Most people who grew up with the Internet have come to overlook its dark side. The World Wide Web is an amazing tool that stores knowledge, connections, and community, but it also gives people the chance to be anonymous, or have secret lives. Netflix's buzzy new thriller, Clickbait, examines what happens a viral video exposing unknown "truths" turn a family upside down.
The show's buzzy premise makes it nearly unmissable. Father of two Nick Brewer (Adrian Grenier) is kidnapped and a viral video is posted online of him holding up two signs: "I ABUSE WOMEN," and "AT 5 MILLION VIEWS I DIE." Nick's family, including his wife Sophie (Betty Gabriel) and sister Pia (Zoe Kazan), spend the season trying to find the kidnapper and discover what Nick did that made him end up on the video.
Fans have already torn though the show's eight episodes, which premiered on August 25, and the show topped Netflix's most-watched charts just 48 hours after its release.
Will Clickbait get a season 2?
Spoilers for Clickbait ahead. Viewers who ran through Clickbait's eight-episode season saw its central mystery sewn up by the end, with Nick's killer revealed and all loose ends tied up.
The Netflix hit is billed as a limited series, but that hasn't stopped other massively popular shows from getting a second season (Big Little Lies, anyone?). The show's fate largely hinges on how long it stays in Netflix's top 10, where it's currently sitting pretty at no. 1. Other new Netflix shows, like Ginny and Georgia, spent weeks topping the Netflix charts before being renewed.
What would 'Clickbait' Season 2 be about?
Spoilers ahead. By the end of Clickbait's eight episodes, we know who killed Nick Brewer. After his co-worker Dawn Gleed uses his likeness in a catfish dating profile, she was discovered by her husband Ed. She then shut down the profile and one of her catfish victims, a woman named Sarah, killed herself. After her death, Sarah's brothers kidnapped the IRL Nick and filmed the videos, but they let him go after finding out he had nothing to do with Sarah's death. IRL Nick then showed up at Dawn's house, and Ed bludgeoned him to death.
We learn all of this in the finale, when Nick's son Kai shows up to Dawn's house after figuring out that she was involved with Nick's death. After holding Kai at gunpoint for a while, Ed tries to escape and gets gunned down by the cops. So both Nick and his killer are now dead. However, Dawn is still around, a second season could follow what she does next with her excellent catfishing skills.
Then again, a second season doesn't necessarily have to focus on the same cast. Clickbait could pull a White Lotus and become an anthology series, with a new mild-mannered man becoming the subject of a viral murder video. In that case, the way for the show to become an anthology without telling the story over would be to switch up the subject of the video. Maybe it's a public figure who has a dark secret life. Maybe instead of following the victim's family, the show could focus on the personal lives of the random Internet sleuths. The show could also figure out a way to keep Roshan Amiri (Phoenix Raei) as the investigating detective. There are a bunch of ways an anthology season could go.
What have the cast and crew said about Season 2?
Though Clickbait may seem like a classic Netflix thriller, creator Tony Ayers designed it as a murder mystery focused on cybercrime, or "the new categories of crime that have sprung up since the internet has taken over our lives." He also told Entertainment Weekly that the show's creative team decided to base the show on real crimes that had actually happened.
Ayers also said that the changing perspectives and character dives of each episode are integral to the series. "The main thing we wanted was to engage people with a roller coaster ride that also had some kind of emotional effect. One of the virtues of that format is that you really get into the lives of the particular characters that each episode is about. Ideally, what we really want is for people to stop and think about the nature of their interactions."
Luckily for us, Ayers is down for more seasons. He told Entertainment Weekly that he would like to continue with the online whodunnit format if people connect to it. "I think it works really well, especially for a more elevated crime. I like to satisfy the whodunnit quality, but still try to do a deep dive on character and then at the same time do a 360 around an event because everyone has slightly different [perspectives]. I've got ideas for a season 2 or 3."