By Shamus Posted Thursday May 21, 2015

Filed under: Nerd Culture 370 comments

So the big news in costume crimefighting funnybooks last week was the new trailer for the upcoming Supergirl show on CBS:

Link (YouTube)

Lots of people are unhappy with it. For starters, it looks a lot like this idiotic and satirical SNL parody movie, except played straight. Our protagonist is a down-on-her-luck assistant to a powerful magazine editor who is looking for love and approval. So it’s Superman crossed with The Devil Wears Prada, maybe with a twist of “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” thrown in. It feels like an executive got the green-light to make a superhero show and – unable to imagine a world where women would watch a power fantasy – his first instinct was to take the bog-standard “chick flick” formula and make the protagonist a super. Going by the trailer, it feels less like a superhero with romantic elements and more like a rom-com with comic book elements.

It really rubbed me the wrong way. The whole thing. The whole, “Nobody respects me” angle can work for some heroes. But Supergirl? At one point a guy tells Supergirl – in her Supergirl costume – to stick to getting coffee. I can buy the idea that a government guy would tell Spiderman to “stick to taking pictures”. I can believe he’d disrespect Daredevil, Ant-Man, Aquaman, Mr. Fantastic, The Flash, or Luke Cage. But Supergirl? if you don’t trust her with matters of national security, fine. If you’re really so dumb you can’t imagine ANYTHING more useful that could be done with limitless thrust, fine. If you’re dumb enough to SAY THAT TO HER FACE then your character is the worst sort of drama-for-its-own-sake contrivance.

Also, the line about capes aiding with “aerodynamics” made me reflexively shake my head. I can believe in a world where an alien gets laser eyes because the sun is yellow, but I’m not going to accept the idea that a loose cloth cape offers the slightest bit of air control. Stop being so silly.

I get why she’s serving coffee, but this makes me want to shout at the screen, WHY DON’T YOU HELP PUT STUFF IN ORBIT YOUR POWERS ARE WORTH BILLIONS!


The problem is not this show, the problem is the lack of alternatives.

My wife and daughters loved the trailer. It resonated with them. Yes, it’s stupid that some government guy would tell AN IMMORTAL BEING OF STAGGERING POWER AND SPEED to “go back to making coffee”. Yes, the fact that she gets no respect kind of makes a lot of people in the story into idiots. But that’s fine. Her experience feels genuine and familiar to a lot of women. “Oh, I’ve had people talk to me that way before, and I wish I had the power to show them how wrong they are!” It is an empowerment fantasy. It’s just more focused on interpersonal empowerment than physical empowerment. (Assuming, of course, that the show sticks to the presented formula and is setting up this world of strawmen jackasses for Supergirl to overcome.)

Her story actually feels a lot like Spiderman: The hero has tons of powers, but super-strength doesn’t solve the fundamental problems of caring for your family, making friends, and (assuming you keep your identity a secret) impressing the people you meet. ClassicBy “classic” I mean in the early days, before he wound up married to a rich supermodel or whatever Mary Jane became. Peter Parker is actually a pretty sad case once the mask comes off. He struggles to please and care for his Aunt May, his work is remarkable but his boss still uses him as a doormat, he struggles to pay the bills, and he’s lonely and looking for a girl in his life. All of this is the reason I love Spiderman so much. I can’t relate to a handsome billionaire who is Awesome at Everything, but I can relate to a teenage kid who has gifts he doesn’t know how to use and problems his gifts can’t solve. And the thematic similarities between classic Spidey and the new Supergirl are striking.

I love the green reflection over her eyes in this shot, reminding us that Supergirl has LASER EYES and this is a point where most of us would be really tempted to (mis)use that kind of power.

This is not to say I think everyone should love the new trailer. In fact, I don’t blame people who loathe it. It feels like the worst sort of clueless corporate bungling: Let’s put this superheroine into My Big Fat Greek Wedding, because female viewers like that sort of thing.

But like I said, the problem isn’t the show. The problem is the lack of alternatives. If you don’t like the grim-n-gritty Batman, you can watch Thor. Don’t like the fantasy magic in Thor? Watch Iron Man instead. Don’t like the pro-corporate vibe of Stark? Try Captain America. Don’t like the whole idealistic “boy scout” attitude? Try Guardians of the Galaxy. Too much silly comedy? Watch The Punisher, Avengers, Superman, the Hulk, Chronicle, Kick Ass, Daredevil, Blade, or the Fantastic Four. No matter what tone or style you’re into, there’s probably a movie in there that you’ll dig.

If you want to use your powers for good, why don’t you find the power switch switch and turn on the lights. Nobody in this office can see what they’re doing.

But if you’re looking for something with a female lead, then this show is basically it right now. And this show can’t be all things to all people. If they went gritty, some people would deride it as “Batman with boobs”. If they go for comedy, other people will complain that nobody takes female heroes seriously. If they go full-on power fantasy then other people will gripe that the show is just a “guy show” that doesn’t explore feminine themes. It’s not that any of these things are bad, it’s that many of these things are tonally or thematically mutually exclusive.

The best thing that could happen would be for this show to be a hit and kick off a wave of female-led shows. There are obviously a lot of women out there who are looking for some kind of hero story, and if we’re lucky then some of them will like this specific attempt enough that other shows will be greenlit. If it tanks, executives are never going to conclude that they were wrong to turn Supergirl into Bridget Jones. No, they’ll shrug and say, “I guess women just don’t like superheroes!” And then it will be another decade before anyone gets the nerve to try again. It’s been almost a decade since the last female superhero (ish) movie, and that one was shockingly bad.

EDIT: I have no idea why, but an alarming number of people are leaving with the impression that I said this show has no right to exist, or that they did it “wrong” just because I don’t like it. This is really annoying, since it’s the opposite of the point I was making. I assume people are dragging their expectations into this discussion and trying to pigeonhole me as either a fan or a hater. So let me repeat:

I don’t like the show, but lots of women do. Which was the point. The only reason this is controversial at all is because we get so few female-led shows.



[1] By “classic” I mean in the early days, before he wound up married to a rich supermodel or whatever Mary Jane became.

From The Archives:

370 thoughts on “Supergirl

  1. Infinitron says:

    Well, you can wait for Captain Marvel in 2018…

    1. krellen says:

      Has Captain Marvel actually been announced?

      And do we know they’re doing Carol Danvers and not lame-Kree-dude-with-an-implausible-name?

      1. Deadpool says:

        I hate the fact Carol Davers is Captain Marvel now instead of her own super hero. I always found Mar, Genis and Phylla considerably more interesting…

        1. krellen says:

          Captain Marvel is a promotion from being “Miss Marvel”. She was never her own superhero.

          1. Deadpool says:


            1. Mike S. says:

              And Binary. But Marvel shares around the Captain Marvel name so much that it makes sense that it would light on Carol eventually. (Though really, she should use her actual Air Force rank, which is higher.)

              As far as I’m concerned, Captain Marvel has a cape and a lightning bolt on his chest, and DC’s calling him “Shazam” is a travesty. But I’ll be glad to see Carol on the big screen. Jennifer Hale did a nice turn playing her in Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes (which I thought strongly drew on elements of her performance as Commander Shepard).

              1. Deadpool says:

                Well, that’s a legal issue. Marvel HAS to put out Captain Marvel comics periodically in order to prevent DC from putting out a Captain Marvel comic.

                So a few years ago when they needed a new Captain Marvel story it made sense to use Ms Marvel (who had reverted back to that stupid name because Bendis is nostalgic) into Captain Marvel. I kinda get the why.

                I just don’t like it. I prefer for it to stay in the -vell Family. Particularly because of the whole Negabands thing and space focused heroes which Carol is NOT. And I felt Warbird fit Carol better as a name anyways.

                1. Mike S. says:

                  Well, she is very space-focused these days. Or was as of however many months ago the most recent issue on Marvel Unlimited is from. (She’s spending time as some sort of at large Avengers ambassador with a starship, and hasn’t been back to Earth in months.)

                  But I started reading Marvel Comics in earnest when Monica Rambeau was CM. (As a kid, I was basically all DC.) So while I’ve caught up a bit on Mar-Vell and Genis, they’re not characters strongly attached to the name in my mind. (Unlike, say, Billy Batson.)

                  1. Deadpool says:

                    Peter David has two runs on Captain Marvel back to back. While thematically different, they were both amazing. Genis has never been as good since…

                    1. Ed says:

                      Huge Carol Danvers captain marvel fan here, and I never got not liking carol as captain marvel. Both genius and phyla vell have been dead in the comics for at least 5 years by now, and mar-vell has been dead since the mid 80s. And carol is tied into classic mar-vell like Monica rambeau never was. Besides all that, its symbolic. Carol takes the mantle of captain marvel because she doesn’t want to be a runner-up, she wants and is the real deal. Also, carols second volume is all space adventures, if you consider that a necessary part of it

  2. Andrew says:

    If they think capes assist in aerodynamics then they clearly haven’t seen The Incredibles!!!

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Yes!Lessons should be taken from that cartoon.

    2. Zeta Kai says:

      To be fair, Kara could take a trip through a jet engine & come out the other end in one piece, which is rare even for superheroes. Capes wouldn’t be a liability like with Syndrome (or Dollar Bill from Watchmen).

      1. Taellosse says:

        Well, SHE’d be in one piece, but the engine wouldn’t. Fortunately, Kryptonians apparently have the ability to spontaneously generate forward momentum to a seemingly unlimited degree – I doubt there’s a jet engine that has enough power to suck her into it if she doesn’t want to go.

        1. Mike S. says:

          True for a full-powered Kara, but the show’s version’s abilities are still developing. (She can just barely support a jetliner, evidently.)

          1. Taellosse says:

            Yeah, but bullets still bounce off her without even making her stumble – she barely even twitches when they hit. Super strength and invulnerability are entirely separate powers.

            1. Mike S. says:

              But Clark doesn’t even twitch.[1] And she wasn’t sure she was bulletproof till she tried it.

              I’m guessing she could actually survive a trip through a jet engine. (And of course, in practice, she can survive anything that the script allows to happen to her.) But at this stage she doesn’t know it yet.

              [1]In the 70s, there was a series of “Super-Sons” stories featuring Superman Jr. and Batman Jr. (Eventually declared non-continuity– specifically, a computer simulation– but the author, Bob Haney, clearly didn’t care much about continuity issues at the time.) Since the younger Superman was half-human, he wasn’t quite as invulnerable: when shielding Bruce, Jr. from bullets, he complained that they felt like bee stings to him. (Which if you think about it would be pretty unpleasant, given how frequently someone in his line of work has to bounce them.)

              1. Taellosse says:

                Well, Clark DIDN’T – apparently at the moment he’s being significantly downgraded in power, such that Commissioner Gordon in a power armor suit can beat him up.

                And her not being sure whether she’s bullet proof or not has, I think, more to do with the fact that until that moment she hasn’t been shot at, than in her not thinking she’s got the power. She presumes she’s got the same abilities as her cousin, even though she hasn’t tested all of them in her previously sheltered life (though, frankly, I find it a little bit unbelievable that she wouldn’t have tried to fly before saving that plane. If I reasonably thought *I* could fly, I’d have totally gone off to a secluded place to try it out long before). I expect she’s had encounters with various dangerous objects and come away unharmed (kitchen knives, possibly even moving cars, that sort of thing) and so has a reasonable expectation of surviving the gunfire.

                1. Mike S. says:

                  My impression is that her powers have been ramping up gradually. She doesn’t know how far they’ve come till she tries, which of course could be really dangerous if she guesses wrong.

                  While I can’t be sure from six minutes of footage, I’d speculate that she had tried to fly before and only gotten mighty leaps. (Possibly of the sort original 1938 Superman was doing back before he started to fly.) Likewise, she has a reasonable expectation of surviving gunfire, but doesn’t know where her limits actually are, and can’t trust that they’ve reached parity with her cousin’s.

                  Dramatically, this lets them keep the difficulties of writing for a full-powered Kryptonian somewhat under control, while letting them gradually escalate to more and more spectacular feats. Especially during sweeps.

  3. David says:

    I saw this image from the show, with the accompanying comment that it actually feels (distressingly) weird to see an image of a woman ripping her shirt open to reveal a costume and have the act not be sexualized at all.

    So I’m giving it a pass for that alone. I’ll seek it out and watch it.

    1. Zeta Kai says:

      I’m already surprised that we haven’t seen up her skirt yet. Color me impressed by a low bar (& a lack of low angles).

      1. Tizzy says:

        OTOH, I don’t particularly care for the way that shot cuts out her face to center on the chest as it is being revealed.

        I get that this choice may have a perfectly innocent explanation, but now it forced me to question their intent, so unfortunate choice…

        1. Adeon says:

          I think it’s more a homage to Superman than deliberate fanservice. Doing a google image search for “superman opening shirt” most of the shots are framed to focus on the “S” on his chest with his face being near the top of the frame (or even out of frame).

          1. Mike S. says:

            Yeah– that’s a longstanding iconic Superman image. It was probably done before, but pretty much any use over the last thirty years is an homage to the cover of John Byrne’s “Man of Steel” #1:

            Supergirl has two 90s covers, one which does it more or less straight, and one in reverse:



            1. Tizzy says:

              That’s more or less what I meant: pretty confident there was an innocent explanation, nevertheless I was slightly uncomfortable. There wouldn’t be any reason to feel uncomfortable in the first place, if it wasn’t for the poor representation of women prevalent in media.

          2. Mike S. says:

            More generally, a friend who was vetting it for their young daughter observed that she was pleased that Supergirl is more or less always shown in power poses, rather than sexy poses. (Which puts it ahead of so. many. superhero comics over the last couple decades.)

    2. swenson says:

      I am legitimately shocked at how, well, normal her costume is. It’s a very classic Supergirl look. I figured they’d go for an even shorter skirt and a midriff-baring top or something, which seems to be how these things usually go. But no, it’s regular Supergirl.

      (and then I get sad that “the female superhero’s costume works as functional clothing!” is sufficiently rare that I’m excited to see it)

      1. Taellosse says:

        I really, really wish they’d resisted the urge to put her in a skirt at all, even a “reasonable” one – it’s the most ridiculous wardrobe choice imaginable for a character that regularly flies. Why couldn’t they have just given her tights? Even bikini briefs and bare legs would have been more sensible. It’s not like she wouldn’t have looked sexy in either of those.

        Given the tone of that trailer, I’ll be shocked if there isn’t an episode early on that centers it’s entire B plot on the fact that some chucklehead took a cell-phone picture or video up her skirt when she was taking off or landing somewhere and shared it on the internet.

        1. krellen says:

          Supergirl wears a skirt. She always has. It’s iconic, and they are clearly going for iconic, with the whole costume montage and rant about “girl” being as acceptable a label as anything else.

          1. Taellosse says:

            I suppose. I guess it’s kind of like the cape comment Shamus mentioned, for me – a skirt is such a ridiculous garment for a flying character to wear, is all. I find it far less believable than the absurd “cleavage window” that Power Girl traditionally adopts.

            Props to Marvel for giving Captain Marvel (Carol Danvers) a reasonably practical but still feminine costume, a thing they’ve managed with her pretty consistently for a long time, even as the details of it have changed several times over the years. Her and most versions of Batgirl are the rare exceptions to the overwhelming trend of absurd costumes for female superheroes, it seems.

            1. Deoxy says:

              I find it far less believable than the absurd “cleavage window” that Power Girl traditionally adopts.

              Since a noticeable number of actual women wear clothing with “cleavage windows” in public, the Power Girl thing is completely believable. Some women do that, and to take the stance that no super character would is at least as unreasonable (and probably more so) as the stance that all of them do that sort of thing.

              Now, I haven’t followed comics much, really, since… well, ever (I get my comic book knowledge primarily from secondary sources, like movies, cartoons, and wikipedia), so I don’t know if that costume is unreasonable FOR THAT CHARACTER or not (like, say, she’s a raging “all men are evil rapists” feminist, for instance).

              1. Taellosse says:

                It’s not absurd as a piece of clothing, inherently (though there are plenty of female superheroes with impossible outfits), it’s that it’s ridiculously impractical as a thing to wear for a person that spends their time highly kinetically. Women that wear outfits similar to Power Girl’s aren’t flying through the open air at mach 4 or getting into fist fights while wearing said outfits. It’s ridiculous because she’d be constantly spilling out of it and/or the top would rip itself apart from wind resistance.

                By the same token, women wear skirts all the time Hell, some men do, too (not to mention kilts). But those that do are in the habit of avoiding activities that would allow others to easily see up them, and flying is exactly the sort of thing someone in a skirt would want to avoid (unless, I suppose, it were a skirt modeled after those worn by cheerleaders where there’s bikini briefs underneath, but I’ve never seen any evidence that Supergirl wears anything like that).

                1. Deoxy says:

                  Oh, I agree on the skirt thing, your other arguments, not so much, as they would apply to ALL clothing, all the time.

                  At Mach 4, “cleavage window” or not, the clothing will cease to exist nearly instantly. There’s no reason to think the style makes that much difference, one way or the other.

                  1. Taellosse says:

                    Sorry for not replying earlier – probably missed the window for any further reply now, but here’s my response anyway.

                    True enough, I suppose (and arguably falls under the category of “necessary suspension of disbelief” – there’s lots of supers that fly, and most of them can keep up with jets, without damaging their clothes), though that doesn’t address my other point, about how she simply moves around a lot, and gets into brawls on the regular, which is not activity conducive to wearing clothes with prominent holes like that.

        2. guy says:

          That is unfortunately possible despite the obvious countermeasure

        3. Daemian Lucifer says:

          Well if we are talking practicality,the most practical outfit for someone with those powers would be:None at all.Maaaybe superman would wear something over his junk to prevent flapping,but thats it.The two dont need outfit for any reason other than decency.

          1. Taellosse says:

            Well, sure (though that raises an interesting sidebar question: when you are virtually invulnerable to injury, do things that make normal people uncomfortable bother you? would Superman care if his junk flapped around in a way a human male found uncomfortable? Would Supergirl care if her breasts bounced around? These things hurt mortal humans, and cause us to wear support garments, but Kryptonians under a yellow sun are almost immune to pain), but you can’t show that in network TV. Even a male character has to save his shirtless scenes for special moments, lest you lose the titillation factor.

            There’s a reason I wasn’t decrying a skirt as an impractical choice for how she chooses to move around, though – anyway, it’s not a tight skirt, so it won’t impede her activity, it’ll just encourage perverts to try to peek all the time.

            1. Daemian Lucifer says:

              Perverts will always exist.We shouldnt stop doing something cool because of them.

              1. Taellosse says:

                True enough. Not sure putting Supergirl in a skirt qualifies as cool, but I’ll concede the point.

            2. Jeff says:

              Superman going naked might be a good deterrent for some segment of the criminal population. Being beat up by a super-wang is pretty humiliating.

              1. krellen says:

                Superman going naked also turns him from an upstanding paragon to a (not-so-masked) vigilante, as most jurisdictions have public decency laws.

