The BBC has its own horror TV series titled Supernatural, but does it have anything to do with the popular The CW’s show of the same name? The horror genre has been going through a good run in recent years, with big-budget adaptations of popular horror stories, remakes, and TV shows like American Horror Story that have kept horror fans entertained for years. The horror genre is more extensive than many people think, as there are various branches and subgenres that sometimes include bits of comedy and drama, depending on what the story requires.
Such is the case of Supernatural, a TV series created by Eric Kripke and starring Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles. The series followed the Winchester brothers, Sam (Padalecki) and Dean (Ackles), who follow in their father’s footsteps and set out to hunt monsters, demons, ghosts, and other supernatural beings. Supernatural premiered in 2005 and came to an end in 2020 after 15 seasons full of ups and downs and a mix of horror and comedy that kept fans entertained for over a decade. Supernatural became widely popular and amassed an extensive and loyal fanbase, who will surely be surprised to know that their favorite show isn’t the only one with that name in the realm of horror, and there’s a BBC show that shares its name but has a much darker tone.
The BBC’s Supernatural is an anthology miniseries produced in the 1970s and created by Robert Muller. The premise of the series was simple but frightening: in each episode, a prospective member of a group called “Club of the Damned” had to tell a horror story in order to gain access to this very exclusive and dark group, and the story would be judged on its scare factor. Those who told a sufficiently frightening story would become members of the Club of the Damned, while those who failed would be killed without hesitation. Supernatural had only eight episodes which aired from June to August 1977 and were repeated for the Halloween season on BBC Four in 2014 – but is there a connection with the Winchesters’ Supernatural?
Although both reside in the vast horror genre, the BBC’s Supernatural and The CW’s TV series of the same name are not linked beyond sharing the same name. However, they do have some similarities in terms of the themes addressed in them, as they both have creatures and monsters like werewolves, ghosts, zombies, doppelgängers, and more. The Winchester’s Supernatural was set in the modern world and included various bits of comedy as the show progressed, while the BBC’s miniseries was fully installed in a horror vibe, with the setting being the 19th Century and with a gothic style to better fit the era. However, both shows expanded to other media, although differently, with the BBC’s series getting a companion book with the screenplay of each episode adapted as a short story, while The CW’s Supernatural branched out to comic books, novels, and spin-off series.
Each Supernatural TV series has different things to offer, and it would be safe to say that those who liked to follow Dean and Sam’s adventures would like the tone and stories that the BBC’s miniseries told, and those who are familiar with the British anthology series might like to take a look at a different “supernatural” story in The CW’s show.