The CW, aka the little network that wants to be noticed but still manages to fall behind NBC, has a very interesting list of pilots. As I said before in my initial look, any one of these could be picked up. Okay, Reignis a stretch. But if there was ever a network with holes that wasn’t called NBC…
The CW has three strong scripted shows that have already earned renewal. They program 10 hours a week. One longish running show, 90210, has been cancelled and Gossip Girl ended it’s run. Emily Owens M.D. was cancelled. Cult is a goner with a capital G. So eight pilots and four existing shows competing for seven slots. That’s not assuming that they will use shows for midseason filler, which trust me, this network needs midseason filler.
With The CW, a success of a pilot depends on the slot in which it would fit and whether it would be compatible with an existing show. There is no way that Beauty and The Beastis keeping it’s timeslot after The Vampire Diaries. There’s two options should BATB be renewed. Pair it with one of these pilots on another night, or we assume Nikita keeps it’s Friday slot and Beauty and The Beastwill be paired with that. Assuming the former is not cancelled.
Let’s pencil in Hart of Dixie for Tuesdays at 8pm. Sure, it could be moved to Monday, but that’s the only other night. Out of all the remaining shows, that one is the strongest. Knowing it needs a companion, which one of these pilots fits the bill? If Nikitais renewed, chances are it won’t be paired with a pilot on Fridays but an existing show. I’m not liking The Carrie Diarieschances at all.
Okay, keeping that in mind, here’s a deeper look at the pilots. I have an extra bullet point for this network. Potential timeslot/pairing. Also, incase you missed it, here’s my initial look at The CW pilots:
- Casting: Madeline Carroll, Michael Weston, John Benjamin Hickey, Johnny Simmons, Elizabeth Marvel
- New info: This is considered to be a warm, quirky, humorous type drama. That’s called a dramedy, right?
- Confidence Level: Low. I haven’t heard too many good things about this script, and there’s no named director for the Pilot yet.
- Potential timeslot/pairing: This sounds like a Hart of Dixiecompanion. So it could work on Tuesday. But only if it’s any good. I’m not seeing it.
- Casting: Evie Thompson, Gage Golightly, Maya Kazan, Arjun Gupta, Dondre Whitfield, Graham Hamilton, Merle Dandridge, Stella Maeve
- New info: We know that this is about the aftermath of a scandal (rape) at a Naval Base in Virginia. Here’s something new from Deadline: It centers around two early twentysomething women — Krista (Golightly) and Page (Maeve) — who grew up together, were once best friends, but now are on opposite sides of the Townie/Military divide.
- Confidence Level: Mild. Sera Gamble has a great pedigree for this network, but I’m still not sure where this goes beyond a scandal fallout. I’m assuming we attach to the characters and go from there.
- Potential timeslot/pairing: This could go with Beauty and The Beast, but that would be one very weak ratings night. Not to mention BATB has abandoned the procedural formula for mythology. It could also go with Hart of Dixie, as a light/heavy drama night. I don’t think this show is strong enough to get a prime fall slot with another new show. I sense midseason potential too.
- Casting: Isaiah Washington, Henry Ian Cusick, Eliza Taylor, Eli Goree, Bob Morley, Kelly Hu, Christopher Larkin, Marie Avgeropoulos, Paige Turco, Thomas McDonell
- New info: This is another futuristic drama, set 97 years in the future after nuclear war destroyed civilization. Some people decide repopulating the planet might be a good idea.
- Confidence Level: Optimistic. This is the CW’s wheelhouse. All that the show has to do is not suck and it’ll work. It’s based on another set of Alloy books though. That worked good for The Vampire Diaries, not so much for The Secret Circle. The key is how well these books are adapted.
- Potential timeslot: Monday or Tuesday. It could be part of the new sci-fi night that will go along great with Wednesdays and Thursdays.
