Heartstopper S1 recap: Everything that happened in Netflix’s coming-of-age drama

Catch up on what you missed ahead of the show’s August return

·5-min read
Kit Connor (left) as Nick and Joe Locke as Charlie in Heartstopper. (Netflix)
Kit Connor (left) as Nick and Joe Locke as Charlie in Heartstopper. (Netflix)

Fans of Netflix hit Heartstopper are in luck. Netflix has finally revealed when audiences can continue watching this touching coming-of-age story — and they don’t have long to wait for season 2.

Debuting in early 2022, the show’s first eight-episode season introduced us to a young love story between two classmates forced to navigate the highs and lows, pressures and pitfalls of a secret, school-set romance.

Based on Alice Oseman’s graphic novel and webcomic series of the same name, Heartstopper’s TV adaptation was a quick success. Fans celebrated its depiction of LGBTQ+ relationships and dedication to heartwarming storytelling, and Netflix didn’t wait long to renew the show for not just a second but a third series.

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We’re getting a bit ahead of ourselves though. If you’re yet to catch up, here’s a quick Heartstopper season one recap to help bring you up to speed.

Fair warning: Spoilers are incoming…

What happened in Heartstopper season 1?

Heartstopper is based on Alice Oseman's popular webseries and graphic novel. (Netflix)
Heartstopper is based on Alice Oseman's popular webseries and graphic novel. (Netflix)

Heartstopper introduced us to Charlie (Joe Locke), a year ten schoolboy who is seated next to a popular year 11 rugby player Nick (Kit Connor) in his form classroom.

Charlie quickly develops a crush on his new table buddy — but his best friends Tao (William Gao) and Isaac (Tobie Donovan) quickly remind him that his new would-be BF is straight and warn him of the dangers of falling in love with someone that he can never have.

Still, Charlie appears to enjoy being around Nick. He convinces him to join the rugby team and even protects him from an overly-aggressive fellow player Ben (Sebastian Croft).

After a period of hanging out, the pair’s friendship starts to blossom, with Nick very nearly holding Charlie’s hand during a late-night movie session. Meanwhile, Charlie, Tao and Isaac’s friend Elle, who has recently left their school to start life at an all-girls school, meets new friends Tara (Corinna Brown) and Darcy (Kizzy Edgell).

Heartstopper (Netflix)
Will Nick admit his feelings for Charlie? (Netflix)

Despite being a bit dismayed that Nick might fancy one of his female friends, Charlie invites him to a mutual pal’s birthday party where he sees Tara and Darcy kissing openly on the dancefloor. Inspired, he musters the courage to ask Nick for a kiss but is left heartbroken when homophobic remarks from other people from their high-school force Nick to run away.

Charlie’s spirits are raised when Nick later appears at his door and apologises for leaving Charlie hanging.

The pair agree to make their relationship official but decide to keep it secret for now while Nick comes to terms with his sexuality. However, with Charlie’s pal Isaac seeing the duo’s first kiss, he becomes worried that their secret will soon be out.

Did Charlie and Nick get together in Heartstopper season 1?

Olivia Colman plays Nick's mum in Heartstopper. (Netflix)
Olivia Colman plays Nick's mum in Heartstopper. (Netflix)

By episode five, Tao and Ellie have formed a pretty close friendship and Nick is still figuring things out in his head. As a result, he’s agreed to go on a date with popular high school girl Imogen (Rhea Norwood) despite already agreeing to go to Charlie’s birthday party at the same time. After a chat with his mum (Olivia Colman), Nick decides to follow his heart and go and see Charlie instead.

Not long after, he begins to question his feelings once more when a viewing of the Pirates of the Caribbean with his mum reignites feelings for its stars Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley. Is he queer?

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As he unpacks his identity, Nick arranges a double date with Tara and Darcy where he reveals his relationship with Charlie. Meanwhile, the latter have made their relationship Instagram-official but are hurt at unexpected homophobic comments following the reveal.

Darcy (Kizzy ​​Edgell) and Tara (​​Corinna Brown) in Heartstopper (Netflix).
Darcy (Kizzy ​​Edgell) and Tara (​​Corinna Brown) in Heartstopper (Netflix).

Things come to a head in the show’s penultimate episode.

With their secret relationship taking its toll, Nick gets into a fight with the local high-school rich-kid bully Harry (Cormac Hyde-Corrin) who’s been picking on Charlie, while Tao does the same to vent some of his anger for Charlie hiding his new boyfriend from him.

With chaos seemingly all around, a distraught and guilty-feeling Nick believes the only way forward is to end his relationship with Charlie.

By Heartstopper’s eighth and final season one episode, it’s sports day at Charlie and Nick’s high school and reconciliation is in the air. After fixing his friendship with Tao, Charlie ditches a rugby game to make up with Nick and the pair decide to continue their relationship only this time, publicly.

The show’s first season culminates in an emotional moment where Nick finally comes out to his mother, telling her that he is bisexual.

Is there a Heartstopper season 2 trailer?

While there isn't a full trailer for Heartstopper's new slew of episodes just yet, Netflix has released a teaser that reveals season two's debut date. Watch it below.

Heartstopper season two starts on Netflix on Thursday, 3 August.