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You season 4, part 2’s ending explained

Joe Goldberg, aka Jonathan Moore, was in a pickle by the shocking midseason finale of season 4 of You, which premiered in early February. The killer was revealed to be Rhys, and Joe narrowly escaped with his life. He was finally cleared in the eyes of those who made it out of the mansion alive (all but Gemma). But he still didn’t reveal the identity of the Eat the Rich killer to the others.

Why? Initially, the assumption was that Joe presumably wanted Rhys all to himself, though the twists and turns that unraveled in the back half of the season proved otherwise. Nonetheless, in the beginning, the tables had turned and Rhys was in the driver’s seat, manipulating Joe like a puppet. He showed up at Joe’s house unannounced, pushed Joe to frame someone as the killer, and even threatened him by suggesting that Marienne didn’t make it on the train back to Paris after all, but rather, was in serious trouble. So how does part 2 of You season 4 end? Digital Trends has all the spoilers for you below.

Is Rhys really the evil mastermind in You season 4?

Rhys smiling in a scene from You season 4.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

At first, Joe pegged Connie as the perfect person to plant evidence on so he could save his love, Marienne. Connie was wasting his life away with booze and hard drugs anyway. But in meeting with Connie, Joe realized the wealthy man didn’t deserve to go down for crimes he didn’t commit. Maybe Joe was changing after all.

A perfect opportunity fell into Joe’s lap when Phoebe was kidnapped by a crazed fan, who imprisoned her in a hotel room under the guise of protecting her from harm. After saving Phoebe, further solidifying Joe’s improved status with the group, he slyly placed the evidence in the crazed fan’s bag, sending her to prison as the presumed killer. His student Nadia, however, witnessed an exchange of words between Joe and Phoebe that made her suspicious. Why was Joe always at the center of everything that was going on?

Seemingly having fulfilled his promise to Rhys, Joe discovered that the evil killer wasn’t done with him yet. He wanted Joe to do one final job: kill Tom, the father of Joe’s new girlfriend. Kate. Ironically, Joe later learned Tom knew his true identity and was using that detail to blackmail Joe into killing Rhys.

Things aren’t always what they seem

Joe distraught on the couch, Rhys kneeling over him in a scene from You season 4.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

In a fit of rage, Joe went to Rhys’ home to kill him and found a strange man who had no idea why he was there. After killing him, Joe suddenly sees a formally dressed Rhys appear beside the stranger’s dead body. How did Rhys appear from seemingly out of nowhere?

Joe then realizes he was never talking to the real Rhys. Instead, he was having a psychotic break and everything that had happened was his doing. It all slowly came into focus: every time someone died, Joe had blacked out right before. He was drugged, fell asleep on a park bench, had fallen from a window. It was Joe, and not Rhys, who had actually killed Malcolm, Simon, and Gemma.

As many fans figured out prior to the final episodes, it all came into focus when flashing back to every conversation and encounter Joe ever had with Rhys. He was always either alone or surrounded by others who were so high on drugs that watching Joe talk to himself looked completely normal. This also meant that Marienne was in danger because of him, not Rhys.

Joe finally figured out where he had put Marienne; in an airtight glass cage hidden under a nonfunctional subway tunnel. Now Joe needed to reconcile everything that happened and right his wrongs. He didn’t want to hurt Marienne, but that Rhys-like voice in his head kept telling him it was the only solution. He’s also plagued by other voices from his past, including both Love and Beck.

Nadia is in her own murder mystery

Nadia standing by a doorway looking terrified in a scene from You season 4.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Meanwhile, Nadia’s love of murder mysteries clued her into the fact that some things just didn’t add up and Joe was probably more involved than he let on. When she raided his apartment, found a key, and pieced together a puzzle to figure out where it led, she was shocked to find Marienne. The two ladies hatched a plan, afraid that if they called the authorities, Joe would just charm his way out of it and hunt them down. Meanwhile, Joe was working on a plan of his own to fix his problem.

But it was too late. Discovering Marienne dead from pain pills just as he arrived to set her free, Joe took her body to rest on a park bench. He also paid a visit to Kate’s father, where he brutally murdered him and his bodyguard. That’s one problem fixed, at least.

But in another twist, it turns out Marienne wasn’t dead after all. She and Nadia enacted their Plan B, using beta blockers Nadia snuck in to slow Marienne’s heart just enough to fool Joe into thinking it wasn’t beating. Marienne returned to her daughter in Paris, with Joe still believing her to be dead. So there was one happy ending to the sad tale.

How does You season 4, part 2 end?

Joe lifting Kate in the air as she straddles him in a scene from You season 4.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Consumed with guilt and anger for having done such heinous things at the hands of, well, his own mind manifesting as Rhys, Joe tries to end it all by jumping into the ocean. But he’s saved in the nick of time by Kate, who is relieved to have her man back and vows to protect him if he did the same for her. She was all-in for Joe Goldberg (at least the victim version of him that she knew), not Jonathan Moore. A sense of relief wafted over Joe as he experienced a sort of reawakening, a renewed lease on life.

Joe had the chance at a fresh start, but there was still that little problem of Nadia, who was intent on finding proof that her professor was a killer. She broke into his apartment once again to find evidence, with her boyfriend Edward keeping watch on the ground.

When she leaves Joe’s apartment, however, Edward was nowhere to be found, but Joe was. As she retreats, she stumbles upon Edward’s dead body behind a car. Joe calmly hands her a knife and suggests she frame her beau and claim self-defense to save herself. Nadia, it’s later learned, refused to pin murders on an innocent young man and ended up in jail, traumatized by the events.

Fast-forward in time and Joe and Kate are as happy as ever. Kate is none the wiser about who Joe really is. Joe is loving his new status as a hero and pillar of the community. As he stares out the window and sees Rhys’ face in his reflection, it becomes clear that while Joe might have a new lease on life, his dark side is along for the ride, too. Should You be renewed for a fifth season, both Joe and Kate are in for a rude awakening.

You season 4, parts 1 and 2, are now streaming on Netflix.

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Christine Persaud
Christine has decades of experience in trade and consumer journalism. While she started her career writing exclusively about…
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