The return of Yellowjackets is within grasp. The Showtime drama series will return for season 2 in March 2023. On March 9, the network released the jaw-dropping season 2 trailer set to Florence Welch’s cover of No Doubt’s “Just A Girl.” Adult Natalie begins to acknowledge the darkness that took over the group in the wilderness, but adult Lottie doesn’t think it’s over. “I thought we left it there when we were rescued but now I realized we brought it back with us,” Lottie says. The trailer ends with the girls carrying someone’s dead body.
Although there are a number of mysteries within the show — including what really happened out there in the wilderness — there’s a lot we already know about the highly-anticipated second season. Thankfully, we won’t have to wait too much longer for more. HollywoodLife has rounded up all the key updates about Yellowjackets season 2.
Will There Be A Yellowjackets Season 2?
Yes, Yellowjackets will return for season 2. Showtime renewed the series in December 2021, while the show was in the midst of its first season. Yellowjackets was already critically acclaimed with a 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes, and its audience continued to grow. The show became Showtime’s second-most streamed series in the network’s history.
“Yellowjackets has been an unadulterated sensation for Showtime,” Gary Levine, president of entertainment for Showtime Networks, said in a statement. “We are overwhelmed by both the acclaim and the audience response to our series, including several ‘Best of 2021’ lists, a 100% 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 two.”
Showrunners Jonathan Lisco, Ashley Lyle, and Bart Nickerson also released a statement about season 2: “We are beyond grateful for the incredible support we’ve received for this show — both from Gary Levine, Jana Winograde, David Nevins, Amy Israel, Dave Binegar, and the rest of the fantastic Showtime team, and from our growing team of ‘Citizen Detectives’ at home. We can’t wait to continue telling this story with our amazing cast and crew. The saga continues!”
Yellowjackets Season 2 Release Date
Yellowjackets season 2 will premiere on March 24, 2023. It will be available on streaming and on demand for all Showtime subscribers before making its on-air debut on March 26 at 9 p.m. ET.
On January 13, Friday the 13th no less, Showtime revealed the official teaser and new photos from the second season. The teaser began with adult Lottie hypnotizing Natalie and trying to take her back to the woods. When Lottie asks Natalie what she sees, Natalie says, “Darkness… we brought it back with us.” The footage also features the younger versions of the characters tackling the brutal winter and Misty meeting a new friend, played by Elijah Wood. The new season looks downright terrifying — in the best way.
Filming for season 2 began on August 30, 2022. “We’re looking into the first quarter of 2023,” Lyle told The Wrap. “We are on a very similar production track in terms of time as we were last season, although of course, we have to shoot an additional episode because we had already shot the pilot the last time. I believe that we are going to finish shooting in about February and we’ll be airing sometime shortly after that.”
In January 2022, HollywoodLife spoke EXCLUSIVELY with Samantha Hanratty, who plays teen Misty, and she did not know when production would begin. “I literally have not heard from anybody… I am so out of the loop right now, and I’m really hoping to get into the loop because I want to know everything. I don’t think anybody has really heard anything yet. I really would love to know when we start filming and where we start filming. If we’re going to move up our lives, I want to know where we’re going. Are we going back to Canada? I don’t know. So I want to know as much as everybody else does. I think I know very little to none though, about this upcoming season. I know a little bit about where Misty is kind of heading, which is cool because I needed to know that for where her mindset was. I’m like, ‘Does she believe in this supernatural stuff going on or not?” And I got a more of an elaborate answer than I was expecting, so I was pretty excited about that.”
What Happened In Season 1?
Yellowjackets follows a high school soccer team on their way to the 1996 national championships. Their plane crashes in the Canadian wilderness, and the surviving members are left stranded. Many passengers, including the team’s head coach, die in the crash. Ben, the assistant coach, has his leg partially amputated by Misty after a piece of the plane lands on top of him.
