Pilot News: CW Orders Riverdale, Mars Mission, Transylvania Monster Mash

The CW’s pilot season shopping spree continued late, late Friday with another four drama orders — including the buzzed-about subversive take on the Archie comics, plus trips to Transylvania and Mars.

Set in present day and based on the iconic Archie Comics characters, Riverdale promises a surprising and subversive take on Archie and friends, exploring the surrealism of small-town life — the darkness and weirdness bubbling beneath Riverdale’s wholesome façade. #Flarrow’s Greg Berlanti and Sarah Schechter are among the executive producers, while Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (Supergirl) will pen the pilot. (Get character/plot details.)

Transylvania, penned by Robot Chicken‘s Hugh Sterbakov, follows a young woman who, in search of her missing father, ventures from circa-1880 New York City to Transylvania. There, she teams up with a disgraced Scotland Yard detective, and together they witness the births of the most famous monsters and villains in history. Jeff Pinkner, Andre Nemec, Josh Applebaum, Scott Rosenberg also serve as EPs.

The untitled Mars project, from Doris Egan (Reign, House), concerns a team of explorers who arrive on the red planet to join its first human colony… only to discover that their predecessors have vanished. Led by a woman whose husband is among the missing, the colonists are forced to change their mission from exploration/settlement to investigation/survival, while navigating the hostile planet as well as their own personal demons.

The CW also ordered No Tomorrow, which counts Jane the Virgin‘s Corinne Brinkerhoff among its writer/EPs and follows an Amazon-like site’s procurement manager as she falls in love with a man who believes the apocalypse is imminent.

Which of the above CW projects just might strike your fancy?

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  1. Nicolas says:

    I almost get excited when I read MARS MISSION, I tought, V-Mars was coming back! :/

  2. Anthony says:

    Riverdale and Transylvania will definitely get series orders. Although I wish the CW would snatch MI-Zero from CBS and give it a series order. The rest of their pilots sound terrible.

  3. Mark says:

    Mars Mission is sounding more and more like the failed series Defying Gravity which ended way to soon.

  4. Ally Oop says:

    Usually I’m excited about CW’s pilots but these sound as lame as the rest of the networks’.

  5. AnneHFreeman says:


  6. spindae2 says:

    As a sucker for the supernatural I’m digging Transylvania, hope they cast the right people for it.

  7. Vince says:

    Riverdale and Transylvania for me. That new comedy is gonna bomb hard.

  8. Jason says:

    I think Greg Finley needs to play the new version of Archie in the Riverdale series.

  9. Joey Padron says:

    Excited about Riverdale!

  10. Out of these four, I’m most excited for Archie but the Mars show could be interesting with the Roanoke angle. No Tomorrow has to be better than Annoying Ex-Girlfriend but that is a pretty low bar and Transylvania just seems like Penny Dreadful-lite.

  11. Brian says:

    How are they even going to fit all these shows on the schedule (unless they are planning on canceling some shows like Reign and The Vampire Diaries)? Their schedule is already pretty full .They haven’t even aired Containment yet and that was announced at last year’s upfronts.

    • brandydanforth81 says:

      They will cancel a few shows(3 at least)& not all 6 of these pilots will be picked up to series( probably only 4 max) & some shows I’ll have shorter seasons next season(100 if renewed,Izombie if renewed,cEG if renewd,Reign,TO,VD)& Reigns seemingly moving to summer .With aNTM moved to VH1,that frees up a Fri slot.CW is also trying to have more original year round programming,programs in summer.

  12. Jess says:

    all of them except No Tomorrow

  13. kn1231 says:

    I miss CW shows like One Tree Hill, Gossip Girl and 90210. I was hoping they would have a pilot that would resemble these shows. Hate how its becoming the comic book channel.

  14. Dave Finucane says:

    Transylvania sounds really good. I hope it gets a series order

  15. Dude says:

    All of them sound interesting but Riverdale is definitely the one I’d be most interested in.

  16. Pati says:

    this Mars mission one sounds too much like the 100, come CW something new

  17. Zainab says:

    Excited about Riverdale, Transylvania&Mars Mission. I think if the EPs of MM want it to be a hit they should get JoMo to play one of the leads after TO gets canceled, Riverdale already has Archie Comic Book fans and the fact that its show runner is GB & Transylvania has the fact that its the most famous Vampire myth story and since TVD is ending soon it can hook the fang fans. No Tomorrow sounds boring but I’ll give my final judgment when I watch it

  18. prish says:

    Mars and the Transylvania mash, here.

  19. Belle says:

    This is probably the most disappointing pilot season ever for the CW :( They are going to cancel shows we like/love and put worse shows in their place I fear. Just bummed!!

  20. jj says:

    i’m actually excited about a lot of these! I know some other commenters aren’t feeling No Tomorrow but I’m intrigued by it! It could be fun in kind of a reverse unbreakable kimmy schmidt way

  21. Frank says:

    Any word on Significant Mother?