In initially pitching Virgin River to me, people kept stating: “it’s just like Hart of Dixie,” and while similarities could have been drawn in the past, especially given Tim Matheson’s role as the small-town doctor in both shows along with the lead character leaving a large city, the similarities end there.
Again, beyond this, I would’ve never put these two shows together, solely because Virgin River brings in heightened drama in a way Hart of Dixie never did, and the series is anything but light and fluffy. That’s especially the case with season three, which is inarguably the series’ heaviest season and features a plethora of darkness.
There is very little that could actually be said about season three of Virgin River without spoiling the plot, but the gist of it is, at times, it’s a lot—and to prepare in advance, know that this one is going to be a harder not to binge because you’re going to want to know just what’s happening.
At the heart of Virgin River however is still this small town, and at the precipice Jack and Mel as a couple. There aren’t a lot of things we can be certain of, but these two are an endgame ship, and they are the kind of couple that will get through whatever hurdles are presented to them. They’re in it for the long haul and in season three, there is a lot of joy to be found with them.
The official trailer shows only a fragment of what actually erupts in the new season, but Virgin River was never going to be the show to kill of its male lead after its female had suffered through a love’s death once before. This show is dramatic, and it can be incredibly dark at times, but it’s not that dark. It is, at its core a love story after all. And they are at the forefront of the love story, throughout the first two seasons, and in the third.
Virgin River is largely a comfort show and in its third season, it upholds the beats necessary to continue playing on its coziness while still carrying out the darker elements (a few of them being the obvious aftermaths of the season two finale).
Season three of Virgin River premieres this Friday, and trust me when I say, once you start, you’re not going to want to stop. (But isn’t that always the case with this show? Well, yes, but it’s especially the case with season three.) Make sure there are snacks and drinks at the ready. And maybe a tissue or two, you know, as one should probably always have prepared for this show.