Anne with an E has delivered a brand new and surprisingly edgy take on the classic Anne of Green Gables story over its first two seasons on Netflix, and fans have been anxiously awaiting news of whether or not the show would get a third. While it seems to have accumulated a loyal following, few shows have guaranteed futures, and Netflix CEO Reed Hastings' comments last year about Netflix needing to cancel more series don't exactly instill confidence. Well, the streaming service has some good news for Anne with an E fans a little over a month after the second season premiered. Anne with an E will officially be back for Season 3, and that's basically the best news.
The third season will run for ten episodes, which matches the episode count for the second season. In the next batch of episodes, Anne will be 16 years old, and growing up means more complications for her. On top of the bold adventures and discoveries we've come to expect of Anne, she'll face some romantic complications. Knowing Anne, the complications will be packed with all the endearing melodrama she can muster. I foresee Matthew taking refuge in the barn more and more in Season 3.
The contemporary themes that have set Anne with an E apart from previous Anne of Green Gables adaptations will continue, and showrunner Moira Walley-Beckett has said that the themes are intended to "inspire and uplift" the audience. Sign me up! Season 3 will go into production this winter and launch on Netflix at some point in 2019. Given how Season 2 ended, fans can definitely celebrate what is likely to come.
For one thing, Anne with an E has only delved into part of Anne of Green Gables, and there's plenty of story left to go in the source material. Considering how the series has been able to add plots to the narrative that didn't take place in the books but are relevant to this day and age, the next episodes should be able to continue telling the tale so many know and love while adding twists none of us could have seen coming, no matter how many times we have (or have not) read the Anne of Green Gables series.
If this show was able to pull off sending Gilbert on a journey by sea, befriending a man from Trinidad, delivering a baby, and then returning to Avonlea in time to give Anne an adorable Christmas present, all while Anne was foiling the plot of a pair of criminals in quiet Avonlea, what can't this show do? Despite all the changes to the classic story, I'll admit that I'm more than a little nervous about Matthew in the third season and (hopefully) beyond, but there's no saying what will happen next.
As long as the cast is turning in as nuanced performances as they did in the first two seasons, we can be confident that the new episodes will be enjoyable, if not always easy to watch. I'm still not quite over poor Anne's reaction when her special hideout in the woods was destroyed by Billy. Amybeth McNulty is wonderful as Anne, and her dynamic with Geraldine James and R.H. Thompson as Marilla and Matthew is always a joy. Gilbert's somewhat bizarre arc might have flopped if Lucas Jade Zumann couldn't tackle the role, and the group of girls around Anne was very well cast. Throw in the scene-stealing Aymeric Jett Montaz as Jerry and Deborah Grover as Aunt Josephine, and what's not to love?
Speaking of love, we can apparently expect some romance in Anne's life in Season 3, and the Season 2 finale didn't exactly hold back from hinting that Gilbert has his eye on Anne. Even if you haven't read the books, you must have picked up on the wedding imagery between those two crazy kids in Season 2, and I half wonder if Lucas Jade Zumann was asked to gaze moonily as part of his audition. That said, we can bet that the course of true love won't run smooth for Anne, and her BFF engagement with Cole in Season 2 is even more proof that Anne doesn't want to just be a wife typical of her time. Those contemporary themes really do add a lot of scope for imagination!
Hopefully Diana will continue to get the opportunity for some contemporary twists of her own. She too began to face the possibility of a future that extends beyond being "finished," then marrying and making babies. I do have to wonder how Anne with an E will continue to address Anne's traumas as the years pass. Anne's flashbacks to her terrible days in the orphan asylum have been incredibly effective at giving the show an unexpected edge, but Amybeth McNulty won't be able to pass as preteen Anne for much longer, no matter how the show dresses her. Will Season 3 move beyond flashbacks to show Anne's struggles with her past?
Now, the first two seasons of Anne with an E weren't perfect, and I know I'll be happy if the show never revisits Mr. Phillips ever again. Prissy and Cole (assuming he comes back someday) would probably be happy if Mr. Phillips stays out of the picture as well. Still, there's a lot to look forward to with the third season of Anne with an E.
Assuming Anne with an E continues to more or less follow the timeline of Anne's story from Anne of Green Gables, we can probably count on Anne continuing to pursue her education and set her sights on college. We'll have to wait and see. Although the fact that we'll probably be waiting at least a year for the next episodes to hit the web, at least we don't have to wonder about whether or not the show will get a premature cancellation.
If you're now in the mood to rewatch (or watch) Anne with an E, you can find the first two seasons streaming on Netflix. Our Netflix premiere guide can point you toward other streaming options available now and in the not-too-distant future. If streaming isn't always your style, we have a rundown of fall premiere dates on network and cable TV as well.