The Season 1 finale of The Winchesters opened up a whole multiverse (literally) of possibilities that could keep the world of Supernatural going. It’s been over two years since the longest-running CW series came to an end, but thanks to The Winchesters, Dean’s story was able to keep going, in a way. But what does this mean for the future of Supernatural and The Winchesters?
The season finale of the Supernatural prequel finally answered how and why Dean was in the 1970s, and it was due to him continuing his drive after getting to Heaven and somehow crossing the multiverse. Showrunner Robbie Thompson tells TVLine that bringing in the multiverse – which was technically introduced in Supernatural – was a means to expand Dean’s story while also still keeping everything intact and still keeping the bigger focus on Mary, John, and the others:
I had no interest in upending anything, for lack of a better expression, past, present, or future of Supernatural. We’re only a few years away from, I’m going to call it, the For-Now Finale, because, hopefully, there will be more story on the road… Obviously, the idea of the multiverse was pretty one-stop shopping, in terms of that coming up pretty quickly. And then again, it was a question of, ‘Will this still be an emotional story for Dean?’ And it felt like we had a really interesting opportunity to tell a story with Dean’s character, even though he wouldn’t be necessarily in every single episode… There were dozens of ways to make it work, but this one felt like the one that would feel the most emotional, without obviously upending anything, and it felt like a story that we could tell about Dean, about where he is at when we meet him in, technically, the pilot, but throughout the finale of our first season.
When Dean initially showed up on The Winchesters, no one knew how he was there, or if this was a different version of him, or if he was still in Heaven, etc. That was all answered in the season finale, when he explained that he’s trying to make sure that Sam continues living a long, happy life on Earth. It was definitely emotional to see Dean this way, both witnessing a different version of his young parents and trying to give them that safe life that they never got. Yet it opens up storylines that set up a possible second season or more.
Since there still isn’t any news on a second season, and with The CW situation preventing a back order of episodes, there wasn’t time to explore the multiverse more and possibly dig into Dean’s story. Robbie Thompson shares his excitement of still being able to tell Dean’s story and even include Bobby, who made a surprise appearance in The Winchesters finale:
We had a couple of opportunities when we were looking at a timeline issue of where could we exist that would, again, not upend anything, and there was really kind of only two spots within that. There was the spot that takes place in between Episodes 19 and 20, when what happens to Dean happens to Dean… So there was an opportunity to tell stories there, but that just didn’t work for me because we wouldn’t have access to Sam in that way, in a way that we could easily explain or at least emotionally explain, and that just didn’t feel like it was a story that certainly I wanted to tell, and none of us did. And the other option was when he was, obviously, in Heaven, because we see him arrive there and he has the scene with Bobby, but then he goes for a drive. That was instantly very exciting to all of us in terms of a space for us to live in and tell our story.
When The Winchesters was announced, the biggest question was how it would connect back to Supernatural since John and Mary’s story on the prequel is different than what fans know in the original series. Jensen Ackles promised that it would mix canon with new mythology and assured fans that while it will be a tad different, the series would still get from Point A to Point B. Exploring a multiverse is always a risky move, but hopefully, we get another season to really explore it.
Throughout the first season of The Winchesters, plenty of callbacks to Supernatural were included, and we even got some familiar faces in the prequel. Although we didn’t get to see Sam or Castiel (possibly because of Jared Padalecki's Walker and Misha Collins' Gotham Knights), we can always hope to see them included if there is a Season 2 of The Winchesters.
Fingers crossed that The Winchesters continues to be part of the 2023 TV schedule later this year, but in the meantime, all 15 seasons of Supernatural are streaming with a Netflix subscription.