It’s been a pretty dark time for DC TV shows, especially over at the CW. The Arrowverse is winding down, after a slew of cancellations, and now Stargirl is confirmed to be ending after its third season (via Deadline (opens in new tab)).
Stargirl is currently airing its third season, but this will be the end for Courtney Whitmore and the rest of the Justice Society. It’s also what appears to be another casualty of corporate buyouts, since this news comes just one month after the network was acquired by Nexstar Media.
The show follows the teenage Courtney as she struggles to juggle normal teenage life and her duty as a superhero. Especially since her small town is apparently plagued by both supervillains and fellow would-be teenage heroes. The show is based on the Stargirl comic series, written by Geoff Johns back in 1999. Johns is also creator and executive producer of the show.
Johns told The Hollywood Reporter (opens in new tab) that the team knew cancellation might have been on the cards, so the third season was written accordingly. “With all the brewing changes at the network, we were aware this was possibly the last season,” Johns said. “So we wrote with that in mind and have delivered what I believe to be the best season of Stargirl yet, with complete creative closure.”
In other words, the third season finale, which is scheduled to air on December 7 won’t be coming with any annoying cliffhangers that will never be resolved. Though, like many DC shows, it wouldn’t be a huge surprise if Stargirl lived on in some sort of sequel comic. We’ll just have to wait and see if DC Comics has in store.
The CW was a joint partnership between Warner Bros and CBS prior to the buyout. Warner Bros was involved in a high-profile merger with Discovery earlier this year, which saw a number of projects canceled in the surrounding weeks and months. Batgirl, an HBO Max original movie, was the most high-profile cancellation, but various TV shows were also given the axe — including Batwoman, Legends of Tomorrow and more.
Earlier this year Mark Pedowitz, then chairman and CEO of The CW, promised (opens in new tab) that the network was not done with Superhero content — no matter the outcome of the Warner/Discovery merger, and ongoing rumors that the network was up for sale. But Pedowitze resigned his position following the sale to Nexstar, and since he doesn’t call the shots anymore there’s no telling what might happen.
For now Superman and Lois is confirmed to be returning for a third season, though it’s unclear when it might air. Likewise, Gotham Knights, featuring Bruce Wayne’s son and some C-list DC characters in the aftermath of Batman’s death, is set to premiere sometime in 2023. I personally don’t have high hopes for that, but I’m happy to be proven wrong.
Other DC shows are still ongoing on HBO Max, including Peacemaker, Titans, Doom Patrol and Pennyworth. There’s also the animated Harley Quinn series, and various other shows supposedly in development — including spin-offs of the Robert Pattinson-led The Batman.
The future of DC TV and movies seems in pretty good hands too, now that DC Studios is under the stewardship of James Gunn and peter Safran. Gunn is a long-time comic director, known for Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy as well as DC's The Suicide Squad and Peacemaker. Safran has produced a number of DC properties in the past few years, including The Suicide Squad, Peacemaker, Shazam, and others.
But while DC TV is very much alive (for now), its one-time home seems content with letting those shows die off. So if you’re into DC, you’re going to need to cough up at least $10 a month for HBO Max for the foreseeable future.