The CW’s New Series ‘Sullivan’s Crossing’ Is a Must-Watch for ‘Virgin River’ Fans

It stars Scott Patterson and Chad Michael Murray

sullivans crossing review virgin river
Michael Tompkins/Fremantle

Ever since Virgin River season five premiered on Netflix in September 2023, we’ve been counting down the days until the release of the holiday episodes on November 30. But in the meantime, there’s a brand-new show to fill your sappy drama void.

Introducing Sullivan’s Crossing, which is inspired by the bestselling book series by Robyn Carr (who also authored Virgin River). The drama originally premiered in Canada earlier this year, but it wasn’t available to stream in the U.S. That all changed last night when The CW aired the first episode of Sullivan’s Crossing. The question is: Is it a must-watch for Virgin River fans? (Spoiler alert: Yes, it is.)

Keep scrolling for an honest review of Sullivan’s Crossing.

sullivans crossing review chad michael murray
Michael Tompkins/Fremantle

The first few minutes of the episode are reminiscent of Grey's Anatomy, featuring a hectic moment in the ER with neurosurgeon Maggie Sullivan (Morgan Kohan) analyzing a patient. After her chaotic shift, she attends an award ceremony to accept the Rising Neurosurgeon Award.

Everything seems to be going well for her...until it isn’t. During her speech, the police storm into the building to arrest Maggie and her boss, Dr. Bob Hollis (Bob Mann).

We’re not entirely sure why Maggie is arrested (at least not yet), but it seems that Dr. Hollis was doing something illegal behind her back. Although the charges are dropped, her career is in shambles.

To escape scrutiny and determine her next move, she returns to her hometown to stay with her estranged father, Harry “Sully” Sullivan (Scott Patterson), who lives on a picturesque campground called “Sullivan’s Crossing” in Nova Scotia. This is where the real story begins.

sullivans crossing review the cw
Michael Tompkins/Fremantle

The premiere episode teases just enough information to leave us wanting more. Plus, it gives us all the same feels as Virgin River. Just like with Mel (Alexandra Breckenridge) in VR, the show hints that there’s far more to Maggie’s past than meets the eye. For example, both Sydney (Lindura) and Edna (Andrea Menard) seem somewhat bothered that Maggie is suddenly returning after abandoning her friends and family years ago.

These aren’t the only strained relationships in Maggie’s life. First, there’s her dad, who she calls Sully. We mean, who calls their dad by his nickname? There’s also her boyfriend, Andrew Mathews (Allan Hawco), who’s newly divorced. Although he recently moved to Boston to be with her, he lost his job offer as a result of Maggie’s arrest. And she’s not in any hurry to return to him. So, what gives?

sullivans crossing review virgin river
Michael Tompkins/Fremantle

Virgin River similarities aside, Sullivan’s Crossing also features a recognizable cast including Kohan (When Hope Calls), Patterson (Gilmore Girls), Lindura (Ghosts) Chad Michael Murray (One Tree Hill), Reid Price (The Sinner), Tom Jackson (Cold Pursuit), Andrea Menard (Blackstone), Amalia Williamson (Northern Rescue) and Dakota Taylor (Zero Chill).

Oh, and did we mention it also stars Lauren Hammersley and Lynda Boyd, who play Charmaine and Lilly, respectively, in Virgin River? (We promise that’s the last comparison.)

PureWow Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Sullivan’s Crossing has all the major elements of a must-watch TV show, including unresolved trauma, estranged familial relationships and unanswered questions. The only downside is you’ll need to watch it in weekly installments, versus binge-watching the entire season à la Virgin River. So far, it’s worth the wait—and we hope that continues.

Sullivan's Crossing airs Wednesdays on The CW at 8 p.m. ET/PT. If you don’t have cable, you can stream the episode the following day on the network’s website.

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Senior Editor

Greta Heggeness is a California-based editor at PureWow and has been writing about entertainment since 2015. She covers everything from awards shows to exclusive celebrity...