but the other characters still feel like background caricatures with little to offer.
And YOU has always done well with making their secondary and tertiary characters perfectly executed caricatures as social commentary.
However, most of them get lost in the plot and haven’t offered much but potential bodies to drop that we can’t even invest in.
Kudos to Tilly Keeper and Lukas Gage, who managed to do the most with their characters and screen time.
While I’m only passably interested in Phoebe’s earnest attempts to love and be loved by this man and Adam’s inability to break through whatever barrier far beyond his sordid piss-play kink that hinders their romance, it’s nothing more than a distraction until we get back to the more pressing and intriguing plots.
Roald went from barely registering as a character to emerging as a coked-up, raging psychopath as if he got tagged into the ring when it was time for his big plot point.
And Sophie and Blessing so far have been decorative and not memorable.
The supporting cast this season seemed promising when announced, but most have yet to amount to much, which is disappointing.
Kate and Rhys have been the only characters of the brood who have been able to match Joe in scenes. And they distance themselves from Joe’s academic duties and any arc related to it, which means we haven’t had nearly as much of Nadia, who has been interesting for most of the season.
Hopefully, we’ll experience the full breadth of what the remaining characters offer in the second half, lest they remain background fixtures with little substance or intrigue.
Rhy: It’s a shame. Clearly, you’re not the man I hoped you were. I did have a plan A before I knew who you were, to frame you for Malcolm’s murder.
Rhys: I suppose I could go back. I don’t want to, but sometimes things don’t work out with the person the way you dream. If you’re clever enough to get yourself free, I’ll see you back in London, and we can revisit this. Otherwise, goodbye, Joe.
If anything, with this shift to a whodunnit, in the series’ attempt to reinvent itself, Joe making a real go at redeeming himself as an unlikely hero up against a different villain, and the lack of effort with the other characters, YOU is showing its age.
The efforts are respected, and Badgley is always a treat to watch, but it may be time for Joe to hang up the baseball cap permanently.
I don’t know how much gas YOU has in the tank or where else it can go after this.
OK, YOU Fanatics, did you guess who the Eat the Rich Killer was? What are your predictions for the Joe/Rhys showdown? Do you think Joe and Kate can ever become a legitimate couple sans baggage?
How long before we see characters like Kate’s father entering the equation? Hit the comments.
Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.