We’ve already been blessed once already with a second helping of Monterey drama, but will lightning strike for a third time and grant us a season 3 of Big Little Lies? As HBO and Sky Atlantic’s drama starring literally all of your favourite actresses draws to a close it’s hard to not think about what might be next. Unfortunately there’s probably nothing coming next. Originally, the show was supposed to be a limited series with just one season, clocking in at eight episodes and we were lucky enough to get Big Little Lies season 2. Let’s not push our luck.
The show is already kinda living a lie. Big Little Lies entered into the Emmys as a limited series and won Emmys for being a limited series (technically this was before anyone knew there would be more). But while it might but a little tarnish on those Emmys, let’s be real, none of us were going to turn down the opportunity to see Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, and Laura Dern return to Monterey.
The series is based on the book by Liane Moriarty, and the events of the first season more or less covered everything that happens in the book, including Perry’s death. But, like all book-to-TV adaptations, a few things were left out along the way, many of them about Bonnie (Zoe Kravitz). The book actually dives more into Bonnie's backstory and her troubled childhood so it really makes sense as to why she’s the one to push Perry down the stairs.
Season 2 covers this storyline, as we’re meeting Bonnie’s mum and dad and learning a little bit more about her. And that, right there, is why season 2 was even possible: There were some leftovers from the original book storyline.
By the time we reach episode 8 of Big Little Lies season 2, everything should be completely wrapped up, once and for all. At this time, a season 3 really seems actually, legitimately, very unlikely. Where would it even go?
Besides, if the show were to continue with season 3 it runs the risk of turning all these “lies” into run-of-the-mill drama. What would the series even do if it continued? Something major can't always happen at the very end of a new season to give the Monterey 5 something to grapple with through the next one. That’s kinda formulaic and would just water down a series that was otherwise wonderful (the jury's still out on season 2, of course). And yes, it pains me to write this because I want to watch Kidman and Meryl Streep fight go head to head forever.
Then there's the fact that this season has gotten dramatic off camera, due to claims regarding supposed drama between season 2 director Andrea Arnold and season 1 director-turned-executive producer Jean-Marc Vallee. That certainly makes the production side of any future seasons a little sticky.
To further cement that this is really the end, HBO’s president of programming Casey Bloys told TV Line that, “I love this group of people – I would do anything with them. But the reality is, they are some of the busiest actresses working in Hollywood. We have deals with some of them — Nicole [Kidman] is doing her next show [The Undoing] with us. I just think it’s not realistic.”
However, he did dangle a little glimmer of hope in front of us, suggesting that it’s all up to the ladies on the show if they return or not. if they all came to me and said, ‘We worked out all of our schedules!’ – then sure," said Bloys. But he was right when he also said that's probably not too realistic.