The Ending of 'You' Season 4, Part 1, Explained

Meet the Eat The Rich Killer.

penn badgley ben wiggins you season 4 part 1
(Image credit: Courtesy of Netflix)

Season 4 of Netflix's You flips the narrative of the last three seasons—Joe (Penn Badgley) meets a woman and becomes obsessed with said woman—on its head, turning Joe, now Professor Jonathan Moore, from the stalker into the stalked. In London, where he's somehow managed to get a job as a professor, Joe-slash-Jonathan falls in with a group of snobbish, wealthy London elites, and then watches in horror as they start showing up dead (in one case, atop Joe's own kitchen table). While we haven't seen the last of Marienne, the cast of You season 4 features a handful of new characters who are equal parts British and nightmarish. As we wait for the return of season 4, part 2, let's break down the ending of You season 4 part 1.


tati gabrielle you season 4 part 1

(Image credit: Courtesy of Netflix)

Surprisingly (but thankfully), Marienne seems to have truly escaped from Joe! After he arrived in Paris to hunt her down at the end of Season 3, Joe learned from another artist that Marienne was headed to an art fair in London. He followed her there and chased his shocked ex-lover through the crowd, until he cornered her in an abandoned building. Marienne had guessed at that point that Joe really did kill her ex-husband Ryan and his ex-wife Love, and Joe confessed to it all. However, he wanted to prove that his past actions were all done because he wanted her to be safe, so he let her go back to Paris and Juliette.

Shortly after, while Marienne was still in London, Joe found out that he was being tracked by a detective sent by the Quinn family, who didn't believe that Joe was dead and wanted to correct that, as vengeance for Love's death. Lucky for Joe, hitman Elliot was tired of killing, so he offers to let his mark go free with a new identity, in return for the fortune that Joe had stolen before killing Love. 

Elliot, not wanting there to be loose ends, also ordered Joe to kill Marienne so there would be no loose ends that could get back to the Quinns. We see Joe following Marienne to the train station, but he refuses to go through with Elliot's plan. Instead, he steals her necklace and sends a pic of it to Elliot as proof, all while watching Marienne get on to Paris safely. All of this went down as a flashback, from before Joe used the fake identity to become Jonathan Moore. So for now, Marienne's safe and sound, and she'll stay that way unless Joe decides to take a trip to Paris in Part 2. Hopefully she pulls and Ellie and stays safe and gone.

Lady Phoebe

tilly keeper lukas gage you season 4 part 1

(Image credit: Courtesy of Netflix)

Of all of Joe's new ultra-wealthy "friends," Phoebe is the biggest surprise. Among the  rude, snobbish, and near-sociopathic clique, the famous socialite and her BFF Kate are the only kind ones, with Lady Phoebe being genuinely sweet. She's also a bit sheltered and prone to trusting the worst people, including her American boyfriend, Adam. By the time the Eat The Rich Killer becomes public knowledge, Phoebe is much more concerned that she still feels distant from Adam, who, again, is the worst.

While Joe and Kate are dealing with...more serious things (which we'll get to later), Phoebe interrupts them to whine about catching Adam looking cozy with a "servant." Joe confesses about Adam's piss play kink to get her to leave, and then Adam and Phoebe have an awkward attempt at intimacy before it's obvious that he isn't into it and they end up breaking up. By the end of the weekend's events, they've reunited, even though it was clear to even Phoebe that she and Adam weren't equals in their relationship. Judging by the glimpse of a crying Phoebe seen in the Part 2 teaser, the couple are going to come to another impasse in the coming episodes.


charlotte ritchie you season 4 part 1

(Image credit: Courtesy of Netflix)

Art gallerist Kate has gone through a lot since Joe Goldberg/Jonathan Moore rolled into town. Her boyfriend Malcolm was the first victim of the Eat The Rich Killer (and his body was disposed of by Joe, which she doesn't know), and her most famous artist Simon Soo was the second. Then, while she's squirreled away with the rest of her friends in Phoebe's country house, she walks in a room to find her other friend Gemma bleeding out on the floor. That's how Joe finds Kate at the beginning of Episode 5, kneeling next to the body and holding the knife.

