Netflix‘s sparkling conveyor belt of hit TV shows produced yet another gem back in February 2019 with the arrival of the whipsmart black comedy Russian Doll. Co-created by Amy Poehler, Leslye Headland and its star Natasha Lyonne, the very, very clever series follows Nadia Vulvokov as she discovers she is trapped in a Groundhog Day-style time loop where she has to relive her 36th birthday over and over again – no matter how many times she dies, she always respawns back at the party.
The first season of Russian Doll currently holds a 97% score on Rotten Tomatoes, and, to absolutely no-one’s surprise, it was immediately confirmed that the show is coming back for a second season. Here’s everything we know so far about season two of Russian Doll.
- Hamilton‘s Ephraim Sykes will guest star in season two
- District 9‘s Sharlto Copley has joined the cast for season two
- Schitt’s Creek star Annie Murphy has joined the cast for season two
- Amy Poehler confirms to NME that the second season will see the show returning to New York City.
- Production on season 2 of Russian Doll recently got under way after it was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Is there going to be a second season of Russian Doll on Netflix?
You probably know the answer to this one already – Netflix confirmed on June 11 in 2019 that season two has been commissioned; news that the show’s Twitter account naturally revelled in.
— Russian Doll (@RussianDoll) June 11, 2019
We’ve also been told that season two will consist of eight episodes – just like the first season – and, much like other Netflix shows, all eight episodes are expected to land on the streaming service at the same time when the show eventually does return. Speaking of which…
When is Russian Doll season 2 going to be released?
We’re not too sure just yet. The season two-confirming announcement simply said that new episodes of the show will be “coming soon”.
It may be a little while longer than first anticipated, too – Russian Doll is one of many Netflix shows that halted their production for a lengthy period due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.
Production recently started again in early 2021 with a premiere eyed for this summer.
Are there any trailers or teasers for season 2 yet?
At this stage, nothing more than the above Twitter video (confirming season two) has been officially released – but we’ll let you know as soon as the first trailer drops.
Which members of the cast are returning for season 2?
Natasha Lyonne is surely going to return as coder Nadia Vulvokov in the new season. She celebrated the news about season two with a pair of suitably wacky Twitter videos (both featuring Harry Nilsson’s ‘Gotta Get Up’, of course), which you can see below.
— natasha lyonne (@nlyonne) June 11, 2019
— Russian Doll (@RussianDoll) June 11, 2019
Co-creator Headland hinted to The Hollywood Reporter back in February 2020 that Nadia may not, however, be the central character in future seasons of the show. “When initially pitched, Nadia was a presence throughout all three of them. But it was not in a very conventional way, if that makes sense. She was always a presence, as we knew Lyonne would always be the beating heart and soul of this show. Whether she was being haunted or she was haunting the narrative, she would be there.”
Now, Schitt’s Creek star Annie Murphy who played Alexis in the sitcom, has joined the cast for season two according to The Hollywood Reporter. It will be interesting to see if she takes up the role of the central character.
On April 12, it was revealed that Sharlto Copley has joined the cast for season two according to Deadline. The South African actor came to prominence on the global scene with his lead role in District 9. Also starring in movies such as The A-Team, Elysium and Maleficent, he most recently appeared in Playstation superhero series Powers.
On April 30, it was announced that Hamilton‘s Ephraim Sykes will guest star in the season two, according to Deadline. Sykes, who starred as George Eacker in the popular Broadway musical, is a Tony nominee – for his role in Ain’t Too Proud – The Life And Times Of The Temptations – and will star as Michael Jackson in the upcoming Broadway musical about the King of Pop.
There hasn’t been any word yet on which other castmembers will be returning for season two. The first season starred the likes of Greta Lee, Elizabeth Ashley, Yul Vazquez and Charlie Barnett, who plays the all-important Alan.
Chloë Sevigny, Dascha Polanco, Rebecca Henderson, Jeremy Bobb, Brendan Sexton III, Ritesh Rajan, and Jocelyn Bioh were among those to appear in guest-starring roles in the first season.
Any ideas about the plot?
Details are few and far between at the moment plot-wise, but Lyonne promised at Recode’s 2019 Code Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona that season two would be the “same show, just weirder”.
Russian Doll was initially pitched as a three-season show and, given how well season one went down, it’s looking very likely that Netflix will honour that commitment in the future. “We definitely pitched it as this three-season idea and yet it’s so interesting to think about how that shapes and morphs in the time since making it,” Lyonne told The Hollywood Reporter previously. “Who knows if we’ll be lucky enough to go back down the rabbit hole. That’s tomorrow’s question. But I think we have some ideas.
“I definitely have ideas that range from the really out-there anthology to staying on board with our friend Nadia,” she continued. “And maybe it’s all one idea. Certainly, what we pitched and the heart and soul of Russian Doll, I’d love to continue to get to work in that way. It’s very satisfying and kind of wild.
“I guess this is what they mean by Peak TV, that the creators are getting to actually make the things that for some crazy reason, the buyers and viewers are actually interested in and that those two things are suddenly aligned. The idea that they would conceivably follow us on that course, should we jump off that cliff, it’s pretty fun to even consider the fantasy.”
The show’s Amy Poehler also confirmed to NME that the show’s second season will see it returning to New York City.
“I can’t give any spoilers away unfortunately, but I’m so excited to get started,” she said of the forthcoming second season. “Natasha and the writers have done an amazing job. The season that we’re gonna bring is going to be so exciting.
“I can say that we’re back in New York and we can’t wait to get started. Especially because that show is a tightly bound package, and everything is connected to everything else. It’s really a puzzle to write and create. I can’t wait for us to start rolling.”