Mindhunter's first season was met with near universal acclaim from critics and audiences alike. Now, almost 2 years later, viewers can finally see the new chapter of Holden and Bill's story. But did David Fincher's creation not buckle under the pressure?
TV shows with great first seasons have the sad tendency to get radically worse the longer they go on. More often than not, the spark that made the show work simply disappears and fans have to stomach unwelcome changes to performance and writing quality.
Thankfully, this curse has seemingly passed Mindhunter by. Season 2's 9 episodes aren't without some minor faults, but overall the shows high quality has not only been retained, but one might even argue that it's gotten even higher.
In the wake of the news that Netflix prefers to cancel its shows after 2 seasons, Mindhunter not only decides not to put a definitive closure on anything, but also subtly teases more great things to come. After the appetite built by the excellence of this new batch of episodes, season 3 is a must. Hopefully we won't have to wait another two years to see it.
First, let's look at the positives of the second season...
5. An Effective Villain
Wayne Williams appeared quite late in the season, but even then, that isn't actually a negative. He was smug, calm, collected and knew how to play the game with the police and the press. In the short run, it was endlessly frustrating but also very interesting to watch, and crucially, because of the way he was introduced, he didn't overstay his welcome.
His calm voice and annoying smirk could easily have got on the audience's nerves after couple more episodes, but keeping his presence short and sweet was a masterstroke. After so many episodes of build-up, the villain had a considerable weight of expectations on his shoulders: in short, if he was disappointing, the whole chase would've felt pointless.
Thankfully, it worked out great, thanks to both excellent writing and the actor's performance. His tics, vocal performance and demeanour all combine to an unnerving effect, especially during the more tense scenes and while his arrest could feel anticlimatic, ultimately that's the way the events played out in real life, so it's hard to argue with.