Looks like Shōgun season 2 may actually happen (even though it probably shouldn't)

"The first season of Shōgun covered the entire book! The story's over! Making another season is just greedy, especially when the author has other books to adapt." "The Anjin is upset about Shōgun season 2."
“SHOGUN” -- "A Dream of a Dream" -- Episode 10 (Airs April 23) Pictured (L-R): Hiroto Kanai as Kashigi Omi, Hiroyuki Sanada as Yoshii Toranaga. CR: Katie Yu/FX
“SHOGUN” -- "A Dream of a Dream" -- Episode 10 (Airs April 23) Pictured (L-R): Hiroto Kanai as Kashigi Omi, Hiroyuki Sanada as Yoshii Toranaga. CR: Katie Yu/FX /

Last month, FX and Hulu aired the final episode of Shōgun, a rich, moody adaptation of James Clavell's 1975 book about an Englishman who travels to 16th century Japan and gets caught up in a pitched fight for control of the region. The show adapted the entirety of the book, and was billed as a limited series. So you'd think that was it, right?

Well, the show proved tremendously popular; people watched on the edge of their seats, cried when beloved characters died, and spread memes everywhere. So even though the story was finished, producer and lead actor Hiroyuki Sanada (Lord Yoshi Toranaga) started getting asked about a possible season 2. "Maybe after the release of the 10 episodes we see the reaction," he said recently. "But we finished the novel already. So who knows?"

Now, Variety reports that Sanada has signed a deal with FX to return as Toranaga. Also, FX is considering submitting Shōgun as a drama at the Emmys rather than as a limited series, implying that it plans to continue the series. All of this points towards Lord Toranaga and his Anjin ship pilot John Blackthorne (Cosmo Jarvis) returning for more adventures in 16th century Japan, despite James Clavell never having a word of source material for them.

Of course I understand the impulse to milk this series now that it's a hit. If Shōgun is indeed nominated at the Emmys as a drama rather than a limited series, it has a good chance of winning over other contenders like The Crown, Fallout and The Morning Show. But also, there's a very real possibility that Shōgun ended up being as good as it was because it had the good sense to end where it did. If FX tries to capture lightning in a bottle twice, it may well end up burned.

To be completely fair to FX, the Shōgun series finale (or season finale, depending on what happens) does suggest that there are battles to fought still ahead. So maybe there is a path for a second season to follow. But to be fair to people like me who think this is a dumb idea, those battles were foreshadowed more as a poetic coda to a story that had wrapped up, not as a prelude to a drama still to come.

This is doubly frustrating because FX already has a nice safe middle path to travel: while James Clavell never wrote a proper sequel to Shōgun, he did write five other books in what became known as his "Asian saga," all of them set in different parts of Asia at different points in history with a different set of characters. So FX wouldn't get to follow up directly with Toranaga and John Blackthorne, but it would get to introduce us to a new set of characters to fall in love with, all involved in time-tested storylines Clavell thought through decades ago.

There hasn't been an official announcement one way or the other yet. We wait on the edge.

Next. Every episode of Shōgun, ranked from worst to best. Every episode of Shōgun, ranked from worst to best. dark

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