The survivors begin their fight to stay alive and have no idea that Misty destroyed the black box that could have helped the outside world locate them. They stumble upon a cabin and an abandoned plane in the middle of the woods. There’s also a strange symbol that begins to show up. Roles are established amongst the group, with Natalie and Travis becoming hunters because they know how to use a rifle. Laura Lee believes she can fly the plane after studying the manual, but she dies a fiery death when the plane explodes in mid-air.
Taissa decides to make a go of trying to find help. She brings along a few members of the crew, including her girlfriend Van. Van is brutally attacked by a wolf but manages to survive after some gnarly stitches. Lottie’s authority amongst the group begins to rise as she feels there’s a dark energy in the woods. Shauna discovers she’s pregnant with Jeff’s baby, and Jackie discovers the shocking news after reading Shauna’s journals.
The penultimate episode is a trip — literally — after the group is accidentally poisoned with mushrooms Misty meant to use on Coach Ben. Travis and Jackie have sex before Shauna, Lottie, and others attack Travis and nearly kill him. Natalie stops Shauna before she slits Travis’ throat. The finale ends with Jackie’s death. Jackie and Shauna got into a fight the night before, and Jackie decides to sleep outside. The next morning, Shauna sees that it snowed and realizes Jackie fell asleep and died out there. While still searching for Javi, who ran off, Travis tells Natalie that he loves her.
In the present day, the survivors are still trying to grapple with what happened 25 years before. Natalie is fresh out of rehab, while Taissa is running for state senate. Shauna is married to Jeff and has a teenage daughter. Misty works at a nursing home.
Natalie, Taissa, Shauna, and Misty receive a postcard with the wilderness symbol on it. When Natalie and Misty go searching for Travis, they discover him dead in a barn. While it appears he killed himself, Natalie is convinced he was murdered. Shauna begins an affair with a younger man, but she ends up killing him when she believes he is blackmailing her. Turns out, her own husband was blackmailing her and others to help save his business.
The final moments of the finale feature Natalie being kidnapped by a group wearing necklaces that feature the symbol from the wilderness. The woman she asked to find out who emptied Travis’ bank account calls and leaves a message asking who Lottie Matthews is. Taissa wins the state senate race as her wife Simone discovers Taissa’s secret shrine that includes the head and heart of the family dog that went missing.
In the very first episode of the series, there is a flash-forward to the middle of winter while the team is still stuck in the woods. A young woman dies after falling into a trap and is later sliced open. The next scene shows survivors eating what appears to be the woman. There is an “Antler Queen” surrounded by 6 others. The only person’s face we’ve seen is Misty’s so far.
Yellowjackets Cast & Crew
The entire cast is expected to return for season 2 of Yellowjackets. The adult cast includes Melanie Lynskey as Shauna, Tawny Cypress as Taissa, Juliette Lewis as Natalie, Christina Ricci as Misty, and Warren Kole as Jeff. Lauren Ambrose joined the cast of season 2 as adult Van, Showtime announced on August 11.
The teenage cast features Sophie Nélisse as Shauna, Jasmin Savoy Brown as Taissa, Sophie Thatcher as Natalie, Samantha Hanratty as Samantha, Liv Hewson as Van, Courtney Eaton as Lottie, Steven Krueger as Ben, Kevin Alves as Travis, Keeya King as Akilah, and Alexa Barajas as Mari. Courtney and Kevin have been upped to series regulars for season 2, according to Deadline.
During her March 2023 appearance on The View, Christina noted that it’s “amazing” to see the younger cast not “have to go through the things that we had to go through. They’re able to say, ‘I don’t wanna do this sex scene. I’m not going to be naked.’ They can set boundaries for themselves, which we were never allowed to do. Someone threatened to sue me once because I didn’t want to do this sex scene in a certain way. It’s just really changed, and it’s really great to see.”
On August 19, 2022, Showtime revealed that Elijah Wood is joining the cast in a “season-long guest arc.” The Lord of the Rings alum will play Walter, a dedicated Citizen Detective who will challenge Misty in ways she won’t see coming.
Malaysian actress Nuha Jes Izman has joined the cast as a recurring guest star in season 2. She will play Crystal, a member of the JV squad and a hard-core theater enthusiast who makes the dubious decision to bond with Misty, according to Deadline.
