“Walker: Independence” will not be returning for a second season, TheWrap can now confirm. Sources close to the series have said that the Katherine McNamara drama will not be returning to The CW.
“Walker: Independence” was a prequel to “Walker,” which stars Jared Padalecki and was renewed earlier on Tuesday for its fourth season. The same source confirmed that “Walker: Independence’s” cancelation will have no impact on the future of “Walker.” At the moment, no other decisions have been made about pending shows at the network.
This news comes ahead of The CW’s upfronts, which are scheduled for May 18. It also marks the first CW show to be axed during this TV season. At the moment, the fates of “All American: Homecoming,” “Gotham Knights,” “Kung Fu,” “Superman and Lois” and “The Winchesters” are still up in the air.
A reboot of “Walker, Texas Ranger,” “Walker” first premiered on the network in early 2021. Network favorite Padalecki stars in the leading role and serves as executive producer of the series, which was set in the ’90s. It was then followed by its prequel series, “Walker: Independence,” which premiered in the fall of 2022. Set in the 1800s, the origin story followed Abby Walker (McNamara), a high-class Bostonian whose husband was murdered before her eyes. As she travels to the West, she joins forces with Hoyt Rawlins (Matt Barr) in a journey that will forever change her life.
Canceling the spinoff of a fan-favorite show doesn’t bode well for any network, especially one in the midst of a major shakeup. Last fall, it was reported that Nextstar would acquire 75% controlling stake in the network. The change of hands has led to several major shifts at The CW, including layoffs of longtime employees.
“Our acquisition of The CW is strategically and operationally compelling, as it will enable us to leverage our operational experience to improve the network’s performance through our management of this powerful national platform,” Nextstar chairman and CEO Perry Sook said in a statement at the time. “We plan to apply the same strict financial standards to operating The CW as we apply to our other businesses.”
In the past, Sook has said that he aims to adjust The CW to cater to a demographic base more in line with Nextstar’s local stations, which have an average viewer of about 58 years old. Considering The CW has built a name for itself creating programming for teens and young adults, this strategy is a major shift for the network. Its programming will likely reflect these changes in the weeks and months to come.
‘Walker’ Renewed for Season 4 at The CW