Tag: the cw

The CW | 2018/2019 – Fantasy Schedule

Those are predictions based on feelings and The CW final schedule may end up very differently! It will be announced on Thursday. Stay tuned and until then, enjoy the read!

RENEWED

SUPERNATURAL | ARROW | THE FLASH | SUPERGIRL | THE 100 | JANE THE VIRGIN | LEGENDS OF TOMORROW | iZOMBIE | CRAZY EX-GIRLFRIEND | RIVERDALE | BLACK LIGHTNING | DYNASTY

ORDERED

CHARMED | ROSWELL | ALL AMERICAN | IN THE DARK | LEGACIES

CANCELLED

VALOR | LIFE SENTENCE

 

Is The CW still relevant in this day and age? Wouldn’t it be simpler for both CBS Television Studios & Warner Bros. Television -which co-own the network- to sell their shows directly to cable, Netflix and other streaming platforms? I mean, The CW is becoming Netflix-dependent and that can’t be good in the long run. Dynasty did terrible live numbers the whole year but it was still renewed because Netflix paid them a lot of money to get the international rights for it. Same goes for Riverdale that everybody outside the US think is a Netflix Original (and that’s how it’s presented, as they always do with their acquisitions).  Well, anyway, scheduling still matters for The CW as for the other nets, so let’s see what they could do with the new shows they picked up and the large number of DC Comics’ shows that are still on their air, even weakened Arrow, while they decided to re-open sunday night!

 

SUNDAY

CHARMED

SUPERNATURAL

At its peak, the original Charmed aired on sunday nights at 8pm. It would make sense to put it back there, especially since they need to make noise about their sunday re-opening. Charmed is the buzziest show they have and hopefully they won’t wait for midseason to launch it, as they surprisingly did with Riverdale and Black Lightning the past two years. The longest-running American live-action fantasy TV series aka Supernatural could also move there, it’s one of the two nights with monday where it hasn’t aired yet. I guess it would be another record of some sort. Also, Charmed & Supernarutal would make a strong pair.

 

MONDAY

SUPERGIRL

ARROW

I remember The CW president said one time that he would never all of the DC Comics’ shows at the same time. Well, I’m betting he will. While Supergirl should stay where it is, I’d paired it with Arrow and for a shortened seventh season, that could also be its last. It’s a though night and a though slot, I think they should wait for midseason to lauch something new there.

 

TUESDAY

THE FLASH

ALL-AMERICAN

The Flash is The CW’s strongest piece and wasting it on a show that is not new would be kinda dumb. So, here’s Greg Berlanti’s new high-school drama coming right after it on tuesday. Yeah, it would also have been cool to put it with Riverdale, which is also a high-school drama, but they can still do it later, if it survives.

 

WEDNESDAY

RIVERDALE

LEGACIES

Dynasty didn’t work at all behind Riverdale; Life Sentence did worse and had to be moved; then they replaced it with The Original‘s farewell season and it did surprisingly good. To the point when The CW probably regretted cancelling it. As a consequence, it would be logical to put the spin-off there. Legacies might not be as strong, but at least they would have given it the best chance!

 

THURSDAY

BLACK LIGHTNING

LEGENDS OF TOMORROW

Not a huge fan of this night to be honest but I kinda like the idea of having Black Lightning opening the night since it’s really family-oriented. Legends Of Tomorrow can air alongside since this terrible show still exists.

 

FRIDAY

DYNASTY

JANE THE VIRGIN

Friday night should stay a dumping ground, nothing new should be launched there. So here we go again with a mix of Dynasty, Jane The Virgin and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend back at some point. Not bold AT ALL but there’s just nothing else to do.

 

MIDSEASON

ROSWELL – It should be kept for midseason so they don’t launch both of their reboots at the same time. It could be paired with Riverdale if Legacies is limited.

CRAZY EX-GIRLFRIEND – So yeah, friday, maybe when Dynasty takes a break.

IN THE DARK – They could pair it with Supergirl on monday once Arrow is done… and probably send it to friday next year!

THE 100 & iZOMBIE – They’re basically summer shows at this point, or deep-spring shows. Let them be again.

Roswell (The CW) pilot preview: Back In Town

Written and executive produced by Carina Adly MacKenzie (The Originals). Based on 90s hit series & Roswell High book series by Melinda Metz. Also produced by Kevin Kelly Brown (Roswell, Flesh and bone, Seven Seconds), Lawrence Bender (Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill, Inglourious Basterds) Justin Falvey & Darryl Frank (Bull, The Americans, Falling Skies, Extant, Under The Dome). Directed by Julie Plec (The Vampire Diaries, The Originals, Kyle XY). For The CWWarner Bros. Television, Amblin Television & Bender Brown Productions. 60 pages. Network Revisions Draft. 1/12/18.

