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11 things we're concerned about in Happy Valley season three

One viewer's concerns over Catherine Cawood's wellbeing

happy valley sarah
Emmy Griffiths
TV & Film Editor
7 April 2022
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Hello. My name is Emmy, and I am a die-hard Happy Valley fan. The two seasons of the hit BBC show are my comfort, my sleepy airplane watch, my 'have it on while cooking' background noise. So when I found out there was to be a third season in 2022, I was ecstatic… for a moment.

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After all, we had left our beloved Catherine Cawood, her family and her friends in a relatively steady place in the season two finale, but a BBC drama can only mean one thing: conflict. As such, my jubilation has turned to straight-up stress, and so to ease my mind and maybe slightly hoping that Sally Wainwright will read this and take pity on us all, here are all the things I am worried about happening in season three...

WATCH: Time to catch up on Happy Valley

Catherine dying

The fact that this is definitively the final series of the hit show is a worry. Why would Sally Wainwright be shutting down any hint of a future follow-up, unless something that meant that there would be no future takes place? Much in the way Harry Potter fans didn't want to accept that any characters would die in book seven, I implore to you Sally, please don't do it.

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Ryan isn't a well-adjusted young man who loves his grandmother

Ryan is a well-loved youngster with some learning difficulties that lead him to act out and thusly do his granny's head in. As much as we are desperate for Ryan to have grown up a respectable young man with a love of the violin and hopes of attending Oxbridge, the fact that the season two finale saw the beginnings of a relationship between Ryan and his biological father, Tommy Lee Royce, tells a different story on where this might head. Not to mention the following plot detail in the press release, which frankly had me returning to therapy.

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"Her grandson Ryan is now sixteen and still living with Catherine, but he has ideas of his own about what kind of relationship he wants to have with the man Catherine refuses to acknowledge as his father."

Ann not making it as a detective

Plucky Ann Gallagher goes through hell in season one, then proves herself to be a savvy officer after joining the force in season two. Although she is determined to become a detective one day, she struggles with alcohol after losing her mother, and being stood up for the first time that she considered dating after her horrific experience. Needless to say, we hope she has risen through the ranks!

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Ryan being suspected in some sort of sordid crime

The other part of the press release that stresses me out is as follows: "When Catherine discovers the remains of a gangland murder victim in a drained reservoir it sparks a chain of events that unwittingly leads her straight back to Tommy Lee Royce." Since Tommy is spending life in prison, and is also a talented manipulator, all eyes are on Ryan doing his dad's bidding. Will he be suspected in the gangland murders?

Tommy Lee Royce surviving the series

Much in the way that I am terrified that Catherine will be killed off in a heartbreaking (yet ultimately noble) way, I will also be miffed if Tommy Lee Royce concludes season three just chilling behind bars plotting his next move. If ever a character deserved to get foamed in a canal boat, it was that guy.

tommy lee royce

Winnie no longer living across the way

Winnie was one of my favourite characters in season two. Catherine's neighbour, who merrily takes in a victim of human trafficking and rolls her eyes at the potential gangsters who may or may not put a petrol bomb through her letterbox as a result, means we want to see her back for more! 

Catherine getting in trouble for John Wandsworth

Catherine is a much-respected police officer but she is also occasionally a maverick who doesn't play by the rules – which includes the season two finale when she runs after John Wandsworth on the train tracks, and is a witness when he falls to his death after attempting to talk him down. While we know the chances are that Catherine is still a revered sergeant, it'd be horrible to see any fallout from season two in the new episodes.

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Clare falling off the wagon

I truly don't think that this will happen, because Clare is Catherine's security and home and basically the audience every time Catherine has a truly wayward story from her day in the office – and so she needs to stay on the straight and narrow for plot purposes – but it'd be horrible to start season three episode one to discover she was struggling heroin and alcohol addiction once more.

Daniel not being with Ann

Season two saw Catherine's son Daniel kicked off by his wife Daisy after having an affair, but seems to be an all-around decent guy who got married for the wrong reasons. We definitely saw a spark between him and Ann in season two after the pair chatted about life and relationships, and honestly, it is probably a very good match. It'd get Daniel off Catherine's sofa, anyway.


Shafiq is no longer working for the police

Shafiq is a member of Catherine's team and a great addition to the Yorkshire Police. He is always by Catherine's side anytime some "crazy weird" stuff happens, like finding a pack of dogs dead in an estate, and is a small albeit essential part of Catherine's universe. Bring back Shafiq!

Joyce retiring

Joyce with her furtive smile and years of experience, alongside her friendship with Catherine, makes for some of the best moments from the nick in seasons one and two, and I'm very invested in seeing more of their banter for season three.  


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