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Virgin River season five part two marks major change for show - details

Part two arrives on Netflix on November 30

Alexandra Breckenridge as Mel in Virgin River
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Virgin River will return to our screens next month with the second part of season five, which will mark a first in the show's history. 

Episode ten ended with the town celebrating its annual Labor Day carnival before a huge time jump to Christmas. 

WATCH: The trailer for Virgin River season five part two

Part two will pick up from where part one ended, marking the biggest time jump on the show so far. 

Talking about the decision behind the three-month gap, executive producer Patrick Sean Smith explained that the events that unfold in part two will drive the story into season six. He told Glamour: "We've joked about it. We've been like, 'We're jumping seven seasons of Virgin River!' With that said, I think there are many surprises still to come in the holiday episodes that then propel us into season six. It's definitely not just a two-off. It's still tied into the serialized stories."

Alexandra Breckenridge as Mel Monroe, Martin Henderson as Jack Sheridan in Virgin River© Netflix
The festive episodes mark the show's biggest time jump

Patrick also teased the upcoming episodes, saying fans should be worried for Preacher Middleton (Colin Lawrence) after a body was found in the woods in a major cliffhanger at the end of part two. 

When asked if viewers should be concerned for the character, Patrick said: "I would be worried. He's a beloved character. You always want to take your most beloved characters and put them in danger. 

Colin Lawrence as Preacher in Virgin River© COURTESY OF NETFLIX
The show's executive producer said fans should be worried for Preacher

"He's such an honorable man, and it was always a loose end from before that we were like, 'Is it worth going back to it?' When we were coming up with the character of Kaia and getting a sense of what their dynamic would be and who she was and what could affect them, it would have to be something big."

While fans will have to wait until November 30 for the remaining two episodes, which are festive specials, they'll be pleased to know that the show's writers are currently working on season six

Taking to Instagram on Tuesday, the drama revealed that the writing team has officially returned to the writers' room just weeks after the Writers Guild of America (WGA) strike officially ended.

View post on Instagram
 

Alongside selfies of the writers gathered around a table in a meeting room, the caption read: "Thrilled to have our writing team back in action, diving into Season 6!"

READ: 7 questions we need answering in Virgin River season five part two

MORE: Virgin River season five part one ending explained – and what it means for part two

When will Virgin River season six be released?

Netflix hasn't yet revealed an official release date for season six and it could be a while before they do. 

While the cast would usually be filming the new episodes in Vancouver around this time of year, the ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike means the actors can't yet return to work. 

Alexandra Breckenridge, who stars as Mel Monroe, previously spoke about not being able to work or promote the show. In a video posted to her Instagram Stories in September, she said: "SAG is on strike and I can't go back to work and I can't even talk about work.

Alexandra Breckenridge in Virgin River© Netflix
Alexandra Breckenridge stars as Mel Monroe in the drama

"So, if all y'all are trying to send me messages asking about work-related things, I can't answer you and I'm really sorry about that."

Considering seasons of Virgin River typically air around a year apart, fans could be waiting until late 2024 or even early 2025 for season six if the strike continues.