Description: After reluctantly returning to her tourist-trap hometown of Roswell, NM, Liz Ortecho, the daughter of undocumented immigrants, discovers a shocking truth about her teenage crush who is now a police officer: he’s an alien who has kept his unearthly abilities hidden his entire life. She protects his secret as the two reconnect and begin to investigate his origins, but when a violent attack and long-standing government cover-up point to a greater alien presence on Earth, the politics of fear and hatred threaten to expose him and destroy their deepening romance…

With Jeanine Mason (Grey’s Anatomy, Bunheads), Nathan Parsons (Once Upon A Time, The Originals, True Blood), Michael Vlamis, Lily Cowles (Braindead), Michael Trevino (The Vampire Diaries, Cane), Tyler Blackburn (Pretty Little Liars, Ravenswood), Heather Hemmens (If Loving You is Wrong, Hellcats), Trevor St John (Containment), Karan Oberoi (Notorious)…

   

As much as I despise this trend of rebooting everything for no good creative reason, some of them make sense and Roswell falls exactly in this category. We don’t NEED a Roswell reboot, per say. Even The CW doesn’t really need it. They’ll already have the Charmed one and we could argue one new reboot a year is already enough. BUT the thing is: Roswell was a good show 15 years ago, that never found the success it deserved. It only lasted 3 seasons and it never became a cult favorite like Dawson’s Creek, Buffy or other contemporaries. Giving the concept a second chance somehow is a desirable idea. And what this script is doing is kinda miraculous: it improves the original show. By making the characters slightly older, they transformed the fantasy teen drama into a more adult property that’s still relevant today. Yeah, we’re not into aliens today like we were in the 90s but among all those vampires and zombies, they’re almost like a breath of fresh air (from space)! And the subject of society feeding on the politics of fear and hatred obviously resonates with post-Trump America.

Kevin Kelly Brown, who was an executive producer on the original series, is the link that connects the two Roswell incarnations. Besides him, it’s a whole new producing team. Meaning no Jason Katims no more. He was the creator of the show and he did Friday Night Lights, Parenthood & Rise since then. It’s sad he’s not part of it, I’m pretty sure he would have been precious there. Even though the show is still based on the “Roswell High” book series, our characters are in their late twenties and don’t go to school anymore, except for the traditional 10 year high school reunion that happens the week-end Liz returns to her Roswell hometown. You want to know the reason why she left? It’s something that’s revealed step by step in the script but I’ll tell you the whole truth anyway since they drag the revelations for too long in my opinion: her sister Rosa died, killing two others in a drunken car accident while she was in high school. And Max was involved in her death -the details are kept under wraps for now- though he never told Liz about it. Pretty quickly after her arrival, people shoot up her father’s diner, fatally hitting her, and that’s when Max uses his alien powers to resurrect her. Now she knows the truth about him, their romance is back full force! When the reboot was ordered, the articles insisted a lot on “the immigration twist” of this version but the fact that Liz has had undocumented parents doesn’t play any role in the pilot. It’s just something that’s said. We’ll see if they plan on delving into it later. The parallel with the aliens’ own trajectory could be illuminating. By the way, I love the scenes between Liz and her father. They’re very emotional.

So Liz is not very different than the one we knew in the 90s, except she became a jaded biomedical researcher. Max is now a dedicated Roswell police officer and a natural born leader. His sister Isobel is married to a man she doesn’t love anymore; she wasn’t meant for small-town life, but she lives it with all the grace and enthusiasm she can muster. Michael is a troubled but brilliant young man, who survived a violent childhood and now is secretly driven to find a way to escape Earth and the humans who have failed him to return to a mysterious home he’s never known. Meanwhile, Maria, Liz’s fun, free-spirited former best friend and social media maven is oblivious to the realities of Roswell. And in this version, she’s not romantically involved with Michael and probably never will be for a very good reason! Michael is gay. And it’s not the only twist… He’s a man of many secrets: he’s in a hidden relationship with… Alex! Yeah, more precisely Sgt. Alex Manes, who returned home from the Middle East after experiencing his fair share of psychological and physical trauma. He aims to adhere to his father’s expectations, abandoning his dreams and the possibility of a future with the man he loves… Well, that’s how you make once a bit weak characters relevant! And let’s not forget Kyle Valentin, Liz’s other ex, the popular son of the town sheriff -a woman this time!- who questions his carefree outlook on life after learning the terrifying truth of his family’s legacy. Those are strong characters all around. They’re all in this period of life when you’re starting to understand who you really are but you’re not accomplished yet and it can be painful. Young adults will relate. And there’s this cliffhanger with a new UFO crashing in the desert, that’s exciting!

