WGN America's First Original Series Salem Will Take Us Back To The Witch Trials

It may have seemed like original programming really took off when cable stations started getting into it, but now that we’re living the days of Hulu, Netflix, Amazon and the like, we are only on the cusp of an entertainment revolution. And because all things are cyclical, another cable station is jumping into the game pointy hat-first, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

WGN America president Matt Cherniss promised original programming when he stepped into his role three months ago, and he is already making good on it with Salem, a supernatural drama from Adam Simon (The Haunting in Connecticut) and Brannan Braga, the creator of Flash Forward and writer/producer on 24 and several entries in the Star Trek franchise, both the films and TV series. Hopefully he’ll be running the show here.

Originally called Malice and developed for FX (where Cherniss previously ran programming), Salem is set in 17th century Massachusetts, and will tell audiences what really happened during the witch trials. It will “uncover the dark, supernatural truth hiding behind the veil of this ignominious period in American history,” where nothing is as it seems, and the story will center “on an epic romance wrapped around this explosive revelation” and words like “new vision of witches” are also tossed about.

There’s no doubt that witches will become the new vampire and zombie in terms of ubiquity in fictional narratives, with Rob Zombie’s Lords of Salem released just a couple of months ago and American Horror Story’s third season focusing on its own coven of witches. So long as it distances itself from the campiness of True Blood’s later seasons and the lackluster dialogue of The Walking Dead, maybe this could be the supernatural drama to rule them all, my pretty. (Cackle. Cackle.)

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.