Although based on a real-life story, Ryan Murphy and Ian Brennan‘s The Watcher manages to conjure a world of its own, full of interesting characters and possible suspects. Throughout the course of Season 1, The Watcher explores the possibility of multiple individuals being the Watcher. From the retired English professor Roger Kaplan (Michael Nouri) to the former occupant of the house, Andrew (Seth Gabel), all remain possible suspects, based on circumstantial evidence. Importantly, Season 1 of The Watcher ends with Dean (Bobby Cannavale) and Nora (Naomi Watts) moving out of Boulevard 657, but the move doesn’t ensure that the new occupants will not be haunted by the letters of the Watcher. Along with the identity of the Watcher, the show makers have also left some other unanswered questions open for speculation. With Netflix renewing The Watcher for Season 2, there are many angles to explore in what could be another thrilling season.
The Watcher season 2 Netflix renewal status
On November 7th, Netflix announced it had renewed The Watcher for a second season.
Bela Bajaria, Head of Global TV at Netflix, said, “Audiences can’t take their eyes off Monster and The Watcher. The creative team of Ryan Murphy and Ian Brennan on Monster along with Eric Newman on The Watcher are masterful storytellers who captivated audiences all over the world. The back-to-back force of these two series is due to Ryan’s distinct original voice which created cultural sensations and we are thrilled to continue telling stories in the Monster and Watcher universes.”
The series got off to a strong start on Netflix, achieving over 125 million hours in its first week. A 19% jump in week 2 saw the series achieve over 148 million hours. However, the series has seen a significant drop of 54% in a week, only able to pull in 67 million hours.
In total, the series has over 340 million hours viewed.
The cast: Who’s in it?
Right now, we don’t yet know if The Watcher season two will directly continue what happened in the first season, but if it does, then expect to see the following cast members return:
• Naomi Watts as Nora Brannock
• Bobby Cannavale as Dean Brannock
• Isabel Gravitt as Ellie Brannock
• Luke David Blumm as Carter Brannock
• Jennifer Coolidge as Karen Calhoun
• Margo Martindale as Maureen / Mo
• Richard Kind as Mitch
• Mia Farrow as Pearl Winslow
• Terry Kinney as Jasper Winslow
• Christopher McDonald as Det. Rourke Chamberland
• Joe Mantello as William “Bill” Webster / John Graff
• Henry Hunter Hall as Dakota
There’s a small question mark around Jennifer Coolidge’s return though, just because the last we saw of Karen was her running away from the house after The Watcher popped up to scare her. Still, Coolidge is an obvious highlight of the show, so we’re sure the writers could work around that.
Coolidge has revealed that she’s yet to receive the call to reprise her role.
“I mean, I’m wondering. I wonder if they will call Karen back. I would definitely go if they offer, if they ask me,” the actress said (via EW).
So perhaps her fate was indeed sealed in season one. But Coolidge hopes she’ll get a chance to make a case for Karen’s return to showrunner Ryan Murphy.
“I wanted to tell Ryan that Karen can run much faster,” Coolidge said. “I hope she’s back.”
Noma Dumezweni also gave a standout performance in the first season too, but her character Theodora Birch died of liver cancer at the end, so the only way she can be brought back is via flashbacks (or some weird Coven-style American Horror Story crossover).
What will season 2 be about?
Season 1 of The Watcher leaves multiple loose ends, setting up a great possibility for a reinvestigation into the identity of the Watcher. Additionally, the way things ended with the first season made it evident that the creators have already laid the groundwork for another season. Although the central characters, Dean and Nora, fail to figure out who the Watcher is from a growing list of suspects, it becomes clear the impact the Watcher has had on the couple, as well as the many others involved with the house at Boulevard 657, is beyond the scope of what’s explored in the first season. Clearly, there are answers to be found, and the canvas is set by Murphy and Brennan in the first season itself.
Much like the real-life family, the Brannocks ended up selling their newly renovated home at 657 Boulevard at the end of season 1, finally driven out by the frightening stalker.
Although viewers didn’t end up finding out the identity of “The Watcher” the season ominously ended with Karen (Jennifer Coolidge), the Brannock’s realtor who sold them the large property, running away screaming after encountering “The Watcher” herself, leading many to believe season 2 will continue following the same characters from season 1.
However, since the real-life family’s story ended there, season 2 would potentially be a fictionalized continuation of the riveting mystery.
The Watcher’s Identity Remains the Biggest Mystery
Despite Dean’s many efforts, he was not able to zero in on the identity of the individual behind the mysterious letters. The legend of the Watcher has encompassed the history of the house at Boulevard 657 for decades already by the time the Brannocks moved into it. Theodora’s (Noma Dumezweni) investigation had already found clues dating back to 1995 when Jonathan Gaff used to live in the house with his family. Although Dean wasn’t successful in his investigation, the way things ended with him being absolutely obsessed with the house, it cannot be said that he’s done with digging into the past of the house. However, the task for Dean will only become harder in Season 2 with the death of the brilliant Theodora, who’s no longer around to help him.
Before hitting a roadblock, Dean’s investigation had come down to Roger Kaplan, the retired English professor who’s credited with creating the “Ode to a House” assignment. It’s also to be noted that the Watcher’s earliest trace can be connected with Roger Kaplan as he was accused by the owner of the house at 55 Oak Terrace who claimed to receive the first letter from the Watcher. However, the direct link of Roger with the birth of the myth of the Watcher seems too big a distraction, given Roger’s otherwise limited role in the scheme of things. Talking of Roger, the third original member of the Preservation Society, William Webster aka Bill, who’s also identified by Roger, still remains a subject of mystery as his identity remains unclear. Bill was also caught by Dean and Nora accessing their house through the prohibition-era tunnels beneath Boulevard 657. Bill remains the least explored character of the lot with very little known about his past. Not to be forgotten that he pretended to be John Graff, the former owner of the house, in front of Dean when the renovation at the house was going on. It remains to be seen if he’s only a concerned preservationist like Pearl (Mia Farrow) and Jasper Winslow (Terry Kinney).
Among the suspects, Pearl and Jasper remain the most inconspicuous. They only come out as concerned neighbors who want to preserve the heritage of the houses in the neighborhood. However, Jasper might have a bigger role in Season 2 as what led to the sudden change in his behavior — an event that dates back to the supposed disappearance of John Graff in 1995 as per Theodora — remains a mystery. Among the neighbors, Maureen (Margo Martindale) is someone who has cleared her name for the major part, since she has only been trying to protect her son, according to her confession to Nora. But somehow Maureen remains connected with the most interesting part of the story if one goes by Andrew Pierce’s version of the events he went through during his stay at the house. As per Andrew’s testimony, Maureen is part of a secret blood-drinking cult, an element also hinted at by John Graff’s story as he’s believed to have drunk his family’s blood before his disappearance. Although it’s unclear whether John Graff really existed, or was the character created as a means to terrorize the occupants of the house through his story.
When might The Watcher season 2 be released?
Season two of The Watcher has just been confirmed, however, we’ll need to wait a little longer until we have a confirmed release date. But it’s likely there wouldn’t be anything until at least the end of 2023 or later.