Supernatural: fans are rallying behind "Like a Virgin" after a schedule bump debacle

Supernatural fans were delivered a rough blow last week with the last minute schedule bump of the January 28th episode, "Like a Virgin," causing an additional week of "Hellatus" (SPN-speak for hiatus). The CW's last minute, supposed Hail Mary to save viewer numbers for Vampire Diaries and Nikita as they feared both American Idol and two large markets were pre-empted with other TV scheduling. 

It seems both worries were really without much ground, as the shows appeared to maintain about the same level in terms of viewer numbers. So, Supernatural fans were made to suffer for reasons with weak merit but then again, what's new? The CW has treated Supernatural like the red-headed step child since the WB and UPN merged into the new network back in 2006 -- not enough promotion and schedule hopping from Tuesday to Thursday to Friday. Now, I have actually liked the Friday placement for the most part and hope it stays there for the duration of Supernatural's time with the network. This year will see the end of Smallville when it comes to its tenth season series finale in May, making Supernatural a logical keeper.

Okay, the chances for Supernatural getting a Season Seven renewal looks good and actors Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles said some time ago at a convention that they were signed for a new season if there was a seventh season pick-up, so it's now in the network's hands. Of course, some of the decisions that the CW and network president Dawn Ostroff have made have at times been questionable, this past week's cluster bomb being one of them. It's my hope that they realize Supernatural is one of their anchor shows. This is a show where the fans won a TV Guide cover for their favorite show as example. In addition, this cover win gave the CW some free publicity (you're welcome, CW).

The Supernatural fandom is loyal and well, let's just say it, they're like junk yard Pit Bulls and when something threatens or screws around with their show you're in danger of losing some flesh if you're within striking distance. The rage that was unleashed with the last minute announcement of fans being denied their January 28th new episode "Like a Virgin" in lieu of repeats of Vampire Diaries and Nikita wasn't a surprise (even I tweeted my disdain for the decision). That night Twitter was lit up with hashtags such as #SaltandBurnCW and #TheCWSucks.

Supernatural has always been like the little engine that could since it premiered in September 2005. Eric Kripke, the show's creator, had a five-year arc planned for the story but even he has said he never thought it would make it to five seasons (but it has, thankfully!). The new show runner is Sera Gamble who has been with SPN since Season One. She took over the reins after Kripke finished his five season arc to allow for a new chapter in the Winchester story. A lot of people asked early on in Season Five when Season Six was green lit, "How do you top the Apocalypse?" It's a good question, yes, but when you're talking Supernatural maybe not so much, because its "I think I can" attitude keeps it plugging along with interesting twists and developments for Sam and Dean, and even Castiel and Bobby. I love Supernatural and I make no apologies about it. Now, have I "loved" every story arc choice that has transpired this season or during earlier ones? No, but that doesn't stop me from watching and I've never pitched a fit and said "I'm done, I won't watch anymore if they do this or go that route" because that mentality is what separates a viewer from a true fan.

For we fans who stick through the thick and thin -- I like to think of us all riding in the Impala with the Winchesters as we experience their triumphs and losses right along with them until the screen fades to black for the final time. There have been some reviews being released from those that were given an advanced screening of "Like a Virgin" and the overall consensus is that the episode is good and the ending is not to be missed!

Supernatural fans must rise like the Phoenix from the ashes of last Friday's disappointment in order to spread the word and raise the buzz once again for this week's premiere of "Like a Virgin" on February 4th at 9:00. Also a reminder that "Appointment in Samarra" will repeat on Wednesday, February 2nd in preparation of the Feb. 4th premiere night.

Let's do as we always do: Support and promote Supernatural!

Check out a preview of "Like a Virgin": 

By Dawn Nyberg

About the author

Dawn has a passion for the show Supernatural & everything that makes it great: acting, story arcs & classic rock. She loves episode spoilers, conventions & sneak peek clips. Follow her on Twitter: @Feretory

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On: Sunday, January 30, 2011
jillyanne said:

I love your article, and I'm also one of those who will continue to watch regardless of how in love I am with the story arc. I actually get tired of hearing fans whining about how they hate this or that. C'mon people...either shut up and love it or stop watching (and whining).

