We must have done something to please the content gods because they blessed us with Showtime’s wonderfully warped, genre-bending masterpiece Yellowjackets. If you haven’t seen the show, it’s a mystery/horror/survival thriller/drama/psychological mindf*ck of a story. The series focuses on members of a girls’ soccer team who survive a plane crash as teenagers and plays out in dual timelines, jumping between the immediate aftermath of the crash in 1996 as the girls struggle to survive on their own while stranded for 19 months and events that occur 25 years later, as the women deal with the trauma and what they did to survive the horrific ordeal.
Yellowjackets is complex, thought-provoking, and instantly addictive (and a critical darling with a perfect 100 percent on Rotten Tomatoes)—which is probably why Showtime wasted no time and officially renewed it for a second season in December 2021, about halfway through season 1. Here’s everything we know (so far) about Yellowjackets season 2.
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Most of the cast is still very much up in the air.
Fans aren’t sure about the status of some characters and who will be heading into season 2 and if the second season will continue to follow both timelines. But recently, a few characters have been officially announced. First, Variety reported that Showtime announced that adult Lottie is going to be played by Simone Kessell, aka the actor who played Princess Leia’s mom in Obi-Wan Kenobi. Around the same time, news also broke that Lauren Ambrose would be joining the cast as the adult version of survivor Van.
Then, fans got perhaps the biggest Yellowjackets season 2 casting news yet whenElijah Wood hopped on Twitter to personally confirm that he will be joining the cast for what Entertainment Tonight describes as a “season-long guest arc” as Citizen Detective Walter (and, FWIW, Elijah seems as excited as fans by the news).
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Other than this, not many casting announcements have been made yet, but the show’s adult stars—Melanie Lynskey, Tawny Cypress, Juliette Lewis, and Christina Ricci—seem likely to return.
The plot is already planned out.
We might not know any specific spoilers about the plot of Yellowjackets season 2 yet, but the show’s creators, Ashley Lyle and Bart Nickerson (who are married IRL), definitely already know where the story is headed—and have since before they filmed a single episode.
“We pitched it as a five-season idea,” Nickerson explained in an interview with the Hollywood Reporter’s TV’s Top 5 podcast.
We can also assume the second season will continue with the Lord of the Flies–inspired exploration of human nature and society.
“Lord of the Flies is about how socialization falls away and how society is a facade. We thought, Who is more socialized than women? As girls, you learn early on how to make people like you and what the social hierarchies are,” Lyle explained during the interview. “It’s a more interesting way of having things fall away. The mask is even thicker. It’s a more layered amount of preconceived notions of how to behave and act.”
Season 2 will have new mysteries.
Even though Lyle and Nickerson went into Yellowjackets with a five-season plan, they also knew they wanted season 1 to answer very specific questions—and, you know, actually answer them instead of teasing them out forever.
“When we were formulating and developing the idea, we always saw this as a multi-season story and our goal in the first season is to very much answer certain questions, because I personally get very irritated with shows that drag everything on forever and don’t give you any answers,” Lyle explained in an interview with E! News. “So we wanted to answer some questions and ask some new ones, so that is hopefully what we accomplished over the course of this season.”
Showtime definitely isn’t going to stand in the way of the showrunners’ vision.
Another educated guess about Yellowjackets season 2? It will be just as edgy and daring as season 1 because Showtime execs have gone on the record saying the network is very much onboard with the showrunners’ dark vision for the series.
“Yellowjackets has been an unadulterated sensation for Showtime,” Showtime entertainment president Gary Levine said (per Variety). “We are overwhelmed by both the acclaim and the audience response to our series, including several Best of 2021 lists, a 100 percent score on Rotten Tomatoes, and snowballing viewership. Clearly there is a hunger for originality and audacity, and our incredible showrunners Ashley, Bart, and Jonathan, along with their pitch-perfect cast, have delivered that and so much more. I can’t wait to see the surprises they have in store for us in season 2.”