Altered Carbon's Joel Kinnaman Doesn’t Know if He’ll Return For Season 2

Joel Kinnaman in Altered Carbon

There could be some bad news if you are a big fan of Netflix's Altered Carbon, leading actor Joel Kinnaman doesn't think he'll be back for season 2.

Set in a dystopian future where your consciousness can effectively live forever, the human race has evolved to use bodies as little more than a vessel known as a sleeve. Season 1 focused on Kinnaman's Takeshi Kovacs inside the body of Bay City cop Elias Ryker, however, the action-packed finale saw Kovacs turn in the Ryker sleeve and place himself in a new (but anonymous) body. With a more than tantalizing cliffhanger, where do we go next?

Altered Carbon has been a big hit for the streaming giant, and Netflix is almost certain to produce a second season. However, speaking to TV Guide, Kinnaman doesn't expect he will be getting the call to reprise his role:

"I don't think so, no. We have no idea what the second season would be, but my guess is that they would follow the two other books, and they are all on completely different planets, completely different worlds, and my guess is — and I don't know — my guess is that it's sort of going to be an anthology show where maybe a couple of the characters continue into the next season. But no one knows what's going on in the second season."

One person who definitely could return is Will Yun Lee - the man who played the original Kovacs. His story was told via flashback in season 1, so no matter where we go, we could explore more of Kovacs' early days with Lee in tow. In fact, it is an idea that Kinnaman himself has supported:

"We don't really reveal what happens to Kovacs' birth sleeve, but because he's not in it anymore, I would assume that sleeve is dead. So I think Will Yun Lee, if he continues to be in the show, it will be in flashbacks."

Joel Kinnaman and James Purefoy in Altered Carbon

It would make sense that Lee and Renée Elise Goldsberry return in their respective roles as Kovacs and Quell, meaning they would be the "couple" of characters that Kinnaman refers to. That being said, creator Laeta Kalogridis could effectively reboot and start again like so many anthology shows do these days.

Interestingly, with two more Richard K. Morgan novels for source material, Altered Carbon represents only the first season of a possible trilogy. If we are going to follow the books, it could also give fans a great indication of where the show would head in season 2. The sequel, Broken Wings, takes place on a distant colony with Kovacs joining a corporate war. It sounds like it would fit right in with Altered Carbon's Blade Runner-esque aesthetic, but it would involve jettisoning the majority of the season 1 cast.

Considering the whole premise of Altered Carbon is a body-swapping sci-fi show, anyone who signed up must've surely known they might not necessarily be around for very long. That being said, with the Suicide Squad star being the lead of season 1, Kinnaman's presence will surely be missed if the story carries on. The writing is still on the wall on if we will even get a second season, but Kinnaman's words certainly make it sound like he has already given up. Who knows though, even if he isn't the lead of season 2, there is every chance he could appear in his own Ryker flashbacks to sneak in the odd cameo here and there.

More: An Easy Guide to Altered Carbon’s Confusing Terminology

Source: TV Guide

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