Wednesday, 26 April 2017

The CW 2017-18 Season: News & Updates

Gregory's Thoughts:

Well... The CW has had an interesting season.
UPDATE 1: 08/05/2017

No Tomorrow and Frequency have been officially cancelled.

UPDATE 2: 10/05/2017

Dynasty will return to airwaves next season on The CW. Military drama Valor has also received a series order making it the second military themed drama ordered for next season (after NBC's For God and Country). The CW has also renewed The Originals and iZombie in addition to giving series orders to Black Lightning and comedy Life Sentence.

After finding success with Greg Berlanti has is array of DC comics based superhero adventure series, ratings for Arrow and The Flash stumbled. Supergirl, which moved from CBS to The CW unsurprisingly posted lower ratings than its run on the former network but has managed to stay afloat and is a good addition to The CW's schedule due to brand recognition. Legends of Tomorrow has been extremely stable (somewhat surprisingly). Other CW heavyweights including the long-running Supernatural and The 100 which has amassed a large online cult following will return next season. The CW comedy series: Jane The Virgin and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend have been renewed but I doubt both shows will remain on the network for long. While both shows have received critical acclaim and a sizeable fanbase, they have failed to turn the acclaim into viewers. However, it is important to note this is not a reflection of the show's quality, only the poor taste of American TV viewers (shade intended). New additions No Tomorrow (another comedy which did not live up to the acclaim of Jane The Virgin or Crazy Ex-Girlfriend) and Frequency will not return after failing to receive any type of episodic back order whilst Riverdale has been renewed, it's low ratings and diminished buzz may be a problem in the long term.

Next Season...

Have American audiences grown tired of superheroes? I doubt it. The CW will probably keep it's superhero shows on the air at least for the next two-three seasons based on their age and production costs. With more in the pipeline (Black Lightning) hopefully the new addition(s) will electrify The CW's slate before the ratings downturn becomes a serious problem. DC superheroes have become a major part of The CW's brand and it is currently the only network which has successfully developed and aired multiple superhero shows during the current era of superheroes.

Should the The CW continue trying to push comedies? I think they should. Jane The Virgin is undoubtedly one of the best comedies on the air at the moment and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is extremely creative and quirky. One of the reasons why these shows still have support from The CW is their awards recognition which is not necessarily a problem (who doesn't want to aim big?!). The CW currently have two female-led comedies: Life Sentence (starring Lucy Hale) about a woman who is mistakenly diagnosed with terminal cancer and Insatiable (starring Debby Ryan) about a beauty pageant coach who takes a vengeful bullied teenager under his wing in development, one of which is likely to receive a series order...

2017 Pilots Preview

Black Lightning - based on the DC comics character of the same name. The show could bring some much needed diversity too the network if ordered to series. It features a mostly African-American cast and based on the script, it could become the most political and socially conscious show on The CW. Interestingly, the pilot script highlights the Pierce family in the same way the Lyons are the centrepiece of Empire. The pilot focuses on Jefferson Pierce's two daughters: Jennifer and Anissa which is somewhat unsurprising given The CW's track record. Based on the network's track record with producing DC comics superhero themed dramas, Black Lightning seems like a sure bet for a series order.

Life Sentence - despite none of their current hour-long comedies gaining a large number of viewers, Jane The Virgin and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend are both critically acclaimed. Both also have quite outlandish plots and strong female lead characters and Life Sentence is no exception. The cancer theme may put off some viewers (in fact I don't think there has ever been a hugely successful network show primarily about cancer) though Life Sentence is actually about Lucy Hale's character who discovers she does not have terminal cancer which makes for some very awkward situations.

Dynasty - I'm not a big fan of reboots and the Dynasty reboot seems a bit lifeless. There's not much to say which you don't already know...

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