Staying #WaywardAF: an open letter to the CW

 

Stardust&Melancholy

To the CW television network:

In 2014, you attempted to sell us a spinoff called Supernatural: Bloodlines. The backdoor pilot didn’t work, because ultimately the new characters weren’t people your fanbase cared about. But there were and are characters that we cared about back then as much as we do now, and I’m not just talking about the Winchesters. For the past four years, a large portion of the Supernatural fandom has been interested in a little something we like to call Wayward Daughters. At first, we didn’t have that cool name, the meaningful #waywardAF hashtag, the t-shirt campaign, or a petition to create a TV show (these things started rolling around in 2015)—but lots of blogs, including this one, were talking about the wonderful and magical idea of Jody Mills and Donna Hanscom leading a group of girls through the world of monsters. Basically, some complex, multi-layered, interesting, and amazing ladies kicking ass and taking names.

For a moment, it seemed like this wonderful and magical idea might become a reality. You gave us an amazing backdoor pilot for Wayward Sisters. We had a glimmer of hope that for once, things might be different. But this last Friday, those hopes for change were dashed. Instead of picking up Wayward Sisters, you chose to create a spin-off of a spin-off (who asked for Legacies?? Seriously?) and bring back a show that you canceled back in 2006.

In a few short hours after this announcement, you were already being tagged in posts and articles about why you’d broken our hearts and how you missed an amazing opportunity. Here are an additional two cents as to why dismissing this show was a bad idea. You may have already encountered these ideas in previous write-ups, but that doesn’t change our devastation, our desire, or our determination.

the CW

The foundation of Wayward Sisters was the fortitude and general badassery of Jodi and Donna, both of whom are already fan favorites on Supernatural. It’s almost redundant to explain that most successful or memorable spin-offs work because audiences know at least one of the characters. Consider shows like FrasierAngel, and Torchwood. And with Wayward Sisters, we didn’t just have Jodi and Donna, but other established characters we longed to know more about. These are quality characters we already love! Not to mention that Supernatural has to end eventually. The creation of a show like this would enable you to have the boys come back for guest appearances—besides, there are so many other aspects of the hunter world we’ve never seen, and this was a perfect opportunity to explore that.

the CW

I have a hard time wrapping my mind around the idea that anyone believes you wouldn’t make money from this show. You have a built-in audience that is willing to spend lots of cash on things they love, believe in, or want to support. We as a fandom have been called “few but fervent” and no one can deny that the relationship between the fans and the show is unlike any other TV enterprise. The actors know it. The writers know it. And you, the CW, know it. “But it’s not about conventions or merchandise,” some people have said. “It’s about advertising.” But do you really believe this audience—one that has helped redefine what a successful genre show means—wouldn’t tune in to watch what we specifically asked for?

And last but not least, the overwhelming understanding that this was chance to change television has been at the forefront of my Twitter feed since the news broke on Friday. There are lots of amazing tweets out there, but the Collective asked some of our followers to tell us what the #waywardAF movement and Wayward Sisters meant to them. Here are a few of the replies we received, and well, they speak for themselves.

So to all the fans reading this who want to know what to do now…here are a few ways to make your voices heard.

  • If it’s still Sunday, May 13 when you see this, send in a video to shivasezekiels on Twitter. She’s creating a Wayward Sisters video project.
  • Sign the petition for the CW to reconsider. As of this post going live, it has 27,750 signatures and is growing by the second.
  • Write to the CW by filling submitting a request here. Tell them what Wayward Sisters becoming a reality would mean to you.
  • Use these hashtags, and use them often: #SaveWayward, #SaveWaywardSisters, #WaywardSisters, #WaywardAF, #WaywardDaughters. The most important of these is #SaveWaywardSisters, which should be tweeted as much as possible during Thursday’s episode of Supernatural.
  • Don’t boycott Supernatural. Though it may seem natural to be angry at the show, the decision to not pick up Wayward Sisters has nothing to do with them.
  • Ask platforms like Netflix and Hulu to do what they did for shows like The Mindy Project and Arrested Development. Did you know you can request TV shows through Netflix? Just fill out this form. It’s technically for existing shows and movies, but if they get enough requests, they might just do something about it.
  • Keep an eye on Twitter. New tweets and articles are popping up frequently with more information on how we can all make a difference.

Oh, and the CW? Even if you don’t change your mind…even if no other network or platform picks up the show…even if nothing changes…we will always be WAYWARD AS FUCK.

Sincerely,

The Collected Mutineer

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