Season 2 of The Flight Attendant continues Cassie’s chaotic journey with a new mystery that allows audiences to see Kaley Cuoco shine once again.
Season one of The Flight Attendant was adored by audiences and critics alike. It was praised for being an original murder mystery and its black comedy approach. One of the biggest highlights of The Flight Attendant was Kaley Cuoco and how she was able to break out of her quirky girl typecast and become this fierce new heroine. All of these praises and more continue as Cassie’s story continues in the new season.
Picking up around a year from where we left off at the end of the first season, we see Cassie absolutely thriving in her new element. She is about to be one year sober, she is in a strong and healthy relationship, and has job fulfillment both as a flight attendant and a civilian asset for the C.I.A. Cassie is truly living her best life and, after years of fighting her inner demons and being in the center of a murder mystery, she finally is able to relax in her routine. When her newest assignment sends her international, she becomes an eyewitness to a murder, but this time there is a twist: the culprit looks exactly like her.
Even though that slight description only covers around the first twenty minutes of this new season, it is obvious that we are going to be hurled right back into the twists and turns that we have gotten to know and love from this show. One of the best parts of this show is that it is so much fun. With all of the twists and turns, this fast-paced mystery is a roller coaster ride in the best way. The creators are able to throw audiences for loop after loop while still keeping the show grounded in its central characters, which is a pretty big achievement given some of the directions that The Flight Attendant goes, especially towards the end of the season.
One of the main reasons why the roller coaster is so successful is because, at its core, this is a dark comedy. There are some pretty intense scenes throughout this series, both emotionally for our protagonist and also due to the fact that the mystery revolves around murder, but there is still time for some more lighthearted scenes that really keep the entertainment value of this show high.
Speaking of emotionally intense scenes for our protagonist, Cassie really did not have it easy this time around. Perhaps even more in this season than last, we really get to see Cassie’s true self and her inner thoughts, which both help the audience understand her battle against alcoholism and her mental health as a whole. The way that The Flight Attendant is able to take its time and really focus on Cassie’s inner journey among all of the never-ending chaos that is happening around her is beautifully portrayed and definitely one of the season’s biggest achievements.
Having these inner thoughts be seen, especially in regards to Cassie’s battle with her sobriety, lets Kaley Cuoco top her career-best performance from last season. She gets to experience almost every major emotion there is within these eight hours we see her and she does it so believably which allows the audience to not only stay grounded with the story but also with her, which makes it impossible to not care and root for her the whole time.
It is obvious that this is Cassie’s show and she has the most to deal with, but there is still a whirlwind of other subplots from different supporting characters which leads to one of the show’s biggest faults. Almost none of the other storylines get any room to breathe throughout this season. There are plenty of other characters who we have grown to care about in season one, and while these supporting characters do get their screen time, their individual plotlines get pushed aside almost every time for Cassie.
With so much going on with Cassie’s personal life and the murder mystery, it is hard to fully appreciate the work that some of these other actors are doing to make their characters as believable and well-rounded as the protagonist. This hurts the most with Shane (Griffin Matthews, of Dear White People) because we see him plenty throughout the series, but don’t really get the chance to understand any of his motivations outside of directly helping Cassie.
Even though some of the supporting characters don’t get the spotlight that they deserve in this new season, we are still introduced to some extraordinary new characters who each give great performances. One of the most important auditions this season is Cassie’s mother, played by Sharon Stone (Casino), who gives not only one of the best performances of the series but is one of the only characters who is given the opportunity to stand toe to toe with Cassie in some of the most emotional scenes that this show has seen.
Stone is able to use every moment of her small screen time and have all of the eyes of the audience drawn to her. Without some of these emotional moments between Cassie and her mother, most of her character development would not have been warranted; much of the show’s success from a character standpoint is due to both the talents of Cuoco and Stone respectively.
On top of this, we are also introduced to another great character, Grace, played by Mae Martin (of Feel Good), who is Cassie’s co-worker and fully succeeds in bringing a more chill and caring vibe to many of the overly stressed characters, even though their stress is quite understandable. It would also be a sin to not recognize both Zosia Mamet (Girls) and Rosie Perez (Birds of Prey), who continue their astounding work this season giving great supporting turns.
Even though season two of The Flight Attendant may not score to the same heights as its predecessor, it is still such a great time. We get to know Cassie more, watch a whole new mystery unfold, and watch a display of mental illness that is very unique but helps bring a new perspective to a lot of people going through some of the same issues that Cassie is. By the end of this season we, as the audience, have been through so many ups and downs with these characters, so it would be an utter shame for us not to be able to return to see what our favorite flight attendant is doing next. Here’s to hoping we get The Flight Attendant season three!
Season 2 of The Flight Attendant is now available to watch on HBO Max.