                1. Taellosse says:

                  They’ve also got laws about assault save in self-defense, and use of force by private citizens. Given that none of the crooks Superman stops can actually harm him, and he’s not a member of authorized law enforcement, he’s very much a vigilante even with clothes on.

                  1. WJS says:

                    Most places with reasonable self-defence laws will also allow you to use force in defence of another (within limits, obviously), and stopping (serious enough) crimes may also get a pass.
                    Going out looking for this kind of trouble won’t be looked upon favourably, of course.

  4. DeadlyDark says:

    I didn’t like first look, but I’ll wait for the pilot himself. Cause, I remember didn’t liking first look of Flash, and wasn’t sold on Arrow’s pilot but in the end these both shows won me over. And probability of the show being good with creators of these two shows is high enough for me.

    1. RCN says:

      Both of these shows lost me completely by the third episode.

      Daredevil hooked me up and never let go from the very first one.

      1. Hydralysk says:

        I had the opposite experience really. Got sucked in immediately by Arrow and the Flash, while Daredevil took 3 episodes before I started actually getting invested.

        1. Steve C says:

          I’m just lampshading that this conversation supports Shamus’ premise that guys have options on what supehero shows to watch.

  5. Daemian Lucifer says:

    What I dont like about this trailer is the hollywood nerdy thing they are going with her.Its made worse by making jimmy olsen into a huge muscular hunk,because we cant have two nerds in a show,god forbid!

    But the costume changing scene won me over,so Ill give it a try.It has potential.And if they say that the nerdy thing was her poor attempt to imitate television,that would be a huge plus in my book.

    1. Joe Informatico says:

      What, the awkward coworker guy who helps her with the costume doesn’t count as nerdy?

      And to me it looks like they’re just doing the distaff version of Clark Kent. Clark has the glasses and is generally presented as being somewhat awkward, but come on–how many versions of Clark have looked like anything but a tall, dark, and broad-shouldered handsome man in glasses. And aren’t we way past the “gentlemen seldom make passes at women who wear glasses” era? For men and women?

      Anyway, once Kara’s in costume in this trailer she comes across as totally confident and capable and even joyous, just like her cousin. it’s only some of the people around her who are cynical.

      1. Alexander The 1st says:

        “Anyway, once Kara's in costume in this trailer she comes across as totally confident and capable and even joyous, just like her cousin.”

        Wait, we’re not talking about Man of Steel Superman, are we?

  6. Daemian Lucifer says:

    By “classic” I mean in the early days, before he wound up married to a rich supermodel or whatever Mary Jane became.

    Silly Shamoose,that never happened.

    1. Micamo says:

      Yeah, had to get rid of that awful marriage so we could go back to the REAL spidy, a millionaire who has anonymous sex with Black Cat all day.

    2. Taellosse says:

      Well, maybe. It might have happened again after all. Depends how Marvel’s current big event shakes out.

      But Shamus, the whole “Mary Jane’s a supermodel” thing didn’t last. Yeah, when they first married, MJ was doing really, really well, and they lived in a fancy apartment, but that was while she was acting on a successful soap opera, I think. It wasn’t long before her character on the show was cut or something, and she lost her job, then (because Peter Parker needs money troubles!) couldn’t find a new job that paid nearly as well. Most of the years Peter and MJ were married they got by, but they were never as flush as when they first married again. MJ was unemployed pretty frequently, and only provided steady income slightly more often than Peter’s own work.

      1. Robyrt says:

        The Amazing Spider-Man newspaper comics have had MJ as a successful supermodel married to Peter Parker for many years. Maybe this is the one he’s referring to?

        1. Taellosse says:

          Possibly, but those have been in a separate continuity for some time now. Until the whole Secret Wars (2015) thing started to come together, it had it’s own reality number designation and everything. I’m not certain precisely how far back they decided it had deviated, but it was made incontrovertible in the wake of Brand New Day – as I understand it, Stan Lee was actually still writing the newspaper comics at the time, and thought the storyline was incredibly stupid, so in the version he was writing, the whole “deal with Mephisto” nonsense was a weird dream Peter had, and he woke up still married to MJ.

          1. Ed says:

            To go the nerd distance, that reality actually makes it out of secret wars via the master weaver saving it in spider-verse from the inheritors. I am sorry I wrote this.

            1. Taellosse says:

              So the lead-in to Secret Wars made a huge deal about how 616 and the Ultimate universe were the only realities left, but there were actually 3 and neither of the other two knew about the newspaper strip one still existing? …Wow.

              I don’t actually read comics myself anymore, but I keep abreast of major developments for some reason, so I was not aware of this detail.

  7. Mormegil says:

    I liked the first half of the trailer. Person with exceptional capabilities wants to fit in and doesn’t know how their powers work with that. Then an immediate crisis occurs forcing her to embrace her strength rather than hide from it. Okay, good, that’s kind of cool. And it’s over before the halfway mark in the trailer. Everything else was a train wreck. Nobody would tell Superman to make coffee (they even more or less acknowledge that in the trailer). So why put it in here? I get that the secret identity plotline is kind of tired and impossible to believe when the hero doesn’t wear a mask but the only alternative was this? Girl struggles to break superhero glass ceiling?

    1. I read the coffee thing as a reference to “go make coffee honey, the men are talking” sort of thing. Yup, no one would tell Superman to go make coffee, but sadly the same is not true for women. I’ve been the most experienced person in the room trying to solve a serious technical issue and been told to go get coffee for everyone (and then my boss yelled at the person who’d said that because he was a good boss).

      There’s some really interesting stuff you could explore with sexism and Supergirl (how would a bunch of MRAs deal with being saved by a girl for example), but given the romcom feel of the trailer I don’t expect much. I’ll give it a chance, like I’m currently giving iZombie a chance (female zombie superhero), but I tend to not like stuff that’s made to appeal to women (I like explosions and don’t really like romance).

      1. Mormegil says:

        The problem as I see it is that women might face sexism but none of those women are literally a god walking among us. It would have made more sense for the alien fighting soldiers to try and kill her than to be condescending. Potential threat is believable, inconsequential is kind of hard to see.

        1. Deoxy says:

          This. It’s just plain typical Hollywood “men are evil” stupidity.

          how would a bunch of MRAs deal with being saved by a girl for example

          That depends greatly on which group you think of when you say “Men’s Rights Activists”, as that’s a very large topic, and it has some perfectly reasonable and accurate points and some really over-the-top, “all women really are stupid”-spouting morons, with no perfect dividing line.

          The MRAs who are just pointing out the obscene and obvious dehumanizing of men in US “family” courts, for instance, would probably have absolutely no problem with being saved by a female super hero – they are, essentially “equalists” pointing out areas where the system is unequal, just like the better (and these days, rarer) portions of feminism.

          The MRAs that have a large overlap in membership with the more misogynistic elements of “PUA” culture would probably hit on her, comment on her body, take any opportunities for inappropriate physical contact, and insult her when she refused to come home with them.

          The former group generally dislikes the latter group rather a lot, both for the obvious reputation and “guilt by association” problems and the real disagreement on how to treat women.

          Really, the MRA movement reminds me a lot of feminism – some reasonable points, some crazy, stupid, “what planet are you from” members. Hopefully, it won’t devolve like feminism largely has to where the crazies are the ones putting themselves forth as representing all of them (and often getting away with it, which is the number of women self-identifying as “feminist” is so low these days).

  8. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Her story actually feels a lot like Spiderman:
    but I can relate to a teenage kid who has gifts he doesn't know how to use and problems his gifts can't solve.

    Actually,thats not quite true.His gifts can solve most of his problems.For example he could cash in his strength by working at a construction yard of sorts.Or he could directly sell his autographs instead of taking pictures of himself to sell.Spiderman can earn money in way peter parker cannot.

    The problem with him,and with many superheroes,is that they constantly try to keep two identities instead of just nixing one in favor of the other.You are afraid for your loved ones,but still want to be a superhero?Fine,fake your own death,let them grieve for you,but at least theyll be safe from retaliation while you go full time superhero.Or,go public and have your loved ones stashed into a witness protection program(of sorts)while you go working full time for the government.

    1. Taellosse says:

      Comics have, over the years, explored such story concepts quite thoroughly. Of course, they never work out. Peter Parker has quit being Spider-Man several times, and also quit being Peter Parker a couple times. As have several other characters (notably, Daredevil faked his own death when his secret identity was revealed, then pretended to be a new hero who was following in Matt Murdock’s footsteps, abandoning his unmasked life completely in the process. Around the same time, Peter Parker had a nervous breakdown from a series of escalating tragedies in his own unmasked life, and tried to become Spider-Man full time as well. It didn’t end up working out for either one).

      Also, the idea of not “cashing in” on his powers is pretty much a founding principle for Spider-Man – it’s the reason he’s a hero, because he tried to do that first, and (at least in his eyes) it got his Uncle Ben killed. Earning money from using his powers is completely antithetical to his character (it isn’t for some others. I expect we’ll be seeing some of that in the Netflix Marvel shows, since Luke Cage and Iron Fist are among the slated characters there, and they’ve often teamed up as “The Heroes for Hire”).

      1. Daemian Lucifer says:

        But he is cashing in from taking pictures of himself.How would that be different from being paid to build a bridge?

        As for others,being superhero full time works for iron man and captain america.Also x-men.

        1. Taellosse says:

          Even that is self-flagellation. He sells them exclusively to The Daily Bugle, where they are used to demonize him. Also, he freelances (he is never on the official payroll of the Bugle), and Jameson consistently underpays him.

          Iron Man isn’t a full-time super – he’s the CEO of a major corporation, and for most of his history in the comics, his identity as Tony Stark was a secret (the fiction that Coulson tried to get movie-Tony to tell at the end of the first film – that Iron Man is an anonymous bodyguard employed by Stark – was the cover used for decades in the comics. A story that Jim Rhodes helped maintain by wearing the Iron Man suit for Tony several times, sometimes for extended periods, long before he became War Machine). The fact that he revealed his identity was a lynchpin of the Civil War storyline a few years back (Spider-Man revealed himself at the same time, to disastrous results, which provided the excuse for One More Day, widely held to be one of the worst Spider-Man storylines of the last 20 years).

          Most of the X-Men aren’t so much full-time supers as their non-super identities are secondary to their super ones. Most of them don’t wear masks, but they have private lives and most of them can walk around in public without being recognized (those that can’t will sometimes wear disguises of one sort or another). Captain America is sort of the same way – his identity is technically public knowledge, but he’s not readily recognized out of uniform most of the time.

          It’s true that not all characters in comics have a secret identity that’s a central focus of their comic – it’s a trope that can get overused, and some have either never focused on it (X-Men and Cap) or given it up in favor of other themes (Iron Man, Hulk). I’m all in favor of that, but for those where it HAS been a major theme, I think there’s value in keeping it that way for at least some of them (particularly those that couldn’t reasonably protect their non-powered loved ones from all their foes, like Spider-Man. Tony Stark has the financial resources to ensure those he cares about can reasonably expect safety, Superman is powerful enough to do it himself, historically, but Spider-Man and those like him are neither rich nor powerful enough to do that, making it an interesting theme to maintain).

          1. Robyrt says:

            Spot on analysis. Of all the secret identity variants, the X-Men are closest to the real-world example of musicians or wrestlers: their real identity is public knowledge, but everyone uses the code name anyway for convenience. If the code name is lame or confusing, like “Marvel Girl” or “Psyche”, people will just call you by your real name. There’s a great story line in the ’80s where Rachel Summers (Jean Grey’s daughter from Days of Future Past) wants to use her mom’s old code name and costume, and the team has to explain why that’s in poor taste.

      2. JakeyKakey says:

        The reason it doesn’t work is because Marvel refuse to break status quo.

        Spiderman is generally considered in the top ten smartest characters in the entire Marvel Universe (assuming he had actually applied himself). He pals around with Tony Stark all the time. Tony Stark could hire him or otherwise provide a few dozen of Spidermen with luxury lifestyles for a lifetime without a dent in his wallet.

        You really can’t reconcile a lot of this stuff without suspending one’s disbelief or going for straight up asspulls.

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          “The reason it doesn't work is because Marvel refuse to break status quo.”

          Yeah.Linkara did a great dissection of spiderman in his one more day review,when he said that spiderman is still written with a mind of a teen,despite being an adult for quite a while now.Which was the reason for that story anyway,to bring the old status quo back.

          1. Mike S. says:

            That’s pretty much Marvel’s DNA. They pulled ahead of DC in the 60s by aiming for adolescents rather than kids. Most of their big characters reflect adolescent concerns in some way (most obviously seen with the Hulk, Spider-Man, and the X-Men– mutants literally have their bodies go through painful, unpredictable changes at adolescence that make them alienated and feel as if everyone hates them). Their trademark style of heroes fighting one another at the drop of a hat is likewise something you sometimes see in teenagers or young adults, but not mature adults in most places in the modern US. (And throughout the genre, stories billed as “mature” are more likely to be adolescent in tone with the safeties off– more sex, more gore, more death, more cynicism– than actually reflecting adult sensibilities or concerns. Though of course there are exceptions.)

            I should be clear that this isn’t a criticism, since “adolescent” can be an epithet as well as a description. (In many ways Marvel’s rise prefigures the increasing prominence of YA in prose literature today.) Some of it I like, some I don’t, but I’m with C.S. Lewis: “When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”

            Either way, suspension of disbelief is key, because superheroes dissolve in too much realism. Mild doses of verisimilitude can help support the suspension, but add too much and you’ve entirely explained away your character. Peter Parker is a) a genius inventor and b) never financially secure. The two don’t make sense together, but take either away and you’ve kind of lost who Spider-Man is in the shuffle. (See also “Superman is the epitome of what is good, kind, and honest”/”Superman comprehensively lies to his friends about who he is”.)

        2. Taellosse says:

          Well, I don’t know about “top 10 smartest characters in the entire Marvel universe” – it’s been made clear that Tony Stark, Reed Richards, Victor Von Doom, and a few others are way, WAY beyond Peter Parker, even if in most rooms he walks into, Peter is likely to be the smartest one there. Peter is characterized as brilliant by normal human standards but not a supergenius. I could list two dozen characters without trying hard that are characterized as supergeniuses, and that’s restricting myself to natives of Earth – if it’s opened up the larger cosmos the list gets a lot longer.

          That said, the core of your point stands – it’s kind of silly that a guy as smart as Peter Parker has to make ends meet as a freelance photographer. That said, there are plenty of people in real life that are very intelligent and fail to apply themselves effectively, so it’s not THAT weird (and they usually don’t have as good an excuse as “I have to spend all my time being a superhero”).

  9. lucky7 says:

    I’m looking forward to this. If Supergirl succeeds (fingers crossed), I wonder who’ll be next?

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Makeup-woman and skimpily-dressed-dudette.

    2. swenson says:

      Remake Birds of Prey, but y’know, actually good this time!

      There were so many things I liked about that show… but also a lot of problems. I think DC could do much better this time around, with the lessons from the Flash and Arrow! You wouldn’t even have to change all that much in terms of the characters, if they’re still refusing to mention Batman, because he didn’t even show up, really.

    3. Syal says:

      Wonder Twins.

  10. ehlijen says:

    I don’t mean any offence, and I don’t want to start anything you don’t want on your site, so delete this if you think it might.

    That said, when you say “this world of strawmen jackasses for Supergirl to overcome”, I think you’re being a bit too dismissive.

    Yes, asking the demigod to make coffee is dumb, but there are women who get treated this condescendingly in the real world and it’s just as dumb in reality to assume someone isn’t capable of more.

    I like the trailer, and I think it hits closer to the mark than many people who don’t encounter such behaviour (because thankfully it isn’t ubiquitous) would be able to easily believe.

    The comment in the trailer is dumb and the character is dumb for saying it. But sadly, that does not make it unrealistic.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      When she is literally the only(other than superman,who isnt available) person in the world that can do such things?Nope,wouldnt happen.Women that hold positions of power because they are the only one in the company/city/country capable of doing certain job are taunted like that,that is true,but not to their faces.

      1. ehlijen says:

        But she doesn’t really have a position of power, does she? She has powers, but she is still an outsider and a civilian to boot. She doesn’t hold a position. I see nothing unrealistic about the military being dismissive about helped offered from such a source.

        Blatant underestimation is the problem, so really ‘but I can lift buildings with my pinky while flying’ isn’t really helping. They don’t trust her to know procedure, how to help. And they they choose to be jerks in how they say that.

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          She single handedly carried a plane to safety.They would definitely not tell her something like that to her face.Especially if they thought she is a loose cannon.

          1. ehlijen says:

            I guess we have to disagree, then. I’ve seen people say very stupid things, and this isn’t too far out there.

          2. Mike S. says:

            It’s clear that something is going to go wrong, though. Both because it’s a drama and there have to be reversals, and because something has to provoke the “I can’t do this” scene that she overcomes in the trailer.

            And they can tell her to her face because she’s a well-intentioned person who wants to do the right thing, hasn’t done this before, and will be upset if she screws up. She’s not a loose cannon going out of her way to inspire fear, any more than her cousin is. (And there are any number of stories in which Superman submits to authority for that reason, even even though no one can force him to.) As they say, if you tug on Superman’s cape, he’ll… ask you politely not to tug on his cape again. The fact that he could knock you into orbit for it isn’t the point, because he’s never going to do that. Likewise Kara.

          3. Alexander The 1st says:

            And Superman saved the world in Man of Steel – doesn’t mean that the military isn’t going to be wary about getting Superman or Supergirl recruited for every mission the military wants to take on, since they’re in the business of world saving, not reducing casualties in the process and making sure things go smoothly.

            1. Mike S. says:

              I’m pretty confident that this Supergirl, like the Flash from the same creators, is in the business of minimizing casualties. (And that the show’s offscreen Superman will be as well.) But that of course doesn’t mean that the agency tasked with countering alien threats is going to immediately trust a new alien who’s largely unknown to them.

              1. Tizzy says:

                I am not familiar with the comics, but it does sound like many of these heroes care more about civilian casualties than any real-world military does. If only because it is so much easier to assign precise responsibility for a body count to a small group of super-powered individuals, compared to a large organization.

                1. Mike S. says:

                  And because superheroes are an idealized genre. While there are exceptions and deliberate subversions, the core idea is that one or a small number of self-selected individuals with no accountability can face and fight dangers better than organized police or armed forces or emergency services can. Part of the fantasy tends to involve the targeted application of massive force without having to accept collateral damage as inevitable. It happens, more often the grittier the story. But until you start getting into satire, there’s still that underlying idea that great power translates into great responsibility– and that losing (let alone actually killing) a thousand to save a million is a highly unsatisfactory result, even if it’s the best you can do.

                  (It’s unsatisfactory in the real world too, of course, but real people mostly aren’t operating under the explicit self-description of “hero”.)

              2. Alexander The 1st says:

                That’s fair, now that I think about it, but more specifically, supers have a higher tendency to put civilians in danger in order to save the world and such, whether it involves the supervillain holding their love interest or other civilians hostage, or just how the fights end up going.

