The Rookie Season 6: Potential Release, Cast, and Everything We Know

By Sam Hargrave Posted:
The Rookie Nathan Fillion

The Rookie has officially been renewed for Season 6 at ABC - here's everything we know so far about the release, story, cast, and more.

Across five seasons, ABC has found great success with its LAPD procedural drama The Rookie, which stars Nathan Fillion as Officer John Nolan as he goes from an older-than-average rookie to training officer.

When Will The Rookie Season 6 Release?

The Rookie, John Nolan

The Rookie network ABC already revealed that its fall 2023 schedule will swerve scripted content altogether due to the ongoing writer and actor strikes, instead opting to air unscripted shows and save the rest for the mid-season.

Season 6 has still yet to actually begin filming, with the ongoing writer and actor strikes seemingly interfering with reported plans to get underway in late June.

Creator Alexi Hawley has already shut down concerns that star Nathan Fillion joining Superman: Legacy - which plans to shoot in January - could delay Season 6 with a definitive "Nope!" in response to a speculative TV Line article.

Aside from the COVID-plagued Season 3, every other season of The Rookie has premiered in September or October. But due to the ongoing strikes, fans will be kept waiting until 2024 before Season 6 releases.

Looking at Season 5, the premiere came in September 2022 around three months after production seemingly began - based on an Instagram reel posted by Tim Bradford actor Eric Winter on June 21, 2022.

If the strike were to come to an end in the next few months, The Rookie Season 6 could arrive for the mid-season in early 2024. However, for now, there are no signs of either the writer or actor strikes closing out with a deal anytime soon.

Who Will Return in The Rookie Season 6?

The Rookie Cast

It appears the full cast of The Rookie will be back for Season 6, including John Nolan actor Nathan Fillion who confirmed his return on Instagram as he celebrated the renewal of the ABC procedural drama.

Lucy Chen actress Melissa O'Neill has also confirmed her comeback on Instagram, sharing her excitement to see what her character and "all of The Rookie crew get up to during Season 6!"

One cast member whose fate remains up in the air is Tru Valentino's Aaron Thorsen, who ended Season 5 in critical condition after being shot, with the next season set to reveal whether the LAPD rookie will live or die.

The full list of cast members currently expected to return for The Rookie Season 6 can be seen below:

  • Nathan Fillion - John Nolan
  • Melissa O’Neil - Lucy Chen
  • Eric Winter - Tim Bradford
  • Alyssa Diaz - Angela Lopez
  • Mekia Cox - Nyla Harper
  • Richard T. Jones - Wade Grey
  • Lisseth Chavez - Celina Juarez
  • Tru Valentino - Aaron Thorsen
  • Jenna Dewan - Bailey Nune
  • Shawn Ashmore - Wesley Evers

What Will Happen in The Rookie Season 6?

The Rookie Season 5 Finale

The Rookie Season 5 finale set up a sinister plot to be explored in Season 6 as a group of coordinated attacks took place against the squad. Although Luke Moran was arrested for the attacks, John Nolan was quickly convinced the man in question was not capable of pulling off such a plan.

Season 6 appears placed to introduce a new villain, played by Kristian Bruun, who had hired Luke and masterminded the attacks. Only time will tell what the unnamed villain has planned for the city, but his speech at the end of the Season 5 finale indicated he has a very specific target in mind:

"Weaponizing Luke Moran against the LAPD has driven every cop in the city away from our target. And by the time they realize the damage we've done, we'll be long gone."

Another major mystery going into Season 6 comes in the fate of Aaron Thorsen after he and Celina Juarez were attacked by a group of gunmen. While his initial surgery appeared successful, the final minutes of the episode raised alarm as a code blue was called from his hospital room, leaving his status up in the air.

On a more positive front, The Rookie may also have a wedding on the cards as John Nolan and Bailey Nunes have now been together since Season 4 and engaged since early in the latest season. Perhaps it may finally be time for the pair to tie the knot in the midst of the squad's latest troubles.

Does The Rookie Have a Spin-Off?

The Rookie FEDs

The Rookie: Feds debuted in 2022 as the first spin-off to the procedural drama, with the series focussing on the oldest rookie ever to enter the FBI Academy, steering away from the LAPD focus of the flagship show.

The 22-episode first season of Feds ended in May 2023, and while a Season 2 renewal has yet to be confirmed, TVLine revealed ABC still has a contractual hold on the series' primary cast ahead of a potential renewal.

The Hollywood Reporter stated that as of June 2023, The Rookie: Feds remained in play, although a decision on a Season 2 renewal was seemingly still to be taken.

The Rookie Season 6 has yet to set an official release date.