Season two of Good Behavior satisfyingly builds on the dramatic foundation of season one, and then some.
The Show: Good Behavior
The Network: TNT
The Genre: Drama
The Challenge: Give a show four episodes with which to draw you in, impress you, challenge you, make you feel something deeply. Four episodes for the chance to find out if you care what happens to the characters you’re watching enough to become invested in the story. If after all that, it does none of those things for you? Then no biggie. You gave it a good shot, and you can move on. But if you love it, you’ll be glad you stuck around.
The Premise: ‘Good Behavior’ is a drama series revolving around the lives of a con artist, Letty Raines (Michelle Dockery) and Argentinian hitman, Javier (Juan Diego Botto). Bad has never felt better as the story follows this modern-day Bonnie and Clyde and their dramatic lives on the run. Their constant run-ins with the law and inability to leave behind a life of crime define the core of their relationship and the story that is Good Behavior. The cast also includes Lusia Strus, Terry Kinney, Ann Dowd, Nyles Steele, and Joey Kern. It is based on a novel series by Blake Crouch, and created by Chad Hodge (‘Wayward Pines’).
Good Behavior’s second season has continued the dramatic appeal and enticement of the first season. With Letty’s son, Jacob (Nyles Steele), by her and Javier’s side, the stakes are higher, and life perpetually hangs in the balance. At the conclusion of season one, Letty was absolved of her previous crimes and given custody of her son. This, however, came at a price when in return she had to hand over Javier’s whereabouts to the authorities. Battling with this decision, she warns Javier to run, who finds himself running to her and Jacob and driving off into the sunset.
The second season picks up with this unique family dynamic and has continued to build on this foundation. Despite having a clean slate, Letty is unable to shake off what she does best, stealing and lying. Javier is still murdering for money because it means providing for his new family. Things get complicated when a dear friend is murdered, suddenly turning Javier from the hunter to the hunted. It seems nothing has changed in the lives of Jetty, even with Jacob by their side. As they struggle to provide a normal life for him, they find themselves right back where they started, in the midst of a scheme that will save them from being arrested. We thought season one was crazy, but season two has thrown us in for a loop we never knew we wanted.
Last season found Javier and Letty struggling to be a couple, while this season has been all about making it work as a family, with the occasional murder or two.
In the first season of Good Behavior, Letty and Javier meet under the unusual circumstances of their respective professions. While Letty is stealing, she catches Javier in the middle of a hit. This begins their tumultuous, yet sexy journey together that has somehow been based on a unique foundation of truth. Despite the lies, cheating, and murdering, the one thing that has bonded them is the reality of what they are capable of. This dynamic is their defining quality as a couple. As a “normal” couple, they don’t make traditional sense, but their chemistry and understanding of one another have the audience rooting for Jetty through and through.
Compared to the numerous relationships in television shows today, they are extremely unique, volatile, and sassy in a way that makes us crave what they have even when it’s so bad. Their strong imperfections, their attraction, and love for one another is unlike anything else. This, however, wasn’t enough to sustain them as a solid couple through the course of the first season. The unraveling we saw in the first season shifted gears drastically in the second season. It has been a welcome change as the couple has embraced the concept of family, making the show more relatable.
“Season 2 is about Letty and Javier coming to terms with who they are, and then deciding whether they’re OK with that.” It doesn’t take long for the twosome to go back to their old ways. What could be toughest to achieve, though, is hiding the truth from the perceptive Jacob.” -Chad Hodge
Coming into the second season on the cusp of the finale, priorities have significantly changed. The mood of the show revolves around trying to adjust as a family. This dynamic serves well to us as viewers because we desperately want this family to work and for there to be some semblance of a happy ending. The second season thus far has been an inner battle between Letty and Javier to move forward and do what is necessary to survive. It has been anxiety-inducing to watch this back and forth because they continue to live their old lives.
As viewers, it has us on the edge of our seats since danger lurks at every corner. The perfect idea of this family seems to be a dangling dream, waiting to be taken away. The storytelling by Chad Hodge this season has viewers invested more than ever before and is a testament to the amazing writing of this show. The shift in the family dynamic has set the tone for how the second season has beautifully developed so far. With every decision comes the caveat of how it affects Jacob and all of us.
Estelle and Letty’s relationship continues to feel like an emotional rollercoaster that may never end.
Just as things had finally settled between mother and daughter, after a challenging first season, we ended up right back where we started. Estelle (Lusia Strus) and Letty have shared a complicated relationship from the start. There has been a constant struggle between the two that has viewers frustrated, angered, and anxious all at the same time. Coming into the second season, there has been a shift in their relationship which has been comforting and humbling after such a tumultuous relationship. Estelle, in her deepest motherly concern, has always wanted the best for Letty, despite her past and wrongdoings. This concern, however, has taken an unexpectedly dark turn in the second season, perhaps damaging their relationship once and for all.
