Last week Supernatural fans learned of a spin-off titled Wayward Sisters being prepped for a backdoor pilot entry in Season 13.
I take a look at the details of the spin-off and ask the question of ‘Will Supernatural Fans Embrace the Wayward Sisters Spin-Off?’
What Do We Know So Far?
Considering the news only broke just last week there is not much information about the spin-off but what we do know so far is as follows.
Season 13 of Supernatural is when the show will be introduced. How far into the season still remains to be seen, but it has been scheduled to have a backdoor pilot episode similar to the previous failed spin-off attempt Bloodlines, which had a back door entry in Season 9.
The focus will be around Sheriff Jody Mills, played by Kim Rhodes, and the young women who are orphaned by supernatural occurrences. With the protection and training of Mills, they will become a supernatural fighting force.
It has the backing and efforts of several of the Supernatural executive producers and writers and intends to bring over characters from the Supernatural series, along with introducing new characters.
This has all come about due to the tireless efforts of fans calling out for a spin-off, and members of the show giving their backing and support on social media. Supernatural showrunners have always been a shining example of listening to their fans and this decision is another example of just that.
— Deadline Hollywood (@DEADLINE) June 20, 2017
Will It End Up Like ‘Bloodlines’
For those who may have forgotten. Bloodlines was an attempted and failed effort to introduce a spin-off show.
Set in Chicago, the show was about five types of creatures in the city, all at war with one another, but it was heavily criticised and never went any further than the pilot.
One of the main criticisms made was the fact that there was no connection to the Supernatural main characters. The planned characters for Bloodlines just appeared and fans were expected to embrace them. What it really needed was a main character that had appeared several times in Supernatural and had some back story already created, and therefore an emotional attachment formed before attempting a spin-off.
Wayward Sisters has gone and done just that by focusing it around Sherriff Mills, so is unlikely to go the way Bloodlines did.
So Will ‘Supernatural’ Fans Embrace It?
Well of course in the beginning fans are going to embrace it. They have been calling on it for years and Sherriff Mills has become a solid character in the show, so yes many fans will embrace it in the beginning.
It’s once the spin-off has gotten off the ground whether fans will continue embracing it or if interest will die off once all the hype of a new show has waned.
So, let’s take a quick look at what might cause fans not to embrace it.
The Winchester brothers, Castiel, and all your other favourite characters: Face it everyone, if you were hoping for more screen time of them you are going to be disappointed. They may appear in the odd episode, but they are not going to become series regulars or anything.
Diehard fans of these Supernatural characters may not flock over since firm favourite characters won’t feature that much or even not at all.
Supernatural and their rather awkward history of female characters: Before you jump down my throat hear me out. This is not some overpowered feminist point or anything. Supernatural has not had a great record of female characters with some fans even claiming the writers needlessly kill off their female characters.
Now an argument can be made for this since due to the nature of the show, characters are likely to be killed off. However, even Misha Collins has voiced his opinion of the way female characters are handled in the show.
How things are handled in Wayward Sister will be extremely interesting considering it is a female-predominant cast show, and if they go about things the way they do in Supernatural when it comes to female characters then they are not going to get very far.
The last thing to consider is whether the demand is high enough to support the show. Supernatural does have a good record for listening to the demand of fans, but the demand has to be high enough to support the show.
Wayward Sister has had growing demand for some time now, but it has taken several years to gain that voice. It is possible the demand is not actually high enough. What characterises as high for show runners to consider the spin-off may not be high enough for network bosses when it comes to TV ratings. When it all boils down to it, if the spin-off doesn’t bring in the ratings then it will get the chop.
So as you can see there are a few things going against the spin-off.
What Do I Think?
I think it will survive the back door pilot stage. I don’t think it will have the same fate as Bloodlines, as they have learned from their mistakes and are unlikely to make them again.
I believe it will get to air its first season and will manage to air all of the episodes (aka not get cancelled mid-season), but after that, I am not too sure.
It will have the new show hype to begin with, which will help but keeping that momentum is another story.
I don’t think The Winchester Brothers and others not appearing will be an issue. Sherriff Mills has her own following. I also don’t think the way female characters are handled will be an issue.
The ratings are going to be the issue. If network bosses are expecting to pull in the same sort of figures as Supernatural did then the show won’t last long. Given a chance I think it will grow its following, but nothing to the likes of Supernatural.
That being said, this is a show on The CW. The ratings are notoriously much lower than the likes of CBS and ABC. The CW focuses on the online presence, looking at Twitter and streaming to determine the fate of the show. Supernatural fans are extremely vocal online, and the same is likely for Wayward Sisters fans.
There is also the fact that plenty of shows have lower ratings than Supernatural and survive. Around the 0.4 in the demographic looks safe, considering that was around Riverdale’s views and it was picked up for a second (and fall) season. The 100, The Originals, and even Jane the Virgin have managed to pull through with the high 0.3s in the demographic. As long as Wayward Sisters is above these figures for the first season and has a good online presence, there is hope for the future.
Only time will tell but I will certainly keep my fingers crossed and hope it all goes well for Wayward Sisters.
What do you think? Will fans embrace it or will it crash and burn? Leave a comment below to let me know your thoughts.
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Author: Callum Gunn
Writer and Social Media Manager at FanNews, Callum is a self-proclaimed geek/nerd who loves TV and Movies and everything that comes with it.