It’s time to head to Texas for Jared Padalecki‘s first post-Supernatural TV adventure. The actor is starring in The CW’s Walker, Texas Ranger reboot, Walker, and this new take on an old classic is premiering at the top of 2021. Even if you’ve never seen an episode of the original Chuck Norris series, you definitely have heard the legendary jokes that stem from it. Now, Padalecki is certainly going to give the character his own twist. To get you up to speed on all the news and spoilers we have so far, here’s everything we know about the new series.
The series will arrive in 2021. The series will premiere on Thursday, Jan. 21 at 8/7c on The CW and lead into Season 3 of Legacies.
The first photos are angsty: The first photos from the pilot arrived in early January, and if pictures are worth a thousand words, then this set is one very angsty novel. The shot of Cordell Walker (Padalecki) and his wife cuddling in happier times will absolutely break your heart, but check out the first photos by clicking on the photo below.
The first footage: Padalecki tweeted out the first footage from the series on Monday, Dec. 14, showcasing his take on Cordell Walker, a man haunted by the death of his wife. The 30-second montage hammered home that finding out what happened to his wife is going to be Walker’s top priority in the freshman season.
— Jared Padalecki (@jarpad) December 14, 2020
The first teaser has arrived. The CW released the first teaser for the series, and while it doesn’t contain any footage from the show, Padalecki’s voiceover says ominously, “For a long time, I chose duty over family until one day that wasn’t an option.” Walker’s badge flips through the air, transforming into a wedding band, a poker chip, and back into his badge before lodging into a wooden wall like a ninja star.
The series will simply be called Walker. Rather than just ripping off the original title, this reboot has opted a shortened version of the name. Walker is being billed as “a reimagining of the long-running action/crime series Walker, Texas Ranger.”
Jared Padalecki will star and executive-produce. Padalecki will play Cordell Walker, a widower and father of two. After being undercover for two years, Cordell returns home to Austin in an attempt to reconnect with his children while dodging dust-ups with his conservative family. Padalecki also will executive-produce alongside Anna Fricke, Dan Lin, and Lindsey Liberatore.
Padalecki’s real-life wife will play his on-screen wife. Deadline reports that Genevieve Padalecki will play Emily Walker, Cordell’s dearly departed wife in a recurring role in Season 1. Her story will be told in flashbacks, and she will be “capable, generous, and focused on helping the disenfranchised.”
More supporting characters have been cast. One of the hurdles Walker will face after moving back to Austin is having to contend with a new partner, Micki, who just so happens to be one of the first women in Texas Rangers’ history. The 100‘s Lindsey Morgan has been cast as Micki, whose character description reveals she was raised in San Antonio, and her family has been in Texas since before it was Texas. She’s described as “focused and perceptive,” and her background in the Army and on the police force has given her first-hand knowledge about what it’s like to be singled out and discriminated against because of her gender.
Variety reports that Once Upon a Time‘s Jeff Pierre has also joined the cast as Trey Barnett, Micki’s boyfriend, who is described as warm and loving, yet haunted. He’s an Army medic recently back from deployment and struggling to adjust to life back home.
Meanwhile, Pretty Little Liars alum Keegan Allen has been cast as Liam, Cordell Walker’s gay, conservative younger brother, who is also an assistant district attorney. He is described as “smart, slightly smug, but with a strong moral compass,” and he’s prone to sacrificing his personal life in favor of family obligations. One of those obligations was taking care of Cordell’s kids during their father’s absence.
Deadline reports other additions to the cast include Mitch Pileggi as Bonham Walker, Cordell’s sturdy, conservative and tough as nails father; and Molly Hagan as Cordell’s mother, Abeline Walker, who is described as “an unstoppable force of nature.”
There’s a mystery at the center of the show. You might have noticed that “widower” bit in Padalecki’s character description, and there’s definitely more to that story. In addition to family and workplace drama, Cordell Walker will also be digging into the suspicious circumstances surrounding his wife’s death.
Jensen Ackles is totally willing to direct. Padalecki’s longtime co-star has stepped behind the camera on Supernatural several times, and when TV Guide asked whether he’d be interested in directing his BFF’s new series, he said he’d absolutely “come over and boss him around a little,” if Padalecki asked.
Additional reporting by Keisha Hatchett.
Jared Padalecki, Supernatural Source