string(4) "home"
Nick and Charlie from Hearstopper

All of the ways Heartstopper season two is different from the books

My king Isaac doesn’t exist in the books!


Heartstopper season two dropped on Netflix last week and people are already just as obsessed with Nick and Charlie’s story as they were with season one.

The series, adapted from Alice Oseman’s graphic novels of the same name, stays pretty close to the original plot of the books seeing the characters go off on the Higgs/Truham Paris trip. But there definitely are some differences between the plot and characters of the series and the original books. Mainly, the absolute king Isaac is a character made up for the series and isn’t in the books.

Here’s a rundown of all the ways season two of Heartstopper on Netflix is different to the graphic novels.

Isaac’s subplot doesn’t exist in the books

Heartstopper character Isaac with a pile of books

Book-loving king Isaac isn’t a character in the books and was made up for the show. In season two, we see more of Isaac’s story develop as he navigates discovering his asexuality. But with Isaac’s character made up for the show, the original books do not feature this subplot.

Instead, the Heartstopper books feature another friend of Charlie’s, Aled, who reveals to Charlie that he has a boyfriend while they’re on the Paris trip. Isaac is based on the character of Aled who is actually one of the protagonist in another book by Alice Oseman, Radio Silence.

Imogen isn’t in the books either

Speaking of characters not in the books, everyone’s favourite ally from the series is also a made up character for the show. We see more into Imogen’s character in season two as Nick comes out to her and she has relationship drama with Ben.

This also means that her relationship with Ben isn’t explored, another character whose role is significantly smaller in the books. Although it has been revealed that Ben won’t be returning for season three, in the books Ben pretty much disappears after the first book when he breaks things off with Charlie. This also means the book doesn’t feature the scene of Charlie having a go at him that’s in the show.

Elle stays at Higgs and doesn’t go to art school

This is a big change from the books as Elle’s decision to leave Higgs creates drama for Tao and Elle’s relationship.

Charlie has a little brother called Oliver in the books

Whilst Charlie’s sister Tori gets more screen time in season two, one of the more controversial changes from the graphic novels is that Charlie’s younger brother Oliver Spring, is missing from the show.

Oliver was also missing from the first season. Addressing this on Insta, Alice Oseman said: “Oliver has little to no plot significance other than being adorable, and hiring a young child actor has a lot of difficulties and challenges! Less Oliver means more screen time for other characters.”

Nick and Charlie don’t meet up with Nick’s dad in Paris

A big theme of season two is about Nick’s relationship with his dad. In the show, Nick and Charlie sneak off to meet up with Nick’s French dad while they’re in Paris. The meeting gets called short as his dad gets called away but in the books, it’s much more brutal as his dad doesn’t agree to meet up with him at all.

The prom doesn’t happen in the books

In the last episode of the Netflix show, all of the characters dress up and go to the end of year Truham-Higgs prom that they spent the previous few episodes preparing for. But the prom doesn’t happen in the book and it actually ends quite soon after they get back from the Paris trip. Instead of the prom, the graphic novel ends with Nick googling “eating disorders” after he becomes worried about Charlie, a scene that is also featured in the show.

Likewise, the end-of-exams bonfire party that features in episode two also doesn’t happen in the books.

Darcy’s parents storyline is new to the show

Darcy from heartstopper with ice cream

Towards the end of season two, Darcy’s relationship with her parents became a big focus with her running away from home after an argument with her mum just before the prom. But this storyline isn’t prominent in the book and Darcy’s personal life as a whole is shown less.

The biggest view into Darcy’s relationship with her parents is in the fourth book when Tara mentions to Nick that Darcy’s family “are horrible people.” But it isn’t mentioned again or explored beyond this in the book.

James is a much bigger character in the show

Heartstopper season two also saw the introduction of a new character James. James is another Truham student who befriends and tries to kiss Isaac in Paris. He’s also accused of giving Charlie a hickey before Nick and Charlie came out as being together.

But in the books, James is not a central character and only appears as the person Charlie refuses to kiss during a game of truth or dare.

Elle and Tao’s relationship plays out differently in the books

Season two explores Tao and Elle’s relationship in detail from the start. In the show, they both have had a crush on each other since the first season but decide to just remain friends after an awkward first date. But in Paris they decide to get together properly.

However, in the book their romance happens much later only becoming a love story on the Paris trip. This means a lot of the early scenes between Tao and Elle were made up for the show including their cinema date.

Both seasons of Heartstopper are available to watch on Netflix now. For all the latest Netflix news, drops and memes like The Holy Church of Netflix on Facebook.

Featured images via Netflix.

Related stories recommended by this writer:

From Taylor Swift to The 1975: A roundup of the Heartstopper season two soundtrack

Every single book Isaac reads in Heartstopper season two and the meaning behind them