Wayward Sisters and Legacies on The CW

The CW Isn’t Spinning off Supernatural Because They’re Spinning off The Vampire Diaries

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Fans of Supernatural were disappointed when The CW network passed on greenlighting Wayward Sisters, a long-in-the-works spinoff of the Winchesterian world. Now we know why.

CW head honcho Mark Pedowitz was asked about the Wayward decision in an Upfront call with advertisers, according to Dateline. (It was the first question asked; everyone, it seems, is curious about the unexpected move, since Wayward seemed like a shoo-in.) Pedowitz explained:

“We had really great material this year,” he said. “We’re really exited about the five series we did pick up. We are big fans of the characters and the women who played the characters in the series, but we did not feel creatively the show is where we wanted it to be. We felt we had a better shot with Legacies.”

Pedowitz added that CW execs are “big fans” of the Wayward actresses “and hope they continue on…guest starring on Supernatural.”

This all feels rather like damning with faint praise, but Pedowitz also made it clear that The CW “did not feel [Wayward] was where it needed to be to go forward with it this year,” which means hope for the project may not be entirely lost. That’s not hugely reassuring to fans who’ve long been excited at the prospect of a female-oriented spinoff of Supernatural, but it’s something.

I’m still wondering what went wrong since Wayward was in development for more than two years with Supernatural creative heavyweights on board, and Supernatural is a series that the CW will seemingly never let die and seeks to make immortal. A sister show would have made a lot of sense.

Ultimately, the network bet on its other long-running supernatural-oriented property, ordering Legacies, a new show from The Vampire Diaries/The Originals universe. Legacies merges characters from both shows, and will follow “the next generation of supernatural beings” as they study at the Salvatore School for the Young and Gifted. The school is a sort of Virginian Hogwarts for young vampires, werewolves, witches, and what have you that was founded by Caroline Forbes and Alaric Saltzman in Damon and Stefan Salvatore’s old mansion at the end of TVD.

Klaus Mikaelson’s daughter Hope will be attending, as will Alaric Saltzman’s twins Josie and Lizzie, and, if I know Mystic Falls, a whole bunch of other, well, Legacies from the fancy old founding families in town. Here’s the official synopsis, courtesy of TVLine:

Continuing the tradition of The Vampire Diaries and The Originals, the story of the next generation of supernatural beings at The Salvatore School for the Young and Gifted. Klaus Mikaelson’s daughter, 17-year-old Hope Mikaelson; Alaric Saltzman’s twins, Lizzie and Josie Saltzman; and other young adults come of age in the most unconventional way possible, nurtured to be their best selves…in spite of their worst impulses. Will these young witches, vampires and werewolves become the heroes they want to be — or the villains they were born to be?

Now, I’m definitely, 100% biased because The Vampire Diaries was a guilty pleasure of mine for many years, but I have to say I also see the logic of this series order. The CW is a network aimed at young adults, and they’ve had particular success with high school-set shows and those made with high schoolers in mind.

A school full of angsty magical adolescents that is already grounded in a known universe for fans makes a lot of sense and I can already see myself tuning in out of nostalgia if nothing else. It’s just a shame that a choice had to be made between Wayward Sisters and Legacies; their pitches were very different and it seems that there could’ve been room for both spinoffs. Is there really such a thing as too much supernatural TV?

(via Dateline Hollywood, images: The CW)

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Kaila Hale-Stern
Kaila Hale-Stern (she/her) is a content director, editor, and writer who has been working in digital media for more than fifteen years. She started at TMS in 2016. She loves to write about TV—especially science fiction, fantasy, and mystery shows—and movies, with an emphasis on Marvel. Talk to her about fandom, queer representation, and Captain Kirk. Kaila has written for io9, Gizmodo, New York Magazine, The Awl, Wired, Cosmopolitan, and once published a Harlequin novel you'll never find.