There’s nothing quite as enthralling as a good old fashioned small-town drama, and the hit Netflix show Virgin River delivers time and time again. The series follows Mel Monroe, a nurse practitioner looking to escape her past, as she embarks on a new era of her life in the small town of Virgin River.
The show is based off the book series by author Robyn Carr, first published in 2007. With over 21 books in the series, there are no limits to where these stories can go. As the release of the newest TV installment approaches, fans are eager to see what’s in store for Virgin River season 5.
Virgin River seasons 1-4 recap *SPOILERS AHEAD*
Read up on the past four seasons of Virgin River — or binge watch! — before you dive in head first to season 5, but beware of *major spoilers ahead.*
Season 1 of Virgin River
Season 1 of Virgin River (which aired in 2019 and based on storylines from the books Virgin River and Shelter Mountain) follows Mel Monroe as she arrives in the tiny town of Virgin River. Mel gets hired to assist Doc Mullins, the town’s local physician, and drama typical of small-town life ensues. Sparks begin to fly between her and local bar owner Jack.
The two form a short-lived relationship, that ends with the news that Charmaine, Jack’s ex, is expecting twins. On that note, Mel heads back to Los Angeles, leaving Virgin River behind. While all of this is going down, there’s a whole host of supporting characters going through their own trials and tribulations.
Preacher, local chef at Jack’s bar, and Paige, bakery-truck owner, also maneuver a blossoming relationship, while Doc Mullins and his wife, Hope, navigate their very long, very complicated dynamic.
Season 2 of Virgin River
Season 2 of Virgin River (which aired in 2020 and combines the storylines from books Shelter Mountain and the third book, Whispering Rock) amps up the drama, as Mel returns to town and she and Jack rekindle their relationship after he ends things officially with Charmaine.
Paige, the bakery owner, faces her abusive husband. In self-defense, she kills him, hides the body, and leaves town. Hope and Doc rekindle their relationship. In the season 2 finale, Jack is shot, leaving fans wondering about his beloved character.
Season 3 of Virgin River
In season 3 of Virgin River (which aired in 2021 and based on Second Chance Pass and other books) Jack lives, but has no recollection of who it is that shot him. When his house burns down, he and Mel move in together, but break up when Jack is presented with the prospect of having children with her.
Jack’s twin sons are at risk of being taken from him by Charmaine’s new fiancé, and his sister comes to town and gets cozy with Dan Brady, a man involved in the shadier workings of Virgin River. Doc and Hope are officially back, and Doc is shocked to learn of an alleged grandson he has, despite not having any children. We also find out that Mel is pregnant, but the father is unknown, as she received IVF with her late husbands embryos, and also had a relationship with Jack.
Season 4 of Virgin River
Season 4 of Virgin River (aired 2022 and based on multiple books) answers a lot of our long-standing questions. Jack is revealed to be the father of Mel’s baby, and the two get engaged.
Hope, who got into an accident in season 3, is making her recovery. Doc and his long-lost grandson get to know one another. It’s revealed that Charmaine’s twins are not Jack’s and we also learn that Vince, the twin brother of Paige’s abusive husband, was the one who shot Jack.
The cast of Virgin River
Get to know the familiar faces of Virgin River!
Alexandra Breckenridge as Mel
Breckenridge plays the role of Mel, the nurse from Los Angeles who makes her way to Virgin River to find solace from her complicated and traumatic past. When talking about Mel’s evolution, Breckenridge told Parade, “She’s in love with this man she never thought would happen again and she’s pregnant with a child she never thought she could have. Really, it’s like 180 degrees since the first season.”
Martin Henderson as Jack Sheridan
Henderson plays the charming ex-Marine and bar owner Jack, who steals the heart of Mel and viewers across the world. Despite the show’s success, Henderson is still ever so humble.
“I’ve been an actor for 34 years, and it doesn’t even matter. This is season 5 of a show that’s clearly working, yet there’s some part of my mind that is filled with doubt that I don’t know if I’m going to be able to do it,” he admitted to Glamour. “But I think I looked appropriately sad at the right moments and appropriately happy at the others. So yeah, I think I’ve still got my job.”
Annette O’Toole as Hope McCrae
O’Toole plays the role of Hope, Doc’s companion and mayor of the town. On the role of Hope, Annette told Parade, “I admire her for being able to say things and kind of have very strong opinions about things are not feel reticent about expressing them. I admire that a lot. I’m still loving what I do more than ever. I am filled with gratitude.“
Tim Matheson as Doc Mullins
Doc Mullins, the resident doctor of Virgin River, is reluctant to accept the changes happening around him, but eventually comes around. Doc, played by Tim Matheson, cares deeply for the residents of his community.
(Read more about Tim’s storied career in ‘Animal House’ to ‘Virgin River,’ Tim Matheson Shares Secrets From 62-years in Hollywood)
“It’s one of those lovely things when the network and the audience really respond to a show. They like the characters, and they like the setting. They like the heart of the show,” Matheson told Smashing Interviews Magazine. “Alex Breckenridge and Mark Henderson are certainly the heart of the show. They’re phenomenal together and fun to work with, so it’s always a treat to go back to work and hang out with them.”‘
Colin Lawrence as John “Preacher” Middleton
Preacher, played by Colin Lawrence, is Jack’s friend and chef at his bar. He’s shown his loyalty many times over the past four seasons, one of the most prominent moments being when he helps Paige after she kills her abusive husband.
Zibby Allen as Brie Sheridan
Brie Sheridan is Jack’s sister, who, upon her arrival into Virgin River, falls for Dan Brady, Jack’s friend from the Marines who’s involved in some suspicious activity.
She told Today, “I think what Virgin River as a town does really well is community. The nature, the quietude and the simplicity gives a great backdrop to people being able to come to terms with whatever’s inside of them and learn to rely on one another.”
Lauren Hammersley as Charmaine Roberts
Charmaine Roberts is Jack’s problematic ex-love interest. She informs Jack early in the show that she’s pregnant with his twins, but we eventually learn the truth.
Benjamin Hollingsworth as Dan Brady
Dan Brady is Virgin River’s resident bad boy, involving himself with the shady business that goes on beneath the surface of this picture perfect town. He plays the love interests of Jack’s sister Brie, and he and Jack were Marine buddies.
Lexa Doig as Paige Lassiter
Paige, played by Lexa Doig, runs the bakery truck in Virgin River. She has a dark past that only few know about.
Grayson Maxwell Gurnsey as Ricky Sudden
Ricky, played by Grayson Maxwell Gurnsey, is the kind teen who works at Jack’s bar and eventually falls for Lizzie, the troubled teen who comes to Virgin River.
Sarah Dugdale as Lizzie Anderson
Lizzie gets caught shoplifting and is shipped off to Virgin River to live with her aunt. She forms a close bond with Ricky.
What can I expect from season 5?
While no official trailer has been released, there are a few storylines we can expect will continue in season 5. If Jack isn’t the father of Charmaine’s twins, then who is? What does Preacher’s future hold? What does the future hold for Doc’s grandson, Denny? The questions are endless!
Where can I watch Virgin River?
Virgin River is available to stream exclusively on Netflix.
When does season 5 of Virgin River come out?
Season 5 of Virgin River premieres on September 7, 2023 with 12 episodes. A sixth season has already been confirmed.