What's Covered In Full Swing Season 2... (And Why It's Better Than Season 1)

The second season of Full Swing showcases some controversial moments from the golf world as well as some fascinating stories, and it has been taken up a level thanks to the Ryder Cup

Full Swing poster and two screengrabs from episodes
(Image credit: Netflix)

*Warning: Contains some spoilers*

The eagerly anticipated second season of Full Swing has arrived, and the producers and crew once again had plenty of big stories and events throughout another busy year of golf to showcase to the mass Netflix audience.

Season one was a big hit, with the likes of Rory McIlroy, Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Matt Fitzpatrick, Joel Dahmen and Tony Finau all starring, and season 2 focuses on some new faces along with some returning characters.

What this year's Full Swing was blessed with was the Ryder Cup, and the show certainly leans on the huge USA vs Europe match with three dedicated episodes to golf's greatest event - one on the wildcard picks and two on the event itself ensure a superb climax to season 2, which is a gripping watch throughout.

Rory McIlroy gets the season off to its start, with Full Swing painting him as a man who's dealing with two big jobs - one as a golfer and one as a politician. We all know how that ends, with McIlroy quitting the PGA Tour board, although that isn't covered in the series.

Rory McIlroy in a chair being interviewed during Full Swing Season 2

(Image credit: Netflix)

McIlroy, as the second-biggest name in the sport behind Tiger Woods, is a good starter and gives plenty of juicy quotes throughout the series but we don't get to visit him at home or at his home club like we do with some of the other stars.

There are some off-course nuggets, though, including him saying he needs a full reset in the locker room after his T7 at the PGA, and his reactions to the merger news. We get to hear from him in the car and discover what his favorite podcasts are but overall, this is a very professional look at his life. He's given Netflix plenty of time and access, but clearly keeps the crews at arms-length.

Rory McIlroy speaking to Rickie Fowler at the 2023 US Open

(Image credit: Netflix)

And on the merger, we hear the words "what the f***" quite a bit from a few players but perhaps unsurprisingly we hear very little on it. The players clearly had no idea it was coming and very few seem to share their real feelings on how the news went down and what they think of Jay Monahan's surprise deal.

Dustin Johnson comes back in episode 2 and we get to hear from his wife Paulina Gretzky, who reveals the couple received death threats after joining LIV Golf. It's interesting to hear from her as a wife of one of LIV Golf's biggest signings and we get to see a look into their life together, and DJ in his natural habitat - out fishing on his boat. Johnson is a very welcome return back to Full Swing, but there's no return for Ian Poulter, who had one of the best episodes in season 1, and Brooks Koepka is only seen briefly.

Paulina Gretzky and Dustin Johnson during Netflix Full Swing Season 2

(Image credit: Netflix)

Episode 3 turns to Wyndham Clark and the return of Joel Dahmen and his caddie Geno Bonallie. It's got a 'sports psychologist' story around it and shows a fantastic insight into the mind of Clark and how he went from an angry, negative golfer to a confident Major champion. Julie Elion, who had also worked with Phil Mickelson in the past, features heavily too on her excellent work with Clark and it's a really good look at one of golf's new stars.

Joel Dahmen is portrayed as a complete opposite to Clark. He's low on confidence with his game and more famous than ever - thanks to Netflix (the famous part). It's sad to see him struggle mentally and his caddie Geno pops up throughout with comments on how Joel doesn't seem to care anymore. Dahmen is raw, just like season 1, and produces some of the best quotes from Full Swing Season 2.

Geno Bonallie and Joel Dahmen hug on a plane

(Image credit: Netflix)

The episode ends with a (possibly drink-infused) cuddle between the pair on a private jet as Joel finally agrees to see a sports psychologist and focus his mind on playing better golf again. It's a nice ending to the Dahmen story that is a slightly difficult watch at times, where he's low on confidence, regularly drinking and not featuring on leaderboards.

Tom Kim then takes episode 4, which follows him at the Majors and ends on his T2 at The Open where he sprained his ankle earlier in the week. Kim is one of the game's potential superstars and it's a good reminder of the talent he possesses at such a young age. There are some funny moments from episode 4 but is it the best of the eight episodes? Certainly not. It is one that will grow his name for sure, though.

