The Sinner series two is challenging our perceptions of crime once again

Aoibhín Meghan delves into the estranged world of The Sinner for its second series.

The Sinner: Julian, matches the intensity and mystery of the series first instalment and manages to create the same depth and intensity of characters in every episode as the series focuses not on who did it, but why they did.

The long awaited second season of The Sinner came to Netflix November 9th, after airing in the US during the summer and proves that the show was not just a one hit wonder, as we find another chilling murder that is not quite what it seems on the surface.

In The Sinner season two, Detective Harry Ambrose, played by the incredible Bill Pullman, returns to his hometown of Keller to solve the extremely unusual murder of a couple by a thirteen year old boy. There he meets Vera Walker, a fiery and formidable woman, played by Carrie Coon.

It is revealed that the couple and the young boy Julian Walker (Elisha Henig), were all part of a commune called Mosswood located just outside Keller. They were supposedly going on a trip to Niagra Falls when they had to stop in a motel overnight and it is here that Julian kills the couple using poisoned tea.

Ambrose is called in to help with Julian’s case by Heather Novack (Natalie Paul), a very young and inexperienced detective as well as the daughter of an old friend. Together they launch an investigation that reveals dark sides of Mosswood and the town of Keller.

Throughout this season we also learn more about Ambrose, as he revisits his childhood. The detective forms a close relationship with Julian and through their discussions and flashbacks we discover his troubled past.

The first season of The Sinner was met with great critical and audience approval. Based off a novel by the same name, written by German crime Writer Petra Hammesfahr, the shows appeal is the way it leads the audience in one direction only to reveal at the end that their assumptions were wrong all along.  

Ambrose is introduced to us when he overturns the murder verdict of Cora Tannetti, played by Jessica Biel who is also an executive producer on the show, who murdered a man on the beach while picnicking with her family.  

The show’s creators have managed to create yet another storyline with as much intrigue and plot twists as in the first season.

The detective returns this time to create a link between the two seasons which lets the audience know that although this may seem a black and white case, the question of motive is no straightforward matter.

Coon is definitely the star of this season, the actor who has also starred in The Leftovers and Fargo is Julian’s mother and appears to be the figurehead of the commune. She is a protective and formidable woman and loving mother and when Julian is arrested the audience are immediately suspicious of her because of their unusaual way of life.

It is this prejudice towards alternative lifestyles that allows the show’s creators to guide us down a completely different narrative, one that blames Julian’s upbringing and the people around him, therefore distracting us from the truth.

The Sinner is the crime drama that we have been waiting for as it challenges our perceptions of who people are and how they should behave. It is reminiscent of old school crime stories but with a modern edge.

Aoibhín Meghan


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