The Circle of Lockdown Life: My Favorite Pandemic-Era Escape Is Back

The Circle, Season 2 (2021)
The Circle, Season 2 (2021)
Screenshot: Netflix/YouTube

Circle, Message: I’m tired of reality. Nah, I’m EXHAUSTED from reality. Weary face emoji. Crying emoji. Hashtag escape.

Advertisement

If you’re a fan of Netflix’s The Circle, you know the exact dialogue style I just used in my lede. If you remember our launch of The Root’s “Black and Bingeing” series, I’m not only a fan of The Circle, I’m a fan of literally every iteration of The Circle Cinematic Universe (or CCU, for short).

Here’s the premise of the show that I previously broke down:

For those of you who haven’t had time to catch it yet, The Circle franchise follows a group of contestants known as “players” who all live in an apartment building and solely interact through a social media app known as “The Circle.” Using social strategy such as likeability and attractiveness (yes, they can choose to be either themselves or a “catfish”), these players compete to become the most popular player all while trying to avoid getting blocked from “The Circle.”

The Circle (U.S.) actually popped off at the beginning of 2020 and unexpectedly became the salve I needed during a very confusing global pandemic era. It was just the perfect amount of mindless entertainment and intrigue. Now, it’s returning in a particularly curious era—we’re experiencing a mass vaccine rollout and there is some real hope in getting back to “normal” (even though that “normal” is also something we’ll need an escape from).

I don’t want to spoil anything major because most of the intrigue of the show is in the twists and turns, but I have to mention this one thing since it was in the trailer (and not technically a spoiler because there’s another twist I won’t mention here):

Advertisement

LANCE BASS IS A CAST MEMBER. YES, LANCE BASS OF *NSYNC. YES, LANCE BASS OF THE LGBTQ COMMUNITY. YES, LANCE BASS OF COSMONAUT TRAINING. YES, HE REALLY DID THAT.

The Circle Season 2 Official Trailer / Netflix (YouTube)

Anyway!

Season 2 recently dropped on Netflix (on April 14) and we currently have four episodes to spazz out about, because keeping its viewers in suspense is The Circle’s entire personality. Yes, this show infamously keeps both its contestants and viewers on their toes, so there’s even more wacky rules and impromptu bombshells to uncover (i.e. what the entire fuck is an “inner circle???”).

Advertisement

 

Advertisement

Let’s break down the new cast of characters so far and my short and quippy thoughts about each of them (note: I’m referring to everyone by their game name, even if they’re a catfish).

Terilisha: The baddest bitch! She does not suffer fools and she’s a math wiz!

Courtney: He’s an entertainment reporter with a lot of energy and a bit of shade—which formulates once particular alliances form.

Advertisement

Trevor (catfish): Behind Trevor’s adorable single-father brand is his real-life wife, Leesa from Boogie Down Bronx. Her various wigs are characters in and of themselves.

Chloe: I remember her from another mindless entertainment-worty show on Netflix, Too Hot to Handle. Come through, network crossovers! Anyway, she’s still delightfully daft.

Advertisement

Emily (catfish): Behind Emily’s overtly impartial sweetness is the snarky and cynical Jack, who is self-admittedly not a social butterfly at all.

Savannah: She seems like the down-to-earth homegirl, though there was something about her that didn’t quite curl all the way over at the beginning. I couldn’t put my finger on it as I grew to dig her...until her virtual tussle with Terilisha.

Advertisement

River (catfish): Behind the hippie, proudly gay youngin’ is the middle-aged not-at-all-conservative Texan named Lee. He cries a lot. He’s adorable. I want to hug him.

Bryant: He seemed to be the “everyone get along”-type…the Shubham (Season 1 reference!) of the group. He’s very centered and will get that breathwork right if you ask him.

Advertisement

By the way, shoutout to Season 1’s Shubham, who is still the nicest person ever.

Advertisement

 #TheCircle is trending right now for multiple reasons as both the U.S. version and the British version that it is based on are streaming their newest seasons—the latter of which just revealed its winner. I guess we all have to stay tuned for the second batch of U.S. episodes, which drops on April 21!

Who do y’all think will take home the $100,000 this season? Who do you want to take home the $100,00 this season? Is “Bye Bye Bye” stuck in your head?

DISCUSSION