The CW Renews The Vampire Diaries, The 100, Arrow, The Flash, & More

The CWNews out of TCA this morning: The CW has renewed practically its whole fall line-up: eight shows including novel adaptations The Vampire Diaries (and its spinoff The Originals) and The 100 and comics adaptations Arrow and The Flash. Additionally, comics adaptation iZombie will premiere on March 17th.

Poll: Fall TV Coverage!

Fall TV is right around the corner – well, for me, I guess it started last night with Haven – so it’s time to decide what I’ll be covering here at Read the Screen. Based on last year’s interest levels, I’m going to keep writing about Bones and Elementary every week, and will cover those shows as completely as possible. I’m inclined to stick with Sleepy Hollow as well – thoughts? I could swap that out for something like The 100 or About a Boy, if you guys would rather read about those. Let me know. As you saw earlier today, I will be linking over to my Haven recaps at TheTelevixen, but that will be on my list of shows for news/videos/other general coverage, along with those above and The Vampire Diaries.

I’ve decided not to review any of the comics-based shows (Arrow, The Flash, S.H.I.E.L.D., Agent Carter, Constantine) on a weekly basis, because I felt like I was in over my head last year with Arrow because I know so little of the source material. If you’re interested in those shows, though, let me know and I’ll try to keep up with general coverage and check in on them occasionally.

Thoughts? Opinions? Other obvious shows based on books that I haven’t listed above because it’s Friday and I’m tired?

TV Casting: Daredevil, Arrow, Elementary, & More

Deborah Ann WollDeborah Ann Woll will star as Karen Page on Daredevil. Peter Shinkoda has joined the show as well.

Colin Donnell will return for an Arrow flashback!

Raza Jaffrey will guest star as Joan’s boyfriend on Elementary.

Wentworth Miller will play Leonard Snart/Captain Cold on The Flash.

The Vampire Diaries has cast Chris Wood, Emily C. Chang, Marco James, Jayson Warner Smith, and Jodi Lyn O’Keefe.

Cote de Pablo will star in The Dovekeepers.

Raymond J. Barry will recur on The 100.

Backstrom has cast Robert Forster as the main character’s father.

CW Fall Premiere Dates

CWThe CW has announced its fall premiere dates, and they’ve got a ton of adaptations this year. The Vampire Diaries will premiere on Thursday, October 2nd at 8/7c, and its spinoff The Originals on Monday, October 6th at 8/7c. Arrow will premiere on Wednesday, October 7th at 8/7c, and its spinoff, The Flash, debuts on Tuesday, October 6th at 8/7c. And The 100 returns on Wednesday, October 22nd at 9/8c. Here’s the network’s full premiere schedule. Which shows will you be watching?

The CW Renews The 100 & Cancels The Carrie Diaries

The 100In addition to the three comics adaptations I posted about earlier today, the CW has decided on the future of its two other adaptations. The 100, based on the book by Kass Morgan, will return for a second season. I’m curious how they’ll keep this one going indefinitely, but I’ve been enjoying it, so I’m happy to give it a try. Unfortunately, Sex and the City prequel The Carrie Diaries will not be returning. Boo.

Book Review: The 100

I really liked the pilot of the CW’s The 100 TV show, and enjoyed the second episode, so I was very curious to read the book. (Well, disclosure: I started the book before the show started, but it took me a while.) Unfortunately, I was almost entirely disappointed. If the show continues to be enjoyable, or even watchable, it will join the ranks of the many CW shows that have (at least for me) elevated their source material, along with The Vampire Diaries, Gossip Girl, and The Secret Circle.

I wanted to like this book, as it plays with some really interesting ideas and asks some good questions about what humanity could or should do to survive. Unfortunately, for a book with so much going on, both plot-wise and idea-wise, it somehow managed to be boring and an extremely slow read. (The many, many points of view didn’t help.) The writing not good, and I felt distanced from the characters throughout; it took me most of the book to even feel like I was being pulled into the story at all. Unfortunately, by the time I finally got interested in the story, almost all of the main characters turned out to be so idiotic and/or selfish that by the end of the book, I was pretty much rooting for (this version of) humanity to just die off already. And I’m pretty sure that was not the intended effect.

