“The White Lotus” Season Two: An Untraditional Approach To Television


Elizabeth Ippolito and Isabella Foley

Created By: Mike White

Starring: Jennifer Coolidge, Michael Imperioli, Theo James, and Aubrey Plaza


Liz: 2/5

Bella: 4.5/5

“The White Lotus” is an HBO Max original series created by Mike White, a former contestant on “Survivor: David vs. Goliath” which has an untraditional yet refreshing approach to streamed television that viewers have been missing. The show centers around The White Lotus resort which has different locations around the world.

Season one takes place at The White Lotus in Hawaii and has an all-star cast of Jennifer Coolidge, Sydney Sweeney, Jake Lacy, Steve Zahn, and Connie Britton. A lot of familiar names, right? The show focuses on various dramas between guests. These range from marital problems, health scares, drug abuse, and grief. All of this occurs at the same resort but each family doesn’t know the other and they all unleash their inner impulses on the getaway. The catch of the entire series is that a death is revealed in the first episode and audiences attempt to solve the murder mystery for the remainder of the show.

Season two is set in The White Lotus in Sicily, Italy, and takes the drama to a whole other level. It focuses on men, prostitutes, infidelity, and drug abuse. It brings on yet another all-star cast of Jennifer Coolidge, Aubrey Plaza, Theo James, and Hollywood’s designated Italian, Michael Imperioli. Season two follows the same formula as season one and it definitely has the same tension.


Liz’s thoughts: 

Season two is underwhelming compared to season one. Season one sets up the premise and served all the drama. This new season felt like “The White Lotus” was just going through the motions. While season two had a much more beautiful production design and cinematography compared to the first, it was a flop with its storyline. The story felt forced and lazy. The beautiful thing about the show is that even though you may not like a season, fans receive a fresh start the next time around. Season three has been confirmed and I will definitely be watching to see where the new cast goes and what happens to them.


Bella’s thoughts:

I couldn’t possibly disagree more with Liz’s take on season two! I was captivated by each episode of season two and while I can understand the drawbacks due to the slow pace, I felt that every second made a difference. The cast performances paired with stunning cinematography inspire me as a filmmaker. I think that the Italy location and addition of even more familiar Hollywood faces elevated the series tremendously. Meghan Fahy, in particular, gave one of the best performances in the entire series so far. I loved her in the Freeform series, “The Bold Type”, and after her “The White Lotus” debut, she is destined for even more stardom. My favorite part about this series is how the writers specifically craft the plot to keep you on the edge of your seat. It is drastically different from other streaming shows and I am looking forward to seeing how season three will make an impact on the industry as well. Everyone that plays a part in creating “The White Lotus” deserves all the awards and recognition that come their way. 


“The White Lotus” is genius in its framing. Starting with the casting, “The White Lotus” has a realistic approach in the sense that every season has a new cast, similar to how there would be many different hotel guests at a resort in real life. This does lead to highs and lows of each season but it maximizes the potential of the series run. By casting famous actors, the show brings in a broader audience. Every single actor already has an established career in Hollywood and brings familiarity to audiences, which makes them more likely to check out the show. This has never been seen before and is honestly refreshing. Also, in a world dominated by binge-watching, having a completely new storyline each season is a great way to supply the demand for streaming services. There’s no need to explain prior seasons or even connect them, writers are able to become more creative and unhinged with their plots. The plot is fascinating, there’s nothing more on brand for viewers than getting an inside look at other people’s lives and dysfunction.

“The White Lotus” seems to rank pretty high on audiences’ radar, one of the most talked about shows of 2022. Rotten Tomatoes gives a high 94% while audiences score it at only 65%. Buzzfeed News calls “The White Lotus” season two, “Narratively speaking, this season felt flatter and had a little less texture, but it really sparkled. Season two was able to establish that the White Lotus formula works”. 


Liz’s season 3 predictions: 

Season three has already been confirmed, and creator Mike White has dropped some hints about what viewers will see. He would like to see something of a religious spiritual trip and hinted at a middle east destination. Personally, I believe season three will take place at The White Lotus Dubai. The show always has a beautiful set design and Dubai is the place to showcase this. My second guess is The White Lotus Israel. I think there is a lot that can be played out in Israel spiritually and a lot of deeper meaning that can be placed in the storyline.


Bellas Season 3 predictions:

While I am unsure of the location for the next White Lotus resort in season three, I believe that perhaps one of the cast members from season two will return, just as Jennifer Coolidge has. Audiences do not need to watch previous seasons as they do not correlate with each other, but I think it brings a sense of satisfaction to die-hard fans of the show, like myself. White never fails to cast the perfect actors that bring intensity to each season and I am excited to see what he has in store next.