The first season of "Anatomy of a Scandal," out on Netflix, follows a British MP and his wife reckoning with his problematic actions, in a very public way. Six episodes of wrenching courtroom action later, and the series ends in a dramatic conclusion.
While the story of James Whitehouse (Rupert Friend), Sophie Whitehouse (Siena Miller), Olivia Lytton (Naomi Scott), and (Michelle Dockery) is over, the show is not.
According to Deadline, "Anatomy of a Scandal" was first pitched as an anthology series, meaning each season will focus on a different high-stakes story. You could summarize the approach like this: New season, new scandal.
Here's what we know about the future of "Anatomy of a Scandal."
'Anatomy of a Scandal' has not been renewed yet
While the show was introduced as a limited series, "Anatomy of a Scandal" has not been renewed by Netflix, as of the time of this writing.
“I leave that up to the experts, the writers, to see where the characters go,” Michelle Dockery, who plays Kate, told TODAY of the show's future.
If it's renewed, the second season may have similar themes The first season of "Anatomy of a Scandal" was based on Sarah Vaughan's novel of the same name. Moving forward, the show will likely explore themes laid out in this season — privilege, consent, and the role of public approval — but in new ways.
The show's creators also hold a clue into its future. "Anatomy of a Scandal" was created by Melissa James Gibson and David E. Kelley, who has explored similar topics in other shows about the upper crust experiencing personal and public unravelings.
Recent additions to Kelley’s oeuvre include “The Undoing” on HBO, in which Nicole Kidman plays a psychologist whose husband is accused of murder, in addition to having an affair, and “Big Little Lies,” which see the wealthy women of Monterey dealing with the aftermath of a scandal (Kidman stars in that, too).
Based on the pattern, we could safely expect season two of “Anatomy of a Scandal” to be based on a riveting novel, and to involve a wife and her wayward husband.
One of the cast members may return, according to the stars
There may be more connective tissue between seasons, beyond thematic similarities.
Star Sienna Miller said Dockery's character, the prosecutor who tried to convict James Whitehouse on sexual assault charges, may return for the next season.
“The series ends with the door slightly ajar, certainly for Michelle Dockery’s part. What’s that next case that she’ll be prosecuting?” Miller said in an interview with TODAY.
“Anatomy of a Scandal” ends with Kate, suited up for a new trial, staring at the camera. Perhaps she'll be investigating James's next crime. In the last episode, James is marched into a police car for his cover-up of a classmate's death in Oxford, which Sophie reported him for.
the same person again. But it definitely feels like there's momentum at the end that could potentially lead into something else," Dockery said.
"It definitely feels like there’s momentum at the end that could potentially lead into something else."
Dockery spoke to her role in the role's future. "The show is left on a note of what's to come. It's the beginning of another story at the end. You see James being marched into a police car. Kate's about to start a new case — probably not that one, because she can't prosecute the same person again. But it definitely feels like there's a momentum at the end that could potentially lead into something else," Dockery said.
Certainly, if Kate reappears, she will be altered by her transformative experiences in the first season.
Kate made the risky decision to prosecute James for sexual assault, even though he had perpetrated a similar crime against her in college. Dockery said Kate found closure through this action.
“For the majority of what you see in the show, (Kate) is not at peace with who she is as a person, her past. Through this journey, this big risk that she takes — prosecuting someone that she knows, her attacker — she comes closer to who she really is,” Dockery said. “I think there’s resolve at the end for Kate. I hope she’s happy at the end.”