What Channel Is the CW on DirecTV (2024 Update)

the cw on directv

What Channel Is the CW on DirecTV (2024 Update)

Key Points

  • The CW is an alternative to the big three terrestrial broadcasts and has a long history that dates back to the late 90s.
  • The channel has undergone leadership changes and a shift in programming focus following its recent acquisition.
  • Popular shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Star Trek Voyager helped turn the fortunes of The CW around in its early years.
  • The CW on DirecTV offers a variety of popular shows, including Superman and Lois, All American, Walker, and Whose Line Is It Anyway?

Are you looking for The CW on DirecTV? The CW is one of the alternatives to the big three in terrestrial broadcasts. It serves as a successor to a pair of television networks that were home to some fairly notable cult classics in the world of television. The channel is still going strong, despite some recent upheavals to the leadership.

If you’re tired of searching for channels on DirecTV, try one of these great streaming options:

Best for Families
Best Overall
Best Budget Option
From $4.99.mo.
From $64.99/mo.

Pick your choice of ESPN+, Hulu, and Disney Plus. Plans start as low as $4.99/month for ESPN+ only.


Free trial available. Watch 75+ channels, including local channels and special premium channel offers.


Take a 7-day free trial and stream more than 70 channels live. Record your favorites with unlimited DVR.

Best for Families
From $4.99.mo.

Pick your choice of ESPN+, Hulu, and Disney Plus. Plans start as low as $4.99/month for ESPN+ only.

Best Overall
From $64.99/mo.

Free trial available. Watch 75+ channels, including local channels and special premium channel offers.

Best Budget Option

Take a 7-day free trial and stream more than 70 channels live. Record your favorites with unlimited DVR.

The CW on DirecTV: Channel Guide

Albuquerque, NM19
Anderson, SC62
Atlanta, GA69
Austin, TX54
Baltimore, MD54
Birmingham, AL21
Boston, MA56
Brandon, MS13
Charlotte, NC18
Dallas, TX33
Detroit, MI50
Little Rock, AR38
Los Angeles, CA5
Madison, WI16
Miami, FL39
Minneapolis, MN23
Nashville, TN58
New Orleans, LA38
Phoenix, AZ61
Portland, OR32

In the event that you’re having trouble locating the channel in your area, you can also use channels 394 and 395.

The CW on DirecTV: A Brief History

The CW has a long and storied history, dating back to the late 90s. The current leadership is moving away from the existing programming norms, bringing a heavier focus on acquired shows, sports, and unscripted content. This comes as a rather drastic shift following decades of narrative-heavy television.


the cw on directv
Riverdale was one of the many programs that came to an end following The CW’s recent acquisition.

The CW comes from the ashes of The WB and UPN. Both networks originally started to compete with the likes of Fox, which had started to gain a major foothold in terrestrial broadcasting. The first decade of these channels’ existence was fraught with financial turmoil. Eventually, hit shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Star Trek Voyager would help to turn fortunes around.

In 1995, there were immediate talks about a potential merger between both stations. Time Warner and CBS saw potential in joining forces and solidifying their foothold on the market. Financial misfortune would befall Time Warner in 2003, which led to the initial stages of this venture.

Channel Debut

2006 saw the actual debut of The CW, which picked up 13 shows from its predecessors. Massive shows like America’s Top Model, One Tree Hill, and WWE Smackdown were among some of the included titles.

Like its predecessors, The CW was also fraught with financial woes. Despite joining forces, The CW was languishing in many regards, especially when compared to the likes of NBC, CBS, and ABC. 2008 would see the departure of WWE Smackdown. Despite these setbacks, shows like Gossip Girl and The Vampire Diaries would prove popular with their targeted demographics.

Leadership Changes

2011 saw the first major shift in the focus of programming at The CW. Newly appointed network head Mark Pedowitz would serve as instrumental in turning fortunes around for the channel. The debut of the action show Arrow served as a launch board for greater things on the network.

Subsequent follow-up shows like The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow would yield some of the highest ratings The CW had ever seen. It also showed the emergence of other popular shows like Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and The 100.

