The world is getting ready as yet one more DC product makes its way to the small screen. This time around it’s Supergirl and, although we still don’t have any word on who will actually be playing the titular character, there is a bit of news coming around that addresses what the show might entail. Read on to see what to expect from Supergirl, the television show.
The general synopsis has already been pieced together via the magic of the Internet. Kara Danvers (AKA Kara Zor-El, AKA Supergirl) has been hanging out on Earth for a while. She’s now 24 years old and knows about her powers but, much like her male counterpart, has chosen to keep them a secret. Finally, she can take it no more and begins her quest to use her bad-ass abilities to help those around her.
In addition to that general back-story, we’ve been told that the show will deal with issues of family and career. And with this latest news, we may be looking at a fairly watered-down version of a super hero television show. Read the latest announcement from CBS Chairman Nina Tassler and see what you think.
“There will be [crime] cases, but what [executive producers] Ali Adler and Greg Berlanti pitched was a real series arc for her… The beauty of it is now with shows like Good Wife and Madam Secretary, you can have serialized story elements woven into a case of the week. She’s a crime solver, so she’s going to have to solve a crime. She’s going to get a bad guy.”
So, let me get this straight. We have a super-powered woman who can melt things with her eyes and smash through brick walls and fly around the world in a matter of minutes and she’s out solving crimes like a wee-amateur detective? And dealing with family and career issues? While this may be appealing to a certain segment of the couch-potato viewing audience, this sounds, to me, like one of the dullest super hero shows ever conceived of. Yes, we want some real-life elements in there so we can form an attachment to the main character, but if this is going to end up focusing on Supergirl hunting down wacky serial killers and dealing with which guy she should be dating/sleeping with in any given episode, I’m in terror of the quality of show we’ll end up with.
But that’s not all! There’s a bit more from Tassler that you might want to check out:
“It’s a female empowerment story. If you look at the strong female characters we have on the air, it really is resonant of that … We’re big feminists. It’s her intellect, it’s her skill, it’s her smarts. It’s all of those elements. It’s not just her strength, which she does have.
“I think we’re watching an evolution with regard to the way that superhero characters are portrayed… There’s a humanity. They’re flawed. There’s a relatability. For our network right now, what we did respond to was the character’s humanity, the other characters in the show as well — the story trajectory and the character’s arc and growth. These are all things that made her just imminently relatable, and made the story exciting. We made a decision based on the pitch that we heard.”
“She’s got to be an every woman… I think back to having had the good fortune of being at Warner Bros. when we were doing Lois & Clark, the chemistry between Dean Cain and Teri Hatcher was really wonderful. So I think in this case, it’s looking for someone who embodies both the freshness and the exuberance of being a young woman in today’s challenging climate and being someone who can carry this kind of series on her shoulders. It’s a big, big show.”
I’m glad to hear that they’ll be willing to tackle some potentially controversial feminist issues, but really, let’s hope it doesn’t get too preachy. People venting their political and social views through television shows generally does little but slow them down, particularly if they heavy-hand it. Kara Danvers is a freaking super hero after all – her relation to normal-life stuff is a just a slight bit different from that of a normal human woman. She’s immune to pretty much everything, so a whole host of female-centric problems don’t even apply to her. In other words – It’s not really possible for her to be “an every woman”. Will the writers even be able to make feminist issues relevant to the character?
One thing that’s influencing this different approach to super-hero-ness could be the fact that Supergirl is airing on CBS. The CW has proven twice already that they can create something dynamic and interesting, but a different network means a different kind of style. And it looks like CBS’s style is to appeal to people who spend all day watching reality shows and CSI spin-offs.
Maybe I’m being too harsh. Maybe the end product will be exciting enough to drag me in. But if they get stuck on the criminal-of-the-week format and fail to make those criminals super-powered and ready to do epic battle with Supergirl at LEAST once an episode, then I’m out before I begin.
What say thee, Nerd Readers? Does this new description of the show leave you wanting to know more or does it have you heading toward the door?
Find out what CBS has done with Supergirl and whether or not it’s worth watching when the show hits the small screen sometime later this year.