Release Date, Trailer, Cast & Everything We Know

The six-episode Paramount miniseries Waco, which premiered on January 24, 2018, examined the 51-day standoff between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), and the Branch Davidians in Waco, Texas. It looked at the tragedy both before and during the standoff, from a range of perspectives from people closely connected to the two sides of the conflict. However, what followed after the events of the Waco siege was nothing less than a tragedy itself, and it would’ve been unfair to leave it out of the series. Paramount+ ordered a sequel series of Waco in April 2022 to present the two-month siege’s repercussions that are equally important to this cautionary tale. Waco: The Aftermath (previously titled American Tragedies: Waco – The Trials) will examine the incidents and the unfair justice administered to the Branch Davidians who survived. It takes place after the terrible incidents that stoked the burgeoning “Patriot” movement and gave rise to the Oklahoma City terrorist attack.


Here is everything we know so far about this necessary sequel. Watch the trailer, meet the returning and new cast, and refresh your memory with what happened last in the series before the sequel’s premiere!

Image via Showtime

Related:Waco Review: Taylor Kitsch Will Make You Want to Join a Cult

What’s the Release Date of Waco: The Aftermath?

Waco: The Aftermath is set to begin airing weekly from April 16, 2023, on Showtime at 10 p.m. ET/PT. The series was originally scheduled to run on Paramount+, but with the announcement that the two networks would be merging, it was switched to Showtime. For those with a Showtime streaming account, Waco: The Aftermath will be available to stream two days earlier, starting April 14, 2023. The series will have a total of five episodes. The original Waco series is available to stream on Showtime and Paramount+, in case you’d like to catch up before the sequel. And once the new series premieres, you’ll be able to watch it by clicking the button below:

Watch on Showtime

Watch the Trailer for Waco: The Aftermath

Showtime dropped a 1-minute first-look trailer for Waco: The Aftermath on February 22, 2023, on its official YouTube channel. The teaser opened with Taylor Kitsch‘s David Koresh addressing a crowd as the head of the Branch Davidians. You can watch the first-look teaser below:

Showtime then dropped an official trailer for Waco: The Aftermath on February 28, 2023, which coincides with the 30th anniversary of the tragic events at Mt. Carmel that began on February 28, 1993. The two-minute trailer immediately gained traction on Showtime’s official YouTube Channel. Watch the trailer below:

The trailer begins on a somber note as Gary Noesner, played by Michael Shannon, talks about the rising anger in America that puts the nation at risk of civil war. As people who have little faith in the American government and judicial system protest on the streets, the trailer continues to show glimpses of an explosion and makes clues about further incidents. The trailer ends explosively with the last clip showing a guy loading a truck with bombs.

What Happened Last in Waco?

In the climactic final episode of Waco, the FBI used infrared scanning to find the Davidians and then released CS gas right into the vault where Koresh had relocated everyone. A gas chamber is created inside the vault when the door is permanently closed, sealing the fate of all Davidians inside. The 51-day siege comes to a horrifying end when the 76 Davidians who were still inside the burning property, including David Koresh and 25 children, die from smoke inhalation or mercy killings. Fans eventually learn how Tony Prince and the FBI portrayed the events as a mass suicide, and Gary Noesner and many more families were left to come to terms with the tragic circumstances. The focus of Waco: The Aftermath will be on the aftereffects of the Waco siege and the growing patriot movement resulting from the infamous disaster.

RELATED: ‘Waco: American Apocalypse’: Netflix Announces its Next True Crime Docuseries

Who’s In the Cast of Waco: The Aftermath?

Given that Waco: The Aftermath is filmed as a sequel, many cast members from the original Waco miniseries will return to continue the story of this historical siege. The star of the show, Michael Shannon will return as Gary Noesner. He is known for his work in films like Nocturnal Animals (2016), 99 Homes (2014), and Revolutionary Road (2008). He recently appeared in the films Bullet Train (2022), Amsterdam (2022), and A Little White Lie (2022). Shannon is also set to return to the DCU with the upcoming film The Flash. Apart from him, other characters returning from the original miniseries include John Leguizamo as Jacob Vazquez, Shea Whigham as Mitch Decker, and Annika Marks as Kathy Schroeder.

New cast members set to appear in Waco: The Aftermath includes David Costabile as Judge Smith, the judge presiding over the trial, J. Smith Cameron as Lois Roden, Giovanni Ribisi as Dan Cogdell, John Hoogenakker as Clive Doyle, Keean Johnson as Vernon Howell, and Abbey Lee as Carol Howe. They will be joined by Michael Vincent Berry as George Roden, Gary Cole as Gordon Novel, Michael Luwoye as Livingstone Fagan, Kali Rocha as Ruth Riddle, Sasheer Zamata as Angie Graham, and Nicholas Kolev as Paul Fatta.

Who’s Making Waco: The Aftermath?

All six episodes of Waco: The Aftermath will be directed by series creators Drew Dowdle and John Erick Dowdle, who also created Waco. They also serve as the executive producers alongside Taylor Kitsch, Andrew Gettens, Lauren MacKenzie, and Michael Shannon. David Glasser, David Hutkin, Bob Yari, and Ron Burkle also join the series as producers alongside Gary Barber. Todd McMullen serves as the cinematographer and Denise Hudson is the supervising art director. In the design department, Daniel B. Clancy is credited for production design and Jayna Mansbridge for costume design.

What’s the Plot of Waco: The Aftermath?

Waco: The Aftermath is expected to resemble a courtroom drama, with the surviving Branch Davidian cult members on trial for their crimes. Flashbacks will be used in the series to explore the beginnings of David Koresh and the Branch Davidian sect, tying it to the first season of Waco. It aims to highlight the domestic terrorism that emerged as a result of the siege and the trials that followed. The series’ plot will also center on the rise of the American militia movement, which presages the January 6, 2021 storming of the U.S. Capitol, with a particular emphasis on the life of domestic terrorist Timothy McVeigh, who is best known for planning the bombing of the Oklahoma City Federal Building in April 1995, which resulted in 168 deaths and 680 injuries.

Here’s Showtime’s full synopsis for Waco: The Aftermath:

Five-part drama series portraying the searing aftermath of the disastrous FBI 1993 standoff at the Branch Davidian compound – an event that galvanized American militia movements and helped radicalize Timothy McVeigh, Terry Nichols and many others.

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