                Military tactics involve primarily working together to avoid fights devolving into situations where civilians are in danger to begin with though – no slamming villains into skyscrapers, for example.

  11. Chris says:

    I forgot Ultraviolet happened! I was happier that way!
    Equilibrium to Ultraviolet must be the shortest career arc in recorded history. Gosh darn it, Kurt Wimmer.

    1. Zeta Kai says:

      Tell that to the guy who made “Sky Captain & the World of Tomorrow”. At least Wimmer got to make a second movie…

  12. ehlijen says:

    I rather liked the trailer. I don’t know much about the comics, but I like the difference I see, in that superman wants to help but struggles not to be worshipped or relied upon, whereas supergirl (in this trailer anyway) wants recognition and to use her abilities to her best for good.

    Yes, they could have made some of the aspects a little less gender stereotype, but overall I like the themes of struggle between selfish desire for recognition and selfless desire to be a hero.

    As for other shows like it, the only thing that comes to mind are Legend of Korra (great show, if you don’t mind watching what’s ostensibly a kids cartoon) and Xena: Warrior Princess. Technically both are fantasy and not superhero shows, but in their worlds the characters act more or less like superheroes.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      (great show, if you don't mind watching what's ostensibly a kids cartoon)

      A kids cartoon where people are brutally murdered,and has lesbians.Which wouldnt be that odd if this was a japanese kids cartoon.

      Xena is already 20 year old though.

      1. ehlijen says:

        Yes, it has those things, but it’s amazing how they skirt those issues. They never actually outright say what happened to the Earth Queen, for example, though they certainly use very clear euphemisms.
        And the relationship you’re referring to just happens to be the only one in the show that doesn’t get openly shouted from the rooftops, which I found a bit chickening out.

        I was much more impressed how they managed to explore fascism, anarchism and morally grey characters, though. Varric’s one of the best good bad guys (or bad good guys?) I’ve ever seen. Plus, I’m a sucker for bumbling paladins, and Korra fits that bill perfectly.

        And yeah, Xena is old. Still holds up, though, and if you’ve not seen it, it’s new ;)

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          Doug Walker mentioned an interesting thing about the villains once:The first season villain represents communism,the second season theocracy and religious zealotry,the third anarchy,and the fourth facism.

          As for the relationship thing,I found it much more interesting because they werent overt with it.It felt much more realistic that way.

          1. ehlijen says:

            If you’re generous about the second season, yeah. Still can’t believe the bad guy’s ‘motivation’ was basically ‘awaken cuthullu and become his mindslave’ :( such wasted potential…

            I also liked the non-overtness of the relationship more, but in comparison it seemed very odd because it was the least overt by far. It felt like they were going against their own style for out of story reasons, to me.

            It was a great show though, not perfect, but great.

          2. Grudgeal says:

            Personally I’d say “misrepresents” myself. It’s like if the writers thought of that initially, but then remembered that the characters had to be villains more than anything else and fumbled at presenting their actual philosophies vis a vis just making them “evil”.

            1. Daemian Lucifer says:

              Zaheer was a pretty cool anarchist though.

            2. ehlijen says:

              I don’t think that was misrepresenting the philosophies so much as showing that people can easily become misguided and that the topics in question are contentious to begin with. That their philosophies weren’t as evil as they themselves actually is addressed.

              Amon’s defeat leads to the first non bending head of state being elected.
              Unalak’s defeat ended in Korra leaving the portals open after all.
              The one world leader Zaheer succeeded in taking out was unmistakably shown as being possibly even worse than him.
              Kuvira did rebuild her nation, she just didn’t know when to stop.

              If anything, the show tried to remind the viewer that just because these were the bad guys, they didn’t not have any good point whatsoever, even though the rash protagonist liked opposing them just because.

              And then there’s Varric who tried to bribe a judge, staged a terrorist attack and tried to arrange for a mass mutiny to achieve the exact same goals as the hero . So the ‘good guys’ didn’t really get shown flawlessly either.

        2. Mephane says:

          And yeah, Xena is old. Still holds up, though, and if you've not seen it, it's new ;)

          Yeah, for kids everything is new. A more efficient society would have stopped producing shows for kids, and just broadcast the same ones again and again in intervals of a few years.

          That said, yeah, Xena was an awesome show. :)

          1. Groboclown says:

            An efficient society would only ever show This Series. Bigfoot and Wildboy is all anyone ever needs.

    2. Alex says:

      Steven Universe is another good cartoon in a similar vein.

  13. RCN says:

    Wait, wait, wait… you mean that this trailer is for an honest-to-goodness superhero series?

    I hadn’t heard of the idea to make Supergirl into a series until right now. I just saw that, started playing the trailer, and thinking to myself “heh, another jab at the sorry state executives put female heroes through. Really funny this sketch… wait… wait… wait… this is not a sketch? No, it can’t be… can it? I’m… I’m out of words.”

    You’re right, the impression this gives is that they’re making fun of the concept, not taking it seriously. It… it boggles my mind, really. This single-handedly tanked any goodwill I had at DC being competent enough to pull-off Wonder Woman in their cinematic universe (well… actually more likely it was the last straw). She is going to be insulting, sidelined and then forgotten. It is a such a shame.

  14. Karthik says:

    I had a series of reactions to the trailer:

    1. Oh, a Supergirl series. That’s a thing? Cool.
    2. It’s set in the office from Prada? Hmm, I wasn’t expecting much, but this looks like it could work.
    3. (Around the mid point with the plane) Way to resolve the primary conflict in the trailer, trailer!
    4. (Around the “go back to fetching coffee” moment) Seriously? I thought we were past the self-doubt phase. Why isn’t she more confident?
    5. I wonder how this squares with the super grim Man of Steel setting. She sure mentions her cousin a lot.
    6. Well, why not? It could work. It’s a fusion of genres that I’ve never seen meet before.

    1. Peter H. Coffin says:

      My read on the trailer is that this show is all about playing with stereotype. Boss seems a vapid powermonger in the intro. Unconfident Kara in the intro. Suave, debonaire, ‘save the damsel’ James Olsen in the intro. Then the plane rescue, and everything’s as expected. Then, half way through, it …. changes. Secret identity? Gone. Vapid boss? Not vapid; insightful in a way that makes it clear she got where she is by destroying preconceptions, perhaps sometimes by waiting. Nerdy boyfriend? Quickly adapts enthusiastically to a support role. Government commander? Hardass, but willing to bend HIS rules to accommodate a changing circumstance.

      Yeah, I can get behind this. Hope they vary up the soundtrack though; I can get tired of Rachel Platten really fast.

    2. Mike S. says:

      Re 5, It’s (thank goodness) not set in the same continuity as Man of Steel. DC isn’t trying to do a grand unified universe the way Marvel is. The producers considered putting it in the same world as Flash and Arrow, but it was nixed since it’s on another network. (And just as well, since superheroes are clearly very new in that world, and a long-established Superman in the background wouldn’t fit.)

      1. krellen says:

        I like “my family’s coat of arms” a lot better than “it’s the symbol for hope”.

        1. Mike S. says:

          Me too– but I’d much prefer “it’s an S”.

          (I blame Marlon Brando.)

  15. kikito says:

    > But if you're looking for something with a female lead, then this show is basically it right now.

    I think Agent Carter is a much better exponent.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      It too had the “Go make us a coffee” shtick.However,it was set in the late 40s,so at least it had an excuse for it.Plus,once the guys found out how much ass she can kick,they stopped with such comments.

      Though,she isnt really a superhero,so that show doesnt really count.

      1. Viktor says:

        Yes, because the 40’s were the last time sexism was a problem. That sort of response is constantly, constantly a thing for women today, even when there’s absolutely no justification for it and the woman is the most competent person in the room. I’ve seen it repeatedly with a woman who’s been in my industry for years and is utterly irreplaceable for our company. Yes, it’s stupid, but no one ever said bigots were smart.

        1. Deadpool says:

          I don’t have a problem with the idea of someone being idiotic enough to tell a woman to go get some coffee in 2015.

          But we’re talking about a military leader in charge of putting away dangerous and powerful aliens in a world where Man of Steel ALREADY HAPPENED telling a Kryptonian who is offering to help him in his endeavor and she is useless to him.

          There is sexism and there is complete and utter stupidity.

          Tying this movie to Man of Steel hurts the feminism angle considerably: No one should doubt what she’s capable of because they’ve all seen what Krytonians can do. Were this KARA who was suffering from this, it’d be considerably more believable. But her work place seems pretty devoid of that problem actually.

          And I’d say that’s probably the reason Carter is better accepted. Her work place was oppressive but most of the time she was on the field with people who understood (or quickly learned) how capable and badass she actually WAS and it was the people who didn’t know who would treat her like a fool. Supergirl seems to be going the opposite way, having people who KNOW how capable and badass she IS to treat her like a fool instead…

          1. krellen says:

            I see no evidence that this series is tied to Man of Steel.

            1. Daemian Lucifer says:

              “Its not an s,its a symbol of whatever” line is a pretty clear tie in.

              1. krellen says:

                See above. It’s NOT a “symbol for hope”, but a coat of arms.

              2. Taellosse says:

                Except in Man of Steel it stands for something else (“hope”). The writers decided they liked the idea of it meaning something else to Kryptonians, and it just happens to resemble an ‘S’, is all.

                It’s been said explicitly that the DC movie universe is separate from anything they’re putting on TV. There’s some lack of clarity at the moment whether this show will be connected to Arrow, Flash, and the new spin-off (they were talking about possible crossover a couple months back, but this show clearly indicates Superman is an established thing, and that doesn’t fit at all with the Arrow-Flash continuity thus far), but it definitively is not in the same universe as Man of Steel.

                1. Mike S. says:

                  The symbol being Kryptonian goes back to Marlon Brando wanting to wear it as Jor-El, though it that didn’t really make it into comics for decades. Though there was an intermediate point where the Kryptonese glyph for the “S” sound was the familiar irregular pentagon with what looked like an “8” inscribed, obviously intended to prefigure Superman’s chest symbol. (See )

                  1. Taellosse says:

                    Good point – I had forgotten that. All the more reason not to lend that line too much weight – the idea of the S-symbol meaning something else isn’t even new to Man of Steel.

                    1. Deadpool says:

                      He’s actually correct, it is a non-descript Superman and not Man of Steel specifically. Jimmy Olsen alone should have been a dead giveaway.

      2. kikito says:

        Well she’s got no superpowers, but she’s definitively a heroine, doing super things – often battling people which do have super powers themselves, be it via nazi old relics, or Stark stolen experiments. And she uses spy gatchets from time to time (not her main thing, granted). I’d say she’s as super hero as Arrow. Even a tiny bit more. After all, she’s got the original Jarvis.

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          The only thing arrow is super at is being a douche.

          1. kikito says:

            My point was that the definition of superhero is variable. I used Arrow because it is a modern TV show.

            It seems stablished that Batman is clearly a superhero, even if he’s got no super powers. I assume that this is because “he does super things”, even without them (unless you count superdetective as a superpower)

            Is Nick Fury considered a super hero? Or The Punisher?

            If they are, then so should Carter. I think.

            1. Daemian Lucifer says:

              Batman is super rich:)

    2. Let’s not forget Electra, which certainly has a female lead and which wasn’t a complete disaster of a superhero movie.

      The Supergirl trailer was in fact pretty bad. It’s Superhero Sex in the City or something like that.

      1. Zeta Kai says:

        You’re right, Elektra wasn’t a disaster. Disasters aren’t so boring that I can’t keeping watching.

      2. Bloodsquirrel says:

        Electra was so awful that you could tell, in every scene, how embarrassed the actors were to be in that crap and how badly they just wanted to get the shoot over.

      3. Taellosse says:

        Elektra was a terrible spin-off to a deeply mediocre Daredevil. There’s a reason barely anyone remembers it. Also, Elektra came out the year before Ultraviolet – and Catwoman, which was even worse than Elektra, came out a year before that. Unfortunately, to a studio executive, it wasn’t just an isolated incident of “female superheroes don’t sell” it was 3 in a row.

        The really sad thing is they were improving. Catwoman was pure crap, Elektra was hackery, and Ultraviolet was almost watchable, if dumb. Had they kept trying, we might have reached “pretty good” in another couple attempts.

        1. Tizzy says:

          That would leave you still miles away from pretty decent. It makes you wonder if the people who were actually making the movies were even taking them seriously.

          1. Taellosse says:

            Probably not.

  16. Zak McKracken says:

    ” I'm not going to accept the idea that a loose cloth cape offers the slightest bit of air control”

    Well… it would definitely affect aerodynamics, though probably not in a good way. A cape cannot stay steady in a stream of air, so it will constantly flap and produce an unsteady flow, even if it would have been steady otherwise. It’ll also produce a separation on your shoulders (air that would be flowing along your back is now diverted by the cape), which means you loose lift.

    …but then if you’re able to produce enough thrust to move planes about aerodynamics are no concern at all, therefore the whole thing becomes completely irrelevant, and that guy is just trying to sound smarter than he is.

    1. Zeta Kai says:

      I’ve thought the same thing about the cape disruptive effect on the air behind the flyer, & it occurred to me that it still has one use: it would mess up the air for any pursuing flyer. Anything following Superman/girl/beast would be affected by the turbulence coming off of their flapping cape, especially at high speed, making pursuit more difficult. This could be beneficial to the cape’s wearer, although it would be a rare circumstance where this would be crucial in a conflict. I could see Batman taking things into account to that extent, but not the Supers.

      1. Taellosse says:

        Batman doesn’t fly with a loose cape, though. In more recent iterations, his cape is sometimes made of “memory cloth” that can stiffen into a glider with an electrical charge (as seen in Batman Begins and the Arkham games), but in that case it isn’t flapping. In older iterations, he could only fly with some sort of external contraption, such as an actual plane, or sometimes a collapsible glider. In either case, he’s not flying unassisted, and his cape isn’t flapping around behind him.

        1. Zeta Kai says:

          I’m not saying that he flies; I’m saying that he’s such a crazy-prepared obsessive lunatic that he would think to design his cape so as to maximize the turbulence that it creates behind him. It’s the kind of thing that he would devise, if he flew.

    2. Mike S. says:

      “The cape helps with aerodynamics” is like “the solar energy reaching the exposed skin of a humanoid somehow powers Kryptonian abilities”. It’s a comic-book science handwave to lightly justify the impossible. It doesn’t stand up under the slightest analysis, but it’s not intended to– it’s just there to give an in-story reason for wearing a cape.

      (The real reason is “because circus acrobats do, and Flash Gordon did, and those along with strongmen are what Superman’s costume drew from, so that a derivative of that costume looks wrong without it.”)

      1. Zak McKracken says:

        Oh, I wasn’t supposing otherwise. I just think it’s fun to take these things seriously just for a bit.

        Some colleagues and me once worked out an estimate of the airspeed at which a blue whale could produce enough lift to fly … it’d have to be rather fast :)

        Also: Superman wears a cape because he wears a cape. That’s good enough. If you really want to give an explanation, use something that’s not so easy to argue against. Like the fact that it looks flashier — I mean that’s what the rest of the costume has been designed for, hasn’t it?
        This is a bit like the Midichlorians thing — completely unnecessary, and actually a bit dissappointing.

        1. Mike S. says:

          I can see that. I thought of it more as a wink to the audience than a serious bit of mythology. For example, I will be shocked– and also disappointed– if, once Kara has some experience flying, she runs into any trouble trying to fly when she’s not wearing it.

          For comparison: in the Legion of Super-Heroes cartoon, the Legion picked up a teenaged, pre-Superman Clark Kent, who still hadn’t quite mastered the whole flying thing. One of the Legionnaires (who, of course, come from the future, and have seen images of his adult self in action) suggested that he put his arms out in front of him, and that immediately steadied him.

          I don’t think we’re really supposed to imagine that the classic Superman pose is actually necessary for him to fly straight as an adult– it’s just an amusing little secret origin for the idea.

  17. PeteTimesSix says:

    So, keeping in mind this is the first time Ive ever heard of this…

    I liked that trailer. It felt alive and colorful and secure in its cheesyness and Supergirl seemed to genuinely ENJOY this whole having superpowers thing. Ill probably end up watching this show at some point because of it. Make of that what you will.

    1. krellen says:

      Given that it’s DC and I’ve watched the first season of Arrow, I’m not really expecting a lot from this, but right after watching the trailer I’m fairly hyped to see this. Even Marvel has so-far been afraid of super powers on TV.

      1. DeadlyDark says:

        Well, it’s hard to expect from Arrow superpowers (though, they have superstrength serum in second season), but they embraced SP already in the same universe by Flash show. And yeah, as we already here, we should post Legends of tomorrow trailer here too.

        1. krellen says:

          I didn’t expect super powers from Arrow, but I did expect to see Oliver Queen, not Batman-with-a-bow.

          1. Daemian Lucifer says:

            He isnt batman with a bow.He is badman with a bow.

      2. Cerapa says:

        You should see the flash if you want superpowers.

        They have a telepathic gorilla.
        And a time traveller from the future.
        And Michael Scofield doing cold puns.
        And a character whose main role is to nerd the hell out and give everyone their comic book names.
        And so on and so on…

        Fuck, the season finale was this week and I miss it already…

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          That finale made no sense.But I must admit that I liked it.And it finished with a bang.

  18. Mephane says:

    I get why she's serving coffee, but this makes me want to shout at the screen, WHY DON'T YOU HELP PUT STUFF IN ORBIT YOUR POWERS ARE WORTH BILLIONS!” title=”I get why she's serving coffee, but this makes me want to shout at the screen, WHY DON'T YOU HELP PUT STUFF IN ORBIT YOUR POWERS ARE WORTH BILLIONS!

    This reminds me of this smbc episode about Superman and methods to utilize his superpowers much more effectively:

  19. Zak McKracken says:

    On the “Girlish” topic: The whole Bridget Jones angle is putting me off. And wh ydoes she need to be told to do the right thing? But then I’m a guy so I should maybe not have too much say on what this should look like.
    What I do notice though: Clark Kent, too, is a very insecure character, too. He struggles with his regular life, he actually sacrifices success in civilian life for his secret career as superman. As Superman, though, he is self-confident, he does the right thing, he commands authority. Supergirl, on the other side, stays completely in character in her supergirl attire. Apparently half the cast knows who she is, and they don’t seem treat her any different for it. When she is supergirl, she’s still just doing what she’s told.

    …maybe she grows through the course of the series? That would be nice.

  20. Mumbles says:

    I think it’s pretty unfair when dudes shit all over girl superheroes for being too girly.

    1. Zeta Kai says:

      Why? I can shit all over male characters for being too manly. And my gender is irrelevant to the character’s portrayal of girly-ness. Powergirl/Starfire are too girly, Xena is not girly enough, & Wonder Woman/Black Widow are just right. It’s a personal opinion.