The new Roswell is actually a better Roswell; a promising pilot that manages to introduce strong characters while setting an atmosphere and launching multiple storylines without getting messy in the process. It’s probably one of the best things, if not THE best, that The CW will offer us next year. 

In The Dark (The CW) pilot preview: Blind Veronica Mars

Written and executive produced by Corinne Kingsbury (The Newsroom, Back in the Game). Also produced by Ben Stiller (Zoolander, Tropic Thunder, Dodgeball, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty), Jackie Cohn (Another Period) & Nicky Weinstock. Directed by Michael Showalter (The Big Sick, Love, Search Party, Wet Hot American Summer). For The CW, CBS Television Studios & Red Hour Films. 59 pages. Draft 1/22/18.

Description: Murphy, a flawed and irreverent young woman who just happens to be blind, is the only “witness” to the murder of her drug-dealing best friend. When the police dismiss her story, she sets out with her dog, Pretzel, to find the killer while also managing her colorful dating life and the job she hates at Breaking Blind- the guide dog school owned by her overprotective parents… 

With Perry Mattfeld (Shameless US), Austin Nichols (One Tree Hill, The Walking Dead, Bates Motel, Ray Donovan), Brooke Markham (Cassandra French’s Finishing School), Keston John (Blood & Oil), Derek Webster (Damages, Harry’s Law, NCIS New Orleans), Kathleen York (The Client List, Desperate Housewives, The West Wing)…

 

  

You’ll like if you already like: Veronica Mars, iZombie, Sue Thomas F.B. Eye

Likely timeslot: wherever there’s a slot available, it doesn’t matter much anyway

 

This is a **rolling my eyes** logline, probably the “best” one since… Jane The Virgin! Yes, never forget that before becoming a critical darling, the Gina Rodriguez-led show was considered as the dumbest thing ever based on the pitch during pilot season. Maybe In The Dark will follow the same path… I see you laughing! I’m batshit serious. The thing is, it’s a good script. Not a great one, a good one. And this alone is a good sign. Starting from where it starts, I mean… Plus, it’s coming at a time when one of the biggest hit of the past few years is about an autistic doctor. You know where I’m going. Not saying here that In The Dark will become as huge as The Good Doctor but it makes sense for The CW to try something like that, centered on a blind detective. She’s not exactly a detective, to be honest. But she’s about to become one of some sort. And a beautiful mess. Enough to shake a little bit the detective genre’s tired formula? Also, it comes from Ben Stiller as an executice producer and one of the hottest indie director out there right now Michael Showalter: other positive signs going for it.

How did they come with such an idea, you ask. There’s a story! It originated from the network and its social good program, CW Good, which last year began partnering with the Guide Dogs of America organization to sponsor litters of puppies to be trained as guide dogs. That’s when they thought of a series involving a guide-dog program. So writer Corinne Kingsbury was asked to write a script and tadaaa! Again, it’s a good one and the pilot order makes total sense. The only real problem I see, it’s that it should have been a procedural with a serialized arc to ensure it some longevity. It’s not something I write a lot. It’s probably the first time I’m writing this in fact. But I can’t see where the show will go once the ongoing mystery about the heroine’s best friend is solved. I mean, I know what they will do: start a new one. But remember when Veronica Mars did that… It struggled a lot and it was cancelled after three years. The situation was a bit different since the show was part-procedural too but I see it as an advantage In The Dark doesn’t even have from the start. By the way, I didn’t choose Veronica Mars as an example by chance. A few things reminded me of the Rob Thomas show. It’s even suspicious he’s not involved in this! The story of course, but also the heroine, though she’s way more trashy, and the overall tone that could be described as very witty and cynical, just like Murphy is. And I mean all this as a good thing. It’s a great show to be compared to, isn’t it?

