Netflix’s Greatest Show of All Time: 5 Reasons why you should watch Netflix’s “BEEF”


Pooja Singamsetty

What starts as a simple fit of road rage, turns into an all out war between two hotheads who desperately try to take each other down, not realizing the destruction they’ve caused around them. BEEF is about two strangers who become obsessed with exacting revenge on one another.

Pooja Singamsetty, Staff Writer

1. The Plot 

What starts as a simple fit of road rage, turns into an all out war between two hotheads who desperately try to take each other down, not realizing the destruction they’ve caused around them. BEEF is about two strangers who become obsessed with exacting revenge on one another, but the plot is much deeper than that. It showcases the progression of their beef, and how a simple incident would end up ruining their lives.

2. The Acting 

One of the most rewarding parts of the show is the phenomenal acting of Ali Wong (who plays Amy Lau) and Steven Yeun (who plays Danny Cho). 

Wong does an incredible job of portraying a working mother whose overwhelming work life suffocates her. One of the things that makes her acting unique in this series is her use of micro-expressions that represent her cracking facade. Throughout the series, Amy Lau is unhappy with her life and feels obligated to fake a smile. In scenes of high tension, hercomposed expression  falters, providing a glimpse into her character’s true hidden emotions Whether it be through the quiver of a lip or twitch of an eyebrow, she perfectly captures Amy’s frustration.

Steven Yeun’s work on the show was also incredibly remarkable as his painfully real performance illustrated Danny Cho’s disappointing life. Yuen does a wonderful job at portraying a character who feels as though the odds are always stacked against him, as if he can never have a moment to breathe. He delivers a convincing buildup and eventually a heartbreaking climax that easily captivates the audience. He has the ability to turn a simple scene of Danny eating a sandwich into a tense representation of his dissatisfaction with life and his desire to have it all exaggerated expressions. 

3. The Symbolism 

Throughout the show, there are many symbols that appear with delicate and detailed intentions, each with their own meaning that ties in with the theme of the show. Take for example, the title cards and episode names, particularly, Episode Four. The title card depicts a disheartened woman sitting alone in rags as she stares, mourning off into the distance, the title of the episode is “Just Not All at the Same Time.” The purpose of this is to represent Amy’s transition from a woman with a loving family, lavish lifestyle, and enviable job to an unhinged woman who lost everything. Amy seemingly “has it all,” but when she starts chasing the gratification of revenge, the audience watches as she loses touch with herself and everything around her. The title card and episode name reflect this because they illustrate how her pursuit of everything at the same time caused her immense stress, inevitably leading to her breaking point. 

Another commonly integrated symbol throughout the series were crows, which represent bad luck in Korean culture. This symbol not only visualizes their horrible luck but also represents a part of their cultural identity, since Amy and Danny are both Korean. 

One of the other symbols in the show was Danny’s Burger King order of four original chicken sandwiches. While the order itself is not the symbol, it’s the fact that Amy is seen eating these same chicken sandwiches later on in the series. Danny’s craze for the burger king sandwiches, he drives out of his way to eat by himself,portrays his loneliness, signifying that Amy was at her lowest point when she too, decided to try Danny’s ritual. 

4. The Cinematography 

If there’s anything A24 is known for, it’s their use of cinematography, and that can be seen through the show BEEF, which uses innovative camera angles and close up shots to creatively tell the story of two drivers whose obsession with each other led each to their own downfall. One particular example would be the shots taken inches away from the character’s faces in order to showcase the utmost vulnerability that the characters experience in that moment. By using zoomed-in clips, the actors can tell a story using simple expressions in their eyes and small shifts in their face. The subtlety of these details  creates a sort of interpersonal experience between the character and the individual viewer. 

5. The Theme

In the show, the audience follows two drivers who have beef because of a fight that began in a parking lot.hen neither of the drivers are mature enough to let the incident go, both Amy and Danny find themselves obsessed with getting revenge, going to the extreme in order to come out on top. And despite them always being at odds with one another, it is revealed that the two aren’t very different after all.heir inner dialogue and self hatred is reflected in each other as they continually yell at each other. This series explores the theme of anger issues and how being consumed with anger has no benefit to anyone. Danny and Amy didn’t like each other because they reminded each other of themselves, an individual with overwhelming anger issues and an unhappy life. However, this allows them to be their truest selves in front of each other since they are the only people who truly understand each other. 

This is portrayed through Amy’s interactions with her husband George, who repeatedly falls short of being Amy’s support system. When ranting to her husband, he tends to act as a “neutral party,” imploring her to let things go and not let her anger get the best of her. However, he unknowingly makes things worse by cutting her off and stating that he understands how she feels, when in reality, all Amy needed was someone to listen to her.. George clearly does not fulfill this role, and she admits herself when telling her daughter June that she felt as though her daughter’s birth was the one moment where she was truly herself. Around her baby June, Amy felt at peace.. She revealed that even George didn’t make her feel this way, but as June grows up, Amy loses this safe-haven causing her to bottle up her true emotions with no release. 

That is until she met Danny, who allowed her to be herself—not the version of her with a perfect family, or the version of her that smiles and laughs, but rather the real her. The version of her who could scream till her lungs gave out, so overcome with rage that she could hold a meaningless grudge. 


All things considered, BEEF was a phenomenal watch, both extremely entertaining and artistic. Symbolism runs deep throughout the show, adding to  elements of complexity and creativity. This, combined with the amazing performances done by the actors came together to create a unique and enjoyable experience that manages to incorporate humor into the most hopeless of situations. The show also provides insightful social commentary while telling the story of two rivals who are not so different after all. 10/10 would recommend.