Current Day

The recent upheaval at Warner Bros has directly impacted The CW. 2022 would see a wide swath of cancellations, with popular shows like Nancy Drew and Riverdale coming to an end. The past decade, despite strong showings, was still leading to continual loss of revenue.

As such, following an acquisition from Nexstar, the network’s new leadership has been focusing on other content. There are still some popular scripted shows on the channel, like Superman and Lois. However, the overall focus has moved towards cheaper content production.

The CW on DirecTV: Programming Guide

the cw on directv
In 2017, Variety reported that The CW’s audience was 50% male and 50% female.

Superman and Lois

Superman and Lois is based on the hit comic book and follows the adventures of the superhero and his wife. They navigate things like raising children, supervillains, and general interpersonal drama. This isn’t directly set in the Arrowverse, but it does continue the tradition of having a broad-appeal superhero show tied to WB properties. The show has been airing for three seasons and was recently announced to be renewed, despite current changes at The CW.

All American

All American follows the trials and tribulations of Spencer James, a talented high school football player. James transfers from his home at Crenshaw High to play football with Beverly Hills High. If you’re a fan of sports, teen drama, and all the other makings of solid television, it’s worth a watch. As with Superman and Lois, All American has been renewed for another season, so you can catch it on The CW on DirecTV.


If you’ve been missing a slice of action on your TV, then Walker is your show. The neo-western serves as a reboot of the popular Walker, Texas Ranger, and stars Supernatural’s Jared Padalecki in the leading role. Despite missing some of the charm and kitsch of its parent show, Walker has been a continual hit. The primetime action show was recently announced as part of the wider sweeping renewals at The CW.

All American: Homecoming

As you might’ve guessed, this is a spin-off from the popular All American series. Homecoming focuses on Simone Hicks, who goes through a similar fish-out-of-water scenario. The main character is pursuing playing tennis at Bringston University. The show also focuses on Damon Sims, a baseball player. The storylines do change up quite a bit, and the different sports showcased make for must-see viewing if you’re into athletic dramas.

Mysteries Decoded

If you’re a fan of cryptids, conspiracy theories, and the supernatural, Mysteries Decoded might be worth a watch. The show is hosted by Jennifer Marshall, and each episode investigates a different touchstone in the zeitgeist of American conspiracies.

You’ll find topics like Roswell, Lizzie Borden, the Mothman, and more covered. The show itself has proven to be rather popular and was one of the more reality-focused programs to get renewed during the recent acquisition of The CW on DirecTV.

100 Days to Indy

Are you a fan of motorsports? 100 Days to Indy is a yearly broadcast that covers the lead-up to the Indianapolis 500. Racing fans have plenty to indulge themselves in during the season, and this show is a great recap and showcase of major players in the sport. The future of the show itself is a bit dicier since its renewal is pending following the Nexstar acquisition.

Whose Line Is It Anyway?

The irreverent improv show Whose Line Is It Anyway? has been a staple on television for years now. The CW on DirecTV acquired the show from its original home, ABC, in 2013. The show is just now entering its 21st season, which is set to debut later this year. Whose Line Is It Anyway? has been a continued favorite among viewers and looks to be going strong.

Penn & Teller: Fool Us

If you’re a fan of reality competition shows, Fool Us is a decidedly different take on things. Rather than focusing on cooking, fashion, or any number of popular topics, Fool Us is a magic show. Contestants are set to impress and trick hosts Penn and Teller, a pair of seasoned magicians who need no introduction. The show originally aired on ITV, but it has been a major hit for The CW on DirecTV. The show recently began its 10th season.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Nancy Drew still airing?

No, it was recently canceled as part of the stipulations for the acquisition by Nexstar.

Was Superman and Lois renewed?

Yes, it’ll be getting an additional fourth season soon.

Is Supernatural still getting new episodes?

Supernatural recently ended its impressively long run on The CW. The series stars can still be seen on Walker and The Boys.

Did the Arrowverse end?

Yes, the shared universe finally came to a close with The Flash’s finale.

Does the channel for The CW change depending on your area?

Yes, if you are a DirecTV subscriber. However, you can find it on channels 394 and 395 if you’re having trouble locating it in the lower-numbered channels.

To top