It's still incredibly early to start talking about whether or not Supernatural might be picked up for another season, but since this week's episode is a repeat, I've had some time to think. From the beginning, Supernatural creator Eric Kripke has said he has a five-year plan for the show, and while he has every intention of finishing it as planned, the summer saw a change in tone regarding the future of Supernatural.
CW President Dawn Ostroff and Kripke himself both remained open to the possibility of continuing Supernatural beyond its current fifth season, but should they? More Supernatural is rarely a bad thing, but is it worth it for another season? Just like for every important debate, I made up a list of pros and cons to help figure it out.
PRO: The Creativity of the Writers
Supernatural has one of the most inventive and creative writing staffs on TV, with stand-outs like Sera Gamble, Ben Edlund and Jeremy Carver. Already this season has featured an apocalyptic future, Paris Hilton and the Anti-Christ (surprisingly, those last two were different characters). And upcoming episodes include Dean as an old man and the Winchesters living in various other TV shows. Creatively, Supernatural shows no signs of stopping and could easily keep going with this talented group of writers.
CON: There's Nowhere to Go But Down
This season, the Winchesters are facing Lucifer. That's as big a villain as you can possibly get, so if the show continues beyond the Lucifer storyline, it would be nearly impossible to match that level of conflict. Right now, if Kripke does plan on finishing this storyline by the end of season 5, it's hard to imagine what could be as compelling as fighting the devil.
PRO: High Ratings
Not only does Supernatural have great DVR ratings, but it's also one of The CW's highest-rated shows. Last week, Supernatural's ratings were higher than One Tree Hill, Gossip Girl, 90210 and Melrose Place (2009), putting it in the top half of the CW's shows.
CON: Low Ratings
I know this doesn't make sense, but while Supernatural is doing OK compared to other CW shows, it isn't doing that well compared to itself. Through the first six episodes of season 5, the show's average rating is about 2.74 million viewers, which is the same as the season 3 average, the lowest the show has ever had.
PRO: The CW Doesn't Have Many Shows
Overall, the CW hasn't developed many hits. Gossip Girl is an exception, and both Reaper and 90210 lasted more than one season, but the CW also had Runaway, Hidden Palms, Privileged, Life is Wild and The Beautiful Life. The CW only has eight shows on right now, and that's not enough, so the network may have to keep Supernatural around.
CON: The CW is Developing a Ton of New Shows
Right now, the CW is gearing up for pilot season to try and develop some new hits for next fall, and their initial lineup is ambitious, with at least eight new hour-long shows in very early development. Not all of these will even be under consideration, but it is a sign that the CW is looking for plenty of fresh talent.
PRO: More Jared and Jensen
If Supernatural comes to an end, the very rabid fan community will be left without a weekly dose of Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles, which could send some people into withdrawal. For proof, just ask Wentworth Miller fans how they're coping with Prison Break ending.
CON: Preventing the Stars from New Opportunities
Working on a TV show, especially one where they are the only two real stars, is a time-consuming process for Jared and Jensen, especially since it films in Vancouver and not L.A. If Supernatural came to an end, both stars would be able to either star in more movies or start over with a brand new TV show. They both have histories, Jared on Gilmore Girls and Jensen on Dark Angel, so it might be fun to see them expand their horizons and try out some new roles.
VERDICT: Bring on Season 6
When all the pros and cons are weighed, I'm left with the overwhelming desire to see where the heck Supernatural could possibly go. Season 6 could be a disaster, or it could be a fresh start and breathe new life into an aging series. There's no way to tell unless we see it, so despite some good reasons against it, I'm strongly in favor of a sixth season for Supernatural, no matter what.