It’s not, generally, a good time to be a broadcast network. Ratings are down, production companies are being sold off to rivals, talent is fleeing to Netflix. Any broadcast network expanding, let alone a small one, is surprising. But the CW, home of Riverdale and an entire universe of superhero shows, is doing exactly that, by adding a weekend night to its broadcasting schedule.
Announced via a press release, the CW will be adding two hours of primetime programming on Sunday nights. The CW has shown a knack for picking hits out of proportion to the network’s size, such as picking up Crazy Ex-Girlfriend from Showtime or going with Riverdale, a show best described as Archie meets Twin Peaks by way of Douglas Sirk. But as it keeps finding niche hits, and thanks in part to the network’s billion-dollar deal with Netflix that quickly gets new seasons up to stream those hits are coming faster, it’s been running out of room. The CW’s shows rarely command enormous ratings, but they’ve got dedicated, and unusually broad and strong, fan bases. Consider that Supernatural is more than a decade old, and may go for longer yet.
So the Sunday night slots, which haven’t had shows put in them yet, will likely both take the pressure off and give the network more room to grow. And in a section of the TV industry which generally makes news by bleeding viewers, it may make sense to ask themselves what the CW is doing right.
(via The CW)