Ready to kill three hours while you inexplicably have to work today? Just kidding, I would never tell anyone to do that (wink) but lucky for all of us, the second season of I Hate Suzie, aptly titled I Hate Suzie Too, is back on HBO Max and perfect for putting in a little browser window off to the side of your spreadsheets or Google Docs tab (KIDDING). The first season premiered back in the fall of 2020, and while everyone was getting horny for the stupid chess show, I was shaking my head at my TV going, “Billie Piper is a fucking genius,” and now you can do that too.
I Hate Suzie’s first season focused on a nude photo scandal for the fictional actress Suzie Pickles (Billie Piper). Pickles — very famous as a teen but much less so as an adult — takes far more heat for the photo than the man who also appears in it: for one, it’s clear from the image that the man she’s having sex with is not her world-weary, embittered academic husband Cob (Daniel Ings) but the director of the TV show she’s in. The photo scandal causes her life and career to implode, risking acting opportunities (Disney rescinds) and custody of her child. Her agent, who is also her best friend, Naomi (Leila Farzad), struggles to keep her career afloat as everything comes crashing down.
I Hate Suzie is born out of a collaboration between Piper and playwright Lucy Prebble, perhaps best known to American audiences for her work as a writer on Succession. She and Piper worked together over a decade ago on Secret Diary of a Call Girl (great show) and Empire (no idea — probably good). It’s an acidic, sometimes unpleasant but way more often biting comedy about our “current moment,” so to speak, with much to show about “cancel culture” and the entertainment industry and little lecturing. If you’re still jonesing for a TÁR fix (blonde lady with rude but undeniably cool vibe) before the short film premieres at the Berlinale, I Hate Suzie & I Hate Suzie Too is the perfect watch.
In a crowded sea of either “fuck the rich!” or celeb-worshiping entertainment, I Hate Suzie is the only show that makes fame feel like a legitimate burden for anyone who isn’t a total psychopath. For one, you will not be remotely jealous of her outfits (almost uniformly awful). If Suzie is a victim of anything, it’s her own humanity and her penchant for fucking things up worse than they already are. Billie Piper, already outstanding in this year’s Catherine Called Birdy, goes for broke in this new season, which sees Pickles go on a Dancing With The Stars-style reality show called Dance Crazee. It’s not just that Pickles is a good dancer — which she is — but that she has to be a good dancer in the midst of a nervous breakdown. JoJo Siwa much?
I Hate Suzie’s two seasons are about three hours in length each, just the right amount of time to watch while avoiding your family or strangers at the airport. Get to it quick, before HBO Max sneaks it off the website like they did with their other show about an unlikable blonde woman, Westworld.