Here Are All the Things You Probably Missed Watching The Bear’s Season Two Premiere

published Jun 23, 2023
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Still of Jeremy Allen in Hulu’s TV show The Bear
Credit: Courtesy of Hulu

You don’t have to be a chef or experience cooking in a fast-paced kitchen to appreciate one of the most anticipated returns to the small screen: The Bear. After a stunning first season, the show quickly became one of the most talked-about series of 2022, racking up awards in the process. 

Using an incredible cast of characters to tell its story, The Bear’s fast-paced editing style and creative camerawork gives viewers an immersive look inside a struggling family-owned restaurant in Chicago known as The Beef. After taking viewers on an intense emotional journey in season one, The Bear proved itself capable of tackling real life issues such as pain, grief, and suffering while expertly peppering in comedic breaks and moments that pulled at your heartstrings.

Now in its second season, head chef Carmy (Jeremey Allen Wright) is rebuilding The Beef’s next life with a major overhaul of the restaurant. Episode one opens with feelings of uncertainty, ambition, and perseverance, and sets the stage for what will be an exciting path. These are some big moments you’ll want to pay extra attention.

1. The chemistry between Marcus and Sydney

The episode opens with Marcus (L-Boy) caring for his ill mother. As he moisturizes her hands and washes her face, you can see the heartbreak Marcus is feeling. Later, when back at the restaurant, Marcus cracks a joke with Sydney (Ayo Edebiri) and you’ve gotta admit there seems to be some chemistry — potentially sexual tension — between the kinda awkward pair. 

2. The anxious uphill battle vibe of the opening credits 

Bruce Hornsby & The Range’s “The Show Must Go On” opens the episode and gives an almost Cheers-esque vibe with its piano intro. When accompanied by the sweeping wide angle drone shots of the Chicago skyline, you can’t help but have an underlying feeling of anxiety, focusing on just how small we are in a big city. Immediately we understand that there is long, uphill battle facing this crew as they work through opening the new restaurant.

Credit: Courtesy of Hulu

3. Cousin Ritchie’s surprisingly deep moment 

In our first truly dramatic moment of the episode, Carmy finds Cousin Ritchie (Ebon Moss-Bachrach) reminiscing over old family photos. Carmy (always in go-go mode) has to check himself when Cousin asks if he ever thinks about purpose. Instead of blowing off Cousin, Carmy takes the time to hear him out. Cousin expresses his fear of becoming useless and cast away when he’s no longer needed, worrying that he has nothing real to bring to the table.

Credit: Courtesy of Hulu

4. Carmy’s sister Natalie not accepting a formal role in the restaurant

By this season Carmy and his sister, Natalie, have developed a much closer relationship, with Natalie spending a lot of time helping around the restaurant. During a team meeting to discuss finances, Sydney suggests Natalie take over as the restaurant’s project manager. While her expertise would be a huge help, her larger concerns of working so closely with the family prevent her from committing. 

5. Sydney offering Tina the position of sous chef

A short but majorly pivotal moment happens when Sydney asks Tina (Liza Colón-Zayas) if she’d be interested in being her sous chef. You’ll remember their relationship has been rocky: Tina refused to call Sydney “chef” — instead calling her “Jeff” — sabotaged her recipes, and just made her life, well, difficult. Now we’re seeing a new relationship begin to bud, with Tina opening up to Sydney’s suggestions. Sydney recognizes the benefit of investing in your employees, rather than hiring someone new. 

6. The investor and the cans of tomatoes

During the finale of Season one, we learned of the tomato cans full of cash that Carmy’s brother, Michael had left behind as a parting gift, along with a recipe for spaghetti, and a note that read, “Let it rip!” After realizing that the cash was loaned to Michael by their investor, Uncle Jimmy (Oliver Platt), Carmy and his team concoct a plan to ask Uncle Jimmy to let them use the original $250,000, along with some extra cash, to make the new restaurant a reality. When Uncle Jimmy expresses his doubts in the team’s ability to succeed based on their track record, Carmy puts up an unrealistic timeline to opening the restaurant as collateral, claiming that they will open the restaurant and pay back the loan within 18 months. 

Carmy’s dedication and trust in his team fuels his ability to make difficult decisions, even if it is going to mean working long hours with no immediate reward. While the chaos of the episode develops around him, Carmy seems to be unphased. Even while an alarm goes off during the entirety of his meeting with Uncle Jimmy, Carmy stays focused on his goal. His confidence in their ability to run a legitimate family business, in his hometown, and with honest partners is what gains Uncle Jimmy’s eventual support. Plus, if he fails, Jimmy gets it all.

Credit: Courtesy of Hulu

7. Three months to open

In the wake of realizing that 18 months is nowhere near enough time to open and make back over $500,000 to pay off their loan, the team seems to be in a bit of shock. Sure, they secured an investor, but they have limited time to make the restaurant a success. While waiting on permits, Carmy anxiously sits around, going over everything in his head. He glances at his old chef uniform with the initials, CB showing, and in a sudden bout of motivation, he gets up and heads back to the restaurant. Upon arriving, Carmy discovers that Natalie and Sydney are already there, and together they all agree on a three-month plan for opening day. The shot narrows in to show their calendars with the message “Every second counts” emblazoned across the second month. Sydney asks, “Is this a terrible idea?” To which Natalie and Carmy nod their heads in agreement as “New Noise” by Refused plays in the background, and the lyrics “can I scream” close out the episode. Sh*t is about to get real.