TV Spoilers & Speculation Corner: 5/25/11

This entry is part 21 of 26 in the series Spoilers 2011: Part 1

This week, we have spoilers for Supernatural:

Don’t forget that we’re looking for TV reviewers, specifically for the CW’s new pilot, Secret Circle (airing on Thursdays at 9pm after The Vampire Diaries) and FOX’s Terra Nova. V and The Event have been canceled, but we are still looking for a replacement for our The Vampire Diaries reviewer. If you want to review something for us, please check out our previous announcement and drop us a line. Silvia has started reviewing Game of Thrones. We also have reviewers for Falling Skies and Grimm.

And our Supernatural-meets-Lovecraft contest continues. You have until May 27 to get your entries in and win stuff.

Supernatural (Friday nights, 9pm, CW)
By Paula R. Stiles

First up, we’ve got general spoilers for season seven that are…well, they’re vague. We now know that Nikita will lead in to Supernatural on Fridays and that Supernatural won’t move from its slot. I think this is a good thing for the show. It brought most of its Thursday audience with it this past season and is doing better than most of the other shows on its network (yes, even in the season finale). Moving it would probably just hurt it at this point by confusing the more-casual audience and putting Nikita there would have killed Nikita dead. Not to mention, moving Supernatural to 8pm would probably have required a reduction in its notorious boundaries-pushing in violence and language.

In addition to news of the show’s timeslot next fall, the CW put out a synopsis for season seven on May 19: “Returning for its seventh season, this haunting series follows Sam and Dean Winchester, two brothers bound by tragedy and blood to the one thing that runs through both their veins – hunting monsters. This past season, Dean and Sam faced insurmountable obstacles: Sam returned from Hell without his soul, and Dean risked everything to get it back for him. The power struggle between good and evil raged on, with the new King of Hell, Crowley, ultimately emerging as their adversary. Shockingly, Crowley had made a secret deal with Sam and Dean’s closest friend, the angel Castiel, who is now a desperate freedom fighter on the losing side of a post-Apocalyptic civil war in Heaven; together, the uneasy allies sought to open a door to Purgatory, where a great untapped well of souls lie waiting to be used as the ultimate form of military power. Sam and Dean reeled from the betrayal by their friend – and raced to stop the angel and demon before they opened that dangerous, otherworldly door. Now, in season seven, the Winchesters will find themselves in an increasingly sinister, changing landscape, up against a new foe unlike anything they’ve ever fought. They’ll find their old tricks, weapons and hiding places all rendered useless. All they’ll have is each other. And the certainty that, like the last of the cowboy outlaws, whatever they face, they’re not going down without a fight. The series stars Jared Padalecki as Sam Winchester, Jensen Ackles as Dean Winchester and Misha Collins as Castiel. SUPERNATURAL is from Warner Bros. Television in association with Wonderland Sound and Vision, with executive producers McG (“Charlie’s Angels,” “The O.C.”), Robert Singer (Midnight Caller), Sera Gamble and Phil Sgriccia.”

Note that the synopsis has Misha Collins as a regular next season. However, the next day, TVLine reported that Collins won’t be a regular next season. Showrunner Sera Gamble hedged that they couldn’t say whether Collins would be in the season beyond the season premiere. Still, I doubt they have much of the season outlined yet, either. Gamble also clarified the lack of presence of Eric Kripke and Ben Edlund on the official synopsis, saying that they are still in the writers room, just in different roles.

The CW put out a general “TV to Talk About” promo for the next year of the CW. Usual stuff, not much of Supernatural, pretty bland overall. The network also put out a new promotional poster for season seven, which was made up of these photos (Only Ackles’ is really new) and followed the pattern for season six of halo and snake.

Speaking of which, the old promo poster has been used as the cover for the season six DVD, with special features including: Jensen Ackles: A Director’s Journey (Featurette), Supernatural and the Quest for the Soul (Featurette), Audio Commentaries on “Clap Your Hands if you Believe” and “The French Mistake”, the regular Gag Reel, a special reel of “The French Mistake” Alternate Takes and Outtakes, Two episodes from Supernatural: The Anime Series – “All Hell Breaks Loose” Parts 1 & 2, an Easter Egg, Blu-Ray Exclusives: A Hunter’s Guide to Season 6 & Pop-up trivia track on “The French Mistake”.

Gamble gave an interview prior to the season finale that indicated some people we “liked” would be killed and a character would be “transformed”. We now know who died and it’s obvious who was transformed (Castiel). Gamble has confirmed this and implied a western theme for the new season. Sebastian Roche gave an interview that was cagey about his own character’s fate.