- Casting: Joseph Morgan, Daniel Gillies, Claire Holt, Phoebe Tonkin, Charles Michael Davis, Daniella Pineda, Leah Pipes
- New info: There’s tons! There’s a whole huge preview on EW. http://www.ew.com/ew/gallery/0,,20686010,00.html
- Confidence Level: Uncertain. Considering we actually get to see this pilot as part of The Vampire Diaries on April 25th, I’m holding all judgments until then. The idea looks great on paper, but does it have enough? Backdoor pilots are big risks, and I don’t think this is the slam dunk everyone says it is. Bonus points though for actually filming the pilot in New Orleans, even if it’ll be filmed in Georgia if it goes to series.
- Potential timeslot/pairing: Many assume it’ll be right after The Vampire Diaries on Thursday, but tell me, as a viewer, do you really want all vampire night? Will two hours be overkill, or suffice a fix? I really don’t know where else it would fit though.
- Casting: Matt Lanter, Aimee Teegarden, Malese Jow, Chelsea Gilligan, Greg Finley, Grey Damon, Natalie Hall, Titus Makin Jr.
- New info: Lanter is the male lead in this story of a teen girl (Teegarden) falls in love with an alien boy that’s been integrated into high school.
- Confidence Level: Perplexed. This is the type of sci-fi/teen drama mashup that The CW is best known for. This sounds like though another show that will appeal to that limited female 18-34 demographic, not to mention the scores of tweens and teens that think Lanter is hot. One common concern is Matt Lanter is too old to be playing a high schooler, but they did say he was an alien.
- Potential timeslot/pairing: Teen drama with a twist. That sounds like Monday fare to me. I don’t see this show being paired with any existing shows. If this flies, I see it working with possibly The Selection.
- Casting: Adelaide Kane, Anna Popplewell, Caitlin Stasey, Celina Sinden, Jenessa Grant, Megan Follows, Rossif Sutherland, Toby Regbo, Torrance Coombs
- New info: Still about the young Mary Queen of Scots.
- Confidence Level: Super low. Unless this is meant to be a 13 episode midseason filler. Then it might work.
- Potential timeslot/pairing: As midseason filler, it’s wherever there is a hole to fill. There will be many.
- Casting: Yael Grobglas, Ben Aldridge, Celia Massingham, Louise Lombard, Lucien Laviscount, Michael Malarkey, Peta Sergeant, Sarah Winter, Sean Patrick Thomas
- New info: None really. Concept is the same, set 300 years in the future, a young woman is chosen by lottery to compete to be queen.
- Confidence Level: Uncertain. I know the network is very high on this project, but it failed last year. What makes a year after the Hunger Games craze better?
- Potential timeslot/pairing: I see this going after The Vampire Diariestoo, if The Originalsfails. Otherwise, yeah, don’t know. Midseason perhaps?
The Tomorrow People
- Casting: Robbie Amell, Mark Pellegrino, Aaron Yoo, Luke Mitchell, Madeleine Mantock, Peyton List
- New info: They just finished shooting the pilot. Also, if Robbie Amell’s last name sounds familiar, he is the cousin of the Green Arrow on the same network.
- Confidence Level: Consider this a done deal. I see this along with another new series being the stronger offering of an all new sci-fi night. It’s a Berlanti/Plec production, which is a great combination of the two superstar producers that have given The CW their top two shows, Arrow and The Vampire Diaries.
- Potential timeslot/pairing: This will be a headliner for it’s own night. I say Monday, if Hart of Dixie keeps it’s familiar timeslot. Otherwise Tuesday. Paired with either The Hundred or The Selection. Why not Arrow or Supernatural? Allow me to take the next paragraph to explain.
I’ve read speculation that Arrow and Supernatural should be split up, because it makes no sense to have two of your strongest shows on the same night. That idea is a fail on so many levels. Call this the “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” scenario. The CW has very few successes, and pairing these two together is their biggest one. Supernatural may be a veteran show, but it has a loyal fanbase that aren’t exactly open to other shows. If the pairing with Arrow works, then The CW will take it. I do not see Supernatural boosting another new show, especially when it has to stay at 9pm because of it’s horror themes.
That’s it for the first round of pilots. Coming up next, all the little changes. Un-casted pilots are getting casted, and comedy troubles just continue to multiply for NBC. In other words, same song, different verse.