Cruel Summer returns with season two’s big mystery surrounding the dangerous love triangle between Megan, Luke, and Isabella. Following in season one’s footsteps, the two-hour season premiere followed the central characters through three different times in the summer of 1999, the winter of 1999, and the summer of 2000.
But season two is already taking a drastically different approach. For most of season one, although Kate and Jeanette’s storylines were intertwined, the two barely ever communicated directly. Season two alters that formula by sticking Megan and Isabella in the same house and having the creation, and eventual downfall, of their friendship, play an integral role in the mystery.
Cruel Summer keeps a similar theme of mystery and uncertainty from season one alive, even though the characters and circumstances are different. Having the story focus on a trio of friends and having them work through a sex tape scandal together, especially with a love triangle background, is a perfect playground for drama.
Season two enjoys discussing the implications of reputations in a small town and the secrets people keep that make them different from what everyone else expects.
But, the season two premiere does not conclude without revealing who had died, and unfortunately, Luke is the unlucky person whose body is pulled from the water. Luke’s father confirms his death, and as Luke’s father grieves, Megan and Isabella make some dangerous hints.
Megan and Isabella dealing with the aftermath of murder is a drastically different tone and approach than Jeanette and Kate’s handling of the growing lawsuit between them.
Granted, Cruel Summer’s first season proves that this show likes to pull the rug out from under the audience, so these could be some solid red herrings as season two prepares to twist and turn throughout the remaining episodes.
But Megan and Isabella are not the only potential prospects for nefarious activity. Local aspiring filmmaker Jeff and Luke’s older brother, Brent, have both been suggested to have the potential to be involved with something destructive.
There is a long way to go until the truth behind Luke’s death and the realities behind Megan and Isabella’s relationship are revealed. In the meantime, Cruel Summer’s second season delivers on its promise to mix up the story, introducing a new mystery and tackling different themes.