Of course, Kate says that she isn't the one who killed Gemma, and Joe believes her (partly because they've been hooking up for the past week, and partly because You's already gone the Joe-falls-for-a-killer route). The pair decide to work together to dispose of the crime scene, and in the process they convince each other they aren't the killer and slowly fall for each other. The country getaway ends in a lot of chaos, but once they're back in London, Kate has fully fallen for Joe and attempts to ask him out. And he...says no.

You see, Joe knows that he's going to be wrapped up into a very dangerous game with Rhys, and he wants Kate to be safe. With Joe's track record, his noble attempt to stay away from her probably isn't going to last very long in Part 2. In addition to that, Kate will also likely have to deal with her business mogul father, who sent security to protect her once the Eat The Rich Killer saga made the news. It's clear that she's terrified of him, so he'll likely make an appearance before Kate's time in You is over.


penn badgley you season 4 part 1

(Image credit: Courtesy of Netflix)

Throughout the weekend at Hampsbridge House, Joe had been entangled in an antagonistic dance with Roald, one of Kate's hunting-obsessed friends with an obvious crush on her. Roald wants Joe gone from the group from the moment he meets him, and Joe has landed on Roald as the prime suspect for his stalker. After all, Roald would have had motive to kill everyone who'd died so far to help Kate in some way (minus Phoebe's bodyguard Vic, R.I.P.). In a very accurate reversal, Roald suspects Joe for the same reason, though he would rather push Joe out of a window than look for concrete proof.

While Joe's dealing with Gemma alone in the game larder, Roald, pistol in hand, catches him leaning over the body. The aristocrat brings Joe in front of the rest of the clique, minus Kate and Phoebe, for a quick tribunal, accusing Joe of being the Eat The Rich Killer. Roald convinces Sophie, Blessing, and Adam that he's the killer—though they don't need much convincing, everyone's still high and awful and Adam's mad at Joe for revealing his fetish to Phoebe—and then says that his Supreme Court Justice uncle would get him off if he happened to kill the Eat The Rich Killer. 

With that, Roald gives Joe a head start to run away before he hunts him down. After a chase in the woods (which Joe dubbs "The Crown directed by Guy Ritchie"), Joe manages to disarm and choke out Rhys. While they're both exhausted, someone else walks up to them, picks up the gun, and knocks Joe out with it. The Eat The Rich Killer has revealed himself to be...

Rhys (a.k.a. the Eat The Rich Killer)

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(Image credit: Courtesy of Netflix)

It turns out that the rags-to-riches memoirist has been killing his posh university friends all along. He confesses to as much, and being Joe's stalker, once Joe awakens and finds himself chained in the manor's dungeon with Roald. As for the next phase of his plan, Rhys wants Joe to frame Roald for all the Eat The Rich killings and kill him so he won't be able to protest his innocence. Joe is instantly disgusted by and "disappointed" with Rhys, but he keeps up his ruse of pretending that he's on Rhys side, as the killer leaves him to somehow kill Roald while in chains.

It seems like Joe has outsmarted Rhys, but the killer may have finally met another killer who's more cunning than him. Rhys comes back to find Joe trying to break out, and in his rage, the ETRK reveals that he knew Joe was faking and that Joe is trying to fight against his true nature as a murderer. A now-disappointed Rhys sets the chamber on fire and leaves the two men to die, after inviting Joe to find him if he makes it back to London.

Since there is a second half of the season to get to, Joe breaks his way out of the chains and, after a bit of hesitation, breaks Roald's restraints as well. Kate (more on her later) rescues the pair through a cellar door to the outside, and Rhys is nowhere to be seen. Fast forward to later in London, and Joe hasn't received any new unknown messages. Instead, he watches the telly as Rhys announces his campaign for Mayor of London. Now Joe knows who he's up against in the coming episodes.

In a The Hollywood Reporter interview, creator Sera Gamble teased what'll be in store for Joe and Rhys in Part 2. "The season divided very cleanly for us. The first half is the whodunnit. We leave you with 'Here’s the killer,'" she said. "And so, Part 2 is about the relationship between Joe and Rhys. He solved the mysteries, and now, how does he actually solve the problem? Is the question."

Quinci LeGardye
Contributing Culture Editor

Quinci LeGardye is a Contributing Culture Editor who covers TV, movies, Korean entertainment, books, and pop culture. When she isn’t writing or checking Twitter, she’s probably watching the latest K-drama or giving a concert performance in her car.