Heartstopper is an understated revelation: an LGBTQ+ coming-of-age romance which handles all corners of the rainbow with reassuring sweetness, led by two exciting, fresh-faced leads in Joe Locke (who plays Charlie Spring) and Kit Connor (Nick Nelson).
At a time when comfort is in short supply, it’s perhaps not surprising that the Netflix show has been so warmly received – yet will this fuzzy hug extend to a second season?
Has Heartstopper season 2 been confirmed yet?
Nope – but we’re very confident about its chances
While Netflix is notoriously sheepish about publishing its viewing figures, it’s clear that Heartstopper has been a success. In terms of critical acclaim, the show holds a 100 per cent rating on Rotten Tomatoes and is (by far) the most warmly-received new series for the streaming platform in 2022. As Netflix is cracking down on password sharing, Heartstopper is a goodwill lifeline which, if cancelled now, would probably sentence the streamer to an early PR grave.
Aside from the show’s success, there’s also more source material to cover. The first season spanned events in the first two Heartstopper graphic novels by Alice Oseman, with two more volumes out there filled with potential stories for additional seasons. A fifth and final graphic novel is also set to be published in 2023, so there’s plenty of story to adapt.
Where could Nick and Charlie’s relationship go in season 2?
Let’s turn to the graphic novels
As the first season was incredibly faithful to the original Heartstopper novels, it’s reasonable to assume that any future seasons will follow the same trajectory as the books. The third volume picks up directly after Charlie and Nick become boyfriends, featuring a school trip to Paris and the introduction of Nick’s older brother David, who isn’t accepting of Nick’s bisexuality.
Speaking to NME about Nick’s character in potential future seasons, Connor said: “For Nick, I think there’s a lot more exploration to be done in terms of his family. It’s known to fans of the comics that he has an older brother who’s homophobic. I think that would be a really interesting route to go down, but I think there’s loads of material to go and explore.”
For Charlie, life takes a darker turn. Later books cover his struggles with mental illness stemming from his turbulent journey at school with his sexuality, bringing sensitive subjects like anorexia, depression and body dysmorphia into view.
“It’s quite easy for us to talk about a future season, potentially, because there are already other graphic novels [in the series],” Locke told NME. “And in them Charlie deals with an eating disorder and his mental health, which I think would be quite interesting to look at.
“There are some moments in season one in which Charlie is starting to go on that journey. Alice is really clever and writes these subtle moments [alluding to that] where if you didn’t know, you wouldn’t guess. But if you’ve read the novels, then you sort of see Charlie starting to go down that path.”
What has creator Alice Oseman said about potential future seasons of Heartstopper?
She’s already thought about the long-game
While the future of Heartstopper isn’t set in stone, writer and executive producer Oseman has put some thought into how many seasons it would take to adapt all the books. “It would probably be four seasons to cover the full story,” Oseman told RadioTimes.com. “I haven’t done any in-detail planning or anything, but it’s quite easy to divide up the books into seasons, so four I think would do it.”
Within that timespan, Oseman is also hoping to expand Heartstopper’s cast in potential future seasons – with an eye particularly on the teachers. “If we do get a future season, we’ll be moving into volume three of the books,” Oseman told Digital Spy. “And that is when the teacher romance happens. So in the show, we’ve already got Mr Ajayi, but in the books there’s also Mr Farouk, who comes in, in volume three. And they have this kind of interesting friendship going on in the background that eventually becomes something more.
“I think that will be so much fun to write in the show, and I’m very excited to hopefully get to write it.”
Could the supporting characters receive a bigger spotlight in future seasons?
The material is right there
While Heartstopper primarily revolves around Nick and Charlie, the first season sowed many seeds for its supporting players. Tao Xu (William Gao) and Elle Argent (Yasmin Finney) have finally hit it off, there’s the relationship between Tara Jones (Corinna Brown) and Darcy Olsson (Kizzy Edgell), while Charlie’s closeted ex-lover Ben Hope (Sebastian Croft) and general bully Harry Greene (Cormac Hyde-Corrin) both left a scarring impression.
It’s likely that these faces will all return in a potential second season, though there’s room for other characters to expand, too. Charlie’s sister Tori Spring (Jenny Walser) was the protagonist in Oseman’s 2014 debut novel Solitaire before Heartstopper existed. As the comedic highlight of the first season, the possibility of some of Tori’s story threads from Solitaire weaving into Heartstopper could be a worthwhile path to explore.
Now the secret’s out the bag, Olivia Colman’s presence as Nick’s mother Sarah Nelson also feels like an asset that’s impossible to ignore. She now knows Nick’s bisexual and in love with Charlie, so we might see her lend her supporting arm to other members of the cast.