The cult HBO horror comedy is already breaking rules and bringing laughs in its sophomore season.
There’s no easy way to live your dream. But if you and your quirky, goth friends can open up a business that conjures up fake macabre events for money, it becomes a very real possibility. HBO’s Los Espookys, one of the best shows of 2019, returns after a long COVID hiatus with a second season abundant with the show’s trademark deadpan humor, random visual gags, and, above all, its big heart.
Created by Julio Torres, Ana Fabrega, and Fred Armisen, this horror-comedy about misfits who stage homemade hauntings for a living comes back with a vengeance.
While the show has its characters deal with the consequences of the first season, they smoothly turn their attention to new paths for the main cast. Renaldo (Bernardo Velasco) has unfortunate visions of the ghost of a dead beauty pageant model killed by a giant anchor going right through her on live television and tries to get to the bottom of this glittery mystery. But while getting to the (sea) bottom of his quest, he learns that maybe the thing haunting him is the expectations of others.
That struggle with identity ushers in frights to all of the Los Espookys gang. In their own way, every major character copes with letting others define who they are or gathering the courage to do it themselves.
The highlight of this season’s unearthly quests for identity is Tati (Fabrega), the beret-wearing uncomprehended genius who continuously steals the scenes she appears in with her signature cute, hilariously deadpan line deliveries. While trying to hold on to her marriage to an openly gay man, she tries to find distractions that can help her escape the truth.
Tati’s main diversion for herself involves starting a writing career – well, by listening to the audiobook versions of already published works and claiming them as her own. It’s a very amusing trope to play, but Tati’s career as an “author” also speaks to her need for validation. The character is no stranger to silly business ventures, such as winning a divorce settlement by demanding a box of cookies from her spouse. Certainly, her persistence to prove she’s a real writer goes beyond her unconventional personality; she wants to assert her convictions and pursue her goals. In this way, she changes her focus from the approval of others and starts to seek her own approval.
It was a smart move for this season to focus on the cast dealing with the same emotional issue (who are you really? Can you truly be who you want to be?) from different angles. What’s more, they do it as a tight-knit team; they have each other’s backs, and they know it. But that fuzzy camaraderie also comes with tough love, as is the case with Andrés (Torres), who must find a job and a place to live after claiming he wanted independence from his wealthy family. His friends are happy to let him crash at their places, but they are firm when the blue-haired fashion icon overstays his welcome.
All of these characters’ journeys are filled with strange humor that, slowly but surely, creates a style of its own. Merely showing these people develop their personalities and confronting bizarre situations as if it were an ordinary Tuesday is how this series aims to win you over. Because it knows it can. After all, treating the concept of valet parking as if it were a myth is funny because you get to fall in love with these characters as they flesh out their own little worlds in their heads.
Abundant chemistry between the cast, witty humor, and intriguing mysteries consolidate Los Espookys as a beautiful comedy with its second season. This outing continues the rollicking adventures of the band of misfits who stage thrills for a living with a successfully funny six-episode batch.
Los Espookys Season 2 is currently airing on HBO.