Debora Cahn’s first major new Netflix show, The Diplomat, has been renewed for a second season. Originally expected to release in 2024, it may be a bit longer for the new season to come out as we’ve confirmed that filming has been halted due to the ongoing actors’ and writers’ strikes.
From the writer of Homeland, Fosse/Verdon, and Vinyl, The Diplomat is a Netflix Original political thriller series that stars Keri Russell and Rufus Sewell.
If you’re yet to dive in, here’s what you can expect from the eight-episode first season:
“In the midst of an international crisis, Kate Wyler a career diplomat lands in a high-profile job for which she was not suited, with tectonic implications for her marriage and her political future.”
Following the show’s release on April 20th, 2023, the show was given an Emmy nomination, with Russell nominated for Oustanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series.
Official Renewal Status: Renewed on May 1st, 2023
After just a week on the service, Netflix had given a quick season 2 order for The Diplomat. Although it’s not mentioned, we suspect the show was given an early season order ahead of the first season premiering.
The Diplomat has been renewed for Season 2. pic.twitter.com/bnfaLvfoU1
— Netflix (@netflix) May 1, 2023
Speaking about the renewal, Keri Russell said:
“I am thrilled to be headed back for another round of this smart screwball show. Dare I say it’s fun? Thank you Netflix for giving us another shot.”
Creator and showrunner Debora Cahn said:
“We had such a great time making The Diplomat. And it’s a thrill to see how much people are enjoying it. We’re so glad we get to do it again!”
Netflix’s head of drama, Jinny Howe, said:
“Fans around the world are loving every minute of The Diplomat’s gripping and propulsive drama, and embracing Keri Russell’s powerful performance as Kate Wyler. After that jaw-dropping cliffhanger, we can’t wait for them to see what the amazing visionary team of Debora Cahn, Janice Williams and Keri Russell have in store for Season 2.”
More season 2 details will be shared later, according to a press release.
Surprisingly, Netflix doesn’t have an extensive number of political dramas. However, there are some big names on the small list. Shows such as House of Cards, Designated Survivor, and The Night Agent have been big hits for the streaming service; however, only one of the aforementioned three is ongoing.
Let’s start with the official stats from Netflix via its top 10 satellite site, which we’ve crunched and embedded via our top 10 search tool.
The show featured in the top 10s for four weeks before dropping out, picking up 173.46 million hours watched:
|Week Period||Hours Viewed(M)||Rank||Week in Top 10|
|April 16th, 2023 to April 23rd, 2023||57,480,000||1||1|
|April 23rd, 2023 to April 30th, 2023||66,460,000 (+16%)||1||2|
|April 30th, 2023 to May 7th, 2023||31,150,000 (-53%)||4||3|
|May 7th, 2023 to May 14th, 2023||18,370,000 (-41%)||8||4|
In our top 10 reports for the week ending April 23rd, What’s on Netflix contributor Frederic said that it had a mediocre start, with the show only just getting below That 90s Show regarding its week 1 CVE.
CVE refers to Completed Viewing Equivalent, whereby you take the runtime of the show and the number of hours publically announced to come up with a way to find out at a maximum how many people got through to the end.
If we stack up The Diplomat with other renewed shows from the last 6 to 12 months, we can see The Diplomat ultimately fell towards the lower end of what viewership shows need to get renewed.
The Diplomat featured in the Nielsen charts for two weeks in total, picking up 44.90 million hours watched. Nielsen tracks US viewing on connected devices.
|Week Start||Week End||Nielsen Rank||Episodes||Raw Minutes||Converted Hours|
|April 17th, 2023||April 23rd, 2023||1||8||1,302 million minutes||21.700 million hours|
|April 24th, 2023||April 30th, 2023||1||8||1,392 million minutes||23.200 million hours|
How about online engagement?
The team at TelevisionStats.com allows us to see how comparatively well the show has performed on social media, Google Trends, torrent sites, and more. You can see from the chart below that while it wasn’t the biggest hit from the offset, in the months following its release, it’s kept up with The Night Agent and BEEF.
If the cliffhanger wasn’t enough to suggest there could be a second season, then it’s hard to suggest what else is needed.
Throughout the season, the US Ambassador, Kate Wyler, has been investigating the attack on the British Warship. Initially believed to be caused by the Iranians, but before long, the finger is pointed at the Russians. However, Kate is eventually able to deduce that the person behind the attack was UK Prime Minister Nicol Trowbridge, who wanted to use the false flag attack as a means to rally the country together and to stop any momentum for Scottish independence.
All season Kate’s relationship with her husband Hal has been shown to be extremely rocky, to the point where the pair are considering divorce. However, as Kate may soon be sworn in as the Vice President of the United States of America, any talks of divorce were shot down immediately. However, Kate may soon be a widow as Hal was one of three, the other being Stuart Hayford, Kate’s deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in London, and Eidra Park, the chief of the CIA station in London, who are victims of a car bombing. We still don’t know the fate of the trio, but Kate has been made aware by the secret service that her husband was in the explosion, and judging by her expression, the news may be grave.
Kate is still yet to be sworn in as the new Vice President. However, Kate is still unsure whether the position is right for her and has even considered her position as a US diplomat. The events of the season could drive Kate to take up the position of Vice President, where she will be perfectly placed to be a force for good; however, equally, she may feel even more disenfranchised with her position as a US diplomat and try to find a way out of the politics game as soon as possible.
When will The Diplomat Season 2 be on Netflix?
Production on the series reportedly began on season 2 in London in June 2023, according to London.gov.uk, which lists “The Diplomat Series 2” among the TV in production in London.
Warning: potential spoilers ahead.
Numerous eyewitnesses have also caught filming happening at St Pauls’s Cathedral on June 3rd, 2023:
During filming, Secretary Antony Blinken met with the cast and producers of the show on June 20th:
Met the cast and producers of The Diplomat at the U.S. Embassy in London @USAinUK. Diplomacy matters. Every day in the real world @StateDept employees are doing incredible work representing the U.S. and addressing global challenges. pic.twitter.com/5RGXv65sGW
— Secretary Antony Blinken (@SecBlinken) June 20, 2023
Filming continued throughout June and into July 2023. However, filming did come to a halt when the actor’s strike began on July 14th and has been on hold ever since. Despite filming in the United Kingdom, the show is still covered by SAG-AFTRA contracts.
A Netflix representative confirmed that the show is still on hold as of August 2023.
You can see the full list of Netflix shows affected by the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes here.
Who’s directing in season 2 of The Diplomat and how many episodes?
Who’s behind the director’s chair in season 2?
We can confirm that Alex Graves will return to the director’s chair in season 2. Tucker Gates will make his directorial debut on the show. Gates has previously worked on shows like American Gigolo, Alias, Homeland, The Morning Show, and The Terminal List.
What’s on Netflix has seen evidence to suggest that season 2 will have a reduced episode count from eight to six.
As for a release date for The Diplomat season 2, with filming now delayed indefinitely, it’s unclear whether the show will still be able to release in 2024. If it does, it’ll be sometime later in the year.
Are you excited to see a second season of The Diplomat on Netflix? Let us know in the comments below!
Additional reporting from Kasey Moore.