      For the record, in video games, Duke Nukem/Kratos/Marcus Fenix are too manly, Link/Raiden/Final Fantasy dudes are not manly enough, & Solid Snake/James Sunderland are just right. It’s still my opinion, one I will hold regardless of your approval. You are entitled to your opinion, but you can’t have mine, too. That’s greedy.

      1. Mumbles says:

        There’s a big, big difference between having an opinion and taking a shit on something. Witcher is too manly for me, but you don’t see me taking a shit on it.

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          But we did see Shamoose take a shit on it.Multiple times actually.Why should the reverse be different?

          1. Ahiya says:

            I’m starting to think you like deliberately missing the point.

            Mumbles: “I think it's pretty unfair when dudes shit all over girl superheroes for being too girly.”
            Rando: But being a dude qualifies me to comment on dudeliness, and it should also qualify me to comment on girliness. Also, OPINIONS.
            Mumbles: “There's a big, big difference between having an opinion and taking a shit on something. Witcher is too manly for me, but you don't see me taking a shit on it.”
            You: But another guy was really harsh on the Witcher’s definition of manliness and appropriate behavior for guys! That is definitely the same as a guy using gendered insults (i.e. framing ‘girly’ as a bad thing) about a female-oriented, female-led TV show.

            Seriously, dude?

            1. Henson says:

              I think you misunderstand Zeta Kai’s argument. He’s not saying that being a dude qualifies him to comment on dudeliness and also on girlyness, he’s saying that he’s qualified to comment on both these things because everyone is qualified. That everyone has the right to express their opinion on whether they find characters too masculine/feminine or not masculine/feminine enough, regardless of who is expressing the opinion.

              Zeta Kai, if I misunderstand, please correct me.

              1. Zeta Kai says:

                Nope, you pretty much nailed it. From my perspective , any “rando” (as Ahiya above called me) can express their opinion about, well, anything, really. So long as they are being undeservedly disrespectful.

                And hey, some people don’t like girly; it isn’t for everyone (see: MLP:FIM), & it’s hard to take overly-girly characters seriously, & this show is obviously trying to walk that fine line without tipping one way or the other. It’s like camp gay; there is nothing wrong with homosexuality or transgenderism, but camp gay is deliberately silly, & taking it seriously is a fool’s trap.

                What I don’t like is the idea that my gender (an aspect of my being that I have no control over, & wouldn’t change if I could, as I am content with it) can be used as a basis to exclude me from criticizing something, or even participating in the conversation about it. It comes off as a reactionary pendulum-swinging vindictiveness of a perceived exclusion of women from some time past, perpetrated by some rando guys against some rando girls who are no longer present in the here & now. I didn’t personally bar anybody from anything, nor will I accept being barred in kind.

                1. Henson says:

                  Hey, thanks for expanding on your thoughts. But I think you may be missing a “not” in your first paragraph…

                  1. Wray92 says:

                    Maybe that’s what he meant to say. It *is* the internet, after all…

        2. Zeta Kai says:

          I will concede that point. The main difference is that of expression of said opinion, & how that is done. One can be critical of a character without being disrespectful to that character, its creator, or the rest of the audience. It’s a matter of degrees, really. And one person’s shitting-on is another’s pointing-out-the-perceived-flaws.

      2. Ivan says:

        Woh dude, you really seem to have a narrow view of what it means to be a man or woman, being a hero shouldn’t change that. You’ve put some of my favorite heroes on that list and I could never agree that some of them are too girly or too manly, that’s just who they are. I’m not going to even point out which ones I originally came to defend because the fact is that the idea of gender roles is such an artificial and restricting aspect of our society, it really does not reflect reality at all. Some men are more girly than girls, some girls are more manly then men, if you criticize a character for expressing the gender identity you think he or she should not, then you might as well do the same for real people, because people are far more diverse than what has been recorded in writing.

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          Some men are more girly than girls, some girls are more manly then men, if you criticize a character for expressing the gender identity you think he or she should not, then you might as well do the same for real people, because people are far more diverse than what has been recorded in writing.

          And what if you do?If you dont like Sean Connerys movies because he is too manly for you,would that make your taste wrong?Or if you didnt like Liv Tylers movies because she is too girly for you,would that make your taste wrong?We are talking about someones taste in entertainment here(visual entertainment I might add),after all.You are free to criticize them fro whatever you dont fancy,whether its their acting,clothing,or looks.

          1. Ivan says:

            I wouldn’t dislike Sean Connery movies because he’s “too manly”, I would dislike his movies because they so often objectify women. I also could see not liking a chick flick because the characters are too materialistic or gossipy. Those are legitimate things to criticize because they are so specific, but criticizing a character for being too manly or too girly is saying essentially that society has laid down certain rules for men and women to follow and these characters are wrong to exist outside these norms. I realize this may not be what you’re trying to say, but it’s what I hear when I hear someone say “too manly/girly”.

            1. Wray92 says:

              In this example, it’s actually the opposite. If you don’t like a show because a character is “too manly,” then that’s because they’re adhering too strictly to the cultural norms.

              Really, what’s meant by that is “too stereotypically manly” or “too stereotypically girly.” Which is a legitimate reason to find something not to your taste.

    2. Henson says:

      I’m curious about this. Obviously there are a bunch of guys who won’t like a show for being too girly, and guys saying that it’s a bad show because of that girlyness would be judging based on personal preference rather than any mark of quality. But I’ve been under the impression that a fair number of women think along similar lines, that a show can be too girly for them too, and being girly is a bad thing; that is, that there are a lot of women who aren’t comfortable with girly things and so treat it the same way as the guys who aren’t comfortable with girly things.

      This attitude could simply be due to their own preferences, but I also wonder if it may be based on societal assumptions on the value of girlyness: in the push for better female representation in popular media, it seems like girlyness had been somewhat demonized as backwards and limiting. The whole pushback against ‘girls are pink’ turning into ‘pink is bad’, for example.

      What I don’t know is how widespread this preference is. Are there a lot of women who reject girly things? Or is this a skewed perspective based on uneven exposure to such opinions, or perhaps based on out-of-date information?

      1. Mumbles says:

        Yess. I’m in the camp that believes a large spectrum is the best option. Devil Wears Prada doesn’t work for Black Widow, but it does work for Supergirl. Some girls like to watch shows about Peggy Carter showing dudes who is the boss, while others prefer a feminine Spider-Man sort of story, like what we see with Supergirl.

        1. Deadpool says:

          The comparison to Spider Man is almost apt… but not quite.

          Peter had a crappy life and no respect, but Spider Man didn’t have the problem. Sure JJJ may have the whole “menace!” thing but Spider Man was Peter’s cool, badass, empowered and escapism version of himself.

          The idea that SUPERGIRL is the one dealing with getting no respect is kind of… Backwards.

          I’ll probably give it a try. Might be trailer bait in a show that’s certainly trying to appeal to a specific demographic…

          1. Taellosse says:

            Careful – Spider-Man IS Peter Parker (and Parker must always be Down On His Luck), and for a very long time, even if he TALKED a good game with the mask on, he wasn’t any better off. It wasn’t just JJJ and the Daily Bugle demonizing Spider-Man – for years and years, Jameson’s relentless propaganda swayed much of the public, too. Cops would try to arrest him, people would catcall him and throw stuff at him, etc. Yes, eventually the sheer weight of his good deeds changed that, but Marvel is fond of revisiting that status regularly – he’ll get framed for crimes, or a body snatcher will make him evil (the latest stunt) for a while and ruin his rep, or some other thing, and Spider-Man will have to spend months and months rebuilding his public reputation again.

            1. Deadpool says:

              Sorta. Spider Man is often feared by the public. The comparison here would be if the military guy said “I capture dangerous aliens. YOU are a dangerous alien!” and attacked her. THAT’D be a Spider Man-esque situation.

              I mean, she has a good civilian life. Her apartment implies she gets paid well, she seems to have a healthy love life, her boss is rude as hell but the work environment doesn’t seem terrible. That seems a far cry from Down on His Luck Parker who struggles to make ends meet, gets bullied every day and sometimes ends up having to sleep on the street.

              BUT, we must remember this entire trailer is based off ONE SINGLE EPISODE. Hardly indicative of the whole series. And it certainly seems worth a try at least…

              1. Mike S. says:

                Her apartment may just imply that she’s a TV character, who more often than not have living spaces inconsistent with their earnings.

                But I agree. They’re clearly structuring the pilot so that she has to prove herself, both to herself and to others. Whether that’s well-justified or not, I think, can certainly wait till we see the whole story.

                (And honestly, even if it’s not, lots of pilots have rough edges. It’s already pretty clear that she’s going to be working with the DEO by the end, so it’s not as if she’s going to keep showing up to alien attacks to be told not to worry her pretty head about it.)

              2. Taellosse says:

                Nah – Spidey’s negative encounters with “regular people” are seldom actually threatening to him. They’re more dark comedy than anything else – the cops are always laughably ill-equipped to hold him (he usually just webs up their guns or simply swings away while they shout impotently after him), and the civilians that get nasty typically are throwing things like rotten fruit. Every so often his reputation will get so sullied that some sort of serious law enforcement will be sent after him – usually some version of a SWAT-like unit of cops supposedly designed to take on powered people (and almost always pathetically ill-equipped to do so, so as to permit the vigilante heroes to remain relevant), but sometimes mercenaries like Silver Sable’s team, or even the Avengers. But that’s a special-case situation. When he’s in default “menace” status his ability to operate freely isn’t significantly impeded, it just gives him something to gripe about in his thought balloons, to add variety to his relationship and money problems.

                I think Mike S has a point about the apartment – I doubt very much she’s paid that well as an assistant, she’s just in a nice apartment because Hollywood (spacious sets are easier to film in, for one thing). Doubtless there will be at least one episode where she’s suffering serious money troubles, if it isn’t a running theme for the show.

                Peter Parker (in the comics, anyway) hasn’t been overtly bullied in his civilian life on a regular basis since he finished high school, by the way, and actually well before that (there was a storyline where he took on Flash Thompson, his chief bully, in a boxing match and knocked him out), nor does he ever suffer so much money problems that he ACTUALLY has to sleep on the street. He’s sometimes having enough trouble that he’s CLOSE to losing his apartment, and once or twice he HAS, but he’s just moved back in with Aunt May (who has remained alive against all odds, for the most part, for 50+years despite being elderly when she was introduced). Down On His Luck Parker always has cause for stress, and reason to complain, but seldom is his personal life a COMPLETE shambles. It gets that way every so often, but that’s not remotely close to the norm.

                1. Deadpool says:

                  Peter Parker has ACTUALLY slept on the street before. It has gotten to that point.

                  And yes, I was referring to classic Peter, high school, nerdy, puny Parker archetype. Eventually he got better (although the money issues never really went away) but for large part of his career Spider Man was his escape.

                  Think about the wise cracking. That’s not a super power. He’s got the wit to have a smart mouth without the costume on, but he did for YEARS. Because he didn’t have the confidence for it…

                  1. Taellosse says:

                    You do know that “high school Peter Parker” was only a thing for, like, 3 years, right? In the early days of Marvel, the comics ran in real time (in the 70s, they slowed it down, and by the 80s, characters basically stopped aging altogether except when it was convenient for plot reasons). When Spider-Man had his 5 year anniversary as a character, he’d graduated high school already and was attending college. Spider-Man has been around for over 50 years now, and for nearly all of that time, he has not been attending school (though he was an on-again, off-again college student for a long while), he has not worn glasses, not been mocked as a nerd by his peers – except when he gets reinterpreted in a new setting and started over again (in the Ultimate comics, in one of the several cartoons they’ve had over the years, or either of the movie continuities, most notably).

                    “Classic Peter” was a tiny, almost insignificant fraction of Spider-Man’s career, even if it is archetypal.

        2. Muspel says:

          Pretty much this.

          The SNL Black Widow trailer was an SNL bit because it didn’t fit Black Widow, not because every element of it was inherently ridiculous. (Yes, some of the parts of it were comedically overblown, but that’s because it’s an SNL bit.) Black Widow just isn’t the kind of person who would do anything in that trailer because she doesn’t have anything resembling a normal life. (This is, in fact, one of the major themes of her character arcs in Avengers 1 and 2, as well as Winter Soldier.) The joke was not “Hah hah! None of these things would ever work for an adaptation of a comic book character!”, it was “Hah! We’re ignoring Black Widow’s character for the sake of cramming in every single chick flick trope!”.

          It’s like how Saturday Morning Watchmen was funny because of the CONCEPT of a “lighter and softer” version of Watchmen, whereas Batman: The Brave and the Bold isn’t inherently mocking the mere idea of a less serious Batman. Different premises work for different characters and stories.

          Supergirl is not Black Widow, and a lot of the things that are inherently ridiculous and/or comedic for one could be a perfect fit for the other. That doesn’t necessarily mean that the show couldn’t end up being really sexist or misogynistic, but saying “oh, the trailer shows some things that normally show up in movies that are heavily aimed at women” is not a strike against it.

          Nobody is saying that it’ll be the show for everyone. I personally was not very interested by the trailer until the latter half (particularly when her sister showed up, which I felt added a lot more character to what I was being shown), but the fact that something isn’t for me doesn’t mean that it’s bad.

          Overall, I’d say I’m cautiously optimistic, which is my usual stance on new superhero adaptations.

        3. This. THIS is what I tried to explain to Shamus. Well, what all three of us tried to explain to Shamus.

          It wouldn’t work for Black Widow because of who she is. (In fact, my theory of why Black Widow hasn’t been made into a movie is because her story wouldn’t make for a nice gentle “can take the tween daughters and feel like she is a good role model” story that they are going for with the other Marvel stories. you can take all the kids from maybe 5 or 6 up to see the rest of the Marvel movies. Black Widow? “Well, son, I think maybe you need to wait a couple years before you see that one.” “Well, sweetheart, Black Widow isn’t really suitable for you.” And so on. Black Widow is more like 007 than Thor or Iron Man. Parents might not be so keen. (I also suspect that is why there are less Black Widow toys. Black Widow the name alone has too much negative connotation.)

          We love Agent Carter (and suspect that she might have opened the way for Super Girl) and hope that, should Super Girl do at all well then it will open the way for MORE… like you know, Wonder Woman?

          1. Wide And Nerdy says:

            This is one big stumbling block to the female superhero launch and I’ve thought along similar lines all along. Black Widow, Elektra, and Catwoman are not superheroes. They’re femme fatales or spies or criminals at different turns. I’ve come to accept Black Widow’s place in the Avengers line up but when I learned of it, I was slapping my forehead because she’s not a superhero.

            I was hoping they could go ahead and get Captain Marvel into this film but I guess they want to launch her in her own film and then work her in. I guess part of the problem with other prospective candidates is the ambiguity of which franchises they belong too given Marvel’s complicated movie rights situation. Several are distaff counterparts (and actually, Captain Marvel is one herself, just a case of the rare one to take over and eclipse her male counterpart). Others belong to Spiderman’s or Xmen’s or Fantastic Four’s worlds.

            Lets see. There’s Tigress, Scarlet Witch (who is in a legally complicated position). There’s The Wasp but she’s not going to be very satisfying alongside her male counterparts unless she uses the powers she got later on as well, enlarging.

            1. Daimbert says:

              I think you mean “Tigra”.

              There’s also She-Hulk, who is clearly in the Avengers/Hulk timeline and actually would have fit the kinda “Ally McBeal with a superheroine” vibe Supergirl might have been going for. And she’s actually pretty versatile, as she’s had series/roles which were Deadpool without the violence type comedies, normal family-type, or fairly serious/political. It would be interesting if they dropped her into Civil War, even unpowered, as a lawyer that gets consulted, even briefly.

              But, yeah, there aren’t very many Avengers heroines that could carry a non-spy TV series or movie, and so who wouldn’t clash with Agent Carter/Agents of SHIELD. That being said, I don’t think there are many if any Avengers heroes left that could carry that as well. Doctor Strange is probably scraping the bottom of the barrel a bit.

              1. Taellosse says:

                I keep hoping they’ll decide to use a second Hulk movie as a vehicle to introduce She-Hulk (who is a WAY more interesting character than her male counterpart). Good casting and scripting could make Incredible Hulk 2 into a backdoor She-Hulk movie, with Mark Ruffalo’s Banner doing what he apparently does best – play excellent straight-man support for a more vibrant character.

                But I guess the Hulk rights are actually a little more complicated than they seem – Universal has partial distribution rights over him. Marvel can make stuff with him in it, but apparently, at least for anything where he’s the headliner, they get a cut, so Disney is somewhat reluctant to focus on him when they’ve got so many others they can leverage without sharing – especially when he’s been tried twice with only middling success.

                1. Wide And Nerdy says:

                  I think Hulk himself is more interesting than She Hulk (if a little played out at this point.) But if they use the courtroom drama angle, her movie could end up being more interesting than any Hulk movie we’ve gotten to date and really fit with what Marvel is doing.

                  Best part is, they’ve built up the Marvel universe enough that she could do her thing representing other Marvel characters.

                  1. Taellosse says:

                    Hulk really isn’t that interesting, though, at least not as an ongoing character. He’s essentially a comic-book version of the werewolf, or Dr. Jekyl/Mr. Hyde – there’s only so much you can do with “the literal monster within” stories before the concept gets played out. There’s a reason they keep doing things to Hulk like giving him Banner’s intelligence, or at least new and more complex personalities.

                    She-Hulk’s personality shift is more subtle, and making it under her conscious control allows them to explore her self-image in both personas in lots of nifty ways. Add to that the change in assumed power dynamics when she towers over nearly all the men around her and can bench press small buildings, and She-Hulk becomes far more interesting than her cousin.

                    1. Wide And Nerdy says:

                      I’d agree except they’ve gone a lot of different directions with Hulk in that regard. He doesn’t just change into the temperamental Hulk. There’s Joe Fixit, the Professor, The Scar, Hulk’s powers and form are reactive to his personality and mental state. His control varies according to how psychologically centered he is.

                      And if it really is about how men treat her differently (operating under some writer’s assumption of how all men everywhere are) I’m beyond tired of that. Way beyond tired. I don’t treat women this way myself. I don’t have the presence to change how other guys act. Thats all I can do. I’m so very tired of the preaching.

                      If this is what we have to look forward to from female led superhero shows and movies, you can count me out and don’t hold your breath for an apology.

                    2. Deoxy says:

                      And if it really is about how men treat her differently (operating under some writer's assumption of how all men everywhere are) I'm beyond tired of that. Way beyond tired. I don't treat women this way myself. I don't have the presence to change how other guys act. Thats all I can do. I'm so very tired of the preaching.

                      If this is what we have to look forward to from female led superhero shows and movies, you can count me out and don't hold your breath for an apology.

                      Quoted For Truth.

                    3. MichaelGC says:

                      I don't have the presence to change how other guys act.

                      Aye right, but things like TV shows might do, simply because they’ll reach lots of people. It is all very tiresome and no one has anything to apologise for! – but personally I give such efforts a break precisely because they may be able to effect change, where I cannot.