I spend a lot of time (probably too much) on and we've declared this week SPN Fan Week. We want to celebrate the united front SPN fans have shown this week in response to the CW and their 'ill-judged' decision.

I cannot wait for 'Like A Virgin', by all accounts it's gonna be awesome. Season 6 rocks and so do SPN fans 

Thanks for a great article Dawn

On: Sunday, January 30, 2011
morganmaniac said:

I'm also one of the rabid fans who were very upset that the episode was replaced by Nikita. I don't mind the series, but when the programming was changed without notice, I changed channels!  I'm a die hard Supernatural fan and can't wait to see 'Like a Virgin'  so sure hope they let us know when it will be on!

On: Monday, January 31, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

Thank you, Jillyanne and Morhanmaniac for your awesome comments! Much appreciated :-) Spread the word about this week's airing of "Like a Virgin" and the rerun of "Appointment in Samarra". Thanks again for reading and commenting!

On: Monday, January 31, 2011
Sami said:

I think that these rabid fans, are being dumb. The CW picks its programming, and that's it. Now that Friday has past, they can suck it up and wait until this Friday. I love Supernatural and Vampire Diaries, but I haven't watched Supernatural since the first episode of season 6.

On: Monday, January 31, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

Thanks for the comment Sami. In some instances fans do go over the top but in this instance I can understand and even embrace the malice they are feeling. Yes, the CW does pick its programming but the sudden schedule bump one day before a new episode air date has been advertised just exudes panic, a freshman mistake for a network that should have their ducks in a row by now ... they're not fresh off the boat in an unknown land. I beilieve fans if given advance warning (indicating a controlled decision on the CW's part) would have been upset, yes, but would have as you said "suck[ed] it up" and this new air date of Feb. 4 would have come along without as much "rabid" fan reaction.

If you haven't watched since the first episode of this season, maybe you should give it another try :-) It's worth it and I see great things ahead for this season! Thanks again for taking the time to read and comment.

On: Monday, January 31, 2011
Keri said:

It's been well noted that the CW is run by monkeys that would rather promote crap teen drama on than shows with substance. I wouldn't say I'm a rabid fan, but I have written them an angry letter expressing their lack of promote towards their shows that have actually had Emmy nominations and a die hard fanbase. Shows that even survived and flourished when put head to head with CSI. I mean really, Nikita was more important? I had a cat named Nikita when I was in diapers. My childhood is on the phone and wants them to stop remaking crap that died years ago so I can stop having regression issues and flashbacks of DayGlo. But I digress. If I was the people in charge of Supernatural, I'd pull a Buffy and see to which network I could move to because they have been the underdog of that network for years now. I don't see the fans of 90210, Vampire Diaries and Gossip Girl getting fandom tattoos and re-fabing replica cars. The summer alone kills me and this break has been anxiety. I've been itching to find out what is happening with Sam just to have my hopes put under the heel of the vampire fad and the 80s revival.

CW needs to get their crap together and stop jerking the fans around. They know we are loyal and will watch it no matter what day or time slot but we will hate them for treating the show like it's the inbred kid in the attic.

On: Monday, January 31, 2011
Cassandra said:

Very good article, Dawn. I think you hit the nail on the head when you said that it's not so much the fact that SPN was postponed for another week that created the problem. The real problem was the last minute decision and utter disrespect the CW showed for fans of both SPN and Smallville. Both shows have done very well for the CW and yet they still treat them as if they are insignificant. SPN especially is, IMHO, one of the best shows on television and the CW needs to recognize that we are diehard, loyal, and yes even rabid fans of the show because it's just an outstanding show. I was highly disappointed at the freshman move the CW made (especially since there were other, better options available) and I let them know it. I agree that had they given more advance notice, I would've been upset but not nearly as upset as I was to learn THE AFTERNOON BEFORE that my show wasn't coming back on Friday. And I can't imagine how disappointed those fans were who tuned in on Friday after not havig heard through the grapevine that SPN was delayed another week. Hopefully the CW will learn from this severe miscalculation and never repeat it again. I am a loyal SPN fan down to my bones, and I am loving this season and excited about the prospect of a season 7. Great article! :)

