- The Boys creator, Eric Kripke, has learned not to predict the number of seasons a show will have, as he was surprised by the longevity of Supernatural.
- The Boys and its spin-off, Gen V, are able to seamlessly move plots, giving the franchise a well-crafted feel that avoids the dragging issues of other miniseries.
- The serialized nature of The Boys sets it apart from broadcast network dramas like Supernatural, making it unlikely for the show to switch to a more standalone format like its predecessor.
The Boys creator Eric Kripke says he’s learned his lesson about predicting how many seasons a show will last, citing one memorable television example that changes his view about Gen V. Even though Prime Video’s superhero satire franchise tends to be limited to eight episodes, Kripke and the rest of the team that works on The Boys and Gen V are able to move plots seamlessly. This gives the franchise an expertly crafted feel that avoids the issues of other plodding miniseries that often feel like an overextended movie. That’s because Kripke has a lot of experience working in television, notably creating the monster-hunting drama Supernatural which ran for 15 seasons.
Kripke, who serves as executive producer on Gen V, reflected on his experience with Supernatural in an interview with Inverse, saying he’s the worst at figuring out how long a show might last. This is in reference to the fact that Kripke left his role as showrunner of Supernatural after season 5, though the series would continue for 10 more seasons. Because of this and because of Gen V‘s early success, as he says in the quote below, Kripke isn’t sure about his five-year plan for The Boys anymore:
“I have since realized that literally no one in history is worse at predicting the amount of seasons of a show, like literally. I have learned my lesson and I’ve stopped predicting how many seasons these shows go. You will find out in hindsight.”
Can A Streaming Show Even Last 15 Seasons?
There are a few streaming series that last for several seasons, largely on Netflix. The comedy Grace & Frankie lasted seven seasons, while early hits like House of Cards and Orange is the New Black went for six and seven seasons, respectively. But as streaming services have increased, and the number of shows has ballooned, the focus has turned to creating new originals that can potentially lure in new subscribers, leading to shorter seasons for shows, even very successful ones. The recent writers’ and ongoing actors’ strikes have been partially about turning the attention back to rewarding specific successful shows.
But another thing that’s different about The Boys and Gen V, compared to a broadcast network drama like Supernatural, is that it’s more serialized and less focused on self-contained episodes. Supernatural likely wouldn’t have lasted so long if it had been one continuous story, without the memorable monster-of-week installments. By the same token, The Boys can’t keep going if it maintains the delay of the Homelander showdown that was the initial conceit of the series.
Gen V, which has been renewed for season 2, is still new enough that it could take a more standalone approach. The Boys, as it stands, is unlikely to switch to less serialized seasons, which is what ultimately made Supernatural such a long-running behemoth. It’s just a case of prioritizing different storytelling methods and also a reflection of how streaming has evolved the television landscape.