Entertainment

Everything We Know About 'Dead to Me' Season 3

More twists to come.

dead to me season 2
Linda Cardellini and Christina Applegate in 'Dead to Me' Season 2 | Saeed Adyani/Netflix
Linda Cardellini and Christina Applegate in 'Dead to Me' Season 2 | Saeed Adyani/Netflix

With its many juicy twists and enticing crime-fueled drama, Netflix's comedy thriller Dead to Me from creator Liz Feldman flies by like a page-turning summer beach read. The series—starring Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini as a messed-up pair of Laguna Beach BFFs who met through tragedy and came together over their shared love for The Facts of Life, Entenmann's, and, well, a handful of deaths and incriminating secrets that follow them wherever they go—has amassed a huge following for its sense of humor, the savvy way it handles trauma, and the breadcrumbs of jaw-dropping reveals at every turn that always leave you wanting more. It's also happened to become an awards contender, raking in four Emmy nominations for Season 2, including Outstanding Comedy Series and Outstanding Lead Actress for both Applegate and Cardellini. 

When Season 2 dropped in May 2020, it ended with the wild kind of cliffhanger the show has become known for, among many other open-ended questions that the series seems poised to answer in a third installment. While fans are left to guess what's next for the Thelma and Louise of Netflix, here's everything we know about Dead to Me Season 3 so far. 

Will there be a Season 3 of Dead to Me?

In July 2020, Netflix announced that Dead to Me will return for a third—and final—season. Good things have to end eventually, though, and too many dramatic turns for more seasons than necessary could've made the wildly popular dramedy exhausting. Show creator Liz Feldman told Deadline that she never intended the show to be a long one and already knows how it's going to wrap up, so have no fear: The madness that is the friendship between Jen and Judy should be given a satisfying end.

"There was a certain point when we were in production on Season 2 when the end of the show came to me, pretty profoundly, so I realized, 'I know the story that I have to tell' and Season 3 feels like the right time to do that," Feldman said. "It’s just something that came to me organically, and I tend to try to follow the gut feelings I have."

When will Season 3 of Dead to Me premiere?

Despite Feldman telling Deadline in late July 2020 that the show was "definitely hoping to start [production] at some point in the next six months," it's going to be a little while longer before Dead to Me can start working on Season 3. Netflix shut down the production of its LA-based titles in early 2021 as COVID-19 cases began to surge in the area (again), and it's unclear when the pandemic will improve enough for those projects to be able to resume filming.

For what it's worth, it looks like the season is written in its entirety by now, as Feldman shared an update on social media in September 2020, saying Netflix approved her proposed arc for Season 3. So, should things allow for the series to start filming in the near future, it's possible we'll see more of Jen and Judy in the latter part of 2021.  

dead to me season 2
Brandon Scott | Saeed Adyani/Netflix

Who in the cast will return?

There sure is a lot of murder on the twisty crime series, but the leads have yet to be killed off, at least. Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini's BFF duo Jen and Judy may have gotten into a pretty brutal car crash at the end of Season 2, but it was clear they survived the accident, so you can be sure they'll be back for more. Considering the show is entirely based around their sometimes toxic/sometimes reliable friendship, they'll likely be around for its entire run. 

James Marsden should also be back as Ben. When Jen killed Judy's ex-fiancĂ© Steve back at the end of Season 1, it seemed pretty clear that Marsden wouldn't be back on the show. Dead to Me managed to pull one of the oldest, soapiest tricks in the book, though, and brought him back as Steve's twin brother Ben—because who wouldn't want more Marsden? Ben is still around, and very much wrapped up in the same drama as Jen and Judy, so he'll definitely return. In fact, Liz Feldman told Entertainment Weekly that "Ben goes on quite a journey" in the upcoming episodes.

She also mentioned, somewhat shockingly, that we'll see more of Marsden as Steve, too. At this point, that obviously means flashbacks, but assume we'll learn more about his nefarious dealings. 

As for the rest of the cast, detectives Ana Perez (Diana Maria Riva) and Nick Prager (Brandon Scott) should be back, and same goes for Jen's kids, Charlie (Sam McCarthy) and Henry (Luke Roessler). While there were a handful of exciting supporting cast additions in Season 2, like Judy's fling Michelle (Natalie Morales), her mother (Katey Sagal), and Ben and Steve's mother Eileen Woods (Frances Conroy), it's hard to say if they'll make another appearance in Season 3.

dead to me season 2
Netflix

What will Dead to Me Season 3 be about? 

With Season 1 and Season 2 each focusing on one character's secret—the first being that Judy was involved with the hit-and-run that killed Jen's husband, and the second being that Jen didn't actually kill Steve in self-defense—Season 3 is set to be about somebody else's secret. Showrunner Liz Feldman told Refinery29, "[...] There's some more story to tell. I know exactly what I would want to do for the third season […] especially now that you know how Season 2 ends. Now there's somebody else with a secret." She's likely referring to Ben, since he crashed into Jen and Judy while driving under the influence and drove away from the scene. As Feldman says, she's interested in continuing to explore the "constant give and take of, Do you tell somebody something if you know it will hurt them?" so the next installment should surround Ben's reckoning with abandoning the accident, potentially injuring Jen, whom he was romantically involved with, and whatever legal case ensues. 

James Marsden even spoke to the possibility of Season 3 centering on the compounding dilemmas in Ben's life to TV Guide. He said, "Not only is he maybe going to find out that Jen was responsible for his brother's death, he's also guilty of a hit-and-run. And they were the victims of the hit-and-run. And his brother was guilty of a hit-and-run in the first season ... I believe [Ben] does make a conscious effort to look at himself in the mirror when no one else is looking and do the right thing ... but sometimes the forces can overwhelm."

It seems like "the forces" will definitely start to "overwhelm," especially given all of the road cams in Jen's neighborhood that will likely prevent Ben's secret from remaining a secret for too long. Were that information to come out, Season 3 could also see Jen and Judy trying to find leverage over Ben if he proves to be a threat. Detective Perez may have let Jen go after she confessed to killing Steve, but now that the authorities found his body and the investigation is still on, if they're able to connect Jen and Judy to the crime (and the evidence is definitely mounting up against them), they may need to cut some sort of deal with Ben so the two of them keep quiet about their respective crimes. 

It also seems possible that Steve's money-laundering scheme and connection to the Greek mafia will come back in Season 3. We've yet to meet any of the shady figures that Steve was working with when he was still alive, and it was only just revealed that the chief of police is somehow involved too, so consider that a large focus of the upcoming season. Perhaps Jen, Judy, and Agent Perez will be able to force the mob into covering up the women's crimes, or maybe even more illegal activity is in their future. The SoCal pals' secrets just seem unable to stay secrets, no matter how hard they try. 

Continue to check back because as more news regarding Dead to Me Season 3 is announced, we'll keep updating this post.

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Sadie Bell is the entertainment editorial assistant at Thrillist. She's on Twitter at @mssadiebell.
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