Predictably, Castiel fans were not thrilled by Collins’ no longer being a series regular and said so. I suspect, though, that Collins will be in as much of season seven as he has in past seasons and that this is a cost-cutting measure. It also frees Collins up to do other projects, like Divine.

As if to bolster the idea of Castiel’s popularity, Destiel and Kurt&Blaine (of Glee) made it to the finals in the “TV Romance Competition” and Destiel won. Predictably, some fans wailed that it was the Death of Heteronormativity. O the humanity.

Ausiello teased that Sera Gamble said that Adam coming back was “a very strong maybe”. Uh-huh. Put this in the same category as the showrunner-generated rumours that Kali and Gabriel would return for season six. He also posted an official teaser for season seven: “In season seven, the Winchesters will find themselves in an increasingly sinister, changing landscape, up against a new foe unlike anything they’ve ever fought. They’ll find their old tricks, weapons and hiding places all rendered useless. All they’ll have is each other. And the certainty that, like the last of the cowboy outlaws, whatever they face, they’re not going down without a fight.”

There was the Asylum Europe 2 convention in Mannheim, Germany last weekend. Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles did panels, as did Mark Sheppard, Richard Speight Jr., Fred Lehne, and Brock Kelly. No new spoilers came out of it, though there were some cute stories. Also, Mitch Pileggi’s talk, which we mentioned a month back would occur this past weekend, was written up in the San Francisco Examiner.

Rebecca Dessertine, author of the latest Supernatural novel, One Year Gone, gave three interviews in which she discussed the book and where such tie-in materials fall in terms of canon.

Finally, Supernatural had two hours’ worth of ratings for its season finale. Final ratings were 2.02 million and 2.11, respectively, with 0.8 in A18-49 ratings. These were down from overnight ratings of 2.06 and 2.21 million, with no change in demos, due to preemptions in Chicago and Sacramento for sports. Ratings were probably low for a few reasons: the preemptions (of course), the one-week hiatus in May that may have confused casual audience members and made them think the season was already over, and the premiere in theaters of Pirates of the Caribbean 4.

Some commentators have presented this as a big failure in ratings. However, this is mainly due to the demo being 0.1 lower than the show’s lowest so far, which isn’t much and can be ascribed to the preemptions. That said, the audience numbers weren’t that low. In fact, the actual season finale at 9pm did pretty well and even the 8pm showing didn’t drop below two million. Furthermore, the show’s season finale (and penultimate episode) did better in the ratings than any other CW show’s season finale save The Vampire Diaries and Smallville (the latter clocking in a much-publicized series finale).

So, speculation. As I said above, I’m not too worried about Misha Collins leaving the show just yet. The writers are very early in writing the season and the fan ructions over the idea of Castiel being killed off (and anger at his last-minute “transformation”) are making clear how popular he is. I don’t see him going anywhere permanently, as things currently stand, or Bobby, either. Though I’m guessing that Castiel, or whatever he’s unleashed, will be what’s dogging the brothers this next season, with the Lovecraft content being set-up for that.

I’m more concerned by the writers talking about doing a “western” and watching Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid for inspiration. Not that I mind westerns, but hasn’t this show always been a horror-western? And their attempt at noir this season? Well…it wasn’t very impressive. Besides, if you insert “western” for “noir”, how different is this synopsis from the one for season six, really? It worries me that the writers seem more focused on their seasonal “theme” than on the season’s overarching story – style over substance. This wouldn’t be an issue if they were doing mainly standalones, but they’re not. It would be nice to see some indication that they’ve learned something from previous seasons, especially the past two. But I suppose we won’t know get any big hints until Comic-Con and won’t know for sure how it goes until the season itself plays out. Let’s at least hope for a solid season premiere.

We’ll be back next week with more spoilers. Stay tuned and check out our reviews of Game of Thrones, The Event and Supernatural.

About Paula R. Stiles

Paula is not at all paranoid about government conspiracies after six years in EMS, two years in Africa for the Peace Corps, a few summers with the Park Service, and ten years studying the Knights Templar. She's seen governments in action. They couldn't cover up a toy picnic table, let alone evidence of alien visitation. Writes about science for fun, history for money, and zombies for the company. You can read her sober-as-a-judge book about Templars in medieval Spain, Templar Convivencia, on Amazon. You can find her homepage at: http://thesnowleopard.net.

Paula R. StilesTV Spoilers & Speculation Corner: 5/25/11