If it hadn’t already turned into the Comic Book network, this fall The CW is fully embracing its inner geek. The broadcast network, which a few years ago was known for soapy teen dramas like “Gossip Girl,” will air four hour-long shows devoted to DC Comics titles starting in September.
The DC block will even air in pattern, Monday through Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET. What’s more, all four shows come from uber producer Greg Berlanti, meaning there’s opportunity for plenty of collaboration inside this weekday DC Berlantiverse. Already, Berlanti has struck an unusual deal with “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow” star Wentworth Miller, who will be departing that show as a series regular but will now be available to swoop in and out of all five shows.
As part of The CW’s lineup, “Supergirl” moves over from CBS for its sophomore season, but stays put in the same place: Mondays at 8 p.m. Veteran series “The Flash” and “Arrow” remain in their Tuesday and Wednesday homes. Then, “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow,” which was a midseason series last year, becomes a Thursday staple.
That’s a lot of comics. Tights and flights will take up almost 50% of The CW’s schedule in fall. The CW president Mark Pedowitz will likely be peppered with questions about the network’s embrace of all things DC when he speaks with press later this morning.
One comic won’t make it to air this fall however: The CW’s new edgy take on the Archie comics, “Riverdale,” won’t be around until midseason. Also: The CW will likely take some grief from fans disappointed to see “The Vampire Diaries” spinoff “The Originals” pushed to midseason.
We asked The CW president Mark Pedowitz to fill out our Upfront Survey. Here’s her take on what’s to come:
1. What were your main goals this development cycle? We’ve been raising the bar for the past few years with our new shows we pick-up, so our goal was to keep that momentum going, especially now that we’re acting from a position of strength.
2. What were you most proud of this past TV season? We were so thrilled with how well “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” captured critical raves, further establishing The CW as a place that takes chances. In addition, both of our other freshman shows, “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow” and “Containment,” launched successfully.
3. What is your TV guilty pleasure right now? AMC’s “The Night Manager.”
4. What is the biggest game changer (or disrupter) in the TV biz this year? We‘ve seen the further acceleration of how and where the viewer wishes to view their shows and the continuing adjustment to the fact that viewers watch more and more on their own schedule
Here’s The CW’s fall 2016 schedule:
MONDAY: 8 p.m., “Supergirl” (new network); 9 p.m., “Jane the Virgin”
TUESDAY: 8 p.m., “The Flash”; 9 p.m., “No Tomorrow” (new drama)
WEDNESDAY: 8 p.m., “Arrow”; 9 p.m., “Frequency” (new drama)
THURSDAY: 8 p.m., “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow”; 9 p.m., “Supernatural”
FRIDAY: 8 p.m., “The Vampire Diaries”; 9 p.m., “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”
MIDSEASON: “The 100,” “Reign,” “iZombie,” “The Originals,” “Riverdale” (new drama)
And here’s a look at The CW’s new shows:
“Frequency” (Warner Bros. TV/Lin Pictures): In this reimagining of the New Line Cinema film, a female police detective in 2016 discovers she is able to speak via a ham radio with her estranged father (also a detective) who died in 1996. They forge a new relationship while working together on an unresolved murder case, but unintended consequences of the ‘butterfly effect’ wreak havoc in the present day. Cast: Riley Smith (“Nashville,” “True Blood”), Mekhi Phifer (“ER,” “8 Mile”), Peyton List (“The Flash, “Mad Men”), Lenny Jacobson (“Nurse Jackie”), Anthony Ruivivar (“Third Watch”), Devin Kelley (“Chernobyl Diaries”), Daniel Bonjour (“The Walking Dead”)
Executive Producers: Jeremy Carver (“Supernatural”), Toby Emmerich (“The Notebook”), John Rickard (“Horrible Bosses”), Dan Lin (“The LEGO™ Movie,” “Sherlock Holmes”), Jennifer Gwartz (“Veronica Mars”). Director: Brad Anderson.
“No Tomorrow” (CBS Television Studios/Electus): When a risk-averse, straight arrow, female procurement manager at an Amazon-like distribution center falls in love with a freewheeling man who lives life to the fullest because he believes the apocalypse is imminent, to comedic and poignant results they embark on a quest together to fulfill their individual bucket lists. Cast: Tori Anderson (“Open Heart”), Josh Sasse (“Galavant”), Sarayu Blue, (“The Real O’Neals”), Amy Pietz (“The Nine Lives of Chloe King”), Jesse Rath (“Defiance”), Jonathan Langdon (“Special Correspondents”)
Executive Producers: Corinne Brinkerhoff (“American Gothic,” “Jane The Virgin,” “The Good Wife”), Maggie Friedman (“Witches of East End”), Ben Silverman (“Jane The Virgin,” “The Office”). Director: Brad Silberling
“Riverdale” (Warner Bros. TV/ Berlanti Prods.): Set in present day and based on the iconic Archie Comics characters, “Riverdale” is a surprising and subversive take on Archie, Betty, Veronica, and their friends, exploring the surrealism of small town life — the darkness and weirdness bubbling beneath Riverdale’s wholesome façade. Cast: Lili Reinhart (“Surviving Jack”), Cole Sprouse (“The Suite Life of Zack and Cody”), Ashleigh Murray (newcomer), Luke Perry (“Beverly Hills, 90210”, “Jesse Stone”), KJ Apa (“Shortland Street”), Madelaine Petsch (newcomer), Camila Mendes (newcomer), Marisol Nichols (“GCB”), Mädchen Amick (“Twin Peaks”).
Executive Producers: Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (“Supergirl,” “Glee”), Greg Berlanti (“Arrow,” “The Flash,” “Supergirl,” “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow”), Sarah Schechter (“Arrow,” “The Flash,” “Supergirl,” “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow”), Jon Goldwater (Archie Comics). Director: Lee Toland Krieger.