On: Monday, January 31, 2011
Kitty Cat said:
Look out! Rabid Supernatural fan here! Why, oh why, must the CW pick on my boys? I've seen every Supernatural episode (some more than once thanks to TNT) and I threw a fit when the show was moved from the Thursday Night Wasteland to Cursed Friday Night. Okay, I adjusted. Then, after waiting WEEKS for a new episode, it gets delayed a week. It's enough to drive a girl to drink! I had better see "Like A Virgin" this Friday or I might do something evil...
On: Monday, January 31, 2011
Ripthorn said:

Having been a loyal supporter and fan of SPN, it was very irritating to find out last minute about the show being pushed back another week. The CW network is a flash in the pan network putting out shows which only appeal to people who adore the glitz-plastic look of young hollywood. SPN is a unique, original, well-written show which deserves better support and better marketing overall.

I have lost faith with hollywood and network executives who "THINK" they know what I like. It amazes me how often they interfer and destroy the noble intentions of a show. I just hope that SPN can hold fast and not fall prey to their sharp claws. I always think back to a movie called "The Big Picture" with Kevin Bacon about how meddlesome they can be. Nothing's changed.

Please stay the course and hold true to SPN's values and originality that I've come to love over the years. As for network exec's pulling the switchero again with scheduling - I just threw in Season one on Blu-ray and started over from the begining. :)

On: Monday, January 31, 2011
Nikki said:

LOVED your article Dawn! I too hold out hope that the CW will realize that Supernatural is one of their TOP 3 Anchor Shows. I am a true fan of Supernatural and I will continue to watch it REGARDLESS of where they go with the story. I think the CW made a terrible blunder by pushing the middle season premier back, and playing a re-run of the Vampire Diaries didnt help. The suits, decision makers, whomever NEEDS TO GET IT TOGETHER! It's like C'mon guys, Supernatural won the cover of TV Guide, and they were up against some stiff competition for Fan Favorite. Like I said GET IT TOGETHER.

On: Monday, January 31, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

Thanks Keri, Cassandra, Kitty Cat, Ripthorn and Nikki for taking the time to comment on the article and the CW's bone-head move last week. I know we're simmering on a low boil, even a little now. I'm so eager for this week's episode and to see where the rest of this season takes us :-) I really appreciate you all sharing your thoughts!

Now, I hear "Carry on Wayward Son" in my head :) Spread the word about the repeat on Wednesday and new epi on Friday ... we need to create the buzz lost from last week's CW snafu. SPN Rocks!

On: Monday, January 31, 2011
Susie S. said:

I am a super fan of SPN. Have all 5 seasons on DVD and watch TNT eps.  And it is the only show I watch on CW.  The other shows are very childish.  This show should be on SyFy.  I think they would get a lot more respect from that network.  I also think SPN fans are more passionate  and devoted to the show.  It is the perfect show in everyway. 

On: Monday, January 31, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

Thanks for commenting Susie S, it's much appeciated! Yes, the SyFy network would be a decent fit even TNT taking on new seasons would be a nice fit. Hopefully, the CW will finally see SPN for the gem that it is and promote it more. Of course, if wishes were fishes but hope springs eternal that that the CW will wake up and recognize that they have an epic show on their network.

Many thanks for commenting :)

On: Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Karret said:

Yeaah.. I'm still mad about it. xD Not quite AS mad now though.. I found out like.. 20-30 mins before it was supposed to air. OmO

But, yeah.. definitely won't ever be forgetting this. I wouldn't have had much of a problem if they announced it earlier. I'd be bummed and disappointed, but I wouldn't be playing both Cee Lo Green's and Lilly Allen's F!_!ck You songs all week, written them negative feedback, or ranted at as many sites and to as many friends as I could about how much the CW sucks.


But you're right, we gotta get the buzz going on about the CORRECT airdate. -A-.. ugh. I'm too lazy for this. GASEKLRYG SEBDRFN

Unng.. gotta stop thinking about this, I'll work myself up into a blind rage again. xD

On: Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

Hi Karret, yep frustration is understandable! I still feel the pangs of it, too. But, at least we get a repeat of "Appointment in Samarra" on Wednesday and the finally our new episode on Friday.

