People captivated by the lifestyle of people with dwarfism love following the story of “7 Little Johnstons.” They’re a family, such as the cast members of the sister TLC show, “Little People, Big World,” and have a similar number of family members. However, their dynamic has a twist; mom Amber and dad Trent have two biological children, Elizabeth and Jonah, and three adopted ones, Alex, Anna and Emma from different parts of the world. Fans can continue following their adventures because TLC renewed the show in early 2023.
The show premieres in the second quartal of 2023
Viewers waited roughly four months after the 10-episode-long season 12 wrapped up on 18 October 2022, to hear news about the upcoming one. On 27 February 2023, TLC announced the first episode of the 13th season would air on 18 April 2023, and follow relationships and major life events in the family.
Although vague, those who followed the previous season can guess what producers refer to. It will include one family member unexpectedly moving back home, and others moving in with their significant others, purchasing their dream home, and revisiting the foreign temporary family member from season eight.
Season 12 was enjoyable
Season 11 attracted much attention for featuring crazier-than-usual life events, and had high ratings, nearly one million viewers for each episode. Although they declined by 100,000 to 200,000 viewers per episode in the 12th season aired the same year, fans were still eager to see what happened to the Johnstons.
Jonah, the eldest sibling, had the most unexpected chain of events happen to him. He introduced his girlfriend, Ashley, in a season 8 episode aired in January 2021. Then, throughout the following four seasons, viewers saw him move out of the family home, celebrate his freedom, enjoy his car mechanic job, then surprisingly celebrate a bit too much. While away from home, he confessed that he tried a legal but not FDA-regulated drug, Delta 8, a strain of synthetic marijuana. That isn’t usually the problem – it’s mild, doesn’t cause a powerful ‘high’ feeling, and is often consumed as gummies, vapes, and oil. However, Jonah reacted badly to the substance; he felt disoriented, his mind was foggy, and his speech was slurred. After he sobered up enough to send his mom a screenshot of a location pinned on a map, Amber and Trent rescued him, and he promised not to try it again.
Tonight @ 9pm pic.twitter.com/5KJvQhZVGe
— 7 little Johnstons (@team7lj) August 30, 2022
Viewers also saw Alex and Emma attending high school and living at home. The family temporarily interacts with the eighth member, an exchange student from Finland named Joose Jeskanen, whom they welcomed into their home in season 10. Although Amber revealed that Joose left the US by January 2022, season 13 spoilers suggest that he’ll return, or that the family will visit him. Emma and Anna were single in the 12th season, although a man tried to buy Anna a drink and hit on her. In contrast, Elizabeth “Liz” and her boyfriend Brice Bolden have moved in together after dating since April 2019, and may get engaged in the next season.
Is Alex Johnston returning in season 13?
Viewers love the creativity Alex Johnston – the adopted child from Seoul, South Korea, and the youngest member – brings to the mix. However, whoever followed the family closely knew that he was diagnosed with central sleep and obstructive apnea in 2017. Mom and dad explained that he had problems sleeping due to brain compression, one of the health issues dwarfism can cause.
Consequently, Alex had to have his adenoids and tonsils removed because the physiology of people with achondroplasia differs from those with average stature. According to the doctors, the bone in the area where his spinal cord and brain stem meet is exceptionally tight, and causes him much discomfort. Thus, he underwent several operations to ease the pain, and remove the numbness in his hands and feet.
None of this would be alarming if it weren’t for the rumors that Alex Johnston passed away in August 2022. Even worse, fans posted comments such as ‘Americans saying Alex is dead. Tell us!’ and received no response from family members on social media. Thankfully, this was a hoax, and viewers could see him work on his Etsy shop, AlexPaperCo, begin to drive, and have his wisdom teeth removed in early season 12. Since the next season is about to air, he’s likely already filmed his segments in 2022. Moreover, the previews show that Alex has a new girlfriend, and is traveling to Ohio to celebrate a birthday, although it’s unclear whose. Thus, Alex Johnston’s health’s improved, he’s in good spirits and will be back on TV.
Ratings are on the upswing
In contrast to mid-2021, when low ratings could get the show canceled, the fear was absent in late 2022. A slew of captivating events combined with a noticeable rating growth between the first and the last episodes almost guaranteed a new season, yet TLC kept fans on thin ice for months. Luckily, this is standard practice for the production company; they keep the decision a secret until a few months before the premiere, and simultaneously announce renewals of several shows. Moreover, they release a “first look” video some days before the season airs, just to generate excitement. We can expect one for “7 Little Johnstons” in March 2023, with segments dedicated to each family member who has something distinct happening in their life.
The family is eager to film more
Throughout the years, the Johnstons have clarified that the TLC filming crew had to adjust to their busy, fast-paced lifestyle, rather than them getting used to being in front of the camera. Amber saidd that none of the family members thought they had separate lives off-camera at the end of a long day, and thus staying true to themselves felt seamless. Moreover, they effortlessly transitioned to documenting their life during the COVID-19 pandemic, proving their adaptability. Also, besides feeling comfortable baring their souls for the world to see, the Johnstons felt that they were relatable and that their lives didn’t revolve around being little people.
Furthermore, they recently started sharing more of their lives. For example, Emma became the ‘queen of TikTok,’ according to her mom, and was excited to post behind-the-scenes videos, skits, and updates. Nearly all family members have a TikTok account, including Amber, and from somewhat to very active Instagram profiles. Amber also promoted her 44lb or 20kg weight loss in 2021, motivating her viewers to start a health improvement journey for the last three years, and seems enthusiastic to continue doing so.