About a year ago, The Bear starring the handsome Jeremy White Allen was released on FX and Hulu. It revolved around a struggling sandwich shop in Chicago that dreamt of making it big. The show became a hit for two main reasons. Firstly, it did an exceptional job of capturing the intense and chaotic atmosphere of a busy kitchen. The episodes mostly took place in the backroom of The Original Beef of Chicagoland, where there were constant overwhelming orders, clashes between exasperated cooks, and demanding chefs. Secondly, the show had a palpable sense of excitement and tension because The Beef was always on the brink of a potential grease fire due to small mistakes.
Watching the show feels like experiencing a series of intense panic attacks happening one after another, with the chaos on screen affecting you physically. It’s like the chaos enters your body and keeps you on edge, making it hard to breathe or even blink.
The Bear is back for its second season, and many people were excited to see if it would live up to the hype. Well, rest assured, it definitely does! The second season takes the show to a whole new level and solidifies its place as one of the best shows on television. Instead of the fast-paced chaos of the kitchen like in season one, season two slows things down and gives each character more focus. It’s incredible how every character in the show gets more depth this time around, making you care about them even more than you did in the first season.
But what truly makes this season a masterpiece is the way it weaves together different elements. There’s a love interest that initially seems unnecessary, but as the bigger picture unfolds, you realize its significance. And let’s not forget the inclusion of Taylor Swift tickets, a chaotic Christmas, and multiple character arcs.
Season 2 has broken records and become the most-watched debut ever on Hulu for FX. In just the first four days of its release, it saw a 70 percent increase in total hours streamed compared to Season 1. These numbers are impressive, even though it’s easy to roll our eyes and wonder what exactly “most-watched” means in comparison to other shows. But let me tell you, anecdotally speaking, it seems like everyone I know is obsessed with The Bear. It’s not just me; people on my social media feeds and even the authors whose work I read are raving about it. It’s become so cool and popular.
As someone who has been covering television for a while, I can say that The Bear is not your typical series. It has surpassed expectations and generated an extraordinary amount of buzz that you wouldn’t normally see for a show like this.
When a show unexpectedly becomes the talk of the town, there’s usually a reason behind it. Shows like Big Little Lies and Mare of Easttown had star-studded casts and kept viewers guessing with their twisty plots. Succession and The White Lotus became viral sensations thanks to all the memes they generated. Abbott Elementary combined elements of beloved shows like Modern Family and The Office with a relatable premise. The Idol was scandalous.
But The Bear stands out from the pack. It’s different. It has captivated audiences without relying on any of those usual ingredients. It has created its own unique appeal that has everyone talking, despite not fitting into any specific category.
In contrast to the first season, the characters in The Bear now genuinely support each other. Yes, there are still arguments and challenges that come with opening a new restaurant, but someone from the team always steps up to find a solution. Relationships between characters warm up, and they start realizing that everyone is doing their best. Every character in the show has a moment of realization about the importance of helping others, and they find a sense of purpose through their shared and sometimes flawed journey. Despite facing challenges along the way, their collective effort brings them together and gives their actions meaning.
Once again, White portrays Carmy as someone who carries visible emotional wounds and appears closed off, avoiding relaxation and being wary of finding joy.
Overall, The Bear is a refreshingly bold and captivating piece of television. It stays true to its belief in the underlying goodness of humanity, even though that goodness is often tested by struggles like addiction, grief, and self-destructive behaviors. It’s a powerful portrayal of the complexities of human nature and how we navigate through difficult experiences.