Two shows, both based on comic books. One is new, and one is just finishing its first season. One was the subject of a fierce bidding war, and one seemed far from a sure thing. One will air on a network best known for crime shows your mom watches, and one might as well change its call sign to DC at this point. But together, it’s good news all around for Supergirl and iZombie. Both shows, based on DC Comics properties, will be premiering and renewed for the 2015/16 TV season respectively, further solidifying the current emphasis in the TV universe of shows based on comic books.
According to Deadline (via Coming Soon), Supergirl got a pick-up ahead of upfronts week, the week where all the networks announce their fall line-ups for advertisers, because of a unique deal between CBS and Supergirl producer Greg Berlanti. There’s no word on how many episodes of Supergirl will be asked for, but according to Deadline, the reaction to the pilot itself and Melissa Benoist in the title role has been very positive. Also unknown is where Supergirl will sit on the CBS schedule and when it will debut, but those questions will be answered next Wednesday when CBS makes its upfronts presentation.
Supergirl, co-starring Calista Flockhart as Cat Grant, Chyler Leigh as Alexandra “Alex” Danvers, Mehcad Brooks as James Olsen and David Harewood as Hank Henshaw, will be overseen by Berlanti (Arrow, The Flash), his No Ordinary Family co-creator Ali Adler, and Arrow/Flash co-executive producer Andrew Kreisberg.
Meanwhile, over on CBS’ corporate cousin the CW, iZombie has been announced for a return engagement next season in another Deadline scoop (via ScreenRant). The series created by Veronica Mars mastermind Rob Thomas and based on the DC Comics book, follows a young woman named Liv (played by Rose McIver) who works at the Seattle morgue to cover her pressing zombie need to consume brains. The side effect is that she gets all memories and talents of the people’s whose brains she consumes, and uses that knowledge to help the Seattle police solve that person’s murder.
So why renew iZombie? Well, it’s been a critical hit for the network, and the CW’s bosses like that, and they like being in business with Thomas. The ratings haven’t been huge like its lead-in The Flash, but they’ve been promising enough to warrant a renewal. Again, there’s no word on number of episodes or when iZombie will return next year, but the same midseason launch with 13 episodes seems like the likely option. Interestingly, only two shows currently airing on the CW – Hart of Dixie and The Messangers – have not been renewed for next season. The CW announces its schedule for fall a week from today (Thursday).
The network upfronts begin Sunday with the announcement from NBC. Stay tuned for a lot of TV news in the next week.