US television network HBO has confirmed that they will not be going ahead with a third season of Gentleman Jack, the series inspired by the coded diaries of Anne Lister, the early 19th century landowner dubbed “the first modern lesbian”, which saw her fight against the anti-homosexual taboos of the day, run successful businesses and pursue a romance with Ann Walker.
HBO, who co-produced Sally Wainwright’s drama with the BBC and independent production company Lookout Point, said in a statement, “When we began this journey more than five years ago, we knew the series’ creator Sally Wainwright had a uniquely compelling vision, and it’s been tremendously gratifying to see how Anne Lister’s journey has resonated with viewers.
“We are incredibly grateful to Sally, to the impeccable Suranne Jones and Sophie Rundle, and to the entire cast and crew for bringing Anne and Ann’s story to life. We’d also like to thank our partners at BBC and Lookout Point for their collaboration on two remarkable seasons.”
The second series of Gentleman Jack focused on Anne and Ann setting up home at her uncle’s estate, Shibden Hall, after going through a form of marriage and becoming what today might be termed a “ lesbian power couple”.
Suranne Jones’s portrayal of Lister has won her a legion of fans in the UK, especially among LGBT+ women. The former Doctor Foster star was named “Celebrity Ally of the Year” at the 2022 DIVA Awards in London and in 2021 she unveiled a statue of Lister in Halifax, LIster’s home town.
Since the show first aired in 2019, Shibden Hall has become something of a pilgrimage site for UK fans.
OutNewsGlobal has contacted the BBC for comment (in the hope, let’s face it, that the corporation will pick up the slack from HBO and make a third series).