I'd love to see great numbers for the Wednesday rerun and the new epi on Friday.

Thanks again for commenting and with any luck the CW won't stick it to the fans again like they did with this fubar.

On: Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Katie said:

Just have to say that I agree with all the fans on here. I was majorly pissed off and I have to say 90% of the reason was the last minute switch. My satellite showed that Supernatural was still airing when I turned it on in the living room room 10 minutes ahead of time. listed a new episode showing when I checked that morning.


CW (and Dawn Ostroff in particular) has shown no respect for the fans of Supernatural. We've consistently fought for the show to survive and even thrive. The CW has done almost nothing to promote the show and get new viewers. The show has succeeded largely through the passion of the fans (campaigns, getting other people hooked, buying DVDs and individual episodes, setting up conventions, etc).


As frustrated as I am with the week's wait, what I'm more frustrated with is the fact that ratings will probably be down next week despite our best efforts. Casual viewers, people who had never seen the show but might have tuned in, etc are going to be confused by the last minute switch. The promos on the CW have been showing for over 7 weeks with last Friday's date and many entertainment publishings (such as TVGuide, Entertainment Weekly, etc) already printed the episode description for Like a Virgin and that it was supposed to show last Friday.


I have no doubt that us fans will make an extra effort to make up for this lack of viewers, but somehow I think the ratings will still come up short. And I have a feeling that the CW won't want to admit that they made a mistake and admit why the ratings aren't higher. Instead they'll blame it on the show itself.


Ugh, I just wish the CW would stop treating the show like dirt and start realizing that if they handled it right, they have a powerful fan-base that could help make really successful. 

On: Wednesday, February 2, 2011
María Isabel said:
We don´t agree with that a Series is replaced by other one, Supernatural is the only and irreaplacable. This Series teaches the real love to us between brothers, the capacity sacrifice of one for the well-being of other one,and though they discuss always love is going to exist between them, they are an example to continuing, since always there must be love, solidarity and capacity of delivery on the part of brothers, the World would be better if this was a reality.
On: Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

Katie, thanks for commenting! I agree completely that the CW takes Supernatural for granted, always have. I thought when it was the WB they did a nice job of advertising but when the merge happened and the CW was born, SPN got the short straw.

As always, the fans will do everything they can to support the show and put the word out :-) Possibly, one day the CW will realize what they have, hope springs eternal.

Thanks again for reading and commenting, it's appreciated!!

On: Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

Maria Isabel, I agree about the portrayal of love and family with the Winchesters. I wish more shows were as good at the portrayal. Of course, we owe almost all of that displayed brotherhood on screen to Jared and Jensen who consistently hit it out of the park with their acting chops :-) They're awesome! I agree, with you and hope that the CW will one day realize what they have in a program.

Thanks for reading and commenting!!!!

On: Wednesday, February 2, 2011
A Sam Girl said:

I'm sorry Sami, but who asked you? Seriously. If you were part of the fandom then you might have a shred of an idea of why we were all so angry and it was due to the fact that we had waited nearly 2 months for our show. It was promoted like you wouldn't believe with all the advanced previews of the show, the teasers and sneak peeks, the spoilers, the promotional clips and interviews that Sera Gamble herself took out time to do for the promotion of the premiere of the 2nd half of the season. The whole entire fandom was excited, happy and hyped up over the new episode to be aired January 28th. Then we find out the very DAY before the episode is supposed to air that they're bumping us for Vampire Diaries and Nikita as well as playing the exact same episodes the very next day on the night that our shows (Smallville and Supernatural) were supposed to air.

I think the Supernatural fandom has ever right to express our anger and show our malice over this because we didn't deserve it, but who didn't deserve it even more was Sera Gamble and gang. She and our boys (Jared and Jensen) along with the rest of the cast and crew worked so hard to get this episode promoted and prepared for the Jan 28th viewing which we didn't get. This is Sera's first season ever as showrunner and to have her network do something like that to her had to be crushing. So not only did it crush the fans that we didn't get our new episode we'd been in eager anticipation of for 7 weeks, but it more than likely crushed Sera, Jared, Jensen, cast and crew as well after all the hard work they'd put in. So please don't go around acting like your word is law and that the fandom is dumb because we were upset because we had every single right to be.