          2. Tizzy says:

            Also, that trailer gave a sense that there was a definite arc to that “Devil wears Prada” situation. Depending on how it is paced/treated in practice, Supergirl may come out of it looking better/more empowered.

            Also, love that they acknowledged and tackled explicitly the embarrassing gender imbalance in names between SuperMAN and SuperGIRL

            1. Mike S. says:

              To be fair, the imbalance began when Kara was introduced as a young teen. Changing an iconic character’s name while retaining loyalty and recognition is tricky. (The Legion of Super-Heroes, who are far less important trademarks, remained “Cosmic Boy”, “Saturn Girl”, “Lightning Lad”, etc. long after they started marrying and having kids. Ditto the Teen Titans, who dropped the “Teen” years after Donna Troy married.) And “Superwoman” is the name of a bunch of other DC characters, one of whom is a villain.

              Maybe they’ll change it eventually, but I think they made the right call not to do it when trying to launch her into a new medium.

              1. Wide And Nerdy says:

                Exactly. Clark called himself “Superboy” when he was a teenager (in continuities where he did operate as a superhero before adulthood).

                Now for Power Girl there’s less of an excuse.

          3. Steve C says:

            I find how women lining up to defend that Supergirl trailer fascinating. I would have guessed it was offensive to more people. I had the same initial reaction as Shamus when I first watched it, without his deeper analysis. The deeper points he mentions (which are in fact your points) I had not considered. Now I’m going to give the first episode a shot. Before I would have avoided it like the plague.

            My question to you is what about the other treatments of Supergirl? Do they work for you? For example I liked Supergirl in Superman/Batman Apocalypse, which despite the title is actually a movie about Supergirl, not Superman/Batman. That included a “girly” shopping scene (note the line @1:50min which makes that entire clip.)

            My point is that when I saw that Supergirl trailer I thought, “This is awful. It could be done so much better.” But what is better? Is what I like better? Or is it just that it appeals to me but the actual demographic it seems to be aimed at doesn’t like it?

            This whole thing reminds me of Broneys– which I thought was dumb. Then I learned more about why people liked it and I could really respect it after that. It still didn’t appeal to me, but it had earned my respect.

            1. Mike S. says:

              Apocalypse wasn’t my favorite Kara incarnation. I didn’t really like how much of the story had her as a menace (her landing, being mind-controlled by Darkseid), and in general the story was longer on big fight scenes and shorter on character interaction than I’d’ve preferred. It’s a legitimate character arc– she’s an alien with unfamiliar, overwhelming abilities in a strange and threatening place, trying to find her place in the world. It just wasn’t really to my taste.

              My preferred animated Supergirl was the DCAU version from the Superman animated series and JLU. I like superheroes who actually seem to have some joy in their abilities, and Supergirl’s first flight over Kansas captures that better than her cousin ever does in that series. (I like the DCAU Superman, but he’s never really given a chance to just relax.)

              And while I liked the too-brief Legion of Super-Heroes series we got, I’d really have liked to see the one teased in her last appearance in “Far from Home”. The idea that she feels at home with the Legion, because the 31st century is much more like Krypton than 21st century Earth, is as far as I know original to the series– and kind of brilliant.

      2. Ahiya says:

        a fair number of women think along similar lines, that a show can be too girly for them too, and being girly is a bad thing; that is, that there are a lot of women who aren't comfortable with girly things and so treat it the same way as the guys who aren't comfortable with girly things.

        Yup, there are some women who are very negative about anything that’s too ‘girly’, just like there are some who are very negative about anything that’s not ‘girly’ enough.

        The former is could be internalized misogyny. It’s a known problem. Just because a person is a member of a group that’s treated badly doesn’t mean they automatically recognize and manage the bad treatment healthily. Women and men are both susceptible to being taught prejudice. Internalized racism and internalized homophobia are also big problems.

        Or, it could be self-defense. There are a lot of guys who can respect a woman while she acts like a guy, and the second she acts ‘girly’ or appreciates feminine things stop respecting her. Claiming a girl ‘isn’t a real fan/nerd/geek’ is one way this gets expressed. Some women navigate this minefield by rejecting things that are too feminine.

    3. kikito says:

      I have a problem with the concept of “girly” itself. I think Supergirl in the trailer “handles power like a girl“, in the bad sense.

      She’s repressed and vulnerable and taking shit from everyone, even when she could torn them all apart with her little finger.

      His cousin, on the other hand … Klark Kent is shy and awkward, but Superman is Super. He’s even super at faking being awkward, that’s how good he is. He’s a super actor.

      But this girl? She’s just clumsy, worries a lot about clothes, can’t make decisions by herself, especially when she’s got her period. Yes, darling, your shoes match your handbag.

      It seems the story’ll get less horrible than that, but that’s how the premise looks to me.

      – Go back to making coffee
      – I could kill you with my eyes

      Come on, it’s not so difficult. This thing writes itself.

      1. krellen says:

        No Superman worthy of the name would threaten to kill a human because of a petty insult.

        1. Muspel says:

          He has, on rare occasions, joked about it.

          For instance, during the JLA storyline “New Maps of Hell” by Warren Ellis, he had this exchange with Lois:

          Lois: “Where’s the intern? I need some coffee.”
          Clark: “Intern went home.”
          Lois: “I meant the cute boy intern with the cycling shorts.”
          Clark: “Incinerated him with my heat vision.”
          Lois: “But did you keep the cycling shorts?”

          1. Tizzy says:

            I feel there is a difference between joking about incinerating someone else, and threatening to incinerate someone to their face. Even if you’re joking, and even if they understand that you’re joking, it’s a pretty awkward moment given that, yes, you can effortlessly incinerate them and they couldn’t do anything to stop it.

          2. Wide And Nerdy says:

            This may be the greatest Lois and Clark banter I’ve ever read.

        2. kikito says:

          Well, no military worth his salt would say “go back to making coffee” to a super metahuman, either.

          It was not supposed to be a threat; more as a warning – “Hey, you really don’t get who you are messing with”. Besides, Supergirl is not Superman. They are different individuals, and it’s ok if they have different personalities (another thing which was missing on the trailer)

          Wonderwoman would have tied the guy to the ceiling.

          1. Tizzy says:

            Bear in mind that it was a test of her commitment as well. The end of the trailer comes right out and says it.

          2. krellen says:

            I think a lot of people who have a problem with that line are missing the fact that her civilian job literally is making coffee. It’s not (just) a sexist slur at her – it’s more of a “don’t quit your day job” remark.

            1. ehlijen says:

              On top of her being an untrained civilian. The military does attract the highly self confident (amongst other types), so if faced with an outsider who’s supposed be able to do their job better, dismissal of the suggestion that the military are not the best of the best and fully sufficient for the task is a realistic reaction, in my opinion.

              To all those saying ‘why doesn’t supergirl just punch/threaten to punch people that annoy her’: that’s not who she is. That’s not who a lot of people are. That’s the whole point of the character. She wants to be seen as a worthy person, not as a powerful alien.
              And that’s besides opening the can of ‘aliens are trying to oppress us’ worms.

            2. kikito says:

              Well, I don’t buy the “civillian coffee maker job” to start with. Ask anyone whose job is bringing coffee to a jerk boss “Would you still be at this job this if you were super strong and you could fly?”. They would laugh at your face. It’s ridiculous.

              If she needed the money (doubtful, as she’s immortal), she could probably compress a piece of rock and make a huge diamond. Or be a bounty hunter. Or any other logical thing. I just came up with those two in 2 minutes. She would have had a whole life to figure those out.

              Not only I’m supposed to believe she is a pushover, but also that she has no ambition or imagination.

              1. krellen says:

                Reminder: all those scenes take place after we are told that Kara “wanted to be normal”. Which is actually a pretty common trope for those with super power. (Sailor Moon, who is literally the Messiah of her fiction, wanted to be normal so badly she reset the universe so she could be.)

                1. kikito says:

                  I confess I would not bat an eye at this character if this was a Soujo Manga. It didn’t occur to me to look at it from that perspective.

                  I guess I will try suspending more of my disbelief.

              2. Mike S. says:

                It’s a genre thing. Superheroes, especially on the more four color end of things, don’t use their abilities for personal gain. And if they try, the universe punishes them. (Ask Peter Parker.)

                There are very few superheroes who couldn’t do something more lucrative with their abilities than their day job, but in a superhero story you don’t do that. (At most, it’s okay to accept a stipend for participating in a recognized superhero team like the Avengers.) Often in stories with classic secret identities, it’s a matter of personal honor to live like a normal human while also juggling a busy freelance crimefighting career.

                Oddly, superhero universes often also have lesser supers who do turn their powers into employment. There were a bunch of speedsters working as couriers in the DCU for a while, there was an entire wrestling league for the super-strong at Marvel. But if a frontline hero tries that, there will be Consequences.

                1. Wide And Nerdy says:

                  Well and especially look at it from Superman and Supergirl’s perspective. With their powers, they can balance their lives pretty effectively. They have superspeed, eidetic memory, they don’t need to sleep or eat.

                  Spiderman on the other hand has the same needs as a normal human. He does have more energy but he needs sleep and food. He can wear himself out just from running himself ragged. A lower level superhero like him, it makes sense that if they’re going to be crimefighting, they’re going to seek supplemental income.

              3. Mike S. says:

                The other thing that occurs to me is that Kara may actually have an interest in a future in the media (since they’re giving her a lot of the Clark Kent stuff). Paying your dues in a menial position to get in the door is time-honored, and this is something that gets her regular face time with the CEO. (Who’s a jerk, but whose reference and personal acquaintance will still be valuable in the future.)

                It’s not a good job in and of itself, but it may well be an important step in the part of her career that doesn’t involve punching things.

          3. Ahiya says:

            Lots of high-powered female executives are assumed to be secretaries still. In 2015. It’s completely believable that a military officer would be operating under the assumption that women = secretary. I’ve seen this happen even in very forward-thinking businesses, and the military isn’t exactly known for treating women equally.

            The ‘stick with coffee’ comment is something that has happened to a lot of women. When combined with other forms of assuming the woman is the secretary (take the notes, reserve meeting locations, coordinate schedules, etc), I doubt there’s any woman working for a reasonable length of time that hasn’t dealt with this.

            1. kikito says:

              It was also clear that this was no regular woman. My main problem was with how she handled the comment though.

              1. ehlijen says:

                You have to remember that quite frequently, if a woman does stand up for herself and counters aggressive dismissal with aggressive assertion, she’ll be branded a moody bitch and still not taken seriously.
                There is literally no way to win for them in some situations, even though the dismisser is at fault.

    4. Daimbert says:

      I think the issue is not so much that she’s being too girly, but more that they started with a superhero show and turned it into a “girly” show. Or, rather, that it’s not a superheroine show that includes elements that women viewers might be interested in, but instead took the typical “Sex in the City” type of show and stuck a superheroine into it for some reason.

    5. Taellosse says:

      I’m genuinely surprised you feel that way, Mumbles, and it makes me re-evaluate my impressions of this trailer. I, and Shamus I assume, saw it more as “studio assumes women like girly, so let’s stick a superhero into a typical rom-com show. Ta-da, female superhero.” But I guess you’ve got a point – there’s room for diversity.

      I guess I just wish this felt a little more like the makers were taking it seriously. But maybe that’s my own prejudice talking.

      The second half does look like it might go to interesting places if they’ve got some guts and allow for real character growth. I guess I’ll withhold judgement until the show comes out and has run for a while.

      1. Tizzy says:

        The “thereis room for diversity” angle is also acknowledged in Shamus’s original article, in the sense that people would react less strongly if there wasn’t such a drought of on-screen depictions of female super-heroes.

        1. Taellosse says:

          Yes, and that’s more or less how I feel about it as well. I guess there’s just something to be said for not dismissing this particular one because *I* don’t think it’s that cool.

    6. Zak McKracken says:

      I think there are two separate things at play:
      One is to have more female protagonists, and the series definitely has that, and while I think it’s fair to say I’m not happy about how she’s portrayed, maybe there’ll be more female viewers who can identify with her.

      The other thing is how women in general are portrayed in media. And in this matter I can confidently say that both my wife and I are annoyed at the prevalence of … not “girlish”, but stereotypical female roles. Female characters whose life consists of shoes, pleasing everyone, picking what to wear, and handbags. I wish there were a lot more ladies in movies who are less concerned about whether their lipstick and blouse match their shoes, and more about kicking ass (either in the literal or metaphoric sense). This may be a personal thing but I have a feeling like the role models available to girls growing up these days are still in a fairly narrow range.

      …hope that’s not coming across as shitting across her (that would have been kinda rude…)

  21. Wide And Nerdy says:

    Sorry but I have no sympathy. Not in this one area. I’m a Superman fan before anything else at all and they’ve been fucking him up since the middle of Christopher Reeves run. He’s a douchebag in the comics since New 52 got started, his movies are bad, his video games are atrocious. The last good story written about him was All Star Superman.

    HIS last TV Shows were CW Tween Soap Opera Bullshit and Working Life Rom Com Bullshit. This is fucking Superman we’re talking about. Its like they’re ashamed to ever just let him be fucking Super and have awesome adventures and do the awesome things he can do. (which is, incidentally, why I was able to enjoy Man of Steel. They’ve been screwing him up for so long that I didn’t care if they screwed him up again as long as he finally got to do some truly kickass Superman stuff on screen.) So if Supergirl gets to be purely about doing the awesome stuff I want Superman to be about, well that would just be unfair. She should be stuck with the same shitty soap opera bullshit Superman gets stuck with on TV for some reason.

    He gets treated like shit constantly by DC while Batman gets all the inspired movies and games and comics and Oscar winning performances and I refuse to believe that its because Batman is a better character. He’s not. People just lack imagination.

    Supergirl is a spinoff. If she succeeds before they can finally fix Superman I’m gonna be pissed. I just am. And I apologize for nothing.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Wait,you got pissed that he was turned into a jerk that just punches really hard in the comics,so you enjoyed the movie where he was just a jerk because they let him punch really hard on screen?Um,why are you not enjoying the comics then,since he is doing basically the same thing in them(though Im not sure if his stepfather was turned into a psycho in the comics as well).

      But werent the superman and justice league cartoons praised?I havent watched them myself,but I heard fans say that superman was portrayed well in those.

      1. The Rocketeer says:

        From what I remember, Superman: The Animated Series was second only to Batman: The Animated Series in its day.

      2. Wide And Nerdy says:

        By the time they did it in Man of Steel, they’d already done it worse in the comics. At least on screen he has more humility than his a-hole comic book counterpart. The one thing I hadn’t seen to date ever was Superman kicking ass on the big screen in live action with competent enough special effects to make it look believable.

        Superman 2, as good as it was otherwise, featured fight scenes that looked like what they were, clumsy wrestling matches between human actors dangling from wires.

        And Superman Returns had him do some cool looking feats but the closest thing he had to a fight in the movie was the encounter with the minigun where he took a bullet to the eye without blinking. I’m not discounting that but I wanted to see him match something that would cause him to use his powers to fullest effect. Usually that’s a fight with another Kryptonian or someone with similar powers.

        Superman the Animated Series had a few decent stories and taking it into the Justice League years, had some interesting character development for Superman where he had a chip on his shoulder from having been mind controlled by Darkseid and used against the earth, then later encountering a version of himself only a little different who turned tyrant and realizing he could make those same choices. It was Superman fearing the monster he could become if he lost control or made the wrong decisions. I’d like to see more done with that. Of course its impossible with the New 52 douche who doesn’t give a shit if he steps over a line because he’s right.

    2. MichaelGC says:

      If she succeeds before they can finally fix Superman

      This is highly speculative, of course, but I guess there’s a chance that if they do Supergirl right, and it’s successful, that might provide the impetus to do Superman over, and get that right for once. As I say, all wild, wild guesses, of course. But you never know!…

      1. Bloodsquirrel says:

        Doing Superman over is going to depend much more on how Superman V. Batman does.

        Or they could just start doing the current Superman right. The one good thing about Man of Steel is that there’s nothing in it preventing them from going in a lighter, more fun direction. It was bad, but it didn’t establish any pieces of canon that need to be rebooted away in order to make a better sequel.

        1. Wide And Nerdy says:

          They could. I could easily see them taking the end of Man of Steel and building a story about the people being scared of Superman and Superman needing to realize that people need to see him doing the stuff that he was doing during his walking the earth phase (remember he did save lots of people, its just when he was clashing with Zod that they forgot to show him trying to save people and avoid collateral damage.) And he may realize that he needs to work on managing collateral damage during battle.

          Superman V Batman does kind of look like its setting that up so I’m hopeful. Though its odd if they’re planning on Superman getting this lesson from Batman. It needs to be that Batman shows Superman how to bring out the qualities that are already there with Superman, not that he has to be taught compassion whole cloth. Compassion is too core of a trait for Superman.

      2. Chamomile says:

        A successful Supergirl would definitely help people making a competent Superman product, but not by a lot.

        1. MichaelGC says:

          Aye, I’d somehow managed to completely brainfade the existence of vs. – possibly a sensible policy overall! :p But you & Bloodsquirrel are right, of course. Oh well – I’ll still hope for the best for Supergirl, as I reckon it’d be good if some of us got their nice things!

  22. The Rocketeer says:

    Isn’t it possible that the so far highly-positive response from women, especially younger, means that this is something that a really under-served audience wants for what it is, and not just a lesser substitute made palatable by desperation?

    Deriding the chick-flick tone of the endeavor seems silly. I mean, chick flicks have an audience: chicks, mostly. I mean, you namedrop My Big Fat Greek Wedding as if it wasn’t a massive hit with a huge audience. You’re mentioning all these apparently Shamus-approved alternatives that each would be derided by various audiences for various valid reasons, but is it really impossible that the show as it is just falls in one of those perfectly-fine categories that you, in particular, don’t care for, rather than universal rubbish that no one should care for but for the dearth of alternatives?

    1. Shamus says:

      That was the entire point of the article. “It looks like a chick flick. Some people don’t like that, but it resonated with my wife and daughters and probably with a lot of other women as well. This is only a problem / controversy because we get so few.”

      1. The Rocketeer says:

        Oh, okay. Really, most of what I’ve heard is that it’s target audience is excited, so I tend to think it’s fine, too.

      2. Ivellius says:

        I think you buried the lead too much–the stuff before the page jump is pretty negative and critical.

    2. WJS says:

      Sure, the Chick-Flick has a big audience – but how much overlap is there between that and superhero fandom? Some, obviously, but it wouldn’t surprise me if there wasn’t all that much.

  23. Thomas says:

    I definitely think it’s wrong to think that a Superhero show crossed with a Chick Flick is an insulting thing.

    It’s an insulting thing if they _only_ make superhero shows crossed with chick flicks, but lots of people like chick flicks and it’s insulting to suggest that a chick flick is a ‘lesser genre’ which would be ‘dumbing down’ superhero stories or w/e.