So Murphy. Gosh, I love her already. She’s a disaffected, hard-drinking, promiscuous mess who pushes away anyone who cares for her. Or in other terms: she’s a cold alcoholic bitch bitter than liquor. We don’t meet so many characters like her, especially on The CW. And when it happens, it’s rarely the central one. I can think of a few, but it’s quite daring. Risky also. But I’m not gonna lie: towards the end of the pilot, she becomes self-aware and decides to change a few things in her behavior. It doesn’t mean it will be easy but she promises to try, for herself and for those around her. It might become a feel-good show after all! Anyway. She’s not easy to like but she’s too funny to hate. I’m very curious to see Perry Mattfield’s performance. I don’t know her, she gratuated from acting school just two years ago but she sounds like the new CW discovery everybody will be raving about, like Gina Rodriguez & Rachel Bloom before.

She’s not the only funny character. They all are, especially her parents. And the bond between the three of them, even though it’s damaged at the time, is quite strong and emotional. Some scenes could make us cry! All the people around her love her so much that it’s heart-warming to witness. The same way as The Good Doctor. Oh and for those wondering, the dog is not that important in the pilot, but it adds a little flavour to it and it certainly doesn’t hurt at all. With the mystery comes a cop, of course. He’s called Dean and he has a daughter who happens to be blind too. How convenient! It’s phony, it’s true, but somehow they make it work. Of course, it opens up the possiblity of a love story between Murphy and Dean. Well… It’s almost inevitable, I guess. The mystery helps sending a message about racism, showing the police doesn’t care about black victims, especially when they come from a poor neighborhood. Can’t say it’s dealt with subtlety but at least there’s dignity and a substantive issue behind the fun entertainment that this pilot is.

A blind girl and her guide dog. This is, like, the worst crime solving team EVER“, says Murphy’s roommate Jess at some point. And she’s right! And that’s why In The Dark is an intriguing show in the making, that could surprise and quickly become a tasty pleasure if The CW gives it a chance. I wouldn’t watch it blindly, but it may be worth opening our eyes to it. It has a lot of heart behind a layer of riveting cynicism.

Charmed 2018 (The CW) pilot preview: Is the #STOPCHARMEDREBOOT movement worth the trouble?

Written and executive produced by Jennie Snyder Urman (Jane The Virgin, Emily Owens, MD, 90210, Gilmore Girls), Jessica O’Toole & Amy Rardin (Jane The Virgin, Selfie, The Carrie Diaries, Greek). Based on the 90’s hit series from Aaron Spelling. Also produced by Ben Silverman (Jane The Virgin, No Tomorrow, The Office, Ugly Betty). Directed by Brad Silberling (Jane The Virgin, Dynasty, Reign, Casper, A Series of Unfortunate Events). For The CW & CBS Television Studios. 61 pages. 2nd Revised Network Draft. 2/27/2018.

Description: Three sisters in a college town discover they are witches right after their mother died in mysterious circumstances. Between vanquishing supernatural demons, tearing down the patriarchy and maintaining familial bonds, a witch’s work is never done. Mel, Maggie & Macy will learn it the hard way…

With Melonie Diaz (Fruitvale Station, The Breaks, Nip/Tuck), Sarah Jaffery (Shades Of Blue, Disney’s The Descendants, Wayward Pines), Madeleine Mantock (Into The Badlands, The Tomorrow People), Rupert Evans (The Man In The High Castle), Ser’Darius Blain (Jane By Design, Jumanji), Charlie Gillepsie, Ellen Tamaki

  

Ever since The CW announced they were working on a Charmed reboot back in january 2017 -we were first to break the news and it was a prequel at the time, which is no longer the case- many outraged fans of the original show expressed their discontent -let’s call it like that- around the globe, while the actresses had some harsh words about it on their respective social media accounts. One year later, the network proceeded with a pilot pick-up anyway, that unleashed hell on earth. Original star Holly Marie Combs unloaded a magical amount of tweets to shade CBS -which owns the rights- like this one:

And she went on and on… In the meantime, a group of hardcore fans launched a Twitter campaign called #StopCharmedReboot, hoping it would discourage The CW but so far it didn’t work, as expected: new actresses were hired to play the three new incarnations of the story and a shooting date has been set (it starts march 19 in Vancouver). The movement is still going strong, with people airing their grievances every day but let’s be honest: unless the network is not happy with the finished product AT ALL, it’s gonna get picked-up to series, it’s gonna air next fall, it will get big streaming deals, it will be successfully sold internationally and even the most infuriated fans will take a look at it no matter what they say. The truth is: in the era of peak TV it’s getting harder and harder for your show to get some attention, that’s why there are so many reboots and sequels, and all this fuss about Charmed is helping it more than anything else; any press is still good press, right? If I had one advice to give to people who don’t want this show to work: STOP. TALKING. ABOUT. IT. Indifference is the strongest force in this universe! Right after The Power of Three, of course.

