Westerns? Check. A great cast? Check. Great executives behind the show? Check. These are just three things that The CW’s Walker: Independence has going for it, but there’s so much more.
Walker: Independence is the prequel to The CW’s Walker, a series starring and executive produced by Supernatural‘s Jared Padalecki. After the success of Walker on the network, Padalecki, Walker creator Anne Fricke, Walker executive producer Seamus Kevin Fahey, and Nancy Drew executive producer Larry Teng are bringing a whole new story to the Walker family.
Set in the late 1800s, the story follows Abigail Walker (Shadowhunter‘s Katherine McNamara) whose husband was murdered right before he was set to become the sheriff of Independence, Texas. Now, Walker is set on finding out just what happened to her husband. The series also stars Matt Barr, Justin Johnson Cortez, Katie Findlay, Philemon Chambers, Lawrence Kao, Greg Hovanessian, Gabriela Quezada, and Mark Sheppard.
Let’s dive into why you need to check out Walker: Independence when it premieres on The CW on Thursday, October 6.
The show already boasts an impressive cast. Abigail Walker is played by Katherine McNamara, who you might know from The CW’s Arrow and Freeform’s Shadowhunters. She’s set to take on a massive role as the origin of the Walker family as we know it, and from what we’ve seen already in the trailer, she’s going to be incredible.
Matt Barr, who appeared in the first season of Walker, is set to play his Walker character’s ancestor (funny enough, with the same name — Hoyt Rawlins). Fans were so upset to see Barr’s time come to an end on Walker that it was a welcomed surprise that he was added to the cast of Independence.
Justin Johnson Cortez plays Calian, a Native American who stumbles across Abigail. He’s previously appeared in shows such as 9-1-1: Lonestar and Before We Go, and is set to have a major role in the series.
Katie Findlay plays Kate, and judging by the trailer, fans are going to love her. Findlay can previously be seen in Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist and Nancy Drew.
Greg Hovanessian plays Tom Davidson (does that last name sound familiar?) While it hasn’t quite been confirmed that those Davidsons are his descendants, we think it’s more than just a coincidence. So far Davidson’s been the main villain pointed out in the trailer, and Hovanessian seems to be doing a great job at it.
Philemon Chambers plays Augustus, the Deputy Sheriff of Independence. You might know him from Netflix’s Single All The Way, and he’s been so much fun interacting with fans and posting behind-the-scenes videos, that so many fans are looking forward to seeing him on screen as Augustus.
Lawrence Kao plays Kai, a former railroad worker who runs a local laundry. We’re so excited to see Kai’s story explored more. Kao previously appeared in Netflix’s Wu Assassins, and Fistful of Vengeance.
Gabriela Quezada plays Lucia Reyes, who is described as the “daughter of a rancher and the girlfriend of an outlaw.” While not much is known about her character at this point, we’re definitely intrigued! Quezada can previously be seen in 9-1-1 and The Goldbergs.
One other major addition is Supernatural alum Mark Sheppard joining the cast! Sheppard was originally kept a secret until The CW Upfronts, where his character was revealed in the trailer. It’s going to be so great to see him back on our screen!
These wonderful actors round out the wonderful main cast of Walker: Independence. As Matt Barr put it at ATX Festival in June, he is “proud to be part of a show with an organically diverse cast that represents the Americans that were around at that time authentically and their contributions to the melting pot that the United States is today.”
They all bring so much to each character that we’re excited to see what they do throughout the season. They’ve been sharing some wonderful behind-the-scenes videos, photos, and more that really make you love the cast and get even more excited for what’s to come!
It’s no secret that Walker is well-cared for and produced, so it’s a breath of fresh air that some of the main contenders from Walker are also involved in this show, along with another huge part of another CW show.
Anna Fricke (showrunner for Walker) and Seamus Kevin Fahey (executive producer for Walker) created the story for the prequel. These two are long-standing wonderful creators and with the story and inclusivity they have on Walker, fans are in good hands.
Jared Padalecki, the star and executive producer on Walker, also returns as an executive producer on Walker: Independence. He’s done an outstanding job on Walker, and so many cast and crew have praised and credited Padalecki (as well as Fricke, Fahey, and all of the Walker executives) for taking care of them and running an incredible family atmosphere on set. Padalecki cares deeply about the story, making a safe and inclusive workplace, and by having him on board you know the story, cast, and crew will continue to be taken care of.
Larry Teng joins the Walker: Independence crew, directing the pilot episode and also jumping on as executive producer. Teng is also the executive producer for Nancy Drew, another well-loved show on The CW. When news was announced of Teng’s involvement, fans of Nancy Drew took to social media to sing their praise of Teng, and it’s clear how much the cast and crew already love him.
Other executive producers from Walker include Lindsey Liberatore and Dan Lin. The cast and crew have also been vocal about diversity. They’ve committed to making sure that the crew and the writers are in an inclusive and diverse space, which means a great deal.
With this crew assembled, Walker: Independence is set to be well taken care of behind the scenes.
The story isn’t your typical story on television these days. It’s about a young woman who arrives in a brand new town in the 1800s after the murder of her husband. Mystery? Check. Western? Check. The story itself is intriguing, alongside the fact that these are ancestors to beloved characters we already know.
