The CW is expanding to Sunday nights next season, adding three new dramas this fall and an additional two in midseason.
The new fall dramas are All American, which is slated for Wednesday at 9 p.m. out of Riverdale; Legacies, which is set in The Vampire Diaries and The Originals universe and will air Thursday at 9 p.m. out of veteran Supernatural; and the highly publicized reboot of Charmed. Charmed, featuring an all-new cast is positioned in the Sunday 9 p.m. hour out of relocated Supergirl to form a night of girl power.
The fall schedule features changes on three of the five established nights, with Tuesday — The Flash and Black Lightning — and Friday — Dynasty and Crazy-Ex Girlfriend — intact.
The two new midseason dramas are In the Dark, the tale of a young blind woman who “witnesses” a murder; and Roswell, New Mexico, the reboot of the original Roswell, New Mexico, which will feature a new cast.
The CW, additionally, has announced that 2018-19 will be the final seasons for Crazy, Ex-Girlfriend, Jane the Virgin and iZombie. The latter two series will return for their now final seasons in midseason. Also returning in midseason is drama The 100.
“The ability to go to Sunday was a sign of confidence from our affiliates, our parent companies and our business model,” said CW President Mark Pedowitz during a telephone press conference. “Our 2018-19 schedule will reflect about 37 new series regulars who are either women and/or people of color. Four of our 12 series have casts where the majority of people of color. And all five of our new series have women writers and executive producers attached.”
From a credibility standpoint, you have to admire a network that prepares its audience for the final seasons of three established series. Instead of unceremoniously dumping a show without warning — a la ABC with Designated Survivor and Fox with Brooklyn Nine-Nine — the message from The CW is that fans matter. And that is an important statement, particularly in this world of social media.
Additionally, you also have to credit The CW for keeping Jane the Virgin, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and iZombie afloat for as long as it did despite the lack of traditional ratings. These days, there is more to shows’ success – or lack of – than Nielsen tallies.
One look at The CW’s fall schedule and the immediate observation is that there will be nothing new of a superhero nature. The network, no doubt, has reached its zenith in this category and the emphasis in this current era of revivals is on the new editions of Charmed and Roswell, New Mexico. Both have a cult following, both could appeal to the network’s target young demographic, and both are immediately recognizable from a branding standpoint.
The ongoing obstacle at The CW is when it attempts something out of its comfort zone (remember military drama Valor last fall or Life Sentence in midseason?). And because that could work against All American and In the Dark, the network must go into the new season realizing it must exercise some patience.
Otherwise, The CW remains a destination for today’s youth. Pairing Supergirl with Charmed on Sunday seems particularly compatible (“strong women on the night,” according to Mark Pedowitz). And you have to be thankful for the network not abandoning what is a perennially troubled night, Friday. While the pairing of Dynasty and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend will not necessarily resonate from a ratings standpoint, these are still scripted options on an evening that could ultimately be in danger of turning into Saturday (translation: repeats and leftovers).
While no schedule is a perfect line-up, Mark Pedowitz and company have crafted what looks like a potentially solid based of alternatives for younger viewers and, no doubt, older viewers who like superheroes too!
Here is the CW primetime line-up this fall (with new series in caps), followed by the new series descriptions.
8:00 p.m. D.C.’s Legends of Tomorrow
9:00 p.m. Arrow (new night)
8:00 p.m. The Flash
9:00 p.m. Black Lightning
8:00 p.m. Riverdale
9:00 p.m. ALL AMERICAN
8:00 p.m. Supernatural
9:00 p.m. LEGACIES
8:00 p.m. Dynasty
9:00 p.m. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
8:00 p.m. Supergirl
9:00 p.m. CHARMED
New Series Descriptions
Spencer James is a rising high school football player and A student at South Crenshaw High. Compton is the place he calls home. But when Beverly High School’s football coach Billy Baker recruits him to join his team in Beverly Hills, Spencer’s mother, Grace, and his best friend, Coop, convince Spencer it’s an opportunity he has to seize. Now Spencer must navigate two worlds, the south side neighborhood that he knows and the affluent Beverly Hills world that has offered him an opportunity for something bigger.
All American stars Daniel Ezra, Taye Diggs, Samantha Logan, Bre-Z, Greta Onieogou, Monet Mazur, Michael Evans Behling, Cody Christian and Karimah Westbrook.
A reboot of the 1998 to 2006 WB drama, the series centers on three sisters in a college town who are stunned to discover they are witches after their mother’s tragic death. Soon this powerful threesome must stand together to fight the everyday and supernatural battles that all modern witches must face: vanquishing powerful demons and toppling the patriarchy.
Charmed stars Melonie Diaz, Sarah Jeffery, Madeleine Mantock, Rupert Evans, Ser’Darius Blaine, Charlie Gillespie, and Ellen Tamaki.
In the Dark
A flawed and irreverent blind woman is the only “witness” to the murder of her drug-dealing friend. After 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 the guide dog school owned by her overprotective parents.
In The Dark stars Perry Mattfeld, Brooke Markham, Keston John, Kathleen York, Derek Webster and Morgan Krantz.
For the last decade, the iconic heroes and villains of The Vampire Diaries and The Originals have captivated audiences worldwide. They left an enduring legacy of love and family in their wake, which continues in Legacies, a new drama that tells the story of the next generation of supernatural beings at The Salvatore School for the Young and Gifted.
Legacies stars Danielle Rose Russell, Jenny Boyd, Kaylee Bryant, Quincy Fouse and Aria Shaghasemi, with Matt Davis.
Roswell, New Mexico
More than maybe anywhere else on Earth, Roswell, New Mexico is ground zero for those who seek proof that aliens exist. Roswell native Liz Ortecho left it all behind 10 years ago, after the death of her beloved older sister, Rosa. But with her father ailing, she reluctantly returns to her tourist-trap hometown to move back in with him. When Liz arrives, she reconnects with Max Evans, her teenage crush who is now a Roswell police officer. Their chemistry is instantly electric. But Liz soon discovers a shocking truth: Max is an alien who has kept his unearthly abilities hidden his entire life, along with those of his otherworldly siblings, Isobel and Michael.
Roswell, New Mexico stars Jeanine Mason, Nathan Parsons, Michael Trevino, Lily Cowles, Michael Vlamis, Tyler Blackburn, Heather Hemmens, Trevor St. John and Karan Oberoi.