Did Supernatural Already Predict Jared Padalecki's Walker, Texas Ranger Role?

As The Simpsons has learned, if you stay on the air long enough, a good TV series can start to more or less predict the future. Whether this is all just a a little bit of history repeating or legitimately some clever foresight on the part of the writers of the series...well, that's anybody's guess. But in the case of Supernatural star Jared Padalecki appearing as Walker, Texas Ranger in a planned reboot of the fan-favorite series that originally starred walking internet meme Chuck Norris, it seems likely that they had at least an inkling he was into the idea.

Earlier today, we learned that CBS TV Studios will shop a Padalecki-starring Walker, Texas Ranger revival to networks, with an eye toward possibly landing it at The CW, which CBS co-owns and where Padalecki obviously has a strong working relationship. But that was not the first time Padalecki will have gone by that name...well, kind of, anyway.

In "Frontierland," a 2011 episode of Supernatural that was written by Andrew Dabb and Daniel Loflin, and directed by Guy Norman Bee, the Winchester brothers travel back in time to the Old West, and Dean (Jensen Ackles) introduces Sam (Padalecki) as "Walker, Texas Ranger" as a joke. Fans, unsurprisingly, brought the clip back today.

Bee, for his part, admitted that he had forgotten all about that joke.

This new Walker, Texas Ranger is said to be a straight-up reboot of the original series, so it will be as though the events of the Norris vehicle never existed in the Padalecki continuity. This is the same sort of approach taken by Magnum PI and MacGyver, both of which have found success on CBS.

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Padalecki will play the titular Cordell Walker in the reboot, "a man finding his way back to his family while investigating crime in the state's most elite unit." As a widower and father of two, Walker returns home to Austin, Texas after spending years on a high-profile undercover case. With his new partner, one of the only women in the history of the Texas Rangers, Walker will face new challenges and serve as the kind of modern day hero the world has been looking for.

Supernatural will return for its fifteenth and final season on October 10 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.