TVLINE | The Bad Place got name-checked a lot in this episode, and we saw a lot of disturbing imagery. Was that hooded figure also part of The Bad Place?
ROBERT BERENS | Yes. The world of Supernatural this season is very engaged in the apocalypse world of the archangel Michael. The Bad Place, [which is] the place that Sam and Dean are at the end of Episode 9, is the kind of proprietary nightmare world of Wayward and the spinoff [backdoor pilot] in Episode 10. We’ll be exploring that hooded figure, the giant monster we heard in the background of the last scene, as well as all those other critters.
Supernatural's fall finale ended on a terrifying note with Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean (Jensen Ackles) lost in an unknown world and, considering the giant footprint they landed next to, facing a huge new threat.
"The danger is big," executive producer Andrew Dabb tells TV Guide. "Where Sam and Dean have gone is a place that's of the Supernatural world, in that it has monsters in it, but it's meant to be alien and very different of any world we've seen."
“Kaia just survived an incredibly traumatic incident, and Jack gave her hope that maybe her power didn’t have to be as dark as she’s been experiencing, but then what happens? A giant calamity occurs, so she’s a reluctant ally of the girls,” says “Wayward Sisters” writer and “Supernatural” co-executive producer Robert Berens. “[‘Wayward Sisters’] will shine a little light on Kaia’s power, but if we go to series it will be a deeper dive. Her connection to this other place is actually very personal. She has a very dark and complicated relationship to this world.”
For such a historically male-driven show, how does an all-female cast change things up creatively?
BERENS: The whole show is changing in order to open up the focus to include other characters, so it's almost not even about gender in that sense. It's about what happens when Sam and Dean are off the board. Basically, they don't exist in our reality anymore, so the cameras, the POV of the show, finds these other characters, a group of women who have, to varying degrees, been saved by Sam and Dean, have been touched by the supernatural, who are working as hunters in their own right. It's not just a chance to put a light on these female characters, it's also a chance to broaden out the POV of the show … as well as an opportunity for these women to actually save the show from itself. Sam and Dean are gone, so they're restoring Supernatural to Supernatural. So the focus will return to Sam and Dean in a very firm way by episode 11, and in a way, it's these women who are making that possible. That's how we conceptualized it.
You mentioned finding Sam and Dean earlier. Is that the thrust of the Wayward Sisters backdoor pilot?
DABB: From the very first episode of the very first season, Sam and Dean [have been] the people that look for people, they’re the people that save people. So when Sam and Dean themselves are in trouble in this very big way, who can come and save them? That’s where Jody and Claire and some of the allies they put together really join forces. However, at the same time, Sam and Dean are trying to save themselves. They’re not passive passengers in this situation. But the purpose of [episode] 10 is we’re showing how Jody, Claire, and everyone else can band together to solve a problem, because ultimately, if the show goes forward, that’s what you’re going to be watching on a weekly basis is them solving a problem. That was the fun of [the backdoor pilot]: We’ve got a problem, a problem Sam and Dean have not really dealt with themselves, and how do these established characters come together to solve this problem in a new way?
BERENS: Almost all of these women have been saved directly by Sam and Dean in the past, so on some level, they’re going to have to wrestle with: Right now Sam and Dean are not in our world, we all owe Sam and Dean — for our lives, for introducing us to hunting, whatever it may be — so the subtext of it is them paying that forward and also them reckoning with what Sam and Dean have inspired in them. They themselves need to step into those shoes for this one case, and what does that bring out in each and every one of them?