Virgin River season 5 to include more diversity and inclusion

Ever since its premiere on Netflix in 2019, Virgin River has been a fan-favorite thanks to its comfortable and relatable drama and romance. The small town series recently premiered its blockbuster fourth season, which paves the way for the even better Virgin River season 5.

We have so much to look forward to in the fifth season, whether it’s the paternity reveal for a certain set of twins, two imminent births, a wedding, and so much more. But a new conversation about the series with Netflix’s head of drama, Jinny Howe, hints at more diversity in Virgin River.

In the fourth season, the series introduced its first LGBTQ+ character, Jack’s Bar waitress Hannah, and brought more characters of color into the Virgin River community. With a new showrunner set for the now-filming fifth season, the focus remains on providing better representation.

While nothing has been formally announced as far as new characters or storylines for Virgin River season 5, Howe previewed the behind-the-scenes process that will rectify the series’ frequent blind spot in diversity and inclusion, something all fans should be excited about!

Virgin River season 5 furthers diversity and inclusion

Compared to other Netflix series, Virgin River has been somewhat trailing behind in making sure all walks of life are represented on screen. It’s important for viewers to see themselves in the characters of their favorite shows, and season 5 will continue to bridge that gap.

Here’s what Jinny Howe shared with Deadline about Virgin River season 5’s focus on diversity and inclusion:

“Without getting specific, I will say that that continues to be a focus. Some of our early casting conversations for season 5, I think it’s fair to say that that is going to continue to be a focus and something the audience will get to experience more in season 5. It’s definitely a priority, and I think you will see, as we expand the Virgin River community, that there will be more diversity and inclusion.”

Previous showrunner Sue Tenney stepped down after the fourth season and will be replaced by Greek and Dolly Parton’s Heartstrings executive producer Patrick Sean Smith. As an openly gay writer, who’s married to fellow television writer Carter Covington, Smith will bring a new and necessary perspective to Virgin River.

One thing’s for sure, the characters we know and love will be back for 12 more episodes and perhaps even more beyond the fifth season. Howe also mentioned she expects a bright future for the series and its “longevity and growth.” Sounds like we’ll be spending plenty more summers in Virgin River with Mel, Jack, and the whole gang!

Stay tuned for more Virgin River season 5 news and updates from Netflix Life!

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