    1. Ahiya says:

      Part of the problem is that chick-flick superheros are basically the only female superheros (the other option is super-sexualized T&A). Even Black Widow got inexplicably turned into a love interest, which ticked me off.

      This show looks fine in and of itself. But it’s basically the only option people have for a female superhero on TV or the big screen now. While we have 2 or 3 shows about male superheros, and most of the movies are male superheros, and most highly-promoted comics are male superheros, etc. That lack of diversity is the problem. It’s changing, but very slowly.

    2. George Monet says:

      Newsflash, chick flicks ARE a “lesser genre” compared to such films as Citizen Kane.

  24. Christopher says:

    As far as I recall from the animated show, which is the ONLY experience I have with Supergirl, not even Superman respected her until she proved herself by going against what he wanted by putting herself in danger and saving the day(unlike this version, apparently, where he’s all for it). I didn’t think the coffee bit was that painful at all. Superheroes get shit all the time, and in this case it’s some military commander guy who dislikes aliens talking to a civilian. Who is also an alien. And a couple of minutes later he’s changed his mind. I guess I don’t see how this is very different at all from most of the superhero stuff I watch where a hero interacts with a government man. Amanda Waller would maybe not tell Superman to go back to pouring coffees exactly, but then Superman doesn’t do that for a living.

    I’m happy to see more superhero shows with people with actual, visually impressive superpowers. I hear Daredevil and Agent Carter are popular, and Agents of Shield have gotten better, but I don’t really care if they don’t have the decency to have fun powers or at least funny-looking costumes(Although, I did watch Agent Carter). Hopefully, Supergirl is gonna have both. And Shamus is correct, and it kicks off a superhero show for The Wasp or whoever down the line. And I’m gonna get off my ass and see if The Flash is fun already.

    What made me annoyed was Jimmy Olsen being a tall, black, bald man instead of a short, white, ginger kid. And trying to figure out if the alien dude in regular clothes, with the Star Trek head and the weird axe is supposed to be this show’s incarnation of Lobo. Feel worse about Jimmy Olsen, because thinking about it makes me feel like I’m a racist for even having that problem with him. Especially when none of you guys seem to mind. I know it’s not sympathetic, but I honestly care more about fictional characters I like looking and acting like themselves than the employment of real actors that I don’t know. I’ll think about my priorities.

    1. silver Harloe says:

      Black isn’t what bugged me, it was buff. There are plenty of black nerds, and he should’ve been one of them. But character-wise, maybe it makes sense that he wanted to change himself. Dunno until I see a few episodes and learn more about this version of him.

      1. Mike S. says:

        My read is that James was the naive, eager kid photographer, when Superman was first starting out. But it’s been a while (probably 5-10 years), and he grew up. I liked it.

        I wouldn’t mind seeing a red-headed, freckled Jimmy Olsen, but live action adaptations have literally never done that, and this production isn’t going for that level of fidelity. (And even I can tell he’s hot.) Honestly, I’m more thrown by Kara not being blonde, since that usually is preserved in the few adaptations she’s had.

    2. Bloodsquirrel says:

      Jimmy Olsen is literally a red-headed stepchild, and should cast as such

      Besides, people are going to complain that it’s racist when Kara’s cousin forces a black guy to marry a gorilla.

    3. Ivellius says:

      I think the “black Jimmy Olsen” is troublesome just because it’s not clear who he’s supposed to be at first, and introducing him in the trailer like they did felt really clunky. There’s something to be said for making recognizable characters in an adaptation, and I think I would’ve preferred them not introducing him so… awkwardly, I guess I’d say? Just having him be “an old friend” of Superman’s and experienced reporter would have felt better, I think. But they probably felt they had to because he’s not immediately recognizable as the character.

      The comparison I can think of is when watching the first Avengers movie and seeing Deputy Director Hill and getting really excited because it was Deputy Director Hill. They didn’t make a big deal of her, but you could tell who she was because of where she was and what she was doing. Touches like that make me happy.

      Also the constant mentions of Superman felt a bit strange–like, where is he if they’re going to spend half the scenes talking about him?

      1. Steve C says:

        Constantly mentioning Superman, I don’t have a problem with. Supergirl does mention him a lot. It’s one of the things she does. Having the perfect cousin that nobody can live up to, yet still trying to, and still trying be her own person are the character’s defining attributes. Living in Superman’s shadow is Supergirl’s raison d’àªtre.

        1. Mike S. says:

          Though I wouldn’t be surprised at a season finale (or even mid-season) in which Superman disappears while on a mission in space, or gets trapped in the Phantom Zone (or, I suppose, is killed by Doomsday) and Supergirl is suddenly faced with having to be the one on the spot with no backup.

          He’d be back eventually, of course– but maybe not till the series ender.

  25. Viktor says:

    This trailer is the first superhero media from DC in decades that’s not ashamed to be about comic books. It has color, and a hero who has emotions beyond “scowl”, and someone who actually helps people. Yes, the civilian life b-plots are going to be designed to appeal to women, that’s clearly the target audience. Why are people complaining about that?

    (Yes, it looks like the Black Widow parody trailer. But that was Black Widow, this is Supergirl. Fun fact, there’s more than one type of woman in the world, and something that’s appropriate for one may be utterly inappropriate for another. Black Widow should get her own Bond movie, this trailer is perfect for Supergirl)

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Actually,flash was the first.It is colorful,the main guy is cheerful,despite having the “my mom was killed,and my dad was wrongfully sent to prison for her murder” backstory.

      1. Bloodsquirrel says:

        Even Arrow has gotten pretty comic-booky. It’s a completely different show than it was during the first season.

    2. kikito says:

      Because she’s a wimp. You can’t be that powerful and be a wimp. It doesn’t compute.

      1. Mike S. says:

        — Lex Luthor, on his subordinate’s ridiculous claim that her analysis pointed to Superman being Clark Kent of all people.

        1. kikito says:

          I could accept it if she was faking being weird and puny, like Superman does. But it does not look fake.

          She just can’t feel intimidated by her boss. Hell, she can probably send her flying just by blowing some air. Just like almost everybody she’s known, for almost her whole life.

          I find it difficult to accept that she would see humans as anything more than tiny, inferior, mortal beings. Her taking shit from a regular human, without faking it, is simply unfathomable.

          1. krellen says:

            No incarnation of Super* has ever been a psychopath – not even Power Girl. “Puny Human” is a psychopath’s thought process.

            1. kikito says:

              That’s my point. It is hard to believe that she (or her cousin) aren’t psychos. Isolated, their family destroyed, and send to a world that fears them, and where nothing can hurt them but themselves, forever. It’s a good recipe for psychosis. At least if you are human.

              And if you are not human and so mentally strong that you can resist all that, then you don’t put up with shit from a boss in a job you don’t need.

              1. krellen says:

                Psychopathy is, to the best of our knowledge, genetic and not trained. Psychopaths are born with diminished empathy and display this throughout their lives. No set of circumstances “creates” psychopathy in otherwise normal people.

                (Psychopathy also isn’t necessarily an evil trait. Most psychopaths are perfectly functional people that never hurt anyone.)

                1. kikito says:

                  My knowledge of mental illnesses is very limited. I hope you got my point nonetheless.

                  1. krellen says:

                    I’m not sure you really understand the appeal of Superman, Supergirl, or any of their incarnations. It’s a power fantasy, yes, but it’s also about the fantasy of having the power, but having the restraint not to abuse it.

                    1. kikito says:

                      You seem under the impression that I meant that she should threaten people with her might on my previous comment. Let me clarify again then: “I could kill you with my eyes” to be said in a non-menacing tone – more like a joke. “Am I supposed to be making coffee the next time an airplane comes crashing?” would have also worked. Or even some self-deprecating humor “Oh, the coffee machine is too complicated for me, a man makes the coffee, I just carry it”.

                      Being extremely good does not mean taking shit from everyone around you. That doesn’t make you “good”, it makes you weak. Being assertive is not bad.

                      You can’t be a beacon of light and hope, and inspire people to be a better version of themselves, being that frail.

                    2. krellen says:

                      I saw no frailty. You might be projecting. There’s nothing weak about turning the other cheek.

                    3. Wide And Nerdy says:

                      It sounds like she’s being young and figuring things out. That’s another aspect of Supergirl, she’s younger than Superman. On the abominable Smallville, we learned that before he became Superman, Clark spent a good solid decade moping and angsting . . .

                    4. Mike S. says:

                      Very true. A lot of early Supergirl stories were basically interchangeable with Superboy stories. (And sometimes close retreads of them, back in the days when editors assumed that within 3-5 years the audience would completely turn over. The story in which Supergirl first joins the Legion of Super-Heroes includes panels that are beat-for-beat repeats of her cousin’s first experiences in the future.)

      2. ehlijen says:

        You keep saying that and you keep being wrong.
        Physical assertion isn’t desirable to some people, regardless of how capable they are of it.
        Plenty of people in the world are respected for non-physical qualities, none of them have to threaten superviolence to gain recognition. Why can’t she be one of those? Why does having those powers mean that she must use them to be taken seriously?

        You don’t like her character, that’s ok. But that doesn’t mean her character doesn’t work or isn’t realistic (as realistic as superhero stories get, anyway; superpowers are often used as metaphors after all).

        1. kikito says:

          That’s not what I mean. I am not saying that she’s supposed to threaten people.

          Even if she was the kindest soul in the world, and if she didn’t like physical violence at all – living years knowing what she can do to others, and that she’s in advantage to everyone else is bound to make her put up with less shit than she does in that trailer. Not doing violence – just showing some character. Maybe disdain, or annoyance. But not this … complacent victimism.

          Unless she’s under some sort of mental conditioning. Or she’s faking everything.

          1. ehlijen says:

            Or she is simply a gentle person who doesn’t understand her powers yet?
            She has spent most of her life so far not having these powers, after all, and she is now trapped on an alien world. It wouldn’t take much for a desire to fit in to suppress much of her self confidence.

            And by the looks of it, the show is about her finding that confidence (again?), and you need a starting low point for such an arc.

    3. Zak McKracken says:

      I agree.

      …when I saw the trailer I was dissappointed because I’d have preferred to see a non-stereotypical role.
      I think if all female superhero shows were like this, there would be good reason to complain but since it’s the only one at all, I guess we should be happy it exists.

      1. WJS says:

        If it’s the only one, then by definition all are like it. …I think that’s kinda Shamus’ point. It wouldn’t be a problem if there were a half dozen other “female superhero” shows and just this one had that vibe.

  26. Zeta Kai says:

    I hadn’t heard of this new show, so when I first pulled up the page, I thought for half a second that it was Shamus’s daughter doing cosplay again. It took me a moment to realize that the promo image at the top was a professional actress in an official costume. I don’t know if that speaks highly of Esther’s cosplay talents, or poorly of CBS/DC’s production department, but there you go.

    1. Kagato says:

      That was also my initial response to the costume preview image they released. “This looks more like cosplay than a production ready costume.”

      But watching the trailer, it makes sense because that’s pretty much exactly what she’s doing. Superman has his iconic outfit (possibly of Kryptonian origin, depending on whether the show follows the movie’s lead), and her friend makes her one that mimics his look.

      If anything, it’s maybe too fancy with the embossed logo and the v-shaped belt. The boots are a bit much as well. With a home made outfit, I’d prefer to see more use of off-the-shelf accessories.

      At least they didn’t go with one of the midriff-revealing costumes from the comics, though they nod to it with the (presumably) cheerleader outfit they try first.

  27. Mike S. says:

    I liked the trailer fine, myself. (And you could trivially cut a similar trailer from the early Flash series, work travails– Barry was always late and distracted and getting in trouble with his boss for it– relationship drama, and all.) But they did do an Action Show trailer as well, viewable at , which is the “like Arrow and the Flash? this is like that, especially the latter!” version. (Which I also like quite a bit.)

    I’m really looking forward to this show. It shows every sign of having the same love of the character[1] and lack of reluctance to do a superhero show that The Flash does. Kara doesn’t Just Want to be Normal, she loves her powers and she wants to help people. She’s Clark Kenting her way through her secret identity. In six minutes she gets as far in her superheroic career as her cousin did in ten years of Smallville. The costume could stand to be a little brighter, but it’s a better one than her cousin’s gotten since the 80s, with no textured plastic or misshapen sigils. They’ve given her a sister to be Anna to her Elsa, and while that’s new I liked what we see of their dynamic. And she begins her career by saving people.

    [1] That skimpy costume she tries and rejects? Consists entirely of elements Supergirl has worn in the comics: her 70s hotpants, her 80s headband, and her 00s crop top. Just as with the Flash, they’re visibly drawing from the character’s whole history.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      That second trailer is much better.

    2. Daimbert says:

      In six minutes she gets as far in her superheroic career as her cousin did in ten years of Smallville.

      Although, to be fair, that was rather the POINT of Smallville, to chase the “Superboy” type of stories instead of the actual Superman ones.

      1. Mike S. says:

        Having grown up with a Clark who adopted the costumed identity earlier, I’d have much preferred their just doing a straight Superboy show. Which by the end they more or less were, for everyone except Clark.

        I’m glad that we seem to be past the stage of that sort of “not-quite-a-superhero” show (a la Smallville’s famous “no flights, no tights”), with Gotham as sort of a lingering outlier.

        1. Daimbert says:

          I liked the feel of Smallville without him being an actual costumed hero, but by the end it was indeed getting a little ridiculous. They should have transitioned him to a full-on Superman shortly after he got on at the Planet.

          I don’t think that every superhero show should do that, which is why I am kinda pleased with the direction of this one, but it is an interesting angle to explore, and doing it definitely made it different from the previous shows, which was a nice change.

          1. Mike S. says:

            The basic idea of watching someone become a hero rather than doing it all in the pilot was a promising one. But I think they made a mistake locking themselves into that premise, rather than letting him adopt the costume, name, etc. as they organically fit the story. (But they probably didn’t expect a ten year run when they laid it down.)

            1. Daimbert says:

              Personally, I think it should have ended right at the end of season 7, with the scene with Lex and Clark staring at each other across Lionel Luther’s grave. It was a well-done scene, and set-up the typical Superman mythos wonderfully, and there was nothing in the remaining seasons that we would have missed, or that wouldn’t have been done better in an actual Superman series.

              1. Mike S. says:

                I fell off the series early due to the overemphasis on freak-of-the-week stories, and only saw bits later on. But I was genuinely impressed with how they were developing the Clark/Lex tragedy during the first season.

                That’s a Silver Age story element that I always really liked in the Bronze Age, but it never really got a full dramatic treatment. Elliot S. Maggin in particular liked to invoke it in Luthor stories, and he clearly liked to imagine that someday, a long time in the future, they might somehow become friends again. (He even eventually wrote the story.)

                And it was dropped in the comics for a long while after Superboy was written out of continuity. Presumably because it always was fundamentally a Superboy arc rather than a Superman one.

  28. Bloodsquirrel says:

    My experience with the trailer:

    “IT’S NOT A BIRD!”

    “Oh god, the next line is going to be ‘IT’S NOT A MAN!’, isn’t it?”

    “IT’S NOT A MAN!”

    *close browser tab*

  29. The Snide Sniper says:

    At this point, I’m surprised it’s not considered stupid to even try to make a Superman or Supergirl series. The pair’s abilities barely fall short of Punpun’s “I win” power, so any use of those powers tends to be both distinctly unsatisfying and any drama obviously forced. Even Smallville, which is probably the best Superman incarnation, had to either turn everything into an investigation or give every villain some green rocks so that they could have credible villains. And that’s even with Superman not knowing how to fly.

    I’d like to see some actually interesting heroines, or even Rule 63’d heroes (no, I don’t care whether it’s been in a comic book), as female leads.
    Samus Aran, Bounty Hunter? Sounds like it could be fun.
    Deadpoolette? Sure, I’d watch that.
    Blacklight-infected woman (the virus from Prototype)? Sure.
    River Tam Beats Up Everyone? No power in the ‘verse can stop this.
    Domino? Maybe, if the “good luck” power isn’t too strong.
    Aquagirl? … I said interesting.

    Filmmakers seem to forget that good superhero/superheroine stories aren’t made by the strengths of the hero/ine, but by the weaknesses.

    1. Keeshhound says:

      Counterpoint: One-Punch Man.

    2. ehlijen says:

      Then I posit that, like me for a long time, you don’t understand superman (I still know little of supergirl), and his weakness.

      The good super stories don’t ask ‘can the hero overcome the challenge’ (because duh, yes). The bad ones do, sure. But the good stories instead ask ‘how will the hero save the world without becoming it’s de facto godking’.

      He has the power to rule the world, can probably do it better than the humans can. But if he does, he becomes what he despises. And yet every time he saves the world, he makes it a bit more dependent on him, takes another small step towards that horror. He wants humans to become as good and powerful as him, but he can’t not help when he’s needed.

      There are plenty of interesting stories there.

      That’s also the idea behind the Exlated RPG: You have the power to shape the world. What kind of world are you leaving behind, though?

  30. Disc says:

    I can’t really imagine what the pull is. Maybe they’ve got all this interesting and deep backstory that fleshes her out eventually, but I don’t know why or how “AN IMMORTAL BEING OF STAGGERING POWER AND SPEED” would grow up so timid and why did it take her until well-into adulthood to start discovering her powers. Just seems like they did a punch of asspulls to justify the setting and her character and not really even try to make her actually interesting. If it was just her having character flaws as part of her personality it would be fine, but I can’t imagine what kind of retardedly sheltered life she has had to have lead to come out like this.

    If you want an actually decent female character who’s socially awkward, yet badass in her own right, try Temperance Brennan from Bones. She’s someone even I as a male can relate to and even admire.

    1. Mike S. says:

      Her powers are clearly developing (which matches the way Kryptonian powers were handled for her cousin starting in the 80s) and she hasn’t been under Earth’s sun half as long as Superman has. She first learns to fly in this trailer, says she “can lift a bus” (and is clearly surprised she can handle the plane, which she has trouble with).

      Presumably her personality developed partly on Krypton, and partly as an orphaned refugee on Earth initially without superhuman abilities– very different from Clark who started to have them in childhood.

    2. krellen says:

      Supergirl’s story: she’s actually Kal’s elder cousin, was 16 (looks like they’re casting her younger here) when Krypton exploded, but her trip went through a wormhole/some other contrivance that left her in suspended animation/thrust her into the future, so she arrives on Earth at 16 when Kal’s already been there for decades and is established as Superman.

      From the trailer, it looks like they’re keeping aspects of this.

      1. Mike S. says:

        They seem to be. She’s younger when Krypton explodes than in recent comics (probably too young to have babysat for her cousin), presumably so that she has time to grow up with the Danvers family. But she’s clearly much older than baby Kal before they both leave. I’d guesstimate based on the respective ages that she’s been on Earth for between a decade and a decade and a half when the series starts.

        My Supergirl was born in Argo City after Krypton exploded, and arrived on Earth as a young teen after its destruction. But I understand why they aren’t going for that here. (Though the animated series had a nice variation that didn’t require explaining how a chunk of Krypton thrown off the planet by the explosion had survivors.)

