‘Virgin River’ Star Alexandra Breckenridge On Christmas Special’s Big Cliffhanger, Ice Skating On Plastic & Her Hopes For Mel & Jack In Season 6

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SPOILER ALERT: The story includes details about the Virgin River Christmas special (Episodes 511, 512)

After a season of heartache for Virgin River‘s Mel (Alexandra Breckenridge), who suffered a miscarriage, she got her happy ending at the end of the Part 2 holiday special when her biological father, Everett, who initially rejected her when she and Jack tracked him down, came around on Christmas. In the finale’s final seconds, he started telling her “something important” before he was cut off in a major cliffhanger.

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In an interview with Deadline, Breckenridge discusses Mel’s search for her biological father and what his arrival could mean for her relationship with her surrogate dad, Doc, who is supposed to walk her down the aisle.

She also addresses the special’s cliffhanger, reveals an unexpected challenge filming the ice skating scenes and shares her hopes for Mel and Jack’s storyline in Season 6 of the Netflix romantic drama.

For exclusive information on Season 6 status, including a reduced episode count, a new time jump and a target production start date, read Deadline’s story. Also check out our extensive post-mortem interview with Season 5 showrunner Patrick Sean Smith, in which he dissects all the twists in the holiday special and and their implications, reveals a good prognosis for Doc’s medical trial and promises more Mel and Jack next season.

For Smith and star Breckenridge‘s take on the main developments in Season 5 Part 1, including Mel’s polarizing miscarriage storyline, read Deadline’s story from earlier this week.

DEADLINE: The search for Mel’s father. It felt like she found him a little too easily with the vague clues she had. And then he rejected her. Talk about that initial setback, how it felt for the character until the happy reunion.

BRECKENRIDGE: Well, it didn’t happen that fast. I mean, Virgin River is a small town, everybody knows everybody. And he still lives in Virgin River, the likelihood of finding him is pretty high. I get it, if you are in a city or if you’re in a suburb that was a little more sprawling, then it might seem like it happened too fast. But given the parameters of Virgin River and how small the community is, I thought that it made sense.

I thought it was very cute, I love the scene with Lydie at the Christmas Pageant. I love her so much, Christina [Jastrzembska] is a great actress, and she’s much fun to work with, she’s always a delight.

I liked the treasure hunt of it all. By the time she finds him, I think she’s still in this place where she’s like, do I want to meet him? Don’t I want to meet him? And I think she is a little prepared to be rejected because she knows that this man never came to find her. Maybe we don’t see it necessarily but it certainly was in my head as I was playing her that he might turn me away.

I think she was surprised that he just blatantly said, ‘I am not the man you’re looking for,’ which is vague. He’s not saying ‘I’m not your father,’ he’s saying ‘I’m not the man you are looking for.’ And then she realizes that he is.

Nobody wants to be rejected, especially on Christmas, by the man you’re hoping to have as a new family member, as a father figure. I think she she takes it pretty well given the circumstances.

DEADLINE: Even though it wouldn’t make sense, a lot of fans were hoping for Doc to be Mel’s father. He has served as Mel’s surrogate father, and she asked him to walk her down the aisle. Can you talk about their relationship and how Everett might fit into that. Who will now walk her down the aisle?

BRECKENRIDGE: Wow, that’s a very good question. I would imagine that Doc will still be walking her down the aisle. However, I don’t know. We haven’t seen the sixth season yet.

But I love the relationship between Mel and Doc. I love how contentious it was in the beginning, how they sparred and how she softened him in so many ways and became a part of his family and he became a part of hers, just by working together in such an intimate environment.

Medicine in a small town, everyone and everything becomes very personal, and they developed this bond over time that’s just so genuine, it is like a father and a daughter.

And given the fact that Mel hasn’t had parents in so long, I think it’s something that she deeply, deeply needed. And obviously, given the fact that Doc had a son he didn’t even know about and now he has a grandson, I think that that has filled up his cup in a way he didn’t even know he needed.

I think it’s one of the most special relationships on the show, the one between Mel and Doc. It’s really quite sweet.

DEADLINE You are ice skating in the special. Do you know how to skate or did you have to learn it for the show?

BRECKENRIDGE: Oh my gosh, that was plastic. I don’t know how Ben Hollingsworth (Brady) was able to skate like that on plastic. But I’m going tell you something, plastic on ice skate is very hard.

I did figure skating when I was a kid, so I do know how to ice skate. I’m not amazing at it, I can ice skate. But on plastic, it was so hard, I could barely move, but I was mostly playing that Mel wasn’t very good at skating, so it worked out.

DEADLINE: In the holiday special’s cliffhanger, Everett is cut off literally mid-sentence as he tries to tell Mel something important. Did you film the rest of the sentence in that scene? Do you know what that important thing is?

BRECKENRIDGE: No, I’m sure that’s the wonderful magic of television where they don’t actually have to tell you, and they can figure it out later. I think it’s had a few different iterations at this point. I don’t know where they ultimately landed.

DEADLINE: What is your hope for Mel and Jack for next season? A wedding? Is there still a chance for a rainbow baby even though it’s not planned anymore?

BRECKENRIDGE: At this point, I think where we’re at is that we are looking for Mel and Jack to have an alternative family and for them to adopt. But you never know. Sometimes in life, usually what happens with people — I’ve heard this happen so many times where people adopt or they have a surrogate and then they themselves become pregnant accidentally. So that happens a lot; who knows if it’s in the cards.

I can’t speak to that but I know that I’m looking forward to them building their dream house together. And for Mel to get back to work, opening that midwifery part of the clinic I think will be interesting.

DEADLINE: What about a wedding?

BRECKENRIDGE: Oh, I’m sure a wedding is sometime in the future. Hopefully it’ll be next season. I would imagine it would be next season. I think that they’re looking for that but I’m not in the writers room.

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