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Why Was Hope Gone From Virgin River? What Happens to Annette O’Toole’s Character in Season 3? Was COVID-19 the Reason?

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Jul 29, 2022 @ 3:16 EDT
Why Was Hope Gone From Virgin River? What Happens to Annette O’Toole’s Character in Season 3? Was COVID-19 the Reason?

'Why was Hope gone from Virgin River?' is currently trending as Annette O'Toole's character returns back for Season 4 of the Netflix show. Many fans wondered if she died. In reality, Annette O'Toole was unable to participate in the filming of Season 3 as she couldn't fly back to Vancouver due to the Covid-19 outbreak. Follow the article to know more about Hope and what happened to her in detail.

Virgin River on Netflix follows Mel Monroe, a nurse practitioner who leaves her husband's death for a fresh start in a secluded hamlet in northern California. The series is based on a series of romantic novels by author Robyn Carr.

Since the show's premiere in 2019, viewers have been attracted to it. But even while Virgin River is mainly about Mel and Jack and their love story, the writers have taken a great effort to develop the show's setting by exploring the personal lives of its supporting cast members.

Fans may have forgotten that Hope, played by Annette O'Toole, hasn't had the easiest time of it since she left Virgin River to care for her sick aunt in South Carolina, but that is quite acceptable given how long it has been since season three. Many viewers have been wondering about the character of town mayor Hope ever since she returned to the show in Season 4.

Some fans wonder why she was gone from the show for an entire season previously. Here is the real reason why she wasn't featured in Season 3 of the show.

Why Was Hope Gone in Virgin River Season 3? What Happens to Her? Was COVID-19 the Reason Why Annette O’Toole Couldn’t Participate in the Filming of the Netflix Show?

Fans expected to see more of Hope and Doc in the third season of Virgin River after they rekindled their relationship in Season 2. While Doc was a regular on the show, Hope was not. It was set early on that Hope was away from town visiting a sick aunt when a hurricane cut off all the power in the area, making it difficult for Hope and Doc to communicate.

When she was finally able to get back in the car and head back to the Northern Californian town, a terrible car accident occurred. She underwent brain surgery after being sent to a local hospital in a hurry.

The season 3 finale left everything on a massive cliffhanger, and when it was revealed that Hope was back at her house with her husband Doc, it was clear whether she would survive or not. However, it was immediately evident that Hope suffered some long-term adverse effects as a result of her wounds and the procedure, specifically that she seemed to have forgotten some of her memories.

She requests to see her close friend Lilly in Season 4; as fans are aware, Lilly passed away from cancer last season. She was frantically running home for Lilly's funeral when she was struck by a truck on the highway. In other scenes, she is seen being confused over a well-known meal and even forgetting that the main characters Jack and Mel had visited her in the hospital.

However, her accident wasn't actually the reason why we were unable to see Hope in the entire Season 3 of the show. Since Annette O'Toole was unable to go to Vancouver last year when filming was taking place due to the coronavirus outbreak, she did not return for Season 3.

In an interview with US Weekly last year, showrunner Sue Tenney revealed,

"We were affected by COVID like every other show, and it was impossible for Annette to come and join us up here in Vancouver. Personally, I love Hope. I love the character, so we got busy in the writers' room to see how we can keep her alive in the show, with only having limited access."

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Bernd Mueller
Bernd Mueller
About the Author
Bernd Mueller is a TV and movie correspondent for StillABae.com and NetflixDeed.com. He worked as a University paper editor for two years. He is currently living in Estonia, working on his thesis. Bernd remotely contributes articles for BAE magazine and Netflix Deed. (email: [email protected])
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