      2. Steve C says:

        They don’t even need some fancy contrivance. It’s relativity and space time. Their two interstellar spacecrafts were going different speeds. You can throw in wormholes, suspended animation, etc on top if you want. Doesn’t really matter. Whoever is moving faster is going to experience less ticks of the clock.

        Two interstellar ships that do not take the same path and speed are *guaranteed* not to arrive at the same time. Also the passengers are *guaranteed* not to be the same relative ages as when they left. No comic book physics needed.

        1. Mike S. says:

          The ships are essentially never portrayed as moving slower than light, so comic book physics is definitely needed.

  31. Syal says:

    So my only experience with Supergirl is the Supergirl movie, and I was left with the impression that the TV version isn’t nearly ditzy enough. Can anybody testify as to what the comic book version of Supergirl is actually like?

    1. Taellosse says:

      Which one? There’s been, to my knowledge, at least 3 (and that’s just in the comics – she’s also had several iterations in other media). The original version, introduced in the 60s, was pretty ditzy, but her personality morphed over time to simply being cheerful. Then there’s Power Girl, who’s the same character but from a different reality – she’s not ditzy at all, and also not usually characterized as especially cheery, but rather driven and serious, more like a female version of the traditional Superman, with a bit of a chip on her shoulder sometimes (and also, because comics, a gigantic rack). There was also a character that called herself Supergirl but wasn’t actually Kryptonian at all. She was some kind of shapeshifting creature that had absorbed some portion of Supergirl’s personality and took on her identity. I don’t know much about her, and can’t speak to what kind of character she was. She was retconned out of existence with (or possibly before) the New 52 reboot a few years back. Who knows whether she’ll reappear in the wake of their latest reboot, in progress now.

      1. Mike S. says:

        I wouldn’t call Silver Age Kara ditzy. She was earnest, creative with her powers (as she had to be, to maintain a secret identity in an orphanage), and good-hearted. And also occasionally crazy, but only in the way that every Silver Age character was. (“Superman needs a wife! We’ll travel in time so that I can set him up with Helen of Troy!”)

        This show looks like it’s drawing most from that incarnation during the Bronze Age, a young adult who’d grown up with the Danvers (though the sister is new). Hopefully they won’t extend that to her dying to save the universe. I imagine they’ll also be mixing in more recent elements (like the “actually older than Superman” bit).

        I’m a little sorry they’re going with Kara rather than Linda as her civilian name on Earth. But I get it. Kara’s a perfectly good American name (though so’s Kal, at least if you spelled it with a C), and it actually peaked in popularity the year Melissa Benoist was born. (Where Linda’s been on a long slow decline for decades.) And Kal arrived as a baby named by the Kents, where Kara would have no reason to change the name she already had.

      2. krellen says:

        Power Girl has a huge rack not “because comics”, but “because editors”. The artist was sure he wasn’t being watched, and just grew them until someone noticed. And then they stuck.

        1. Taellosse says:

          The stuck part is what I was referring to.

  32. MichaelG says:

    I have a stack of SF novels to read. Let me know if anyone writes a superhero comic that doesn’t kill brain cells.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Alan Moore.

      1. Zeta Kai says:

        +1, & I will also offer up Neil Gaiman. Both are brilliant, literary, & able to stack layer upon layer of meaning in their stories. There are many great writers in comic books, but these two are (IMO) transcendent of their genre.

        1. MichaelG says:

          Thanks, I’ll look for something online. I’ve read some Neil Gaiman novels.

          1. MichaelGC says:

            If you try Sandman, I’d recommend starting with Season of Mists. It’s the second story arc, so you’ll effectively be placing yourself in the middle of res, or whatever the phrase is, but the comic-style ‘previously on’ panels should be sufficient.

            As can often happen, this second arc is when Gaiman really began to ramp things up creatively, both because he’s getting the hang of it, and is being given greater freedom. The first arc is more constrained: still good, but possibly best once you’ve already got to know the characters and want more of their stories (even slightly weaker ones).

        2. Daemian Lucifer says:

          I constantly forget that Gaiman did comics as well.To me,he is always a book guy.

          1. Taellosse says:

            He still does them from time to time. He’s authored a couple limited series for Marvel in recent years (1602 and The Eternals, that I know of), as well as occasional things for DC (he’s in the midst of a new Sandman story now, actually, in honor of the 25th anniversary).

          2. Zeta Kai says:

            I love Sandman; it’s unlike any comic book that I’ve ever read. I remember reading the final arc, & being somewhat disappointed by the last issue. Then I reached the last two pages, when everything clicked into place. Before I understood the meaning of the issue, it didn’t have any meaning to me. But that I got it, immediately re-read the last issue, & literally cried at the brilliant poignance of it all. Excellent stuff, from beginning to end, although I agree that the first arc is a bit of a different animal (more horror, less literary mythmaking).

          3. Mike S. says:

            It’s completely legit to think of him as a book guy– he’s done them more and longer by now. But comics were my introduction to his work, and I liked his comics work better than I’ve liked his books. So in the back of my head, I still think of him as a comics writer who also writes prose novels.

            And I remember when I thought of him as merely the most skilled of the Alan Moore knockoffs. (The first book of Sandman really does feel a lot like a Moore pastiche till he finds his own voice. And of course he was the one picked to replace Moore on Miracleman before that book’s Great Interregnum.)

    2. Daimbert says:

      I’ve rather enjoyed the Greg Cox novelizations of some of the DC comic megaseries, so that might be something you’d want to look into …

    3. Otters34 says:

      Squadron Supreme! Astro City! The old Star Brand! John Robinson and Tony Harris’ Starman run! Zot!! Christopher Priest’s Black Panther! The stuff Milestone Comics made that one time, especially Icon.

      A textbook on electrical systems and accompanying theory! The laws of your locality! This brick I wrapped in pure brain-matter!

    4. Ahiya says:

      Are you open to webcomics?

    5. Ant says:

      You could try the webserial Worm. It’s finished, and it is one of the best superheroes story I have ever read/watch.
      The heroine is interesting, she is a consequentialist but she is also really biased(not in the sense that she is racist or a bigot, but more in that she is realistically mentally scared by bullying). The rest of the cast is also quite good, there is a huge, living and quite consistent world, and I was completely hooked after the arc 8 and found the rest.

      All this being said, it’s far from perfect (the same way that Shadow of the Colossus is a masterpiece despite being too short, too long and having clunky control).

  33. Starker says:

    If they go for comedy, other people will complain that nobody takes female heroes seriously.

    The comedy thing has been done:

    It was pretty bad, though.

  34. Personally, I’d watch Supergirl if she just went around punching every jerk mentioned in this blog: ShitPeopleSayToWomenDirectors.

    THAT would be MY power fantasy.

    But I agree with Shamus, there needs to be a LOT more variety of female superhero stories.

    Also, “Ultraviolet” was indeed rather awful. But I thoroughly enjoyed “Aeon Flux”, which came out the year before (2005).

    1. Steve C says:

      I wonder if that’s where the really cheesy unbelievable lines in that trailer comes from?– real life?

      1. That’s a rather sad depressing thought, isn’t it?

      2. Ahiya says:

        Yes. Yes, they do.

  35. Daimbert says:

    I just haven’t had much interest in the new crop of DC TV shows. Green Arrow looked too much like the Green Arrow in Smallville, which I hated, and trying to make it darker and grittier wasn’t going to make me want to watch it. I saw the ads for Flash and thought him a goofball, and so had no reason to want to watch it. I tried Gotham, but gave up after the first episode; that wasn’t a show I wanted to watch. I saw the trailer for Supergirl and thought … you know, this might be interesting. The main character is appealing and there might be interesting things to do with it, if they go beyond what seems to be the rather shallow starting premise.

    1. Mike S. says:

      Barry can be a little awkward, but he’s not a goofball: he’s someone who thinks his powers are awesome, and wants to use them to help people.

      1. Daimbert says:

        Yeah, it is probably just the commercials that threw me, but I don’t have any interest in going back and trying to watch all of it now somewhere, so that might have been a missed opportunity. Especially since I have on DVD the 80-90s version … all one season of it.

        1. Taellosse says:

          Worth noting that John Wesley Shipp, the actor who played Flash in that show from ’91, plays Barry Allen’s father in the new show. And Amanda Pays, who played Tina McGee, is also in it, sort of reprising her role as Tina McGee (she’s obviously a different version of the character, but she’s still a scientist at Star Labs). Also, Mark Hamill was on playing “the original Trickster” too (presumably it was, again, a different version of the character that predated Flash, rather than them postulating that the first show is somehow in continuity with this one).

          I can’t actually personally recommend it, as I haven’t watched the new show yet (waiting for it to come out on Netflix along with Arrow season 3), but I’ve heard a lot of good things about it, particularly from fans of the first show (which I loved as a kid, and also have on DVD now. Though I have to say, a lot of it doesn’t hold up that well today, sadly).

  36. Fishminer says:

    So, in terms of there not being any other superhero shows, I feel like the fast approaching AKA Jessica Jones deserves a plug here. Netflix did a great job with Dare Devil and is definitely prominent enough to influence what other shows are getting green lit in the industry. I agree that more diversity is needed, but disagree with the assertion that all of female superhero shows sinks or swims with Supergirl.

  37. mechaninja says:

    I can't relate to a handsome billionaire who is Awesome at Everything, but I can relate to a teenage kid who has gifts he doesn't know how to use and problems his gifts can't solve.

    That’s really interesting to me, and reminded me why I have always liked Batman and Iron Man more than Spiderman… I prefer more fantasy and less relate-ability. I want a fantasy where I don’t have to be reminded of my real world problems in any way for any reason, pure power fantasy where all of my problems are invisible or handled by money or other things that the heroes have access to.

    It occurs to me that is a lot of why I dislike Martin and Jordan as well. The arbitrary and un-fair nature of the deaths of so many of the “good guys” in ASoIF, and the teenage angst of WoT both reflect too closely to real life for me, and so I want nothing to do with them. My favorite author is David Drake. He may as well label his main characters, and there are no surprises as to who ultimately lives and who ultimately dies, and if any of the main characters die, It Is For A Good Reason.

    Anyway, my point is, I found it interesting that the thing I like least about Spiderman is one of the things you like about him.

  38. Chamomile says:

    There are characters for whom the “can’t get no respect” plotline is well-suited. Kryptonian gods who can level cities by just doing a quick loop ’round the moon and back and not bothering to decelerate on the way down are not among those characters.

    1. ehlijen says:

      That’s because the only conceivable way these people would do such a thing is by accident and ‘hero unwittingly causes disaster…again’ is a good way to never get respect.

      The supers want to be respected, not feared. That’s a crucial difference.

      You might as well ask why Captain America isn’t richer than Tony Stark, he could be awesome at bank robbing, after all!

      1. Chamomile says:

        The fact that Supergirl isn’t going to level cities no matter how much you provoke her doesn’t change the fact that a character who is oozing with godlike power is ill-suited to a can’t get no respect plotline. It’s utter nonsense that people wouldn’t respect someone who is basically completely invincible, and being forced to populate your supporting cast with braindead idiots to facilitate your plot isn’t going to be any better here than it was in the Walking Dead.

  39. Tsi says:

    There were a lot of female lead shows in the 90’s and early 2000 a couple of which could be considered superheroes like DarkAngel, Buffy, the Charmed sisters …
    My GF grew up with them and love them and i remember enjoying watching them as well (except the later seasons).

    I wonder what happened since then as I can’t name a single one past 2005 that is either good or has strong female leads.

    1. somebodys_kid says:

      Alias (though that may be before your cutoff year).

      I don’t watch many TV shows but these came to mind…

    2. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Buffy is amazing.Who wouldve thought that a “silly little show about a high school cheerleader fighting vampires” would tackle subjects like:death from terminal illness,rape,drug addiction,self destruction,same sex relationship,….and do it in a pretty serious fashion.

      Darkangel was meh,but charmed was utter crap.

      1. ehlijen says:

        I totally forgot to mention buffy above. Derp. Also a good show!

    3. ChristopherT says:

      The last decade or so has really seemed to have dried up, which with the current up swing in superhero media could be an idea for people to check some of these shows out and consider getting them on DVD or BluRay where available. I’m finding it interesting/tragic in a world where the internet is this accessible, and we have DVDs of so many shows and movies, that we’re almost in a sort of information blackout with so many things. We seem to be losing our geek history when things are the easiest to access they’ve ever been.

      Some further superhero(ish) TV shows that I’ve watched, (to be included with Dark Angel, Buffy, and Charmed)

      Birds of Prey some hit and miss episodes hurts the short number of episodes, but there were some parts I really enjoyed watching, and while I was set against this shows version of Harley Quinn, she really grew on me, and felt really right in the last episode. Also, they allowed Barbara Gordon her wheelchair.


      Witch Blade Recently got it on DVD, and I’m not sold yet, the first episode was really bad, it was awful, but it started getting better. And could be an interesting thing just to look into.

      1. Taellosse says:

        I wanted to like Witchblade, but it never really gelled for me. I wasn’t that sorry when it got cancelled.

    4. Ivellius says:

      I’d argue even Tru Calling / Ghost Whisperer could count.

      I kinda liked Tru Calling but never watched the latter.

    5. DeadlyDark says:

      Last Nikita with Maggie Q was great.

    6. Orphan Black is great (much more a conspiracy show than superhero but well worth a watch, especially for the mindblowing talent of the main actress). Lost Girl is good (but loads of sex because the main character is a succubus but at least it’s done in a sex positive way). iZombie is pretty good so far but is more a zombie solves murders than a superhero thing.
      If you’re okay with a larger cast, there’s Once Upon a Time and the spinoff, Once Upon a Time in Wonderland (both male and female heroes).

      1. Mike S. says:

        Tatiana Maslany should win all the Emmys (literally– one for each character she plays). But Orphan Black’s continual redoubling of their conspiracies is losing me. I find I don’t really believe they have a final truth to uncover, just more complications to throw in to keep everything off balance.

        Granted, that probably won’t stop me from watching as long as Maslany and the effects people can keep coming up with new variations on the characterization. (Though I wish they’d gotten someone like Enver Gjokaj for the Castor actor. He proved he was a genuine chameleon on Dollhouse, while the actor they have just isn’t in Maslany’s league.) But I find I’m zoning out on the main plot and watching entirely for the clone setpieces, Allison’s Weeds/Breaking Bad excursion, etc.

        1. I watch it like I watch most stuff, I wait till there’s at least 4 or 5 eps I haven’t seen yet, and then shotgun ’em all, so I’m not caught up (I should probably figure out where I stopped and how far behind I am, but I still need to finish catching up on Who before Timegate Sat and I get to meet the actor playing the new Master!). But yeah, the overarching Ur-conspiracy is nowhere near as interesting to me as the stories of the individual characters. Also, Felix is awesome.

          1. MichaelG says:

            I gave up on Orphan Black after they brought the crazy girl (Helena?) back after she had clearly died in the previous season ending. Come on people, play fair!

            1. guy says:

              I’m currently watching the third season and glad they brought her back for the amazing adventures of Helana and Mindscorpion.

              I do have a science gripe about how the MacGuffin is the sisters’ original genome when it seems like Sarah’s genome should suffice for what they actually want it for, namely curing a genetic disease Sarah doesn’t have.

  40. Retsam says:

    What I liked about the trailer was that it got “hero” right. Sure there’s interpersonal drama here and there, but the core of this trailer, to me, was someone trying to be a hero, to save people and making the world a better place. And that’s something that’s been pretty sorely lacking in most of the DC superhero movies, at least. Compare Supergirls “I want to help, let me help” to Superman’s “I’m so conflicted about my powers” and Batman’s “I’m angry about my parent’s death and/or Superman”.

    Sure, she’s basically a distaff counterpart to Spiderman, doing the “lovably dorky” thing (I mean the good Spiderman movies, not the Amazing atrocities) which is hardly a novel depiction of a female character… but hey I wasn’t offended by Spiderman and I doubt I’ll be offended by this.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Yeah,dc shows are (mostly) better at the hero thing than the movies.Flash will do almost anything to save people.

  41. Joe Informatico says:

    We’ve had movies and series where comic-book superheroes were crossed with all sorts of genres:

    -Space Opera (Green Lantern, Guardians of the Galaxy)
    -Sword & Sorcery/Science Fantasy (Thor)
    -War film (Captain America: The First Avenger)
    -Political conspiracy thriller (Captain America: The Winter Soldier)
    -Period spy thriller (Agent Carter)
    -80s action film (any Punisher adaptation)
    -Serious crime drama (Daredevil Netflix series, The Dark Knight)
    -Horror (Blade)
    -Teen drama (various X-Men incarnations)
    –To the point of soap opera melodrama (Chris Claremont’s X-Men)

    So what’s wrong with adding a bit of rom-com into the mix? Hell, Marvel kicked off the Silver Age and reinvented superhero comics by adopting elements from their romance and horror comics to superheroes. Genre-mixing isn’t just a common element to the superhero genre–it’s the foundation of the genre.

    1. Ivellius says:

      Yes, but the issue is that these alternatives generally focus on male leads. I think Shamus could have articulated some of this better in the opening part, but there aren’t good alternatives to “rom-com” for those who want to see women as superheroes.

  42. Mike S. says:

    On the off chance that anyone other than me actually likes the idea of a superhero romcom, I’d recommend checking out Thom Zahler’s Love and Capes, which follows the relationship between a bookstore owner and a Supermanesque hero. Very nicely done, generally light, but with some surprisingly emotional bits.

    There are four tpb collections, and he’s put a bunch of it on the web as strips at

  43. ChristopherT says:

    I’m optimistic about the show. The “First Look” had a few things that concerned, but overall I am more interested to see where it goes and hopeful that I might enjoy it.

    I didn’t really care for the level of nerdy geeky-ness that Kara was putting on, it was a bit too much, but like Daemian Lucifer if it’s just her trying to fit in, and mimicking media she’s seen, then I’m happy.

    I didn’t like the tone of the trailer too much. But that could be me, I’m hoping, like others I’ve seen around the internet, that the trailer just had the wrong music put to it. The Romantic part, from the trailer does not seem that heavy at all, but the tone leads that it is. Kara’s co-worker who like her, merely mentions his attraction to her once, and then has the lesbian moment, and the romantic subplot from the trailer is dropped to a point that it really doesn’t quite fit with many Rom-Com trailers where there’s a much stronger emphasis on the romance. Though, even if it does have a strong-ish romance plot going on I wouldn’t be against it, plenty of male superheroes have lovey dovey shooting out of their ass.

    Kara stopping that plane from crashing scene was great, her reaction was lovely, her and her foster sister seem really close, and it seems like her sis looks out for her a lot, and doesn’t want her ending up in trouble because of her powers, and has that protective but also lecturing moment once Kara saves the plane, and I rather felt Kara’s reaction was genuine, she used her powers, she saved lives, she’s out there, and it feels great, almost a sort of coming out of the closet, she’s out now, she doesn’t want to closet her powers, who she really is.

