‘Hearstopper’ Season 3 Is More ‘Grown-Up,’ According to Joe Locke

heartstopper season 3
Heartstopper Season 3 Premieres in OctoberNetflix
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Spoilers below for Hearstopper season 2.

Fear not, Heartstopper is coming back for more. Netflix's swoonworthy adaptation of Alice Oseman's graphic novels returned last year for a second season, but a third is already on the horizon. Luckily, there will be more to explore with Nick and Charlie (especially after season 2's texting cliffhanger), and their beloved friends as they continue to navigate love, relationships, adolescence, and identity. Here's what to know.

Was Heartstopper renewed for season 3?

Yes! In May 2022, Netflix announced that the series would be renewed for two more seasons, meaning a third season is already in the books. However, it's unclear when production will begin, or when the next chapter will be released. (Though, given that finale cliffhanger, we hope it's soon.)

When will Heartstopper season 3 come out?

Netflix confirmed the news: Heartstopper season 3 premieres October 3. The streamer announced the news with a first-look clip of Charlie trying to tell Nick “I love you.”

Who will be in the cast?

The full list and additional cast members have yet to be announced, but the season 2 cast consisted of: Kit Connor (Nick), Joe Locke (Charlie), Yasmin Finney (Elle), William Gao (Tao), Corinna Brown (Tara), Kizzy Edgell (Darcy), Sebastian Croft (Ben), Tobie Donovan (Isaac), Rhea Norwood (Imogen), Jenny Walser (Tori), Cormac Hyde-Corrin (Harry), and Olivia Colman (Sarah, Nick's mother).

Netflix also announced that Darragh Hand will join the cast as Michael Holden, who appears in Oseman’s graphic novels as well as her novel Solitaire. “Michael is a quirky, eccentric optimist with a sunshine disposition, and it was a challenge to find someone who I felt truly channelled Michael from the books,” Oseman wrote on Instagram. “But then Darragh came along and warmed our hearts, made us all laugh so much, and perfectly complimented Jenny Walser’s Tori Spring.”

On Thursday, April 25, Netflix revealed that Wicked star Jonathan Bailey would be joining the cast.

“Everyone say 🍂 hi 🍂 to Jonathan Bailey. He’s joining Heartstopper Season 3 for a cameo appearance as Jack Maddox, Charlie’s Instagram-famous crush,” they tweeted along with a teaser clip from the upcoming season.

They also retweeted Netflix UK & Ireland’s post announcing Eddie Marsan and Hayley Atwell as two other new cast members.

“It’s not just Jonathan Bailey joining Heartstopper S3,” they wrote. “we’re also welcoming Hayley Atwell as Nick’s Aunt Diane and Eddie Marsan as Charlie’s therapist Geoff!”

Has filming started yet?

Yup, it was announced on October 2, 2023 that the new season was “officially in production.”

Netflix previously shared that Oseman has already written the script for at least the first episode of season 3. The streamer posted the title page of the screenplay, revealing that episode 1 is called “Love.”

What will season 3 be about?

Season 2 sets up some plot points to be explored in the next chapter.

The season ends on an eventful prom night with the Truham and Higgs kids. Nick comes out as bi on Instagram, revealing that Charlie is his boyfriend, and they attend together. After revealing she hasn't come out to her parents, Darcy finally tells Tara that she loves her, and Tara reiterates her love right back. Tao and Elle officially become boyfriend-girlfriend, but she tells him that she wants to go to Lambert art school. After dealing with his insecurities all season, he respects her decision. Maybe next season will further explore how the best-friends-turned-partners handle being a long-distance couple.

This past season saw Isaac explore his asexuality, ending with him borrowing the Ace book from the school library. It's likely we'll see more of his exploration next season. “We get a sense [that] this is not an easy realization to come to, and there’s complexity to come,” executive producer and director Euros Lyn previously told ELLE.com.

And by the way, did anyone else catch the way Imogen looked at Sahar? Perhaps her sudden crush will grow into something deeper next season.

At the end of prom night, after all their friends leave Nick's house, Nick and Charlie have an intimate conversation about Charlie's experience bullying and his eating disorder. Charlie reveals that someone overheard Tao saying Charlie came out, and led people to ridicule him in vile ways. The bullying was so insidious that it led Charlie to self-hate and he began harming himself, though he assures Nick that he doesn't do that anymore. Nick comforts Charlie and has him promise to tell him if he ever feels that badly again. They embrace through tears. After their conversation, Charlie heads home, feeling safe, supported, and blissfully in love. He is so smitten that he writes a DM to Nick saying “I love you”—a big step!—but he doesn't hit send yet. His thumb just hovers over the send button. It seems like season 3 is ramping up to be about whether—and how—Charlie tells Nick he loves him, and vice versa.

Besotted teachers Mr. Farouk and Mr. Ajayi will also return to go on a date next season. “We will a hundred percent see more of Mr. Farouk and Mr. Ajayi in season 3,” executive producer Patrick Walters told ELLE. “I would say that those two are a perfect couple, and there’s gonna be lots of very funny, odd couple chemistry with the two of them.”

While viewers won’t know what happens until they tune in for themselves, Heartstopper star Locke teased what’s to come to Deadline, suggesting that season 3 may be a bit different than the others.

“It’s definitely a more grown-up season,” he shared. “We deal with more darker issues, Charlie’s mental health is a big focus. And it’s still Heartstopper, so there’s always the light at the end of the tunnel, which is a really great way of dealing with issues like that.”

This story will be updated.

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