‘Outer Banks’ Co-Showrunner Shannon Burke Confirms [SPOILER] Will Be the ‘Spine’ of Season 3

Outer Banks season 2 ended with the surprise reveal that Big John (Charles Halford) is still alive. At the same time, the Pogues found themselves stranded as castaways on a desert island. Netflix has yet to renew the series for another season.

But the showrunners are already planning the drama that is yet to come. According to co-showrunner Shannon Burke, a specific theme will be the “spine” of season 3.

Outer Banks stars Madelyn Cline and Chase Stokes filming in Barbados
Madelyn Cline as Sarah Cameron and Chase Stokes as John B. in ‘Outer Banks’ Season 2 | Jackson Lee Davis/Netflix

The ‘Outer Banks’ showrunners had multiple options for the season 2 ending

Co-showrunner Jonas Pate told Entertainment Weekly that it wasn’t a certainty that they would end season 2 with the reveal that Big John was alive. However, they always knew it was a possibility, and it was a card they could play.

His twin brother and fellow showrunner Josh Pate added that they shot alternate endings for both seasons 1 and 2, and picked the ones they felt were the best.

“Sometimes you just don’t know until you put it together and that’s definitely part of our process, trial and error,” Josh explained. ‘We write more than we talk and then we trade pages back and forth and we’d say, ‘That was good,’ or ‘That’s a bad idea.'”

There was a reason the showrunners chose the Big John reveal to end season 2

Burke pointed out that they discussed having Big John appear with Limbrey (Elizabeth Mitchell) in episode two, three, or four of season 2. However, they ended up choosing the reveal at the end of the season for a very specific reason.

“It was always an idea lingering around and thematically, it sets up some stuff we want to explore in the third season,” Jonas explained.

‘Outer Banks’ co-showrunner Shannon Burke confirms the ‘spine’ of season 3

John B has yet to discover that his dad is actually alive — but he will. Josh Pate says that John B’s (Chase Stokes) relationship with his dad is “a huge theme” and a significant part of the plot for season 3.

“John B’s relationship with his dad is a huge theme and having his dad back around and eventually they’re going to meet back up and John B has to reconcile his idealized version of his dead dad with the reality of his alive dad,” Josh explained. “It gives us a lot of thematic father-son stuff to work with.”

Burke agreed, adding that the father-son theme is “going to be instrumental and maybe the spine” of season 3.

How will fans react?

Burke went on to say that Big John being alive is “obviously a gigantic revelation that’s going to power a huge part of the third season.” She says she is “super interested” in how the audience will react.

“I’m super interested to see how people are going to react or if they’re even going to remember who he was!” Burke admitted. “We’re really having our fingers crossed that the moment works and that people are excited.”

‘Outer Banks’ star Chase Stokes says season 3 will be an emotional one for his character

According to Newsweek, Stokes is also focused on his character’s relationship with his dad during season 3. He says it will be an emotional season for John B. when he comes face-to-face with the man who abandoned him.

“It wasn’t like he was swept away by a natural disaster or whatever the case may be. It was his choice to go out and leave his son, and what does that look like?” Stokes said. “What does it look like when a kid comes face-to-face with a parent who’s left and chose to put him in these circumstances and has no idea what has happened in the meantime?”

Seasons 1 and 2 of Outer Banks are available on Netflix.

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