On: Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

A Sam Girl, thanks for reading and commenting. Like my article said, there are fans and viewers. Even though we can't fathom someone else not seeing the epic landscape of Supernatural that SPN fans do, I've decided that like Kripke wrote in Swan Song and had Chuck say ... there will always be some fans that complain (I paraphrased) ... Of course, for those of us loyal to SPN we divide into two groups: viewers and fans. A fan cannot and will not leave a show even if they aren't happy with an angle but viewers are able to tune out and that's their right, they aren't wrong and can have their opinion (I don't try to understand them but accept them) ... but, man are they missing out on something phenomenal!

Let's support the show and promote it :-)

Thanks for reading, much appreciated!

On: Monday, February 7, 2011
George said:

Due to the lame re-schedule I missed the episode "Like a virgin". Anyone have an idea how I can see it? I don't want to wait for a re-run.

On: Monday, February 7, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

Hi George, if you missed the episode this past Friday 2/4/11 -- the CW usually loads the full episode on their site within a few days. It's not on there yet (just checked) but it should be soon. Also, it could be on ITunes or even Youtube sometimes viewers load epi's in parts. I hope the info helps :-)

On: Saturday, June 4, 2011
Chris said:

I thought it should have ended after season 5. That season 5 finale was nearly perfect and probably should have been at least and hour and change without commercials.  Season 6 has been vastly disappointing in my opinion that I have stopped watching and only tracking it on wikipedia and other outlets. I think the fantasy stuff like the phoneix, dragons, Eve, and etc are stuff that isn't needed in Supernatural. They should have stuck with Death, remnants of heaven and hell, and have new stories about ghosts, werewolves (not that changed WW stuff.), Vampires (again not revised), and maybe have the law back on their tail. This show has been good with the folk lore and biblical lore but not when it throws in what I mentioned above. Maybe they should throw in God in person to clean up this bomb of a season.

On: Saturday, June 4, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

Hi Chris, Season 5 did have a powerful ending, although to leave it hanging with Sam showing up under the street light would have been TV. Season 6 had some growing pains, I think due to Sera Gamble taking over where Kripke left off S5. Eve is dead, no more dragons have been mentioned and I doubt we'll ever hear of a Phoeniz again. Over all, S6 had a lot more rough spots than not but they did get the storyline back to what made the show so appealing when it first aired in 2005 ... the brothers and their relationship. The inspiration for S7 is going to be a Butch Cassidy and the Sundance kid kind of season, so it appears that they are headed back to the formula of earlier seasons. Also, Misha Collins (Castiel) is not a series regular for S7, so it looks like they are attempting to adjust the amount of heavenly contact. Although, based on where S6 left off ... my guess is we'll see Castiel in the premiere but beyond that I think it will be very little.

I have not been happy with every story arc move nor progression of the series in certain episodes throughout all seasons, but I started watching when the pilot aired in 2005 and I'm on this train until it reaches the station and the credits roll on the series finale whenever that may be. So, come Hell or high water, I'll keep watching. However, with the network Upfronts stating the inspiration for S7 is Butch and Sundance ... it's looks like the old days of Supernatural cold be headed the viewers way, time will tell. Thanks for commenting Chris, it's appreciated :)

On: Saturday, June 4, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

I meant to say that had S5 ended and been the finale, it would have been BAD TV, I left out the word bad in previous comment ... apologies!

On: Wednesday, June 8, 2011
Thomas said:

Maybe one of you fans can help me out.


In the Season 6 episode where they fall through the window into our universe or one close to it, whatever - what is with the guy who dodges the bullets and then just walks away when the angel is shooting 'em all up at the end? That dude cracks me up every time I watch that episode.

On: Thursday, June 9, 2011
Dawn Nyberg said:

Hi Thomas, I believe that guy was Serge, the one who takes a lot of the promo pics, etc., and handles the cinematography of a scene and how it looks on film. They were going for a Matrix like reponse from him minus the extreme slow-mo bullet time back bend :-) It is funny!


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