“Estelle has always, deep down, wanted what was best for Letty. And her heart breaks for her daughter that she cannot seem to get it together.” -Michelle Dockery
Having raised Jacob raised in the absence of Letty, Estelle feels a responsibility for his safety and well-being. As viewers, we don’t blame her and sympathize with her concern. It is a difficult notion to hand over care of Jacob to Letty after she has led a life full of crime. It doesn’t help that she chose a partner of equal stature. When Estelle helped to get Javier caught, there was a lot of anxiety and anger involved. In the context of the show, it tore apart a dynamic that was finally finding some stability. For the audience, it was heartbreaking and frustrating to see them face separation. There was a collective gasp when we realized Letty involved herself into the situation, thereby jeopardizing custody of Jacob. This ultimately fractures the fragments and pieces of her relationship with Estelle that come so close to normalcy.
The second season has dove head-first into the concept of family and what role it plays in the story. While the first season approached a more distant, hopeful perspective, season two looks to tackle the imperfections of relationships straight on, despite its beauty or flaws.
The allure and mystery of Teo’s presence this season has added paranoia and angst to the nth degree.
As season two’s plot began to unfold, we’re presented with Teo (Juan Reidinger). This introduction came in the midst of Javier feeling convinced that someone is out to get him. This paranoia and belief stemmed from the murder of his dear friend, Silk (Gideon Emery), who used to dispose of the bodies that Javier would bring to him. Taking it as a sign, Javier has been on the look-out for anyone that may be seeking him out. Things get confusing and complicated when Teo, his sister’s ex from long ago, shows up. He comes bearing gifts, love, and empathy for Ava’s (Maria Botto) loss, but it doesn’t seem to rub Javier or any of us the right way.
“He plays a big role in a mystery that gets bigger as the season goes on.” -Chad Hodge, discussing Teo’s character
Teo’s character is sure to wreak some havoc on the family, in ways that can’t be determined just yet. This adds to the allure of the show’s plot thus far in the second season as Javier and Letty now face a new challenge. There seems to be something off about Teo and his intentions, and the timing is all too coincidental. These assumptions come from the uneasiness we see in Javier’s face after seeing Teo. As viewers, our gut feeling tells us this guy is not good news. The anxiety continues to build in the moments when Javier is arrested, and Teo appears watching this unfold.
The overall mood of the scene shifted as dark; gloomy music took over. When he showered Ava’s girls with presents, there was a uniform “oh no, you didn’t” feeling amongst the viewers. The cinematography of the scene and the dark colors used in Teo’s scenes confirm the ultimate shadiness of his intentions. Watching Javier squirm and lose the light in his eyes, when Teo is around, has increased the overall anxiety surrounding his well-being and safety this season for us as viewers.
Agent Lashever was the villain we never knew we wanted.
Season one dove ever so slightly into the intricacies of Agent Lashever (Ann Dowd) and her role in the show. As season two has kicked off, her role and importance have somehow increased ten-fold. Once a looming threat in the background, she has now become front and center in Javier and Letty’s life. She single-handedly controls which way their lives may head, and does so in the most hilarious of manners. While she is gung-ho on keeping our lovebirds separated, we can’t help but love her quirky and strange behavior this season. Despite being a threat to the central characters of the show, she has brought a unique, comedic twist to their lives.
“A storm is starting to brew around them, the challenges become more intense, and life gets tougher. At the center of that storm: Agent Lashever and her lover/unwilling accomplice, Christian Woodhill, Letty’s former parole officer.” -Michelle Dockery
While she controls Letty’s ex-parole officer, Christian (Terry Kinney), any which way she desires, she does so in a way that will get her what she ultimately wants-Javier captured and in jail. While scenes with Teo always carry a dark vibe with them, scenes with Agent Lashever always seem to be light and carry an odd optimism to them. She has no empathy for Letty and Javier, and is willing to do whatever is necessary to bring them in. Despite that, we almost want to love her for her wacky and nonsensical behavior. Her crude humor, ability to not have a care in the world, and narcissism are executed amazingly by Ann Dowd. Agent Lashever’s involvement this season is sure to create hysterical drama and plot twists that will bring an angle of Good Behavior the audience has not seen before.
Final Verdict: Good Behavior’s second season dramatically executes a thrilling plot that fans can’t get enough of!
As we continue to dive deeper into the second season of Good Behavior, there is so much left to learn and discover. The characters find themselves at a familiar intersection where corners have to be cut and questionable decisions made to ensure a future together. Creator Chad Hodge has increased the stakes ten-fold this season, pulling us all into the world of Letty and Javier and investing into it (and we sure aren’t complaining!). Where the characters will go from here will determine the course of the lives they so desperately desire, as we do for them.
This season has brought an additional element of mystery to it, causing fans to be in constant panic mode regarding Javier. We don’t want anything to happen to him! We love Javier too much for Teo, or anyone to hurt him. As far as Teo goes, he continues to be a mystery thus far in the season, and his purpose, we hope, comes to light in the upcoming episodes.
The writing in season two by Chad Hodge and Blake Crouch has exceeded expectations and pulled in the viewers more than ever before. The direction they are taking us in season two has us 100% invested in the characters, story, and their lives. It is worth mentioning that Juan Diego Botto and Michelle Dockery have performed marvelously and beautifully as Javier and Letty. Their chemistry is to die for as they pull off the good and bad as a couple, leaving us always wanting more.
There is nothing more we look forward to every Sunday than seeing where Jetty is headed next in their Bonnie and Clyde-esque adventures. They give us hope that even in the bad, good exists, and boy is it all so sexy!