Abigail Walker arrives in Independence, Texas after the murder of her husband where she meets Hoyt Rawlins as well as other members of the town. From the trailer, they’re setting it up as Tom Davidson (who was mentioned above — with a suspiciously familiar last name) as the murderer. However, fans of Walker know that with the writers’ incredible storytelling, all isn’t what it seems.
It’s going to be really fun to get to know all of the characters, their backstories, and where the story is going to go from here. We know from Walker that often there are small breadcrumbs placed throughout episodes that eventually lead to some huge plot twists — one thing I’d expect would be the same for Walker: Independence, too.
It’s also evident how much research, thought, and care is going into the authenticity of the story. Speaking on diversity, at ATX Festival Justin Johnson Cortez stated, “When this opportunity came up, I was a bit nervous because I wanted to make sure that the character was going to be represented in a positive way … I think there’s a little bit of the West in Calian, as well, and he should be unpredictable and a little dangerous. But what was really important to me is that we see him smile and that you’ll see him laugh. I didn’t want to represent the same old image of Native American characters on screen, so I’m excited to dive in deeper and show the complexities behind this character. Show how much fun they can be.”
Fans are certainly in for an exciting story, and can’t wait to see it play out on screen!
What The Fans Are Saying
Fans have been excited and hanging on every single photo, video, interview, etc. about Walker: Independence, so we asked a few fans what they’re most excited about! Take a look at some of the responses below.
I am very interested in learning some back story to the Walkers. Having the distance relatives as Abby Walker and bringing Hoyt Rawlins (Matt Barr) in has got to make for cool stories.— Sue Ladigo🍾 (@Trucklady53) August 28, 2022
I am looking forward to Walker: Independence because the cast is amazing and diverse. They are doing their research to make it an authentic and developed story. Can’t wait to go back in time to meet everyone in Independence.— Marlene Butler (@Marlene71154692) August 29, 2022
I’m a big fan of Larry Teng so I’m very excited to see his directorial vision onscreen. I’m also incredibly excited about the representation we’re seeing in the cast & characters & that the writers & EPs have been doing their research for historical accuracy!— Jenni Sarikas **STREAM LIKE A LADY** (@JennisAyQua) August 28, 2022
the biggest reason for me is that i love plot, and ever since it was hinted in the main walker of the origin story I wanted so badly to see it. another reason is the characters sounding very cool, cant wait for kate, calian and augustus story mostly.— marilynsd (@msd12354) August 28, 2022
Love a good westerns, and I’m so excited to watch the stories of these diverse characters develop.— CanucksLadies #3 (@HeHughes376) August 28, 2022
I’m looking forward to the diversified portrayal of people who actually settled this country. Jared being the EP and the fact I love Walker attracted me to this project but now that I’ve seen trailer everything appeals to me. Cinematography looks spectacular #WalkerIndependence— Nina (@DJHsgirl) August 28, 2022
I’m looking forward to #WalkerIndependence not just because of the epic trailer, but because of the love, care, hard work, and research being done by those in front of and behind the camera in order to do justice to the diverse characters and Texas history they’re portraying.— Melanie (Moose Family) (@WaywardMaslow) August 29, 2022
I can’t wait to learn more about these amazing people. The town feels so alive already.— 💙💛🫂 Cat | 🕔 (@Pathryn34) August 28, 2022
Characters that will change our lives forever are just around the corner.
And I can’t wait for everyone to meet them. #WalkerIndependence
For one thing I already feel like I know these characters. The cast has done an amazing job of bringing their characters to life just through description.— Kim – Already missing the ocean 🌊 🏖 (@Walker_PLEASE) August 28, 2022
I am excited to see a western type show that actually hits on the actual diversity that was present in that time.
Every single character is rich & detailed, with their own unique purpose, voice, & history. I’m excited to get to know them.— Brittany Ann 🤍☀️ (@bhorton314) August 28, 2022
They’re all new residents of a big city in Texas trying to carve their own path. I’m doing the same & I can’t wait to see where all of our stories go. 🤍
Firstly I grew up watching westerns and I love the history of the 1800’s. It’s a chance to see how the #Walker family became who they are now. I like the idea of seeing how people lived back then and the diversity it brings.#WalkerIndependence— Julie Hughes (@JulesHu863) August 28, 2022
I’m looking forward to WINDY because I get to see an Indigenous person portrayed accurately in a setting where Indigenous people are often stereotyped or completely removed.— marcy / #ProtectICWA (@bbygirlsamw) August 29, 2022
I want to see this for the character understanding of where the Walkers and Davidsons come from as well as to try and see if maybe there can be a reason for such a generational rivalry between the Walkers and Davidsons— Jewls (@Jewls31760163) August 28, 2022
I can’t wait to learn more about the backstories of these characters and get introduced to some new ones and learn about the town and how everything plays out that takes us into Walker #WalkerIndependence— Rhiannon/SPN/THE BOYS/WALKER (@BeausCordell) August 28, 2022
Check out Walker: Independence this fall when it premieres on The CW on Thursday, October 6. You can watch the trailer, here. Make sure to catch up on all of our Walker and Walker: Independence coverage!