'Beauty And The Beast' Will Be MIA For Awhile

Seeing a beloved TV show go on hiatus is never an easy obstacle to endure. Being forced to go months on end without even a single new episode is one of the cruelest forms of torture. (Well, not really, but you get what I'm saying.) And yet, that's the way it has to be. Some might even say it's a tale as old as time. Speaking of which — now that The CW's Beauty and the Beast Season 3 finale is about to make its grand debut, I can't help but wonder how long we will be forced to go without these beloved characters. When will Beauty and the Beast return for Season 4? Unfortunately, as it stands now, the answer to that particular question remains slightly uncertain.

You see, usually, I'm able to predict when a show's next season will air based on their track record from previous seasons. However, Beauty and the Beast proves to be an exception to the rule. While the first two seasons debuted in October with 22 episodes a piece, The CW decide to change things up a bit by switching the show's third season to the network's summer lineup with a 13-episode order. So if the series continues with this new summer schedule, fans can expect Season 4 to premiere sometime in late May or early June of next year.

Sure, that's still a little too far off for comfort, but it's certainly better than the alternative of being outright canceled altogether. In fact, this change up seems to be what saved the series from total extinction. CW president Mark Pedowitz announced at the Television Critics Association winter previews back in January that "one of the reasons we picked it up was to begin bringing scripted programming in the summer."

I mean, let's be face it — Beauty and the Beast has never exactly been a ratings goldmine, which is a big part of what made its third and fourth season renewals somewhat shocking. The network even went so far as to renew the show for a fourth season months before Season 3 debuted. That's a lot of trust to put into a show that doesn't have the sturdiest viewership background, so a summer schedule could very well be its saving grace. But in the meantime, at least we have a ton of great new fall shows to obsess over throughout the next eight months. May will be here before we know it.

Images: Ben Mark Holzberg/The CW (2)