The end of the world, again

"The End of the F***ing World” returns with a beautifully written season two

Julia Wolfe, Staffer

Back again after a year and a half hiatus, the Netflix original “The End of the F***ing World” reached viewers with its second season on Nov. 5, 2019. The series was created based upon a comic created by Charles Forsman.

The End of the F***ing World, a British television show created in 2017, was popular as soon as it hit Netflix. The ending of the first season, abrupt and shocking, was supposed to be the one and only season according to the creator of the show, Charles S. Forsman. Two years later – and by popular demand – the second season aired Nov. 5, 2019. Fans were not disappointed.  

The first season had 8 episodes, ranging about 20 minutes each, and in total could be watched in a matter of two hours. The dialogue itself was very deadpan, and the way the characters speak in the beginning of the season is very robotic and inhuman, to highlight the stunted emotions of main character James (Alex Lawther), who initially believes he’s a psychopath with a murder fantasy 

Alyssa (Jessica Barden), full of teenage angst and spontaneity, meets James. She clearly has her own set of mental issues, which are displayed from the get-go: she struggles with her family and feels isolated and distraught when dealing with everything she’s supposed to value. 

Together they venture around various parts of the UK on a road trip, making disastrous and almost always dangerous decisions every step of the way.  

Despite the short episodes, by the end of the first season, you feel very close and connected with both of the main characters. The audience never knew what happened to James and Alyssa until season two came out, and everything was explained.  

Along with the mysteries of the cliffhanger in season one explained, season two included a new member that the audience had the opportunity of psychoanalyzing: Bonnie (Wunmi Mosaku). She had just as great of a traumatic upbringing as the other two, if not worse. Her mental instability is explained thoroughly throughout the first two episodes and she is set up as the antagonist of the season.  

Throughout both seasons of the show, the ideas of death are used ironically and in almost a humorous manner at times. The way that the characters fall into the grips of death constantly and remain relatively scotch free is hilarious as you’re watching the scenes play out.  

Another beautiful part of the show is the relationship between James and Alyssa: you can’t help but love how their flaws and differences bring them together in this unconventional yet beautiful manner. In season two, the way James addresses his feelings for Alyssa are much healthier and show how he has grown as a character since the first season.  

 The most important idea in the show is mental health. The way each character is raised is explicitly shown in the show as an explanation as to why each character is the way they are. Throughout the series, each character on the show has a clear impact on the others, and the way they deal with their emotions and motivations are really interesting to watch play out.  

Overall, The End of the F***ing World has been a very interesting show to see play out. The different points of view paired with a refreshingly new plot gives the show a charm other shows can’t sustain. Viewers can easily watch the show in just a few sittings, and the subtle humor thrown is the cherry on top. I would recommend this show to any person interested in a suspenseful TV series that will make them laugh and cry all within the span of a couple episodes.