Critics have trashed Ryan Murphy’s new project, but another season could change everything.
Netflix’s Hollywood is billed as a fantasy alternate-reality: The release of the movie Peg, during the Golden Age of La La Land, beckons in a new age of enlightenment. Suddenly, race, gender, and sexual orientation aren’t the barriers they once were. Everyone watches Peg, which stars a Black woman and was written by a Black gay man, and understands what America can be when marginalized communities see themselves on the screen. The world rejoices.
But not all have fallen for the Dreamland spectacle, as some critics have called the series “hollow,” “a baffling Hindenburg of TV,” and a “disaster.” Not exactly good news when you’re trying to tell a story of hope. So does the script have anywhere else to go? Is there a chance for Ryan Murphy’s grand experiment to redeem itself?
A SECOND SEASON OF HOLLYWOOD IS UNLIKELY FOR NOW. BUT IT SHOULD HAPPEN.
Although Hollywood is considered a limited series with no plans of renewal (yet), there’s certainly precedent for similar Murphy projects getting the green light for a second go-around. Both American Horror Story and American Crime Story started out as limited series but have since been renewed for multiple seasons, albeit with different stories, characters, and settings for each.
“Hollywood” is a pretty vague title—about as vague as “American Crime Story”—which means there could be space for the show creators to make a new installment within another climate. If they could dig deeper into the nuances of a more progressive Hollywood during, say, the Civil Rights Era or the AIDS crisis, perhaps the end result of the limited series wouldn’t feel so shallow.
PATTI LUPONE WANTS TO DO IT.
A second season of Hollywood might be far from reality yet, but we know at least one star ready to jump on board: Patti LuPone, who plays studio executive Avis Amberg.
When asked by The Daily Beast if she’d be up for another season, maybe set in the 1960s, she replied, “You bet. ‘Please Ryan, bring me back.’ Oh yeah. I’m already imagining the go-go boots and mini-skirts.”
WHEN WOULD IT EVEN RELEASE?
Considering Netflix has not yet officially renewed the series, it’s hard to predict when another season might air—especially given the delays across the industry during the COVID-19 pandemic. Production all around has screeched to a halt, so a second season wouldn’t be launched into action at the earliest until this all clears up. It’s possible a season 2 (or a follow-up limited series) wouldn’t arrive until 2022 or 2023, if we were to estimate.
WHAT WOULD A SEASON 2 BE ABOUT?
Since Hollywood has completed the full arc of its narrative, it’s unlikely we’d see the same characters in action again. (With the exception of Patti LuPone, who seems eager to return.) But Murphy likes to shuffle some of his favorite actors into different roles, so if we didn’t see Jake Picking (Rock Hudson) or David Corenswet (Jack Castello) in a potential second season, we wouldn’t be surprised if we saw his frequent collaborator Darren Criss (Raymond Ansley) if the show picked back up. The Emmy winning actor also appeared in Murphy’s Glee and American Crime Story.
When Murphy brought new iterations of his other limited series, like with ACS and AHS, he created new storylines with each season. Perhaps we could see a Hollywood set during the Silent Age or the modern Blockbuster Age.
Murphy previously told that while making Hollywood, he and executive producer Janet Mock “were talking about growing up in the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s, and having no one to look to [on-screen] who looked like us and was successful.” After focusing on the ’40s, could they move on to rewrite history in one of those later decades?