That said, I . . . would not be entirely surprised if I wind up reading the next book. I’m sure I’ll want to throw that one across the room too, but as I said, some of the ideas the book plays with are really interesting and I’m curious to see how certain issues resolve. And sometimes I just like to punish myself, apparently. We’ll see.

Pilot Thoughts: The 100

The 100Last week, the CW aired the first episode of their new show The 100, based on the novel of the same name by Kass Morgan. I’m in the middle of reading the book right now, and honestly it hasn’t really grabbed me so far, so I didn’t have high hopes for the show. But I’m delighted to report that I really enjoyed it, and that it pulled me in much more quickly than the book has.

Part of this, undoubtedly, is because the show both gets going more quickly than the novel and does a better job of explaining the background of the world up front. They did a nice job of getting the kids into the ship immediately and then having some exposition come via videos while they’re traveling to earth, which worked very well. And back in space, the leaders coming out and saying that the kids are expendable was more blunt and direct than I expected, and certainly raises the stakes.

My favorite thing about this pilot was Clarke. She’s so competent and practical, even in this crazy situation! “Before you get any ideas, Finn’s mine.” “Before you get any ideas, I don’t care.” Love it. I’m sure there will be plenty of romance as the show progresses, but I really like that right now, our heroine is so focused on what needs to be done to survive, and that even though the others call her “princess” and she’s clearly from a privileged background, she has more real skills and useful knowledge than most of the rest of the kids. None of the other characters have quite grabbed me that much so far, but there’s time.

I am interested to see how the political situation on Earth works itself out and to what extent it mirrors the one in space. There are definitely issues of class and privilege as well as personal agendas and, you know, teenagers being teenagers. (Bellamy, honey, I know you have good reason to hate the government, but anarchy is not the answer.) “Whatever the hell we want” is a rallying cry that made me want to scream in frustration, but also one that makes perfect sense for a bunch of adolescents, and it will be interesting to see how long they try to hold to that philosophy. Back in space, the adults clash over whether their priority should be simply keeping humanity alive or making sure it deserves to survive, and I look forward to seeing how that theme plays out in both places.

Other thoughts:

  • There are a few big changes in character backstory between the novel and the show, and I’m curious to see whether they wind up being for specific reasons or if it just seemed like it would make the characters more accessible.
  • I was impressed with the way they filmed things to make the kids’ first looks at and experiences on Earth seem shocking, even though it’s actually normal to us.
  • Practically every show on TV has used “Radioactive” by now, but I’ll give this one a pass since the lyrics are actually relevant here.
  • It will be interesting to see how the show deals with the two groups of characters in separate places with no contact (so far), though the one-way wristband monitoring helps this.
  • “What? He’s cute.” “He’s a criminal.” “They’re all criminals.” The CW must be so happy they found a way to make a show in which every boy is a “bad boy.”
  • Oh, hey, the water monster thing! And the creepy deer! This show might give me nightmares.
  • And . . . apparently there’s someone already there on Earth, shooting people. So that should be interesting.

The CW Sets Season Finale Dates + Labyrinth Miniseries

The CWWe had some news from the CW yesterday – they’ve set their spring season finale dates as well as the airdates for Labyrinth. According to Give Me My Remote, the networks TV adaptations will almost all end in May:

  • May 13: The Originals
  • May 14: Arrow
  • May 15: The Vampire Diaries
  • June 11: The 100

Miniseries Labyrinth, which is based on the novel by Kate Mosse and stars Tom Felton, Sebastian Stan, Jessica Brown Findlay, and others, will air on May 23rd and 24th. It “jumps back and forth between modern and medieval France as it follows the lives of two women who are separated by centuries, but united in their search for the Holy Grail.” I’m looking forward to that one.

The Cast of The 100 Answers Questions for CW Connect

The 100In this cute video from CW Connect, actors from the upcoming show The 100, including Eliza Taylor, Thomas McDonell, Isaiah Washington, Marie Avgeropoulos, and Henry Ian Cusick, answer fan-submitted questions. The show premieres on March 19th.