The third season of Netflix’s seminal series You gave the viewers a look into the turbulent marriage that binds the creepy and psychotic characters Joe Goldberg and Love Quinn, portrayed effortlessly by Penn Badgley and Victoria Pedretti. Although they promised to start afresh in Madre Linde for the sake of their son Henry, Love could not prevent her hands from getting bloodied, sending the duo down a rabbit hole of gruesome violence and murder.
Although they are self-proclaimed “soulmates”, Love and Joe are soon caught in a web of lies, infidelity and madness that prompts Love to wield her murder weapon against their neighbour, the young and attractive architect who flirts with Joe. Later, Love has a torrid affair with the deceased’s husband’s son, Theo, a nineteen-year-old college student who is smitten by Love’s charming nature.
Dylan Arnold plays Theo Engler in the third season. He had initially auditioned to play the role of Joe Goldberg in the first season and then Forty in the second. After being rejected twice, it would appear the third time’s his lucky charm as he finally got to romance Pedretti’s attractive albeit terrifying character.
Although Love manages to use her charm and flirtation to gain information from the naive Theo, he later manages to find out about her sinister nature that prompts her to push him down the stairs in a fit of rage, to his alleged death. However, Theo is alive, as discovered in the final episode and can be seen being wheeled out of the hospital by his father.
Theo’s father is always busy, making him feel neglected. He can be seen indulging in drunk driving to gain his father’s attention, who is even more caught up in the mysterious disappearance of his wife. Being Love’s next-door neighbour and having spent some time with her in the bakery, he becomes emotionally dependent on her, which leads to physical intimacy.
Arnold had a lot to say about their forbidden relationship.
“I think for Theo, his family life is not very stable. He doesn’t really have a support system,” the actor said.
Calling Love his “support system”, Arnold continued saying, “There’s this really interesting balance between him seeing her as a support system and in a weird way, almost a mother figure, but not totally like that, of course.”
The actor sympathised with his character, adding, “He’s trying to find someone that he can love, and that can love him back.”
However, he does not forget to view the same from Love’s perspective and justifies Love’s brutal actions. “If I were to dive into Love’s side, obviously she loses her brother in the second season, so there’s this missing piece she’s searching for, trying to find someone to care for. She finds that in Theo.”
Fans have been in love with Theo’s selfless and giving nature and felt sorry for this young boy who was enamoured with a psychotic, murderous character. He seemed pretty shattered when he stumbled upon the truth. Given that his character is alive, fans desperately want him to make a return in the fourth season, perhaps as someone who would finally confront Joe Goldberg?
Arnold spoke about how this traumatic experience would scar Theo forever. “I think it’s definitely going to be hard for him to trust anyone to love again after that whole debacle”.
He added, “I definitely thought about it. It could be interesting if he goes and tries to avenge her. He’ll probably try to move on with his life. And figure out how to be happy after all of that.”
Stream the third season of You on Netflix now.