Peaky Blinders' Story Will Continue Into World War II And Beyond

If you thought you had a handle on where exactly in history that the Birmingham-set gangster series "Peaky Blinders" would finally call it quits, think again. This comes directly by order of the Peaky Blinders themselves — or, rather, series creator Steven Knight. The "Locke" and "Spencer" writer has previously made his intentions known for the Cillian Murphy-led crime drama to come to an end upon the outset of World War II. 

So far, the series has documented Tommy Shelby's (Murphy) rise to the top of London's violent family of gangs while also balancing his struggles with PTSD, stemming from his brutal experiences in World War I as a tunneler. Through Tommy and his far less emotionally buttoned-up brother, Arthur (Paul Anderson), much of the series has overtly dealt with the horrors of war and how taking a life (or many) changes a person. 

Thematically, it made sense that "Peaky Blinders" would take us from the aftermath of one World War to the beginning of the next, fated to leave irreparable scars on a whole new generation. However, just like the original hopes to end "Peaky Blinders" with seven total seasons, plans have once again changed. According to Knight, fans can expect to witness the Shelby family grapple with the beginning, and possibly even the aftermath, of World War II. In an interview with Empire, Knight spilled some details about the upcoming sixth season:

"It was always Britain between the wars — how the lesson from one war was not learned and was repeated. It's also the end of empire: we enter the Second World War and by the end of it, there is no empire, really. But I ... have revised the scope of what it is. It will now go into and beyond the Second World War. Because I just think the energy that is out there in the world for this, I want to keep it going, and I want to see how this can progress beyond that."

Those who know their history will know that, unlike the continental United States, Britain witnessed the ravages of war firsthand in their own backyard. It's hard to imagine the petty in-fighting between Birmingham gangs amounting to much in the midst of the Blitz, but that's likely why last season introduced the threat of villainous fascist Oswald Mosley (Sam Claflin). That's called thinking ahead!

"The End of the Beginning"

Steven Knight goes on to lay out his writing process in figuring out exactly how to bring "Peaky Blinders" in for a landing. Thrillingly, it has already been announced that the story will not be ending with this final season. A feature film is in the works, scheduled to start production in 2023. That means fans can sit back and enjoy the journey that the upcoming sixth season takes us on, without worry that we'll never get to see these characters again. (Well, some of them are likely fated to die tragic and painful deaths. That's just the name of the game. But besides that, I mean!) Knight refers to season 6 (or series 6, as the proper folks across the pond call it) as "the end of the beginning."

As you may have gathered by now, Knight isn't a fan of pre-planning every step of the series ahead of time, preferring instead to let the story take him along its winding path. According to Knight, "I don't know what's gonna happen until I get to writing. The way I tend to work is not to plan, and I think if I did plan, I wouldn't be able to do it. Just sit at the keyboard and if you know the characters well enough, let 'em loose and see what they say to each other. Let the dialogue guide the plot."

Sort of sounds a little bit like Tommy Shelby, known for playing fast and loose with all his grand ambitions and pulling off several last-minute escapes, eh? The final ending of "Peaky Blinders" might be a long ways off, but season 6 is set to premiere in early 2022.