Ask Amber: Criminal Minds spinoff, Shannara and more

Ask Amber, Criminal Minds
Richard Cartwright/CBS

Welcome to another weekly edition of Ask Amber. Have a TV question of your own? Email or follow her on Twitter.


Amber: Oh yeah, that was definitely a wannabe spinoff you saw on last week’s episode of Criminal Minds. Remember the last time the series did a spinoff, in 2011 with Forest Whitaker and Janeane Garofalo? That really wasn’t so long ago, and of course the show was cancelled after one season. So why does CBS think it will work now? Well, the international settings immediately open up the story possibilities, so there’s that. Plus Gary Sinese has a built in audience from his days on another spinoff, CSI: NY. Anna Gunn maybe not so much–otherwise Gracepoint might not have tanked–but if her role on that Fox remake taught me anything, it’s that she plays a fierce cop. As for the whether the show will continue? Well that remains to be seen. The series had an OK showing in the U.S. ratings on Wednesday, winning the night overall with 10.08 million viewers. But official series pickups like this typically aren’t announced until May, when the U.S. networks present their annual upfronts in New York. We’ll know for sure by then. Hi Amber, will When Calls the Heart be back for a second season? Thanks – Samantha Amber: Definitely. The series shot in and around Vancouver last year, and although it was originally supposed to debut in February, it’s hitting the U.S. screens on the Hallmark Channel on Saturday, April 24. For us Canadians, we’ll get the show too, albeit a little later beginning Sunday, May 3 at 7 p.m. ET on Super Channel. For those following along on social media, I’ve discovered they’d like you to use the hashtag #Hearties. I’m going to leave that one alone.

Amber: I would be very surprised if it doesn’t. The fantasy series (based on the popular Shannara series by Terry Brooks), is an MTV property. And MTV Canada is usually pretty on the ball with picking up U.S. acquisitions of that nature. Worst case scenario, I’d say Canada might be a week or so behind. However, nothing has been officially confirmed just yet. It’s a little early; The Shannara Chronicles is still filming in New Zealand. I can tell you that it will be a 10-part offering, and that for those keeping track, the series follows the events in the series’ second novel, The Elfstones of Shannara. Oh, and so far Manu Bennett, John Rhys-Davies, Ivana Baquero, Poppy Drayton, Austin Butler, Aaron Jakubenko and James Remar are attached.


That’s all for this week. Have a TV question of your own? Email, follow her on Twitter and be sure to check out Ask Amber every Monday.