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All Creatures Great And Small Season 2 - What We Know So Far

The PBS-Channel 5 drama "All Creatures Great and Small" proved to be the escape viewers needed in early 2021, and as a result, the charming series was swiftly renewed for Season 2. Based on a series of memoirs by James Herriot, the show is set in the 1930s Yorkshire Dales, where a young Herriot (Nicholas Ralph) moves to join a rural veterinary practice. While the young vet is a fish out of water at first, he quickly finds his place in the practice of Siegfried Farnon (Samuel West) and the quirky Yorkshire town he now calls home.

In a television landscape dominated by gritty dramas and biting comedies, "All Creatures Great and Small" became a surprise hit in the winter. It even helped PBS become the second most watched TV channel on Super Bowl Sunday after CBS, according to The Wrap. As a result, it's no surprise that PBS and the British drama's U.K. producer Channel 5 signed on for a second season of animal-fueled adventures in the picturesque Yorkshire countryside.

Now that the show has secured an official renewal, the most pressing question on fans' minds is when will "All Creatures Great and Small" Season 2 premiere? And, just as importantly, will this be the season that Herriot and Helen (Rachel Shenton) get together? Read on for everything we know about Season 2 so far.

Updated August 31, 2021: This article has been updated to reflect the release of the first Season 2 trailer.

When will All Creatures Great and Small Season 2 premiere on PBS?

The coronavirus pandemic impacted film and television shoots around the world, but "All Creatures Great and Small" had a slight advantage since much of the show is filmed outdoors. So while there was still a delay in filming, Season 2 is now well underway with actress Anna Madeley (Mrs. Hall) telling PBS Masterpiece that filming would take place from March until July. With that schedule in mind, fans in the U.K. can likely expect to see Season 2 some time in the fall.

However, U.S. viewers will be in for a longer wait. Just like with the first season, Season 2 is expected to air in its entirety in the U.K. before it makes its way to PBS. If the new season does premiere on Channel 5 in the fall, then the earliest American viewers are likely to see Season 2 is January 2022. Although, it could be later, depending on whether or not there are filming delays or the British air date is later than expected.

Still, since Season 1 just finished airing stateside in February, a winter or spring 2022 premiere isn't bad, all things considered.

Who will star in All Creatures Great and Small Season 2?

Happily, all of Season 1's primary cast members are expected to return. That means viewers can look forward to see more of Herriot (Ralph), Siegfried (West), Helen (Shenton), Mrs. Hall (Madeley), and Tristan (Callum Woodhouse). Additionally, PBS confirmed Hugh (Matthew Lewis) will return, despite being jilted by Helen at the altar. And it sounds like there could be competition brewing between the community's veterinary clinics since Kriss Dosanjh is back as rival veterinarian George Pandhi, as well. 

As for fan favorite Mrs. Pumphrey and her beloved Pekingese Tricki Woo, the character will be back, even though the role has been recast due to the death of Dame Diana Rigg. Since the character plays such a large role in the real life Herriot's memoirs, the producers opted to cast "Miranda" star Patricia Hodge in the role rather than write Mrs. Pumphrey out entirely.

Hodge isn't the only new face on board for Season 2, though. PBS also announced Dorothy Atkinson is joining the cast as Diana Brompton, a potential match for Siegfried, who he meets at a church dance. Meanwhile, James Fleet will appear as Colonel Merrick, a farmer and former military man.

What will Season 2 of All Creatures Great and Small be about?

Season 1's eventful Christmas special left several threads dangling that will need to be addressed early on in Season 2. One of the most pressing matters involves Siegfried telling Tristan he passed his veterinarian school exams, even though he failed part of the test. It's only a matter of time before the truth comes out, and Tristan is likely to be heartbroken over his brother's deception.

In a February interview with Salon, series writer Ben Vanstone revealed that although it's legal for Tristan to practice veterinary medicine without a degree, the issue will be more of a "moral" one for Siegfried's little brother when he finds out. "In Series 2, we begin with Tristan unaware of what his brother has done," Vanstone said. "And, Siegfried, he's very much done this because he's so desperate to move forward in his relationship with his brother."

Elsewhere, Helen and Herriot will still be dancing around one another at the start of the series, even though she called off her wedding to Hugh. Before those two star-crossed lovers can finally get together, Helen is going to do some soul-searching about what she wants out of life, while Herriot settles into his role as a partner in the practice.

Finally, fans can expect plenty of heartstring-tugging animal stories in Season 2, including cases involving lambs. "You're going to see some lambs, which we couldn't do last year because we were in the wrong season..." Vanstone revealed. "From about now through to late May is lambing season, so we should have some lambs for you."

From the promise of lambs to new romances, Season 2 of "All Creatures Great and Small" sounds like it's going to be full of surprises. Until then, you can check out the first trailer for Season 2 (via Yorkshire Post).