Showtime’s dark drama Yellowjackets became a sleeper hit not long after its winter 2021 premiere, drawing in fans with its unique plot alchemy—part off-kilter survivalist story, part murder-mystery, and maybe some supernatural horror?—and sterling performances by beloved ‘90s actresses Juliette Lewis and Christina Ricci (along with always-welcome Melanie Lynskey). The hooky concept: a girls high-school soccer team is stranded in the wilderness, and more than 25 years later their flash-forward adult selves grapple with what happened during their year-plus in the frozen unknown—the details of which have only been verrrrry slowly hinted at. The first season ended last January with a tantalizing cliffhanger about the mysterious (and possibly cannibalistic) circumstances that went down and now, after a too-long hiatus, we finally have our first glimpse at the new season, which will premiere this spring.
The teaser opens on Lewis’ Nat being asked to recall events in the Canadian wilderness as part of some sort of hypnotherapy session, and responding, “Darkness. We brought it back with us.” We see several of the core characters struggling with their past and how the violent savagery they succumbed to in the woods threatens to unravel the lives they’ve built since escaping.
The clip also gives us our first glimpse at Elijah Wood’s character, a “citizen detective” who crosses paths with Ricci’s fan-favorite sociopath Misty as he ostensibly tries to unravel their long-held secrets. In his post-Lord of the Rings life, Wood has excelled in eerie, unnerving projects, whether he’s the catalyst of the discomfort, like in Sin City, or someone just trying to survive it, like in the excellent, little-seen Come to Daddy.
“Kidnapping, cults, death. Your friendships are a little more complicated than most,” Wood’s character says to Misty in one short, punchy scene.
Other notable new cast members for the second season include Lauren Ambrose as adult Van and Simone Kessell as adult Lottie, characters who were previously only shown in teenage form during flashbacks.
Plot details have been tightly controlled during the show’s run, with Ricci even telling GQ in January 2022 that she wasn’t quite sure what she had signed up for when she boarded the developing series. “I didn’t really know that it was going to be folk horror. You have to understand, we had very little information in the beginning; people played it all very close to the chest, what was going on for the rest of the season. So initially, the only aspect of that that I understood was that there would ultimately be some sort of culty thing that happens out in the woods. We still don’t know exactly what it is. We still have not been told. I happen to be someone who is really fascinated by cults, so I was intrigued by all that, and intrigued, also by the idea of Misty in that situation, and all the potential manipulations that could occur.”
Yellowjackets’ second season will premiere on March 26, and a third season has already been ordered.