Sometimes, you just scratch your head and move on. That was certainly my reaction to the following news: The CW has renewed Beauty and the Beast and Hart of Dixie for Seasons 2 and 3, respectively, and also given a series order to The Vampire Diaries spin-off The Originals. They join Supernatural, Arrow, and The Vampire Diaries on the list of shows confirmed to be returning to The CW for the 2013-2014 TV season.
It appears that "good enough" is the motto of the broadcast networks year. Both Beauty and the Beast and Hart of Dixie have been gutted by critics and are struggling to post 1.5 million viewers weekly (Hart of Dixie only hit the mark four times this season). But with only Arrow, Supernatural, and TVD actually earning (mostly) their keep, The CW needed to renew something.
The quick series pickup of The Originals comes the day after its backdoor pilot debuted as an episode of The Vampire Diaries, even though the well-publicized premiere was a slumber party away from a series low in total viewers and was a bit disappointing, according to our own Cory Barker. Still, The CW apparently would rather take its chances with a new series that can sucker in a built-in audience. They might be overestimating things, if you ask me.
The pickups mean The CW has programmed six of its 10 hours next season, with a seventh probably going to America's Next Top Model. The CW has eight pilots in contention as well as decisions to make regarding Nikita and The Carrie Diaries and whatever stupid reality programs it can come up with (anyone remember Remodeled?). Optimistically, there are five spots available, taking midseason series and backup options into account.
Personally, I like The CW's strategy of becoming a genre channel for young adults, and bringing back Hart of Dixie and Beauty and the Beast definitely hinders the chances for the network's cool-sounding sci-fi pilots. Doesn't The CW know we all want to see The Hundred?