Without any further ado, I’m gonna tell you what I think of this pilot script. But first, just know I wasn’t a huge fan of the original show, I didn’t watch the entire thing, I never considered it as a must-see and I never understood why it was so popular and why it still is. But I have nothing but respect for a show that was able to please such a devoted and vibrant fanbase all around the world. It’s rare and precious. Also, what will follow is MY opinion only, from a business perspective more than anything else. Is it a promising script? Does it have the potential to become a hit for The CW? That’s what I’m interested in. Feel free to comment but please be respectful!

Back when the pilot was picked up in january, the network described it as “a fierce, funny, feminist reboot”, which was understood by many people as a provocation implying that the original show was not fierce, funny and feminist. Well, things have change, time has passed. What was feminist in the early 2000s -“girl power” and everything- looks a bit soft and cheesy nowadays. It was a first step. An important one. Charmed was a good example of female empowerment for little girls but it was no Buffy The Vampire Slayer. I don’t mean to belittle what was accomplished but let’s not rewrite history either. It was not groundbreaking. More than a decade later, in a world with the #MeToo movement -Rose McGowan is a huge part of it and it’s no coincidence- and shows like The Handmaid’s Tale, a straight follow-up wouldn’t have made a lot of sense. We can’t blame the new writers and producers for wanting to be timely. Their goal is to appeal to a new generation -with younger characters- and address the most pressing issues women face nowadays (the “case of the week” part is about a professor who’s a predator). So let me rephrase it: the Charmed reboot is fiercier, funnier and more feminist than the original show. I’m not sure it sounds better but you’ll have to deal with it! That being said, the script tries way too hard to look “woke”. More subtlety wouldn’t have hurt anyone. They’re clearly making a statement here, let’s just hope they relax a little after the pilot, not making it too heavy all the time.

The whole Mel character, the middle sister who’s a passionate feminist and an outspoken activist -with the ability to freeze time- sounds a little too cliché, especially when you add the fact that she’s a lesbian. Hear me out: it’s great there’s a lesbian sister in the show, that’s one of the reasons why this version is modern. BUT it might have been more interesting to give the feminist attribute to another character, so we don’t fall into the usual “feminists are homosexuals (who hate men)” trap. Still, she’s probably the most interesting character here; after the family tragedy, she becomes angry and violent, she loses her way, she loses her girlfriend too -Nico, who’s a detective in Hilltowne- so she adds darkness to a show that’s not light-hearted. Maybe that’s the biggest difference with the original Charmed: it can be funny because the dialogues are sometimes great and inspired -and we recognize the Jane The Virgin team here- but it’s pretty gloomy overall. The family manor is right in the middle of frightening woods, not in a sunny street of San Francisco. The opening sequence leans towards the horrific genre, with jump scares, fog, crows, murder of crows even… Same goes for the end with a Ouija board in the attic, and whisperings… A totally different atmosphere that is closer to Buffy, Riverdale or American Horror Story than good ol’ Charmed.

The younger sister, Maggie, is the complete opposite of Mel. She’s 18, your typical millenial girl who’s worried about her social identity -too bad for her, she can hear other people’s thoughts- and she’s not happy at all to discover that she’s a witch. She has a wry sense of humor and she’s part of a sorority that will probably play a major role in the subsequent episodes, between the mean girls she wants to be friends with and the weird guys that are lurking around her. She will probably become a fan favorite. Last but not least, the older sister who didn’t know she had sisters until recently: Macy, a “science nerd” in her late 20s with a Ph.D. in quantum physics. She’s moving with her boyfriend named Galvin to Hilltowne to do lab work. She possesses the power of telekinesis. Her love story is already totally boring and I’m not sure Gavin will stick around much longer. Finally, there’s Harry, the girls’ “devilishly handsome” advisor, refered to as a “whitelighter” like Leo was, who adds a lot of humor and eccentricity whenever he appears. Think Eliot in The Magicians. But he’s not exactly who he says he is…

You’re probably wondering if the Book of Shadows is still part of the story and the answer is yes. The Power of Three? Yes, of course. Are the Halliwell sisters part of the story or even refered to? Not at all. I don’t think they will ever exist in this version. It’s not a sequel. If the overall tone is darker, they kept most of the original show’s premice. They’re still the most powerful witches ever known, destined to protect both innocents and the world at large from demons and other devil creatures. They didn’t lie: it really is an update of the same concept with characters that are more diverse. It’s not just using the show’s name and popularity to do something totally different. It’s fast-paced, with transitions throughout that consist of three quick cuts which are in fact small slices of each women’s stories. Think How To Get Away Murder. They do something similar. I find it irritating on paper here and it doesn’t add much but why the hell not after all… We’re promised monsters of the week cases as well as ongoing stories about the witches’ love lives while the bigger picture is probably kept for later, once they will be familiar with their powers.

