As always, the rumors and speculation surrounding the Duggars in the lead-up to the return of Counting On are off the proverbial chain.
Will Josiah's second try at courtship last? Will Jessa and Ben adopt or get pregnant? Will Josh (or Jill) ever be seen on camera again?
Will Joy-Anna finally put the shotgun wedding rumors to rest by virtue of having her baby nine months or more after she tied the knot?
These questions and more will be answered in the upcoming season of Counting On, starting Monday, February 26 on the TLC network.
Here's a look at some storylines we expect to see on the always-controversial reality hit, along with some we certainly hope to.
Center of Attention
The network's first promotional image for the new season speaks volumes in terms of who's featured and who's absent. Derick Dillard is persona non grata, and it looks like wife Jill will be MIA with him. With just weeks to go before welcoming her first child, it looks like Joy-Anna will get the bulk of the screen time.
Joy's Bundle of Joy
Joy is set to give birth any day now. (The Duggars have kept her due date a secret, a move that's made fans suspect she got pregnant out of wedlock.) While viewers might have to wait until next season to see her child enter the world, the bulk of her pregnancy will likely be featured in the upcoming string of new episodes.
From Tim Tebow to Lawson Bates and Jonathan Hartono, and from Jacob Wilson to Caleb Williams, eldest daughter Jana has been linked to many available men over the years. Yet none of these courtship rumors have ever come to fruition. Will this be the year for the fair Cinderella Duggar? Or will we be treated to more gripping footage of Jana working in the garden and slaving away taking care of Anna and Josh’s brood?
A Bun in Jinger's Oven
Joy's not the only one with a baby on the way! Jinger Duggar is expecting her first child sometime in 2018. The Counting On production schedule usually puts the show 2-3 months behind, so expect to see her share her big news late in the season.
Speaking of the Vuolos...
Of course, fans are already wondering if we'll be seeing much of Jinger at all this season. She and husband Jeremy Vuolo live in Laredo, Texas, and between his work as a minister and her pregnancy, they may not have the opportunity to travel to Arkansas to spend time with her family very often.
A Kid For Kendra
Joseph Duggar and his wife, Kendra Caldwell, are soon to welcome their first child, as well. In the past, Counting On has struggled to find an entire season's worth of storylines. We don't think that will be an issue this time around, especially since...
Jill Might Be Expecting, Too!
Yes, there are rumors that Jill Duggar also has a baby on the way. However, she has yet to confirm anything, so don't be surprised if that's not the case. And even if Jill really is expecting, we might not see much of her pregnancy...
Derick and the rest of the Dillard clan might not appear on Counting On at all this season. Derick was fired by TLC after he launched a transphobic tirade against fellow network star Jazz Jennings on Twitter. To the pit of misery!
One of the big stories of this off-season has been the rebellion against the family's dress code led by Jinger Duggar. Jinger and some of her sisters have tossed aside their parents' rule that women should only wear long skirts. It remains to be seen if the sisters will wear pants on camera, or if Jim Bob's notion that knees are prayin', not displayin' will reign supreme on TV.
Duggar Divorce Drama
Divorce is strictly forbidden in the Duggars' religion. But rebellious Amy Duggar isn't big on following the rules. Sources indicate that Amy may be headed for a divorce from her husband, Dillon King. If that's the case, you can bet she'll end up clashing with her uncle Jim Bob, and the drama will likely make its way onto Counting On.
A Courtship For Josiah!
Just this week, it was revealed that Josiah Duggar is courting Lauren Swanson. It's the 21-year-old's second courtship. (He courted Marjorie Jackson in 2015, but the relationship fizzled.) He hopes this one will result in marriage, and fans hope to see some of the courtship on Counting On.
Jim Bob and Michelle on Trial
When Counting On premiered, Jim Bob and Michelle promised thay'd play a minor role in the series. Obviously, that didn't last long. Now they're at centerstage, in part because of recent controversies over their parenting. Those who watch the family social media accounts closely have accused the couple of ignoring their younger kids and focusing too much on the family media empire. Don't be surprised if they address that subject on the show this season.
The Return of Josh?
For years now, Duggar fans have feared and anticipated the television return of the Duggars' disgraced oldest son, Josh. Lately, he's been appearing on his parents' social media pages more often, but we don't think they would be foolish enough to re-introduce him to Counting On viewers just yet.
For years now, Jessa Duggar and Ben Seewald have considered the possibility of adoption. Many fans believe that we'll see them explore that option on the show this season. Of course, with two very young children at home, the Seewalds already have their hands full.
Will John David Leave the Nest?
Obviously, fans are hoping that this is the season in which Jana will finally find Mr. Right. But it's important to remember that her twin, John David, is just as single. Many viewers are hoping the show will focus a bit more on his story this season.
Birthday Celebrations Galore
The Duggars often use the show to manage their carefully cultivated public image. Recently, they were accused of forgetting both Jordyn and Joseph's birthdays. So you can expect to see them lavishing attenton on their children who celebrated birthdays during filming this year,
Homemaking With Joy
Similarly, Joy was recently criticized for moving her family into a messy house that some fans believe is unsafe for children. So you can expect to see Joy and husband Austin Forsyth living in an immaculate and perfectly maintained home this season.
Will Anna Speak Out?
As we've said, it's unlikely that Josh will return to the show anytime soon. But that doesn't mean his family will be ignored completely. Expect to see more of Josh's beleaguered wife, Anna Duggar. And expect her to plead for sympathy from fans who have seem to have no interest in forgetting about her husband's past indiscretions. As much as the Josh scandals remain an embarrassment to his family, the Duggars would probably rather talk about that then...
The Family Feud
Reports of Jim Bob butting heads with his sons-in-law over matters of religious doctrine have been circulating for several months. Counting On almost certainly won't address these conflicts directly. But eagle-eyed fans may pick up on signs that not all is well in Tontitown. For example, if Jeremy and Ben are featured in fewer scenes this season, that may be by order from Jim Bob.