Why You Need to Check Out ‘Walker: Independence’ This Fall


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 Cast

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.

Anna Kooris / The CW

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!

The Crew

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.

Richard Foreman/The CW

The Story

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!

Anna Kooris / The CW

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.

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!

Briar is the Editor-in-Chief of Nerds and Beyond. She has been running the site since 2015 with the goal of being a unique, professional news site dedicated to all the things she loved - and providing fans with the best content available. Briar oversees the day-to-day operations and runs all of the social media. She loves all things Disney, Star Wars, Supernatural and anything tech related. You can follow her @thebriarroseee.

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