This story contains spoilers up to and including the end of Episode 2 of You.
It's not unusual for TV series to have a group of characters you despise - sometimes it's the whole point of the show. But you'd be hard pushed to find a selection of characters more objectionable than those in Netflix thriller You. But who is the worst?
Joe Goldberg (Penn Badgley)
Sure, he's an obsessive stalker who creeps outside windows, steals phones and holds people hostage. And by the end of Episode 2 (possibly earlier, since ex-girlfriend Candace is apparently missing), he's also a killer. But is Joe actually the worst person in You? Would it be wrong to suggest that a lot of what he says about the other characters rings true? Or is he just so eloquent that he has even us buying his shtick?
Guinevere Beck (Elizabeth Lail)
Up until her showdown with her professor - more on him later - Beck came across as pretty lame. She has terrible taste in boyfriends and friends, spends way too much time online and hanging out with said terrible friends instead of getting on with writing her awful poetry, and lives outside her means. But by the end of Episode 2, she'd shown some backbone. Maybe there's hope for her yet.
Benjamin Ashby Jr. III (Lou Taylor Pucci)
Joe really didn't think things through, did he? After whacking Benji on the back of the head and sticking him inside that convenient climate-controlled chamber (which, by the way, does anyone else ever use?), he then had to put up with the artisinal soft drink purveyor's stream of BS. When Benji tried to paint Beck as the real villain in their relationship, the contents of his phone revealed exactly what type of guy he is. Or was.
Peach Salinger (Shay Mitchell)
You know what, Peach isn't so bad. Yes, she's entitled, dismissive, spoilt and obnoxious, but she's pretty cluey, picking up on the fact that Joe just happened to be around when Beck fell onto the subway tracks. And she's a good friend, although we suspect her constant offers of money to Beck would come with some sort of strings. Still, it's pretty telling when someone with all her traits isn't the worst person in the show.
Beck's other friends
Clearly not objectionable enough since we can never remember their names - for the record, they're Annika Attwater (Kathryn Gallagher) and Lynn Lieser (Nicole Kang) - Peach's two hangers-on never seem to work (one's an Instagram "influencer"; the other is in PR) and have approximately zero redeeming features. But they're more a waste of space than anything to get too worked up about.
Professor Paul Leahy (Reg Rogers)
Ugh, there's nothing worse than a married, middle-aged man in a position of authority who preys on vulnerable young women. With his groping hands and abuse of power, this academic deserves everything we suspect he has coming to him.
Mr Mooney (Mark Blum)
Just when we thought Joe's boss was a nice old man, it turns out he may well be part of the reason Joe is the way he is. In Episode 2, we saw the book store owner deal his mentee a blow in a flashback scene. Is anyone else concerned by the fact that we've only seen Mr Mooney in flashback so far?
As you can see, the competition for You's most objectionable character is high, and at this point, Benji is going to be hard to ever beat. But with eight more episodes to go and characters we haven't even met yet, nothing is certain.