The Charmed fans will be pissed to read this but this pilot script is pretty decent. It’s not an insult to the original though they’re doing like The Halliwells never existed (and some might find that insulting, I get it). It’s modern and as feminist as they claimed, though subtlety is not their strong suit. The characters have things to say and stories to tell that should be heard in those troubled times. In other words, it’s not revolutionary in any way but it’s not the trainwreck haters would like it to be and there’s really nothing to rally against. Ignore it, don’t watch it, just let it be. There are more important battles worth fighting for. 

The End of the World as We Know It (The CW) pilot preview: Extraterrestrial

Written and executive produced by Justin Halpern (Powerless, iZombie, Shit My Dad Says) & Patrick Schumacker (Cougar Town, iZombie). Based on the 2012 Alloy book by Iva-Marie Palmer. Also produced by Rob Thomas (Veronica Mars, iZombie, 90210), Danielle Stokdyk, Dan Etheridge,  Leslie Morgenstein (The 100, Pretty Little Liars, The Vampire Diaries) & Gina Girolamo. Directed by Glen Winter (Smallville, Arrow, Supergirl). For The CW, Warner Bros. Television, Alloy Entertainment, Ehsugadee Productions & Spondoolie Productions. 60 pages. Network 2nd Draft. 1/27/2018.

Description: when a prison spaceship carrying the universe’s most deadly aliens crashes in Southern California, two millennial women, Kate & Ruby, with bigger dreams than working at a kids’ pizza place in The Valley are recruited by Quinn, a space cop to hunt down the escaped criminals, who have camouflaged themselves as eccentric Angelenos…

With Gage Golighty (Teen Wolf, Red Oaks), Quinta Brunson (Broke, Up For Adoption), Josh Helman (Wayward Pines, Flesh and Bone, The Pacific)…

    

You’ll like if you already like: Supernatural, iZombie, The X-Files

Likely timeslot: paired with Supernatural, wherever it ends up next year!

 

Did you read the description of this pilot up there? Hope you did. Here’s now the description of the book it’s based on: “When Queen Bee Teena locks UFO conspirator Leo, extreme virgin Evan, and straight-A student Sarabeth in the basement during her biggest party of the year, she doesn’t plan on getting trapped in the Loser Dungeon (as she so names it) herself. She can barely imagine a night with these dweebs—let alone a lifetime. But when an alien invasion destroys their entire Midwestern suburb, it looks like these unlikely friends are the last people on earth. Now, it’s up to them to save the world…” Very different, hum? While the show seems kinda fun -and spoiler alert: it is!- the book seems even funnier and more importantly: edgier. It’s a bummer because I really liked this script but I can’t help thinking about what could have been if they did a straight adaptation of the novel. And the question is: why adapting it in the first place if it’s to make it so different? Nobody cares anyway. It’s not like it had a huge fanbase already. But let’s focus on The CW’s The End Of the World As We Know It, which is totally different from Netflix’s The End of the F****** World by the way.

Let me introduce you to our heroines first. Kate (Gage Golightly) is a struggling actress who’s unable to catch a break. She is looking for a role with a “hero line” but all she can get is dumb parts in dumb TV shows. It’s not that she’s not talented. It’s more about her mouth. She can’t help being annoying, and saying everything that comes to mind. She’s her own worst enemy and a lot of fun for us to follow, but she’s a nightmare for virtually everyone else. Except maybe -and that’s debatable- her best friend Ruby (Quinta Brunson). This one is a hyper-intelligent, upbeat graduate from MIT, who hasn’t been able to hold down an engineering job due to her interests shifting a mile a minute. Therefore, she currently works at her parents’ business, a birthday party place/pizza restaurant for kids. She’s nerdy and anxious, but also very sweet and sharp when needed. Those two make a great pair and the casting seems spot on! Did you know that Brunson’s an internet superstar? In 2014, her clip The Girl Who’s Never Been on a Nice Date became the first to go viral on Instagram. Since then she created webseries and worked for Buzzfeed. In other words: she’s a great catch for The CW.

