That '90s Show boss teases Leia's love triangle might not be over

That '90s Show. (L to R) Mace Coronel as Jay, Callie Haverda as Leia in episode 207 of That '90s Show. Cr. Patrick Wymore/Netflix © 2024
That '90s Show. (L to R) Mace Coronel as Jay, Callie Haverda as Leia in episode 207 of That '90s Show. Cr. Patrick Wymore/Netflix © 2024 /

One last spoiler warning for That '90s Show part 2 before we dive in...

When we last left Leia and her friends in That '90s Show's first season, she and Nate shared a moment that could have been disastrous... and it was in part 2. The secret that they nearly kissed comes out when she returns to Point Place for the summer, and their respective significant others aren't too pleased to learn the truth.

Leia and Nate maintain that there's nothing between them and attempt to save their relationships. Even though Leia and Jay are able to repair their relationship and stay together, Nate and Nikki break up — over more than just the kiss that almost happened. However, later on in part 2, the former couple starts hooking up again, has a pregnancy scare, and Nate wants Nikki back.

There's a lot still to come in That '90s Show when part 3 makes its premiere on Netflix later this fall, but showrunner Greg Mettler shared a bit of the inspiration behind the arc of part 2. In an interview with TV Line, Mettler revealed that before deciding on which couple would break up and which couple would stay together, the writers explored all of their options among the friend group.

There's still hope for Leia and Nate (well, maybe)

As it turns out, Mettler seemingly suggests that the door to a potential Leia and Nate coupling might not be completely closed! If you're a shipper of this particular pairing, that's good news. However, after the events of part 2 Leia and Jay appear to be solid, and now Nate has it bad for Nikki again. Don't hold your breath just yet, but the possibility could be on the table in the future.

Here's what Mettler told TV Line:

"We discuss every different combination of every character in the room, and that one came up. We wouldn’t have gone there at the end of Part 1 if we didn’t think there was something potentially there. Coming into Part 2, we wanted to do a lot of stories involving Leia’s coming of age, so we decided [not to pursue Leia and Nate] on purpose. But these ensemble sitcoms — look at Friends, look at That ’70s Show — tend to explore every different relationship, so all options remain open. You never know where we’re going to land."

Gregg Mettler, showrunner

As Mettler said, "We wouldn't have gone there" with Leia and Nate "if we didn't think there was something potentially there." That little love triangle plot twist at the end of season 1 was merely dipping a toe to test the waters and check how fans react to potential pairings. And because they didn't move forward with that one in part 2, that doesn't mean they can't or won't circle back.

The sitcom's showrunner also explained that rather than calling it quits on Leia and Jay, he and the writers wanted to spend more time on that relationship and its influence on Leia's growth, which brought them to the decision to break up Nate and Nikki. They made the correct decision, as breaking up Leia and Jay so soon would set an exhausting precedent later on down the line.

That '90s Show's predecessor truly did mix and match relationships among the core group of five teens, as Jackie dated all four of the male characters (later marrying Kelso) and Donna dated (and obviously married) Eric and had a little something with Hyde. Fez probably flirted with her at some point, too. Hopefully, the Netflix sequel spinoff will have enough time to do the same thing.

Stay tuned for more That '90s Show news and updates from Netflix Life!