Batwoman and Legends of Tomorrow Canceled: Are CW DC TV Shows in Trouble?

It’s a sad end for a series that had really hit its stride the last two seasons after a troubled start behind-the-scenes which continued to boil over for the next two years. Still, the season three finale worked well as a series finale, and Arrowverse TV shows are adept at bringing back characters from canceled shows as guest stars in other series as this season’s The Flash event, β€œArmageddon,” proved.

A few hours later, word broke that Legends of Tomorrow had also been given the ax.

Despite the fact that it finally introduced beloved DC Comics time-traveling superhero Booster Gold in its season finale and ended on a tremendous cliffhanger, the series also spent its final episodes giving many characters loving send-offs, potentially setting the stage for its cancelation. A vocal #RenewLegendsOfTomorrow campaign had been keeping up the pressure on social media, but ultimately it wasn’t enough to save the Waverider crew.

Now the big question is, how many more Arrowverse shows are there going to be? At the moment, the only DC TV shows that The CW has in their arsenal that have been renewed for the 2022-2023 season are The Flash season 9 (which is currently rumored to be a shortened final season, much like they did for Arrow in its final year) and Superman & Lois season 3. Stargirl season 3 is also currently and will arrive later this summer. It’s not technically part of the Arrowverse, however, and it has strong ties to HBO Max (after the beginning of its life on the now-defunct DC Universe streaming service), so its fate seems unrelated to some of its network-mates as of now.

Which leaves big question marks still hanging over one more DC show on The CW. The first is Naomi, executive produced by Ava DuVernay and which is currently airing its first season. It seems unlikely that the network would announce a cancelation before it airs its season finale on May 10.

There are two wild cards in all of this. The first is that The CW itself is up for sale, with Texas-based Nexstar media likely to take a controlling stake in it. As The CW is co-owned by Viacom and WarnerMedia, and with the latter’s new corporate masters Discovery looking for efficiencies in the wake of their recent acquisition, an unprofitable area like The CW and its roster of relatively high-budget superhero shows seems like a target for contraction.

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