The second season of the Netflix series Locke & Key continues the adventures of the Locke family and their supernaturally-forged keys. At the conclusion of the first season, we saw Ellie (Sherri Saum) trapped in the void after having her appearance changed to look like Dodge (Laysla De Oliveira) via the Identity key, while the real Dodge made her escape. Keeping her cover, she resumes her disguise as Gabe (Griffin Gluck) continuing to infiltrate the Lockes particularly as a love interest for Kinsey (Emilia Jones). The second season picks up almost immediately after the events of the first as the family maintains control of most of the keys while Gabe/Dodge continues to scheme.
The strength of the series based on the comics by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez is its core cast of Lockes: Jones, Connor Jessup's Tyler, Darby Stanchfield's Nina, and Jackson Robert Scott's Bode. I didn't feel really the characters evolved beyond their first season molds, with the plot conveniently falling into place depending on what key said character had at the time. De Oliveira doesn't seem to be involved as much this season as much of Dodge's role still remains as Gabe, but showrunners work her in where it counts (translation: the climactic season two finale). We do see Aaron Ashmore's Duncan Locke have more of an expanded role than previously and much like his brother Shawn Ashmore's role in The Boys, they give him a similar guilt-ridden regret. Hallea Jones' Eden Hawkins looked like she had a lot more "fun" in a more devilish role similar to Peyton List's Tory Nichols in Cobra Kai given what happened to Eden at the conclusion of the first season.
While it's easy to rest on the laurels of what made the first season, the stakes were definitely raised. There was also a greater sense of urgency and loss, even when moments felt predictable because the strength of the ensemble and the writing made it work. There are a few gripes like it would've been nice if they did more with the flashbacks beyond what was being foreshadowed for the third season. I would've also liked to see more exposition of Dodge beyond her nefarious plans that doesn't feel like a page from the script to Robert Rodriguez's The Faculty. Locke & Key was not only renewed for a third season and but has already wrapped filming on it. With that in mind, I hope that expanding beyond what we were presented with at the end of the second season doesn't tamper with what could've been a satisfying conclusion. Let's hope Carlton Cuse, Meredith Averill, and Aron Eli Coleite don't wear out the series welcome next season.