The Flash, Supergirl, Arrow, and Legends of Tomorrow are four of the CW’s most popular shows, and all four have been renewed for the next season. The network announced the renewals ahead of its slot at the Television Critics Association conference.
With The Flash sitting as the channel’s most popular show, it’s not really a huge surprise. For the shows to disappear completely, we’d have to see the network make a huge shift toward a new audience. CW president Mark Pedowitz said that while many shows are seeing shorter seasons, the network’s comic book shows lend themselves well to full 22-plus episode seasons seen in more traditional television scheduling.
I’d tend to agree with Pedowitz, but Arrow, Legends and, to some degree, even The Flash have struggled with those longer seasons. The shows seem to have a hard time knowing what to do with all that time and end up stretching out drama that would be solved by two adults having a normal conversation or one adult using their education rather than meandering away for something less connected to the plot or shortening the season.
I’ve watched friends initially enchanted by the shows drop them in frustration with the stories or the amount of work required to keep up. I’m excited that the shows will continue, but I’m hoping the teams behind these shows will look at how audiences are responding to them and use that information well.
All four shows are currently on their standard mid-season hiatus, but all four return starting the week of January 23. with Legends of Tomorrow switching to Tuesday nights following The Flash.