With the arrival of the crashed spaceship, Kate & Ruby have finally found their mission in life. We could consider the show as a coming-of-age dramedy about two young adults, who are dealing with the juggling act between running a business, saving the earth, and finding purpose on a more personal level. It’s a rich program and it’s handled perfectly in the pilot script since it manages to be both funny and touching. Let’s not forget about the sci-fi side of it, which is mostly quirky and where most of the fun comes from, partly thanks to the character of Quinn (Josh Helman). He’s a galactic police officer -both charming and irritating- who hates humans and hates working with the girls -as much as they hate working with him- but he quickly realizes that they are capable of providing much-needed aid to him, ‘cos they know way lot more about humans than he does. And also because they’re badass and courageous. I love the interactions between those three, it totally works on paper, but I have to say I couldn’t care less about their first mission in itself, which is about catching a monster. And that’s what it is: a procedural show with a monster of the week, disguised as a comedic drama. This might make it less appealing for some people -me included- but it doesn’t mean it won’t work. And maybe a more serialized storyline is hiding somewhere… That’d be cool!

The recipee for The End of the World as We Know It worked for The X-Files for years -their comedic episodes were often the best- and it’s still working for Supernatural too… for 13 seasons! So I’m pretty confident about this one. Those hunters have more than a fighting chance and it’s nice to have girls doing the dirty job this time! If The CW feels the need to go more procedural, it’s a great candidate. What might doom it? Roswell! Even if the tone is vastly different, they both deal with the same subjects and the reboot has the advantage of being already well-known…

The CW’s 8 most exciting projects for 2018/2019 pilot season

 

The following article is based on descriptions mixed wih talents attached ONLY. None of the scripts have been read at this point.

 

For how long The CW will manage to survive? The situation is getting complicated, if you ask me. The 5th network is becoming less and less relevant these days by relying on too many DC Comics shows –Arrow is not the powerhouse it once was, Supergirl is doing so-so, Legends of Tomorrow is losing castmembers like crazy, only The Flash can still be labelled as a success- and on well-liked CBS-produced dramedies that attract a very tiny crowd of die-hard fans. I’m looking at you Jane The Virgin & Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. Military drama Valor flopped, as everyone expected, except The CW president Mark Pedowitz; while Life Sentence, their most promising new entry, is still waiting for a spot on the schedule…

Is The CW being destroyed by Netflix? What looked like a fair exchange a few months ago is entering a dangerous territory now. The CW is simply becoming Netflix-dependent and that can’t be good in the long run. Many people think Riverdale is a Netflix original -they brand it like it is and the success over there apparently helped the CW ratings- and they even stole them the Sabrina spin-off, which is still a shocker to me. How did they let that happen? Black Lightning is a Netflix original overseas, as is Dynasty, which is the only reason why it was given a backorder since the ratings are truly terrible. And Netflix picked up a full season of The CW’s last pilot season’s dark dramedy Insatiable. So far, you can argue that Netflix needs The CW as much as The CW needs Netflix, but clearly the best projects are now going directly to Netflix, while The CW takes the leftovers. Between Warner Bros. selling shows to everyone (especially to FOX, which will soon lose its in-house studio in the Disney merger) and CBS Television having the CBS All Access platform now, I’m not sure The CW will still be there in a few years…

Anyway, they still have a pilot season to navigate: here are the 8 pilots that have potential. Yeah, 8 is not much…

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EPIPHANY (Warner Bros. Television)

What?  about a group of gifted strangers recruited to a Gilded Age mansion to solve a complex code that lies within the structure’s walls…

Why? Weird concept, the kind that never passes the script stage, let alone the pilot stage… but at least it sounds original and could work as a miniseries. But is The CW really looking for miniseries? They probably don’t. Don’t get attached to this one. It has like 10% chance to see the light of day.

 

FEMME (CBS Television Studios)

What? about four millennial women from different walks of life who become unlikely friends and fierce allies after meeting online in a secret feminist social media group…

Why? After Freeform’s The Bold Type and all that’s happening in the world right now, Femme, produced by Jane The Virgin‘s star Gina Rodriguez, looks perfectly relevant and exciting. And shows about female friendships have mostly disappeared (besides Younger), it’s time they come back stronger than ever!

