Welcome to the monster mafia.
After months of waiting, Supernatural is finally giving fans their first taste of the CW's planned spinoff Supernatural: Bloodlines, which focused on the various mafia-esque monster families that run the underbelly of Chicago. Yes, an entire city has been taken over by the things that go bump in the night right under Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean's (Jensen Ackles) noses all this time. But that all changes in tonight's episode of Supernatural, which serves as a backdoor pilot for Bloodlines, and introduces fans to Ennis (Lucien Laviscount), a newly minted hunter out for revenge, and David Hayden (The Vampire Diaries fan favorite Nathaniel Buzolic), a shapeshifter from one of the ruling families.
To help prepare you for the highly anticipated hour, we chatted with the pilot's writer and producer Andrew Dabb, who dished on everything you need to know about Supernatural: Bloodlines before tuning in tonight at 9 p.m....
Winchesters Hit the Windy City: Or should we say the Windy City hits the Winchesters? After nine seasons of hunting, the brothers witness a first when they discover Chicago is being ran by monster families.
"It's of course a big shock to them, and they of course want to get to the bottom of it," Dabb previews of Sam and Dean hitting the big city only to discover the supernatural hierarchy. "It's something where they never thought of monsters functioning this way, and now they see it. Though I will say over the course of Supernatural we've certainly seen more in terms of monsters being more familial, more sympathetic, things like that."
As for how devious these families get, Dabb says, "Some are down and dirty and essentially just street gangs and some are like the Corleone family in The Godfather, where they're really connected up to the highest echelons of power."
Location, Location, Location: The first star cast in the spinoff? The city of Chicago, the Supernatural team's first pick for the location. "Chicago seemed pretty perfect. It's a beautiful city, it has a great mob history. It also has a great occult, dark history," Dabb explains. "There are a bunch of haunted houses in Chicago, and then things like H.H. Holmes and The Devil in the White City and things like that, and it really just spoke to us on that level. It was pretty much Chicago from the jump."
More Characters: While Supernatural has largely focused on just the two brothers throughout its run ("If you're going to build a show around two guys, you couldn't pick two better guys," Dabb gushes of Ackles and Padalecki), Bloodlines will tackle more characters.Dabb says, "I think it's an ensemble show and I think we have six incredible actors who all can have their own storylines, all can have their own relationships, and all can have their own romantic moments. There will be romance, there will be relationships, there will be betrayal." (Translation: Expect more romance, especially with Buzolic's character.)
Pretty People Are a Plus: "Obviously we were looking for a couple of really ugly guys," Dabb jokes of casting Laviscount and Buzolic as the two leads before revealing they were looking for someone who "could play both tough and vulnerable" when casting Ennis and someone "serious and also really comedic and charming" for David.
Dabb adds, "I realize that with Jared and Jensen the bar is incredibly high. And as much as I would have loved to say we were just going to find another Jared and Jensen, that's probably impossible, so we were really trying to find guys that kind of brought their own bold flavor to it."
Supernatural: Bloodlines airs tonight at 9 p.m. on the CW.