Joe Is Back: Our Theories On What Will Happen On “You” Season 3

A baby makes (season) three

Serial killer Joe is back to wreak havoc. Netflix just revealed that You season 3 will drop on 15 October (a day after for our timezone). And that means it’s time to explore some theories.

Who is the neighbour Joe is peeping at on the trailer? Will season three You have the same story and ending as the third book from Caroline Kepnes’s You series, You Love Me? Be warned that there will be major spoilers for the first and second seasons of the Netflix series and minor ones for the book You Love Me.

Before we start with the speculation, let’s do a recap first of what happened. We left Joe (Penn Badgley) last season as he is about to start a new, quiet life in the suburbs of California with his partner Love (Victoria Pedretti), who turns out to be a murderer herself and is revealed to be the one who killed journalist Delilah (Joe’s neighbour) and her childhood nanny.

After Joe found out about the murders Love committed, he initially wanted to kill her as well but stopped at the last minute when Love tells her that she’s pregnant. The two got back together and retreated to the suburbs to raise a family together, a situation that Joe says is his version of “doing time”. But to Joe, all is worth it because of his proximity to a mystery neighbour who is now the current subject of his affections. On top of it all, Joe is expecting a daughter.

‘You’ season three is off to a bloody start.

In the new trailer, it’s revealed that Joe is having a son instead whom he names Henry, a name Joe thinks is “classic but not basic”. He’s anxious about having a mini-me and resolves to change his ways so he can be a dad his son is proud of. But will he, really?

Now that we’re all caught up, here are our season three You theories.

The neighbour and Joe’s new victim are not the same person

The biggest mystery season two left us with is the identity of Joe’s new neighbour. Many quickly theorised that it’s Joe’s long-lost mother whose fate is unknown. While it’s an interesting twist which would shift the focus away from Joe’s love life, this particular You season three theory is unlikely to happen because it already got shut down by actor Penn Badgley, telling Bustle that it’s “definitely” not his mum.

When the casting for the third season was announced, it’s revealed that One Tree Hill actress Michaela McManus will be the one playing Joe’s neighbour Natalie who is said to “harbour a secret life”, according to Variety. However, we have reason to think that she’s not gonna be Joe’s next victim (R.I.P. Beck). So who else could it be? The books clue us in.

Michaela McManus is the neighbour of Joe.

There are several differences between the book and what’s already revealed for You’s third season. In You Love Me (the third book from the series), Joe actually spends time in jail while on trial, but similar to what’s on the show, he gets off scot-free. He goes on to live life in the suburbs alone using the money Love’s family gave him as a pay-off to guarantee that he’ll stay away from his son and former lover. He then befriends and romances librarian Mary Kay Dimarco who already has a family of her own.

The show looks like it could be setting up a similar character in Marienne (Tati Gabrielle) who, like Mary Kay, is a librarian and also has a daughter to take care of. Our bets are that neighbour Natalie (which is billed only as a recurring role) is just a red herring but the true target would be Marienne.

One of Marienne’s friends will die

As the tradition in You, one of those close to Joe’s victims will most probably meet a tragic end. Both Beck’s friend Peach (Shay Mitchell) and Love’s brother Forty (James Scully) were killed by a gun. There’s always gonna be not-so-innocent bystanders who will meet their maker by the penultimate episode. In season three of You, there’s a couple of candidates but the prime victim could be Dante (Ben Mehl)​​ who is described as a witty librarian with damaged eyesight and a family man who wants to “expand” his brood and is always available to help friends (a.k.a. babysit) their children.

Now, this could go two ways. Dante could be as amiable as he appears and is going to be the adult “saviour” of the season. Or he could be a creep who may kidnap Joe and Love’s son, Henry. Either way, his fate is not looking good.

Marriage or Love will not survive season three

One sad truth about this series is that Joe’s love interests are quite dispensable. Out of all the ones we’ve been introduced to — Candace (Ambyr Childers), Beck (Elizabeth Lail), Delilah (Carmela Zumbado), Love — only one survived. But we think Love is gonna be out of the picture soon. In the book, she’s already out of the way, leaving Joe free to go on his creepy ways. But on the show, she’s married to Joe and there’s no doubt that complications and fighting between the violent couple would arise as Joe starts yet another stalking adventure. It could only end with either divorce or Love being killed. The book You Love Me also has Joe ending up married to another woman and moving to a new city again so it’s definitely likely that we’ll bid farewell to Love Quinn.

Joe’s mum-in-law Dottie would report him

Love’s mother Dottie (Saffron Burrows), still grieving from the death of his son Forty, would probably be a controlling mum-in-law as it’s described that she’s going to “pour” her efforts into her grandson. There will probably be a thing or two that she and Joe will disagree about in terms of raising Henry. It’s already implied in the trailer that instead of Henry, Dottie wants to name her grandson after Forty, saying that he is her late son’s reincarnation. From school to eating routine, there’s bound to be a lot of conflicts.

And unlike the other people in Joe’s life, Dottie will be a formidable opponent. She can easily overturn Joe’s acquittal and open an investigation against him. In the book, it’s even mentioned that Love’s family hired a private investigator to monitor Joe’s whereabouts. The question is: who’s going to win?

Which of these You season 3 theories do you think is most likely to happen?

(Cover photo from: Netflix)

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