Exeter, Devon UK • Apr 16, 2024 • VOL XII

Exeter, Devon UK • [date-today] • VOL XII
Home Screen Review: The Traitors UK Series 2

Review: The Traitors UK Series 2

Eloise Grainger, Print Sport Editor, details the second series of The Traitors UK, noting the ever-growing audience and complex dynamics inside the castle.
5 mins read
Written by
The Traitors – Series 2 | Official Trailer | BBC

If you haven’t watched The Traitors Series 2, then you quite literally must be living under a rock. This game show / reality TV hybrid has captured the attention of millions of TV viewers across the UK, and for good reason. The game is built on a foundation of lies, deception, and secrecy. Both the faithful and the traitors need to be cautious.   

The final aired on 26th January, and just shy of 7 million people tuned in. Even when Love Island: All Stars was expected to be dominating the reality TV world, it was The Traitors that became the fan favourite. We are trading bikinis for sweaters and trench coats, that’s for sure! What has perhaps aided the show’s success is that it really is for everyone – reality TV lovers, game show lovers, Claudia Winkleman lovers. She has swapped out her Strictly persona for a more dark and neo-gothic role. If she can switch personalities with a snap of a finger, so can our contestants.   

A world of paranoia is constructed in a Scottish Highlands castle. With traitors committing murders once a night, it is up to the faithful to correctly find the traitors amongst them and banish them at the Round Table. If they do this, the faithful split the prise pot (which could be worth up to £120,000). But if there is a traitor / traitors remaining, it is the traitors who take all the money.  

Contestants either make or break the show. Series 2 was blessed with an outstanding selection of 22 strangers. Any traitors who wish to be in the final must hide behind a façade of friendship and teamwork.  

Paul established his dominance in the traitor’s turret and amongst the faithful. A friendly façade on the outside, and cunning cruelty on the inside. But, in episode 8, Paul was banished from the castle – his excessive self-confidence did him no favours. Perhaps the power and control he had of the game got to his head.  

Diane quickly became a fan favourite for her iconic leadership at the Round Table and clever game play, but mainly for her secret that she is Ross’s mother. Fans were devastated she was a victim of the traitor’s evil murders, but she went out in arguably the best way. A whole day was dedicated to her demise, steeped in suspense as contestants were picked out one by one and were left with who was murdered. Poor Ross had to bury his own mother… and nobody even knew! The Traitors made a mundane event like a funeral such a spectacle.  

Ross attempts to avenge his mother’s death. It made for the perfect revenge storyline when the traitors decided to recruit Ross. But he never had the guile nor the time to take vengeance on Harry. The traitors used faithful as pawns to do the dirty work for them, planting seeds that sowed Ross’s fate at the Round Table.  

The 12 episodes spanned 4 weeks – the temporary 5-day wait was just long enough to create intense suspense to get us through the dreary January. Fans have been clinging onto every ounce of Traitors content possible, with Ed Gamble hosting The Traitors: Uncloaked, with the post-show chat continuing over on BBC Sounds. Memes and reels have connected the fandom – my personal favourite discussion is the hilarious misspelling of names at the Round Table. Poor ‘Charlot’.  

Harry played a brilliant game: he convinced everyone from the start of his purity and innocence, twisting things to benefit him. Many disliked his smugness, but he fully deserved to be. At times it seemed this cockiness would be his undoing, but he was quiet and confident until the end, and that’s what gave him his victory. Jaz (known now as Jazatha Christie for his detective skills) took a pedantic approach to situations meaning he had the facts to eliminate Harry, yet he revealed this all too late. 

The contestants became a real family unit making it painful when one departed from the castle. The tension cultivated is something that few scripted dramas can match to such perfection. We have fallen in love with these characters. In the end, even Harry felt remorseful.   

The finale placed Harry and Mollie in a position of ultimate betrayal. Mollie left the banishment devastated after discovering Harry was a traitor and losing a share of £95k. They had a brotherly-sisterly love for each other, but this was Mollie’s downfall. She had control of the game’s ending and couldn’t find it in her heart to vote for Harry.  

Whether you are willing for the downfall of the traitors and success of the faithful or visa-versa, Harry deserved to win. The contestants now have a huge online presence and social media following. Just 11 more months until hopefully a season 3 returns to our screens and the fun begins all over again. What a start to 2024 British television! 

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