Supernatural may have ended on The CW back in 2020, but the hunter legacy is living on. It was recently announced that the network gave a pilot order to The Winchesters, a prequel that follows John and Mary Winchester on their own hunting adventures and love story, told from Dean’s perspective. The show comes from SPN’s own Jensen Ackles and wife Danneel Ackles, and now the project has found its two new leads.
Zombies and American Housewife star Meg Donnelly has been cast as Mary Winchester, while The In Between’s Drake Rodger will portray John Winchester, per THR. The two are taking over the roles once portrayed by Amy Gumenick and Samantha Smith, and Matthew Cohen and Jeffrey Dean Morgan, respectively, on Supernatural. Smith and Morgan both reprised their pilot roles as Mary and John for the milestone 300th episode.
According to the character synopsis, Meg Donnelly’s Mary Campbell is 19 years old. Stuck fighting demons and other dark forces throughout her life, she contemplates leaving the “family business” after she loses a loved one. With her father Samuel’s disappearance and John Winchester’s arrival, she starts a new team of hunters.
The character description is a bit off from what was actually seen on Supernatural. Although Mary was a hunter when she was growing up, her father never disappeared, and rather, sacrificed himself to Yellow Eyes. But it will be interesting to see how it plays out, and whether it will have any connection to her and John’s futures.
Meanwhile, Drake Rodger’s John Winchester is an army vet who has recently returned from a stint in Vietnam. After finding out about his father’s past life with the Men of Letters, John makes it his mission to fight a new war as a hunter.
Just like with Mary, there are some inconsistencies with John’s character description, with the biggest being that he didn’t know anything about being a hunter until after Mary's death, nor did he really have any sense of his father in the Men of Letters. Seeing how it all comes together will be something to look forward to, and how it could possibly turn into something more.
The Winchesters marks the third Supernatural spinoff effort, after failed attempts with 2014’s Bloodlines and 2017’s Wayward Sisters, both having backdoor pilots. With Jensen Ackles working on this new project, perhaps it has a better chance at life than the previous two. The Winchesters is still in its pilot stage, so it may be a while until we hear official news about its future.
Jensen Ackles is not the only Supernatural star working on a prequel project, as costar Jared Padalecki has Walker prequel, Walker: Independence, also in its pilot stage. Winchester scoring a series order would mean that both former Supernatural stars found ways to return to The CW in a big way, although Ackles did come to Padalecki's Walker set to direct an episode recently, and the pranks were daily.
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