Warning! SPOILERS for The Winchesters finale!
While the Supernatural spinoff The Winchesters only ran for one season, the cameos in it from the original show set up a better season 2. While the rise of streaming platforms has created greater access to series, one of the unfortunate elements about them is that they’ve contributed to shorter and fewer TV seasons. This means that while older series, such as Supernatural, had the time to find their rhythm and become truly great, nowadays, many series are axed before they have that chance. The Winchesters is an example of this, as it had a lot of potential before it was canceled.
The Winchesters season 1 told the story of how Dean (Jensen Ackles) and Sam’s (Jared Padalecki) parents met, fell and love, and worked together to find Mary’s fathers and fight demons and monsters. As they do so, John Winchester (Drake Rodger), Mary Campbell (Meg Donnelly), and the rest of The Winchesters cast discover that their world is under threat from demons called the Akrida and must face off against them to save the planet. Throughout the series, Dean narrates this story before he becomes much more involved in the finale, along with a few other cameo appearances from Supernatural characters.
The Winchesters Season 2 Can Tell Better Stories
But on a broader scale than simply telling John and Mary’s love story, The Winchesters season 1 had to do a lot of expositional work beyond merely introducing John and Mary and the stakes surrounding them, including the series’ place in the franchise overall. As a result, much of the focus for audiences in the series was the mystery of the universe or timeline in which the show was taking place, especially with the series retconning established canon from Supernatural. But with cameos from Dean, Bobby (Jim Beaver), and Jack (Alexander Calvert) in season 1’s finale, The Winchesters finally established the boundaries of their story.
Because The Winchesters season 1 ended with clarifying the show’s place in the wider Supernatural universe, this would have set up a much stronger season 2. In addition, since the series had established precisely where the series events were taking place and all the expositional information had been taken care of, The Winchesters would have finally had time to focus on developing more narrative elements. This would have also allowed the series to move forward with greater independence from Supernatural and truly distinguish itself on its terms.
The Winchesters Season 2 Can Bring Back More Supernatural Characters
Along with establishing unique narratives for itself, if The Winchesters could have had a season 2, it would have been able to include more fun, occasional guest roles with Supernatural characters. Among them include cameos from Sam and Castiel (Misha Collins). The latter would have been fascinating to meet beyond his involvement with the Winchester brothers, and it would have undoubtedly been amazing to see Dean and Sam reunited in the great beyond. Along with this, it would have been fascinating to see Jack continue in his new role as God and further develop how he was managing his new abilities and responsibilities.
Finally, although Supernatural has already depicted the end of John and Mary’s story with the demon Azazel (Fredric Lehn), The Winchesters would have had the chance to develop this narrative further. With Dean’s journal forewarning the couple of the demon’s plans, it could have been fascinating to watch them attempt to outmaneuver the demon over the years in something of a cat-and-mouse story. Especially since the prequel was retconning story elements anyway, it could have even grown beyond what Supernatural established for the two monster hunters and the yellow-eyed demon and even produce a very satisfying tragedy with the knowledge that Mary must die by the demon’s hand.
Supernatural Proves The Winchesters Needs More Time
However, even with all this potential with The Winchesters, it’s unfortunate that the series will not get a season 2. Good stories often need time, especially prequel series that must maneuver around established canon while avoiding rehashing stories the audience is already familiar with. Supernatural needed this breathing room, too, as it did not truly settle into its story until after a couple of seasons, making it disappointing that The Winchesters did not get the same grace.