The acting (lead and supporting) in this show is next-level and surpassed all expectations.
For a love story that is so explosive, within it lies a hint of relatability that really draws you in.
The writing and directing is A+
The stellar soundtrack literally sets the tone for the entire season adding the perfect touch to every moment.
With Letty and Javier having dealt with so many issues already, it’s tough to think what could be next for them.
We didn’t get enough out of Ava’s storyline, especially towards the end as her character appeared to be shady.
TNT encapsulates basic human desires and struggles in Good Behavior–and we can totally relate.
In its sophomore season, Good Behavior managed to blow our minds, slay every episode, and left us wanting more. Thanks to the creative minds of Chad Hodge and Blake Crouch, we were thrust back into the chaotic world of Letty (Michelle Dockery) and Javier (Juan Diego Botto) once again. Over the course of ten episodes, this drama series unpacked the events of the season that preceded it while looking ahead to the future. The season focused on the turbulent nature of Letty and Javier’s love story–a very complicated and dark relationship while exploring Letty’s desire to be a good mother and create a family. Unfortunately, hitmen, murders, acid trips, and the like prevented them from taking the straight and narrow path to a “normal” life.
The beauty of Good Behavior this season lies in its impeccable storytelling, riveting acting, and addicting plot. The story was pieced together beautifully by Michelle Dockery’s portrayal of Letty, who demanded the screen with her every move. As a character who often teeter-tottered between the roles of protagonist and antagonist, Letty’s journey this season was pivotal to appreciating the essence of Good Behavior. Her counterpart, Javier, phenomenally played by Juan Diego Botto, shone as her partner in crime and exemplified perfection (apart from the hitman thing), in every single way. Together, the two commanded the storyline and took us on a whirlwind journey of love, deceit, and murder. Alongside them, was a stellar supporting cast that took the reins of the story into their hands, and proved to be just as crucial in the story’s progression.
For a show so deeply rooted in its characters, Good Behavior took a step further this season to highlight human emotions, needs, and wants in a way that hasn’t quite been done before. When you’ve spent most of your life conning/murdering, how do you find recluse from that? This is precisely the question Good Behavior oh so poetically answers this season–and does a damn good job of it.
The secret to Good Behavior’s success? A hypnotizing, unconventional love story–plain and simple.
While the first season focused on establishing some semblance of a relationship between Javier and Letty, this season dove head first into the depths of it. No apologies, no warnings. Just raw, passionate love and the dark truth that surrounded it. The journey of these two characters set up the foundation for the second season so much so that we were invested in its outcome every step of the way. And while the overall idea of such a relationship ever actually working is quite unrealistic, that is not the idea we get caught up in–and that’s what you call excellent storytelling.
Letty: I make life worse for you! I am always the problem. Why do you wanna be around me?
Javier: Yes, you’re a problem, but so is everyone.
Letty: Just let me leave you.
Javier: No. We have done that. And you always come back, and I always come back.
While Javier and Letty struggled to make it work, there was something magical and beautiful about their obstacles that contributed heavily to the appeal of this season. As a couple, we wanted them to be together, no matter what. However, the circumstances pulling them apart added an addictive aspect to their love story. Two polar opposites fighting against themselves, their insecurities, and inner demons just to tread down a path of love. The poetic nature of this relationship struggle really pushed the story forward and encompassed the core of this season.
The tension and intensity of Good Behavior brought forth a plot that emanated genius and brilliance in every aspect–and then some.
When you have a show that explores the deepest, darkest emotions a human being can feel, it speaks volumes to just how amazing it is. Such emotions were scattered throughout the season resulting in some of the strongest moments we’ve seen thus far in Good Behavior. Following the unintentional murder of Teo and Patrick, Letty found herself overcome with shock and grief. Occurring in the aftermath of her acid trip, this rendered her even more vulnerable to the situation. What proceeded spells out some of Dockery’s best acting to date in Good Behavior and the show’s successful attempt to depict a person in shock. Jumbled words, strange visions, and the inability to understand her surroundings, Letty fell deep into the throes of distress–illustrating a very accurate depiction of someone in such a state.
Letty: Let me be done. Just let me be done. Let me be good at one thing.
Javier: I am not going to let you do that.
Letty: I just murdered two people. You can’t unmurder people.
While Letty battled her inner thoughts and never-ending dilemmas, Javier’s story this season brought a certain aggressive but intriguing element to the plot. His journey in discovering who had murdered his family became a central point of the story, delivering plot twist after plot twist as we learned the truth. One scene, in particular, is when he finally captured the man that had been gung-ho on taking down his family, the forever shady Teo (Juan Riedinger). The physical struggle between the two illustrated Javier’s inner frustrations in such a captivating manner, that even in its darkest moments, we couldn’t look away. And between his complicated relationship with Letty, being a hitman, and trying to be normal, the rageful emotions came pouring out–proving Juan Diego Botto is here to stay.
