Sky Rojo season 2 review – a pacey follow-up can’t help but disappoint sky's the limit

July 23, 2021
Jonathon Wilson 0
Netflix, TV Reviews
2.5

Summary

Sky Rojo season 2 leans too heavily on a well-worn structure and facile shock value, making for a pacey outing but one that can’t help feeling like a step down.

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2.5

Summary

Sky Rojo season 2 leans too heavily on a well-worn structure and facile shock value, making for a pacey outing but one that can’t help feeling like a step down.

This review of Sky Rojo season 2 is spoiler-free.


Alex Pina’s Sky Rojo was a hit, there’s no doubt about that. A pacey, sexy, sun-bleached crime thriller, it had all the ingredients to stoke Netflix’s absurd global userbase into a frenzy. Pina obviously liked its characters and setup so much that he basically remade it exactly for Season 2, continuing the back-and-forth revenge plot as Coral (Veronica Sanchez), Wendy (Lali Esposito), and Gina (Yany Prado) attempt to pay back their pimp Romeo (Asier Etxeandia) and his sibling enforcers Moises (Miguel Angel Silvestre) and Christian (Enric Auquer) for what seems like a lifetime of torment and abuse.

Honestly, Sky Rojo Season 2 never really expands out beyond this core conflict. It mimics the first season’s structure, racing from one hare-brained scheme to the next and interspersing the present-day events with plentiful flashbacks, and doesn’t really resolve anything by the end. One gets the sense that this story could go on forever, with Romeo and Moises chasing the girls, and the girls planning to take their revenge on Moises and Romeo until they all died of old age.

It’s not bad, you understand. But it can sometimes be frustrating. When the opening episode picks things up right where we left them, with Coral getting one over Romeo, we get a good example of why. Instead of just taking the girls’ passports and setting them all free, she gets high as a kite on the cocaine that she just saw Romeo overdose on and forces them all to have a party at gunpoint until it inevitably all goes wrong. It speaks to Coral’s extensive psychological and emotional damage, but it doesn’t exactly speak to good plotting.

Wendy and Gina, meanwhile, begin on the run from Christian and basically keep going for the entire season, getting themselves into one scrape after another. Wendy, particularly, gets a lot of attention, with many of the flashback sequences pertaining to her. As before, they’re often horrific, and Coral’s frank narration gives them all a lacerating tone. But Gina is completely forgotten about. When I was reminded later in the season that she’s pregnant I did a little double-take, so little attention had been paid to the fact. With the stakes and the conflicts established in the first season, this sophomore outing is less about the girls and their respective backstories than it is a frantic chase from A to B and back to A again, which helps the eight episodes breeze by but prevents them sticking on an emotional level.

Plenty of attention is also paid to Moises and Christian, but the relationship is cliched, and the latter is clearly a puppet dancing on the short strings of a plot that needs him to force other characters into certain positions. He has little to say for himself, and there’s a clear contradiction in how the flashbacks depict him as a monster and yet the implication is that we’re to feel a little sorry for him. No such luck. But really, characterization is left by the wayside thanks to a repetitive and at times contrived structure that sees each party get temporarily ahead only for some unforeseen development or unmentioned plan to keep everyone in touching distance. That’s the nature of a tense thriller, of course, but it’s a little artless how the tension is achieved here.

Also artless is Pina’s fascination for having the girls wear nothing but lingerie for no good reason, and several rape scenes played purely for shock value feel like low-hanging fruit. Some of the show’s fun, anarchic spirit has been lost in Sky Rojo Season 2, and it’s hard to imagine anyone looking forward to the inevitable third season as excitedly as they did for this one.

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