Here’s a spot of good news, Reservation Dogs returns for its second season on August 3. A trailer dropped this week, and though Bear’s crappy spirit guide is still around for comic relief, it looks like season two will drill down on the emotional fallout of Elora Danan abandoning her friends to go to California with Jackie. It doesn’t look like that road trip is going well, and meanwhile, back in Oklahoma, Bear is struggling with a new job and Willie Jack might be cursed. The first season was a hang-out sitcom with dramatic undertones, but season two looks like a reverse of that—more drama, less hanging around. Makes sense, Elora Danan made a decision that should carry significant consequences. A more banal show might play that down for the sake of laughs, but nothing about Reservation Dogs suggests anyone involved is interested in banality.
I do wonder if we’re in for a replay of season two of Ted Lasso, at least in terms of fan response. After a buoyant and hope-filled first season that plays like a warm hug, Ted Lasso went deeper and darker for season two and left some fans divided on the result. If Reservation Dogs, which many people have deemed a “comfort show” like Ted Lasso (at least in season one), goes the same way, will there be a backlash? The feeling I get with Ted Lasso is that people are at least willing to see where it goes in season three, despite mixed feelings on the sophomore season. Will Reservation Dogs get the same grace if its second season explores more emotional, less comforting ground?