Good Behavior explores more than just a difficult love story in its storyline, it is a deep and insightful peek into the core of the human struggle. Illustrating the point that nothing and no one is perfect–and that is where the beauty lies.
Amidst the madness of Good Behavior, there always shines a light at the end of the tunnel–family.
With the volatile relationships that exist in the world of Good Behavior, this season took us deeper into the underlying goal of it all–having a family. Letty spent the entire first season engrossed in a custody battle with her ex and emerged victorious when she finally brought her son, Jacob (Nyles Steele), home. This season explored their relationship as they adjusted to the reality of being a family once again, after all the cons, drugs, and stealing, of course. The writers of Good Behavior brought an intriguing element to this mother/son relationship, as Letty’s behavior rubs off on Jacob. Nonetheless, this relationship became Letty’s anchor to a life of normalcy and the straight path. With Jacob in her life, she always had a goal–to be the best mother she could possibly be. And this was no easy task to accomplish for the writers and actors as they tackled creating a complicated relationship and produced a beautiful bond that became Letty’s sole purpose in life.
Letty’s relationship with her mother, Estelle (Lusia Strus), proved to be extremely unpredictable throughout the course of the season and made for some great tear-jerking moments. Whereas in the beginning of the season, they shared a somewhat “normal” relationship, things took a dramatic turn when Estelle turned Javier into the police. Feeling betrayed, Letty proceeded to cut ties with her mother. However, as the season progressed and Letty inched towards her downfall, she made the decision to have Jacob stay with her mother.
Estelle: So it’s the middle of the night.
Letty: I guess sometimes you just need to talk to your mom, no matter what time it is.
Estelle: So I’m your mom again?
Letty: You betrayed me.
Estelle: I didn’t betray you. I protected you. At least I tried to.
Letty: Nice try.
As this scene unfolded, it collectively broke all our hearts. All’s well that ends well because this shift in their relationship transformed into a source of comfort for Letty in her most desperate time of need, and highlighted once again the show’s underlying theme of family being an anchor, no matter how horrible you treat one another.
The magic of Good Behavior is brought to life with its supporting cast–especially, the incredible Ann Dowd.
What the first season lacked in depth and storyline in regards to the supporting characters, this season brought them front and center into the drama. The supporting cast was absolutely mind-blowing and brought a necessary addition to the story. Playing the role of sassy, IDGAF FBI agent Rhonda Lashever was Ann Dowd. Her character’s relentless pursuit to capture Javier possessed a certain laugh out loud quality to it and made for some great moments during the season. She shone in the moments her hilarious, uncensored banter took over the screen, bringing a very light-hearted feel to this season’s gloom and doom. Not to mention, her relationship with Letty proved to be comedic and mutually beneficial–especially as she negotiated money from a con in exchange for Letty and Javier’s freedom.
Letty: What you really want is revenge on the FBI.
Lashever: What are you proposing?
Letty: You raid that money before the FBI does. We’ll do all the work for you.
Lashever: If you skip out on me, I will find you and I will destroy you.
Another shining star this season existed in the character of Christian (Terry Kinney), who played Letty’s ex-parole officer. His dynamic with Letty has continued to mature and evolve into that of a best friend, rather than a crutch. This season brought him in the spotlight as he rescued Letty from the brink of death and right into Javier’s arms–where he knew she belonged. His dedication to Letty resulted in an outstanding performance by Kinney, who channeled his paternal instincts to portray a fatherly figure to Letty. Bravo, Kinney, Bravo.
Final Verdict: Good Behavior unapologetically reveals the human experience of relationships, life, and most importantly–love.
If this season was any indication, TNT will be left with no choice but to renew this gem of a show we have all come to love. From the plot twists to the edge of the seat drama to the tumultuous relationships, this season of Good Behavior had it all. The creative team behind this season deserves a huge round of applause for creating a show that is so real in its stories and so relatable in its characters.
And a point very worthy of noting, particularly this season, is the epic soundtrack that went along with each and every episode. Behind every dramatic, comedic, or stand-still moment, played a song perfectly matching the emotion of the scene. Case in point, as Letty fell further into the depths of her acid trip and roamed through cornfields, Jai Wolf’s tech-electronic beat, Indian Summer, added to the exact feeling of this oddly upbeat scene. Kudos to Gabe Hilfer and the rest of the music team for creating one hell of a soundtrack to go with one hell of a show.
While the story may have ended on a somber, unexpected note after a crazy season, we have hopes that a potential season three will explain the questions we were left behind with. Will a new story explore a different angle on Letty and Javier’s relationship? Or will we experience a will they, won’t they type situation again? Our hopes are on the former–because there is just no reality where these two aren’t together.
Good Behavior presented a memorable and emotionally jarring season where the characters journey became our own. From the directing to the acting to the writing, no stone was left unturned. And if we know one thing, its that a show matching Good Behavior’s level of emotional depth, character development, and ridiculously good looking-cast will be hard to find. Impossible even. Try finding one that comes close–we dare you.
Season Two Verdict: “Good Behavior” [TNT]