 

ILLEGAL (CBS Television Studios)

What? about 16-year-old Rafael: He is a charming but bumbling high school student just trying to survive puberty. But when this all-American teenager discovers that he is not American at all, his perfect Honor Roll world is turned upside down

Why? Gina Rodriguez is also behind this project and at some point, CBS will have to do something with this overall deal they signed with her two years ago… Illegal is based on the life of series co-executive producer Rafael Agustin and certainly doesn’t seem to be that different from Jane The Virgin topically and tonally. Since Jane doesn’t have that much life left, it could takeover.

 

IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD AS WE KNOW IT (Warner Bros. Television)

What? when a prison spaceship carrying the universe’s most deadly aliens crashes in Southern California, two millennial women with bigger dreams than working at a kids’ pizza place in The Valley are recruited by a space cop to hunt down the escaped criminals, who have camouflaged themselves as eccentric Angelenos…

Why? Now we’re talking! How long can this premise sustain? I’m not sure. If there’s an ambitious mythology behind, not just a “monster of the week” situation, then maybe we have a winner here! The creators Justin Halpern & Patrick Schumacker have mostly worked on comedies before, meaning this could be a fun ride. Would be a great companion show for Supernatural and even a natural successor if the show gets cancelled one day but I feel like it’s the CW that will get cancelled first!

 

LADY IN THE MASK (CBS Television Studios)

What? set in a near future where people can back-up their minds like they back-up their computer. It centers on a woman who awakens in the hospital after a suspicious car accident and learns her memory was damaged and restored from a two-year-old “back-up.” As she tries to return to her seemingly loving husband, high-profile job in her family’s tech VC firm, and otherwise normal life, the details about her missing years begin to contradict one another, leading her to believe she’s being manipulated by someone close to her, that the accident was no accident and that she’s at the center of a much larger conspiracy — unless she’s just losing her mind.

Why? Among those 8 projects, it’s the one I’m the most conflicted about. It’s already too complicated for its own good and would probably work better as a 2-hour long Black Mirror episode. But if somehow they manage to make something believable and thrilling out of it then I’m in. Is it really what we’re waiting from The CW? Not really. But surprising their audience seems like the best way to go these days, as long as the product is solid. Let’s just hope it is! It reminds me of Ringer a bit though. Can’t be a good thing.

 

THE SHE WORD (CBS Television Studios)

What? about four driven female assistants who discover they have been victims of gender discrimination at their boys’ club of a company; they vow to work together to take over by whatever means necessary…

Why? The CW will have to decide between this one and Femme. They are probably vastly different but they tackle the same -important- subject. What’s interesting with The She Word it’s that it seems to be darker. That’s what’s implied in the “by whatever means necessary” of the pitch and a “How To Get Away With Murder“-style soap is an exciting perspective, as long as it’s not only about revenge but empowerment too.

 

THE VALIANT (Warner Bros. Television)

What? about a Celtic princess on the run from an arranged marriage and a sheltered life who is captured and forced into slavery under Julius Caesar; she ends up training among the first wave of female Gladiators to compete in the Colosseum for fame, fortune and, ultimately, her freedom…

Why? Personally, I would never watch this BUT I feel like there’s an audience for it as long it’s not just an excuse to show partially naked women fighting (not that it wouldn’t be a good selling point). Spartacus was very popular a few years ago; maybe there’s potential here and it would draw attention. The CW is desperately looking for attention. That being said it’d have to be really good and modern to survive, because period drama and this network just don’t fit well together. Even The Carrie Diaries couldn’t make it…

 

UNTITLED SPENCER PAYSINGER PROJECT (Warner Bros. Television)

What?  inspired by the life of pro football player Spencer Paysinger, a rising high school football player from South Central L.A.; when he is recruited to play for Beverly Hills High, the wins, losses and struggles of two families from vastly different worlds – Compton and Beverly Hills – begin to collide…

Why? Let’s just see it as Friday Night Lights meets The OC, produced by Greg Berlanti and his football player of a husband Robbie Rogers. It could attract both men and women and would depart from everything that is on the network right now. It represents a risk but it’s damn time to take one, a good, worthy one.

 

Meanwhile, The CW is still looking into a Charmed reboot but is also trying to revive Roswell, as well as spinning-off Supernatural with Wayward Sisters and The Originals with a show focusing on Hope Mikaelson, the tribrid daughter of Niklaus Mikaelson and Hayley Marshall-Kenner. Alyssa Milano’s Hacktivist is still on the map with a second script ordered and a one-hour horror anthology series Black Rose written and directed entirely by women and produced by Drew Barrymore is in development, though it would fit better on cable or streaming.

 

What projects are you interested in? Feel free to comment!