Following an interminable wait, Dickinson fans finally received some good news: season 2 will premiere in January 2021. The inventive comedy about the life of Emily Dickinson (Hailee Steinfeld) dropped its first season on AppleTV+ in November 2019, and Emisue stans have been anxiously awaiting a new season ever since. On Friday, December 11, the full trailer for the new season dropped, and it offers insight into the new season, from Emily’s fame conundrum to Sue’s (Ella Hunt) newfound “influencer” status.
Below, everything we know about the show’s second season, from casting news to when you’ll be able to watch.
When will it air?
Dickinson returns on Friday, January 8, 2021, with three new episodes. The rest of the season will premiere weekly on Fridays.
What will season 2 of Dickinson focus on?
After a first season that re-imagined Dickinson’s artistic ascension, creator Alena Smith revealed season 2 will explore the writer’s position on fame. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter she discussed how the series would dissect why much of the late poet’s work was written in secret and not published until after her death. “Season 1 gives one answer, which is it was a patriarchy and her father was opposed to women publishing. Season 2 is going to completely turn that on its head or inside out and give a very different answer, which is that Emily herself had a deeply ambivalent relationship to fame,” Smith explained. “Season 2 is really all about fame and the attention economy, which was a central concern in Emily Dickinson’s poems. She wrote many, many poems about fame and about running from fame or rejecting fame. But she definitely had an obsession about fame even if she was subverting it.”
The showrunner also tweeted a tease of things to come, writing, “Dickinson really is as much a dramatic adaptation of her poetry as it is a historical depiction of her biography. This will become even more clear in season 2.”
The official Apple TV+plot description for season 2 reads, “Emily Dickinson is pulled out of her private literary life and thrust into the public eye, while struggling with the sense that the pursuit of fame might be a dangerous game for her to play.” The first teaser for the new season illustrates this, with Emily and her sister Lavinia (Anna Baryshnikov) conducting a seance with their friends in which Emily asks, “Oh great spirits, should I seek fame?” A lightning bolt and extinguished candles suggest the answer is no. New character Hattie, played by Ayo Edebiri, adds, “I wanna make spooky shit happen and get paid.” Returning characters Abby (Sophie Zucker), Jane (Gus Birney), and Toshiaki (Kevin Yee) also make appearances.
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The newest trailer, which you can watch at the top of the article, introduces Finn Jones’s newspaper editor Sam Bowles, “influencer” Sue (“I don’t even recognize you!” Emily tells her), and a few killer one-liners from Lavinia.
Who’s in the cast?
Several new faces will join Emily, Sue, and Lavinia in season 2. Jones’s Samuel Bowles plays “an energetic and magnetic newspaper editor,” while Pico Alexander will star as Henry “Ship” Shipley, an Amherst College dropout who rents a room at the Dickinsons’ house.
Other new characters include Nick Kroll as Edgar Allan Poe, Timothy Simons as Frederick Law Olmsted, and Will Pullen as Nobody.
Adrian Enscoe (Austin Dickinson), Jane Krakowski (Emily Norcross Dickinson), Toby Huss (Edward Dickinson), and Wiz Khalifa (Death) will all reprise their roles in season 2.
Will there be a third installment?
Yes! Dickinson became the first Apple TV+ production to receive a season 3 renewal.
In November 2019, Smith told THR that season 2 doesn’t take the show into the Civil War, a time period she’s hoping to explore. “We get a bit closer to the Civil War [in season 2]. We get right up to the brink of it,” she said. “The season kind of builds up to…John Brown’s raid on Harpers Ferry, which we are kind of figuring in our show as kind of a 9/11 moment or a moment when war becomes inevitable and the society that has held itself together so far knows that it’s not going to work anymore. If and when we have a season 3, that would be when we were in a Civil War.”
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