Hafa Adai! Welcome to Chamorro Cinema where we talk about all the NERDTASTIC NEWS with an ISLAND VIEW.
The fall is coming up quick and with that comes a new generation of comic book television shows. Last week we talked about ARROW and this week we're giving you the low down on Supergirl.
On the show, Melissa Benoist (Glee) is playing the titular super heroine. She lives in National City as Ally McBeal's Cat Grant's Assistant. In the comics Kara Zor-El is sent by her parents to earth to be raised by her cousin Kal-El (Superman). They had survived the explosion of Krypton but the land under their domed city, Argo, became Kryptonite and they all died slowly of radiation poisoning. When she first arrives on earth she becomes an orphan and adopts the identity of Linda Lee. She hides here blond hair under a brunette wig and secretly assists Superman while avoiding being adopted. Eventually she is adopted by Engineer/Rocket Scientist Fred and Edna Danvers and after a few months was finally announced to the rest of DC Universe. She is then killed off in Infinite Crisis, before returning in all her glory a few years later.
The cast includes quite a few DC heroes and villains infact she works with a few...
Cat Grant, played by Calista Flockhart... playing Maryl Streep's character in Devil Wears Prada.
In the comics, Cat is a trashy gossip columnist for the Daily Planet who is always portrayed as creeping on Clark. Later she becomes more like the the J. Jonah Jameson to Kara's Spider-man.
On the Show she is Rupert Murdoch! The head of CatCo, a media conglomerate and generally an all around master of the universe type. Her son is Carter Grant (Levi Miller) and he is described as, "sensitive, shy and has a crush on Supergirl". In the comics his name is Adam and he is kidnapped and killed by the Toyman.
Jeremy Jordan as Winslow "Winn" Schott. In the comics, Winslow is the first iteration of Toyman.
He is more nuisance than supervillian but after Crisis he becomes more sinister. He has a psychotic break and kills Cat Grants son Adam (Later we find out it was his son, the Dollmaker, that actually killed Adam).
In the show he's a tech expert who works alongside Kara at CatCo. No word on whether or not we will see him talking to "Mother" or any of his darker tendencies. This is great material for a drama, but I think its too dark for the show CBS is making. Also Winn is far too young to have a son on the show.
Jimmy Olsen (Mehcad Brooks), leaves the Daily Planet to become art director of a media conglomerate. That's totally logical right? Go from local newspaper photographer to art director of a massive media company...Any way he's the love interest for Kara.
He was previously involved with Lois Lane's sister Lucy (Jenna Dewan-Tatum). In the comics, Jimmy is the plucky young photographer that serves as the readers idealistic proxy.
Instead of A.R.G.U.S. and Amanda Waller we are getting the Department of Extra-Normal Operations (DEO), headed by Hank Henshaw (David Harewood). Hank Henshaw is most know for being the cyborg superman during the reign of Supermen storyline. This is the most surprising character on the show thus far. The fact that DC is giving them such a recognizable villain to use, and that they are changing his origin so much is a testament to how much they trust CBS with these characters.
Kara's earthly and Kryptonian family is represented by Chyler Leigh as Alex Danvers (a character unique to the show) who works for Hank at the DOE. In the trailer she appears to be a best friend type character to Kara, but if you look closely at the flashback sequence she appears to be looking out the window at Kara and Superman with contempt/jealousy...could she be manipulating Kara for her own benefit?
Laura Benanti as Alura Zor-El (Kara's birth mother). Alura Zor-El is going to be getting the Russell Crowe treatment and will function as Kara's guide into the world of Spaulding inspired superheroing. We recently saw this actress as Sadie on Nashville - so between her, Melissa Benoit (Glee) and Jeremy Jordan (Smash) we could have a musical episode for sure...it could guest star the other Glee alumn Grant Gustin from the Flash.
Helen Slater and Dean Cain as Kara's foster parents Eliza and Jeremiah Danvers. I'm not sure why they changed the names of her foster parents...but hey they are changing things left and right so what's one more thing. The coolest part about this casting is that Helen Slater played Supergirl in the 1980's and Dean Cain was superman in the 1990's.
Okay now that that's out of the way...I am concerned about this show. It feels like someone wrote a script adapting The Devil Wears Prada and then had to take that script and change it into a Supergirl story.
The trailer looks good, it just looks like there are lots of tonal shifts that seem haphazardly thrown together. There looks like a decrease in quality as well between the "Felicity" style portions and the portions featuring the DOE. I hope that when the show premieres these sections are more seamlessly stitched together with the dramatic elements.
I'm also worried about the sheer number of people who know her secret identity by the end of the trailer. We lose some of the potential drama of balancing both superhero and personal lives if the support system is too large.
That's what I think, but I want to know what you think about the upcoming Supergirl TV show. Leave me a comment below. You can also follow me on Twitter @manuelmendiola and check out Chamorro Cinema on YouTube.
Thanks for reading.