Tom Kim holds a clapper board during Netflix Full Swing filming

(Image credit: Netflix)

Matt Fitzpatrick returns in Episode 5 alongside his brother Alex, who is wrestling with the struggles of being in Matt's shadow. It's quite eye-opening just how much being 'the other Fitzpatrick' affects Alex, but we get to see him buoyed by beating his brother and having an excellent finish in his debut Major at The Open. These two, along with Dahmen, come across as the most 'normal' of the golfers and this will surely go some way to growing Alex's fandom.

Pick Six, episode six, is where things really start to heat up for Full Swing's second season as Team USA's Ryder Cup wildcard dilemma is covered in some detail. There's no real mention of Bryson, DJ, Finau or Young and instead is pitted as Justin Thomas vs Keegan Bradley.

Justin Thomas at his Florida mansion

(Image credit: Netflix/Full Swing)

Thomas was staying with Zach Johnson at one of the tournaments, which was a surprise to me, while Bradley was the guy looking in and some may believe he wasn't picked due to friendships. We get to see Johnson's phonecall to Bradley to tell him he didn't make the team, and it is one the most gut-wrenching moments of the entire series. Bradley comes out of it really well and should be applauded for his reaction. He's sure to earn many more fans from season 2.

The final two episodes focus on the Ryder Cup, and while most hardcore golf fans won't learn a great deal, it still makes for two great episodes to end the season. There's some good footage with Justin Rose at his stunning Wentworth home, where he learns that he's earned his first ever wildcard pick, and the build-up to the event certainly will give you goosebumps and remind you of just how incredible the Ryder Cup is.

Team USA players hit on the range at the 2023 Ryder Cup

(Image credit: Netflix)

There's no inside the locker room footage or anything really juicy, although we get an alternative look at the LaCava vs McIlroy/Lowry controversy and some never-heard-before words from inside the ropes.

Full Swing to a casual golf fan will be a superb and gripping watch but for a die-hard, it is tough to get truly excited by the episodes that don't give away too much or teach you a great deal. The F1: Drive to Survive series is most likely a much easier show to put together due to there being just 20 teams and a set calendar of races.

In Full Swing, they've got literally hundreds of golfers to choose from - the World No.700+ Alex Fitzpatrick features for example - and there's events on the PGA Tour, Korn Ferry Tour, DP World Tour, LPGA Tour plus the Majors, Ryder Cup and Solheim Cup to choose from.

Season 2 feels very similar to season 1, and that's not necessarily a terrible thing, but the faces do feel similar and there's surely dozens and dozens of other golfers and teams who would make for great episodes and stories. There's no Rahm, Bryson or most of the LIV roster - how good would episodes featuring Mickelson, Pat Perez, Sergio Garcia or Henrik Stenson be, for example?

On the PGA Tour side of things there's no Cantlay, Schauffele, Hovland, Harman or Fleetwood, and there most certainly aren't any LPGA players. That's a shame, especially in a Solheim Cup year. 

Sticking with the PGA Tour, we get very little from Jay Monahan and the FedEx Cup and the tour's flagship Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass is mostly ignored.

But with the footage they've got and the tournaments they covered, Full Swing Season 2 is a really good watch. Every episode showcases different stories and behind-the-scenes access, and there are plenty of good characters to grow fond of.

Of course it could have been better, but it's once again great to see our sport covered on such a huge streaming platform. It's a solid 8/10, good job Netflix.

Elliott Heath
News Editor

Elliott Heath is our News Editor and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news team as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as five Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. His first Open was in 2017 at Royal Birkdale, when he walked inside the ropes with Jordan Spieth during the Texan's memorable Claret Jug triumph. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Western Gailes, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays off of a six handicap. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!

Elliott is currently playing:

Driver: Titleist TSR4

3 wood: Titleist TSi2

Hybrids: Titleist 816 H1

Irons: Mizuno MP5 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Srixon Z Star XV