Budget cuts to crossovers: 5 things Supergirl's move to the CW could mean

Great news for fans of DC Comics and good television: Supergirl was renewed on Thursday for a second season. One big change, though: it’s moving from CBS to the CW.

Though many fans cheered the move (it always felt more at home at the CW, something that Cat Grant herself observed in the Flash crossover episode), there are definitely a few cons to come with the pros here.

The budget will be lower

There’s no way around this, so we might as well get the bad news out of the way first:  “Supergirl’s” massive, CBS-sized budget is no more. The makeup, CGI and flying sequences on the show were top-notch in the first season, but now that it’s moving to CW, that budget is going to be slashed.

Deadline reports that the show was already planning a move to cheaper Vancouver, away from L.A. It’s hard to say exactly how much of the budget cuts will be noticeable, but effects-heavy The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow are also shot in Vancouver and the CGI for both is quite good overall. But watching Supergirl, you could tell the effects were just that much better (fights in mid-air, Supergirl hovering, etc.).

Regardless of how much it costs, Supergirl’s best effect is the terrific performance of Melissa Benoist.

More crossovers; a stronger DCTV universe


The move to the CW and Vancouver will make it much easier for crossovers like the one with The Flash to happen again.

Legends of Tomorrow executive producer Phil Klemmer recently told Blastr that he is itching for more crossovers, so there’s a high chance she will show up on that series or vice versa.

The earlier crossover also established that Supergirl lives on a different earth than the main DCTV universe, so we’ll have to see how they get around that (not that it’s out of the question for a Kryptonian to figure out how to travel between earths).

And Martian Manhunter possibly meeting the Green Arrow, Flash, Atom and others? We’re there for that.

Comic book series looking riskier for the “big four”

Despite the fact that it was the top-rated new drama on CBS, the network still couldn’t justify keeping the series around. That means other networks will be more hesitant with comic book-based TV series (though we’ll surely continue to see them on the CW – hello, “Riverdale” – as well as Netflix, AMC and elsewhere).

Fox is seeing some success with Gotham and Lucifer, and Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is hanging on at ABC, so it’s not a lost cause – though the latter just canceled Agent Carter and nixed a proposed Marvel’s Most Wanted spinoff. (It remains to be seen how much the DC universe will be a part of NBC’s upcoming sitcom Powerless.)

CBS might need more than Star Trek for genre fans


CBS is pushing its “All Access” service in a big way in the coming year, with the web-only Star Trek TV reboot. However, without Supergirl as part of the deal, that may make fans think twice about signing on. The fate of CBS’ well-received Limitless is still up in the air, and the summer series BrainDead is also a big question mark at the moment.

CBS might be well-advised to consider more genre programming to keep Trekkers and fellow geeks around for the long term.

Supergirl going to Hulu via CW is good news for subscribers of that service. Hopefully, season 1 will end up there or Netflix soon for latecomers to catch up (not to mention the chance that  CW reruns it over the summer).

A second season of exciting possibilities

Yes, we get more Calista Flockhart as Cat Grant, more Manhunter and of course more Kara next season. As mentioned before, Benoist’s performance is up there with Grant Gustin’s, Stephen Amell’s and Matt Ryan’s (we still miss you, Constantine).

There’s the chance that we’ll see more Kryptonian lore brought into the show: after all they have nearly 80 years of Super-history, and Supergirl built up a nice rogue’s gallery over 20 episodes.

With the loss of Agent Carter, it also falls on Supergirl's shoulders to represent female characters, not just to comic book fans and the audience at whole, but to the young girls watching (I can't tell you how many times I heard the words "my daughter loves that show"). Here's hoping the series can continue presenting a strong young woman, whose life doesn't revolve around dating. Somehow, we feel confident this will be the case. 

The big question, of course: Will we ever see Superman up close?  (Paging Tom Welling…)

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