Melanie’s husband Jason Ritter is set to guest star in the new season, Variety revealed on Dec. 20. He’ll appear in one episode but details of who he’s playing have not been revealed yet. Jason previously posted a TikTok spoof video back in January 2022 that introduced “Steve The Orange Slices Guy,” a made-up new Yellowjackets character. Jason teased a possible appearance in his wife’s hit show in an EXCLUSIVE interview with HollywoodLife.
“I’ll make some calls. I’ll see what I can do. I don’t know if Steve The Orange Slices Guy has a place in the Yellowjackets universe, but I wanted to put him in there because there’s always an orange slices guy. The orange slices guy was very important to me when I was playing soccer,” Jason quipped.
Since Jackie dies in the finale, Ella Purnell is not expected to return as a series regular. Nélisse told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY that Jackie was “only supposed to be in the first season.” However, Nickerson revealed to TVLine that Jackie will likely be seen again in the future.
“We definitely have an idea for a way to continue to use her, and she’ll certainly be a presence, probably throughout the run of the show at least,” he said. “The gravity of her character will be felt throughout the constellation, no matter what. And we would love to specifically use her for a few things that we have cooking.”
Who Is Playing Adult Lottie?
On August 17, Showtime announced that Simone Kessell would be playing the role of adult Lottie Matthews in season 2. Simone is a New Zealand native and recently starred in Obi-Wan Kenobi as Breha Organa, mother to Princess Leia as a child. Her additional television credits include Our Flag Means Death, Reckoning, The Crossing, Of Kings and Prophets, and Terra Nova.
Fans had previously tossed around names like Maggie Q, Sandrine Holt, Morena Baccarin, and Olivia Munn as possible candidates. The showrunners confirmed in early 2022 that they already had ideas about who could play the older version of Lottie.
“I can’t really reveal who they are, but yes, we’ve had some really fun, vivid discussions about who could play adult Lottie. I can’t really tell you much more about Lottie in 2021, because I feel like that might kind of spoil the story that we’re marinating on,” they told Variety.
Yellowjackets Season 2 Plot
The first season ended with winter arriving, so the stakes will only get higher. Nickerson revealed to THR that the show was pitched as a “five-season idea.”
Lyle also noted in an interview with ELLE that the showrunners have an “endpoint” for the series. “We know what we want to be building toward. As writers, we have to be flexible, especially now that we have this incredible writing staff and you have all these beautiful brains coming together to think about the paces that we can put these characters through. But we do have an endpoint, and we have tent poles along the way of things we know we want to happen. To some extent, the question is just, if we have an idea of how we get there, can we find a better idea?” Following the finale, the showrunners teased to Variety that “we haven’t met all the survivors yet in 2021.”
Christina Ricci told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY that she wants to see more of Misty’s “emotional life” in the second season. “In the first season, we saw a lot of how she operates, but we didn’t see much of her internal life,” Christina said. “I think that for me as an actress, I hope that we explore more of that because that is really interesting and compelling stuff just for me.”
Nélisse revealed that she thinks Shauna will be wrecked over Jackie’s death moving forward. “I think she’s going to have a really hard time afterward because even though things were going sour with Jackie, I don’t think they’ve even ever really had such a big fight before,” she told HollywoodLife. “So for it leading to her death, I think she’s just going to put all of the pressure on her shoulders. She’s going to be even slightly traumatized probably afterward. We’ll see in season 2 what they write, but I feel like she might even go numb and just go into full-on survival mode and just be emotionless for a while.”
Get ready for an even bloodier season 2. “There’s scenes in season 2 that are graphic, to say the least, and I remember just doing it, and [the cast] all sat and looked at each other, and we were like ‘What the fuck are we doing. Like, literally, what the fuck are we doing,” Nélisse said in a December 2022 Yellowjackets screening, according to Variety. “You’ll look at it, and you’ll understand, but I don’t think you’ve ever seen such a scene in TV before.”