    Another small thing I really liked about the trailer was her on the couch kicking her feet up at her being talked about on the news, it felt the right amount of girly, fun, cute, that I want to watch this show.

    As to the “Go back to making coffee” bit. It’s a little rough, but I think it’s worth noting and keeping in mind in some form that in the trailer it presented her job as getting coffee for her boss. Though I can get the worry that it’s a more gender-oriented thing.

    Anyways, I hope the show works out. Looking forward to it.

    1. Jonathan says:

      I think that the “go get coffee” thing is coming from someone who knows her civilian identity, and doesn’t think she is…well, Super enough. If Nick Fury told Spiderman “Go back to selling pictures for the newspaper,” nobody would think twice about it.

      Prediction: Helpful puppy-dog beta wannabe-boyfriend doesn’t make it past season two. He’s a good match for her civilian identity, but as Supergirl she is out of his league and has lots of better options. He can’t do better than Supergirl, but she can do much better than him, so the relationship dynamics won’t work out.

  44. Tuck says:

    That green reflection in her glasses might just be caused by an anti-glare coating. My specs often have a greenish tinge exactly like that, in photos, but my laser eyes have long since been auctioned off for charity.

  45. Ben Cranks says:

    I see this in the same vein as Smallville (from my small exposure) it’s a sort of amped up teen drama that happens to have superheroes. Honestly I kind of dug it personally and while I agree that certain parts land with a thud (‘get coffee’ really?) overall it looks interesting.

    My biggest fear is that the show may not be as enjoyable over 45 minutes as opposed to 6, is this kind of ‘pilot synopsis as trailer’ common for shows now?

  46. ThirteenthLetter says:

    “Oh god I hope this is good because if it isn’t, the executives will decide ‘welp, X never works’ and it’ll be ten years before anyone tries again.”

    Applies to a lot more things than just superhero media with female leads, that’s for sure. It’s a depressing scenario whenever it happens.

  47. Speaking personally, what I’d REALLY like to see theme-wise in a show like this would be:

    1. A female protagonist who isn’t an Interchangeable Hot Chick in a Skintight Outfit with perfect Direct-From-The-Salon hair, and some “Well, yeah, you can fight crime, but you’re not hot enough for Prime Time” think pieces. This is actually one of the things that I dislike about Agents of Shield–all of the female characters have EXACTLY THE SAME Farrah Fawcett hairstyle. Just go on TV, find all the similar-genre shows, and get pictures of the backs of the ladies heads. HARD TO TELL APART, AIN’T THEY. Yeah, Joss, women can kick ass–but apparently they can’t be shown having anything other than perfect hair that looks like it was 3D printed out of some kind of Stepford Wives machine?

    2. Some INTELLIGENT discussion of how it may feel odd to be a woman superhero with powers that make you excel beyond all hope of comparison in areas that are “traditionally” considered to be male strongholds. I’m not talking about unsubtle “guy has macho moment and female punches him to show that she has to be taken seriously” (which is endemic in the Marvel movies, btw–this scene is even in the Ant-Man TRAILER). But more interesting stuff like, how does it affect your relationship when your reflexes are all wrong? How does it feel to go from being The Badass who does All The Protecting to “sorry, but if you go out there, you’ll get squished”–and to be told this by The Living Barbie Doll? What does it take to reorient into more of a support role? What different skills does that take? How hard are they to develop? Do you get flak for suddenly becoming “the Girl?”

    1. Mike S. says:

      Buffy got into that a bit, especially in how she related to Xander and Riley. Riley wasn’t popular, but I liked him till he went off the rails. (And still think it was a healthier relationship than either of her vampire paramours.) Especially early in the relationship, where he, e.g. acknowledged that while he was strong (what with being an enhanced super-soldier), she was “like, Spider-Man strong”, and clearly found that something he had to adapt to but not an intolerable challenge to his masculinity.

      1. There are a lot of places you can go with looking at people’s expectations. Like, if you’re a super-strong superhero, do people assume that you’re some kind of living weapon and talk to you through your non-super sidekick all the time even though you’re STANDING RIGHT THERE? Do they assume that because your sidekick carries your tablet with your appointments on it that they’re some sort of “super-hacker”?

        1. Mike S. says:

          That’s always been one of the classic justifications for the secret identity: it’s the only way for someone like Superman to retain a relationship of equals with other people. (It’s often crushing for him when it’s revealed, because at that point there’s basically no one he can really talk to about it.)

          1. This is nonsense. What makes people equals is their intellectual equipment, not their physical equipment.

            If Marilyn Vos Savant (you know, the woman with the highest IQ ever recorded) can have an advice column for years and relate with tremendous grace and good cheer with hundreds of thousands of fans from every walk of life, then Superman can be friends with us “normal” people.

            1. Mike S. says:

              (I’ll preface this by stipulating that the secret identity is an aritificial genre construct that can’t be realistically defended. As with superhero costumes and codenames, any support is a matter of helping shore up the (utterly necessary) willing suspension of disbelief, rather than suggesting that it’s something that could or should work in reality.)

              That said, I can’t speak to Marilyn vos Savant in particular. But celebrities in general experience the same sort of problem. It’s isolating to be someone everybody recognizes and many want something from. Ruling monarchs can have hangers on and favorites, but it’s nearly impossible for them to have friends. Insofar as Presidents can, it’s because their separation from ordinary life is late and temporary. I doubt many make a lot of friends in office.

              (And it’s telling how much camaraderie there often is between ex-Presidents who were bitter political opponents– presumably because they’re uniquely able to relate to one another’s experiences. Superhero comics analogously show superheroes having lots of connections with others in the life. Particularly Superman, whose membership in the Legion of Super-Heroes was often shown as a chance to kick back with people who weren’t in awe of him.)

              Superman is a globally recognized savior figure, and has been at least since he entered adult life. (In some tellings, since he was a child.) Without a civilian identity, that would create a serious distancing effect for many people.

              It’s not possible to just go out for a quiet coffee with Superman. Superman’s presence anywhere is, by definition, an event. Knowing Superman is an ambition. And people indifferent to fame and social climbing would tend to avoid the whole scrum, both as unpleasant in itself and so as not to be mistaken for a shallow poseur. Superman would be less likely to meet them, and they’d be less likely to make overtures. The people he’d meet would be disproportionately those who wanted or needed something from him.

              In short, Clark Kent gives Superman a way to not be the center of every crowd he’s in. For a kid from Smallville who just wants to do the right thing, there’s a lot to be said for that.

    2. Steve C says:

      Funny you mention hair. Skye in Agents of SHIELD has terrible hair. I liked her hair in the first season. It is so bad now I find it distracting. So much so I was expecting it to be a “bad hair day” plot point at the start of the second season when they changed it.

      1. Mike S. says:

        While it’s not something I pay much attention to, I remember a lot of complaints that Skye’s first-season hairdos were way too high-maintenance for someone who lived in her van.

        1. krellen says:

          I watch SHIELD with a woman, and that WAS something I heard a lot of while watching.

          1. Yeah Skye’s extensions and highlighting in the first season were absurd. I kinda wish they’d gone all-the-way short to a pixie cut instead of the raggedy-ann mess she has now.

            Agent Mae has about the best compromise between “runway model” and “practical” IMO. It’s subdued, but it looks nice.

        2. Daemian Lucifer says:

          What people forgot is that at the day we saw her,she was planning on meeting someone and getting them on her side.So naturally,she would clean herself for that.We didnt see her on other days.

    3. DeadlyDark says:

      Not sure enough second point because it’s more a spy show*, but first point covered and exceed in Nikita. Not only we have badass Maggie Q as main protagonist, there is also kicking ass Nikita’s protege, played by Fonseca. And show itself surprisingly good. I only wanted to watch a bit of action and some eye-candy for a couple of episodes, ended up loving the show for it’s complex plots and characters. Go figure.

      *Though, main villains never thought of Nikita as weak or something. It’s always was game of equals.

  48. SteveDJ says:

    The only comment I have to offer is: CAPES. We all should have learned very clearly from The Incredibles that capes are BAD!

    1. Mike S. says:

      Superman and derivative characters without capes are worse.

      (And they’re invulnerable, and have capes of manageable length. Batman’s the one Edna needs to talk to.)

  49. Ivan says:

    Re: your edit,

    I did get the impression that you were saying that they were doing the show wrong as well, but right at the last paragraph I figured out what you were trying to say. Maybe it was preconceptions, or maybe you weren’t quite as clear as you thought you were.

  50. Otters34 says:

    It’s kind of telling that by now people just assume that the big drama point of super-folks is whether or not they will win. We know, as a matter of course, that in the fullness of time every super-hero TV character HAS to prevail over their enemies.

    Whether public realization of what they can do will alienate their friends, or make their relationships less “real”, the competing desires to be respected and still keep a place in the world they’re comfortable with, the constant question about what the powers you have are even for and whether you’re doing the right thing with them, the difference between being admired as a person and feared as a living god, the many, many things that are outside your power no matter how many people you can liquify just by flying very fast, the fact you have to choose who you help, how you decide that, what happens when you make a mistake in that calculus.

    Being super only short-circuits plots if the writers are lazy. Having the power to get your way all the time and NOT using it can be more interesting than several tens of fives of expensive action scenes.

    1. krellen says:

      I don’t wonder if video games partially explain this. After all, the appeal for most gamers is the “will I win” aspect, the test of whether you are good enough to overcome this challenge, and this translates to all genres, including superheroes – and then these expectations get carried back over to older media, where they aren’t quite as expected.

  51. houiostesmoiras says:

    So much comments, can’t read them all… In other words, sorry if anyone else has similar or sufficiently opposed opinions that I should be posting in response, but I can’t be bothered to find the right point to insert myself.

    I… kinda had a similar reaction to Shamus at first, then I slid into hopefulness. I do still think the show (or, at least, the pilot trailer) looks a little too chick-flick-y (not that I didn’t like The Devil Wears Prada, just that it doesn’t seem like a good fit for a superhero show at first glance), but, then I realized that’s kinda the point. And not just from a marketing standpoint, either. Or, rather, those beats were used for demographic marketing, but they chose Supergirl because she fits into those tropes fairly well: They didn’t just shoehorn a female superhero into a show about a down-on-her-luck 20-something gaining validation for her life, but picked a superhero who didn’t need much reshaping for her origin story to fit into that mold. Supergirl isn’t the most popular superhero around, so her origin hasn’t been retold and retconned all that much, and the trailer looks like nothing more than the most recent modern update to her origin, and a heck of a lot more empowering than her first origin. (Granted, not a lot of female superheroes had particularly empowered origins or roles back then. Seriously, who wastes someone with Wonder Woman’s abilities as a secretary?)

    EDIT: When I say Supergirl isn’t the most popular superhero, I don’t mean to imply that she’s a bad or unpopular superhero, just that she’s not as popular as DC’s and Marvel’s big flagships like Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, The Avengers, Spiderman, or X-Men. The most popular characters tend to get the most retconning and updating of their origins, and it hasn’t happened as much for Supergirl as, say, Wonder Woman. (Side note: The more specific the beats in the story, the more likely the character is to get updates than retcons. Spiderman: in high school, parents gone, lives with aunt and uncle, socially awkward, bitten by radioactive spider, gains superpowers, fights for money, gets cheated, lets thief escape, uncle killed by aforementioned thief, decides to fight crime, more quippy when masked than in real life, civilian alter ego gets job photographing superhero alter ego with overbearing boss. Lots of updates, few major retcons. Wonder Woman: Amazonian princess, lives on Themyscira, blessed by gods, learns of evil outside the island, goes to fight said evil and hopefully forge diplomatic ties with “Man’s World.” Several retcons. (Note that I’m only talking about origin story retcons, not mid-timeline retcons.))

    Anyway, tl;dr for that paragraph is: My kneejerk reaction was similar to Shamus’, but I think it’s not quite as bad as he makes it out, either culturally or as a guy who might wind up watching. (Though I agree that it would be better if we were at a point, culturally, where a decent Wonder Woman show would be more viable than a marketed-towards-females Supergirl.)

    Also, there’s one really big reason to be looking forward to Supergirl. Is it just me, or does it look fairly light-hearted? Sure, there’s a bit of grey—today’s audiences won’t accept pure 50s-style “the good guys are always pure and just, and the bad guys are always obviously evil” shows—but it looks a lot like Supergirl is a good person who tries to make the right decisions, has friends who support her, wins the admiration of the world she helps to save, and, in spite of a few dark spots, generally has a positive outlook on life. Forget whether the superheroes are male or female, the Super family needs some of that right now. Look at Superman Returns, Man of Steel, and the Superman of the new 52: DC and the studios making Superman movies saw the success of the dark Batman movies and apparently decided that was the avenue to take with all their flagship characters, to great fan backlash. (I have no idea what, if any, the box office backlash was; I just know that the most positive opinions I’ve heard of Superman’s recent direction has been along the lines of, “Well, it’s still kinda entertaining,” and the majority has been more like, “But Superman is the hero who’s always positive and moral and actually has a pretty decent life! He’s the escape fantasy, not the underdog or the antihero or the one who has to make the hard choices!” Obviously, this opinion is not universal, but it seems pretty common. Also, yes, I know pre-new 52 Superman sometimes had to make the hard choices and his life wasn’t always great, and he did kill Zod in the comics (though more cleanly and without letting a bunch of civilians die first), but there’s a difference between specific stories and the overall impression of a character, especially in comics.)

    I see Supergirl as an attempt to bring the “Super” name back towards the positive themes that tend to be the impression it leaves on most fans. And I really hope I’m not jinxing it.

    1. houiostesmoiras says:

      Sidenote: On the Marvel front, is anyone else looking forward to A.K.A. Jessica Jones as much as I am? I haven’t seen/read much about it yet, and I know I devoted a lot of text to how I’m looking forward to a more uplifting superhero series, which, if you know anything about Jessica Jones, is not something you’d expect from this show, but even if it winds up completely grimdark, it’s yet more variety in female heroes. Even if Supergirl winds up being a complete rom-com-with-superpowers (which I don’t think it quite will… I hope), there’ll be *gasp* variety. With female leads!

      Between Agent Carter, A.K.A. Jessica Jones, Supergirl, and the decent (actually, great, at least by action show standards) balance of female characters in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., there’s actually a lot to choose from in superhero/action/comics shows with female leads this year. Now all we need is for someone who wouldn’t balk at R-rated violence, like HBO, to pitch a Black Widow show and get Scarlet Johansson to join and Marvel to greenlight it.

      1. Mike S. says:

        I keep hearing good things about Jessica Jones, but haven’t really read much with her in it. Is the Alias series the one I want to look for, assuming it’s in the Marvel Unlimited app?

        1. houiostesmoiras says:

          I don’t have the app, but assuming it just gives you access to Marvel’s comics, yes, her first title was Alias, and her P.I. firm is Alias Investigations. She also stars in a book titled The Pulse. As both a former superhero and a former supervillain (mostly under mind control, of course; this is the Marvel universe after all) with little bits of interaction with lots of other heroes, you’ll see appearances from pretty much all of Marvel’s major players, which is pretty cool. Also, Jessica’s often unpleasant and relatively understated life is an example of a good way to write someone whose superpowers don’t buy them happiness. (As opposed to, say, Man of Steel.)

          I really love what little I’ve seen of Marvel’s plans for their Netflix series. First, they’re making a series with a female protagonist (A.K.A. Jessica Jones). Then, they’re making a series with a male protagonist as a spinoff of that (Luke Cage) rather than the other way around. (It makes a lot of sense to have a Jessica Jones series and a Luke Cage series with one as a spinoff from the other, as they have a long and complicated relationship, but it’s interesting that they’re spinning the male-centered series from the female one, particularly since Luke Cage has been around in comics a lot longer.) Finally, they’re making a series with a black protagonist (Luke Cage again). And, yes, if you look up Luke Cage, you’ll probably see his jive-talking white-guy-trying-to-write-a-black-guy original incarnation, but (and, granted, I’m white and live in a very liberal/colorblind area, so my perspective may be off on this) he’s not written in a racist way anymore, hasn’t been for a couple decades. Maybe it’s the confidence of having a giant like Disney at their backs now, but Marvel’s actually being insanely progressive for a media company.

          EDIT: Oh, I can’t believe I almost forgot! When Jessica eventually has a daughter, and later decides to get back into superheroing, of course she needs a nanny. A whole bunch of B-list superheroes apply for the job, and who does she pick? Doreen Green! Any comic series that gives us more of the unbeatable Squirrel Girl must be read!

          1. Ed says:

            Sadly, alias is not on marvel unlimited (they don’t keep the max imprint stuff on there, despite alias being the only series i know in main continuity in that imprint) the pulse is on there, tho I haven’t read it myself. If you are a big squirrel girl fan, check out the new unbeatable squirrel girl series, which is supposed to be excellent

  52. newdarkcloud says:

    Honestly, my thoughts when I saw this were “Oh thank god it’s not grimdark.”

    I honestly don’t know how much more grimdark shit I can take from DC anymore.

    1. houiostesmoiras says:

      Yes, this. Please, please, please, CBS and DC, remember that Superman, Supergirl, and Power Girl are the “beacon of light” superheroes, not the “fighting from the shadows” or “doing the best they can in a horrible world” superheroes!

    2. The Other Matt K says:

      Yeah, this. I saw the trailer, and it previewed an exciting, colorful show with a cheerful, optimistic character. That alone was enough to get me interested, and it boggled my mind that so many were bothered by her being nerdy and awkward, when the image of Clark Kent as a bumbling doof is pretty much iconic to the genre.

      1. Mike S. says:

        I wonder if it’s because it’s been thirty years since the Clark Kent disguise was really played in the classic mode. Reeve was pretty much its last hurrah, then Byrne reversed Superman’s personality dynamic. Pre-1986, Clark Kent was a wimpy, clumsy disguise Superman put on to divert attention. After 1986, Superman is a suit that brave, smart, athletic Clark Kent puts on when he’s superheroing. That was extended to later media adaptations: TAS, Lois and Clark, etc.

        I’d guess that Superman: the Movie and the pre-Niagara Falls bit of Superman II are the only places most people under 30– under 40?– have seen a bumbling Clark.

  53. SharpeRifle says:

    Hmmm…was reading through everything then decided about halfway down to just throw my thoughts up instead.

    1. Actually at one point Pre-Crisis this is the job she had….and it went something like this….except the people know who she is part.

    2. Ok I had a BIG red flag at Ally McBeal showing up….especially since we all know what happened the last time someone assaociated with that show did DC. But hopefully she isn’t writing it! (Seriously though Cat Grant? Do people somehow find Calista Flockhart attractive and I’ve never noticed?)

    3.Yeaaaah completely untrained powerhouse shows up to “help”. Ummmm I think I mighta told her to go back to getting her boss coffee too. We frown on the untrained in combat situations….its not helped by having to see her plow headfirst into a dirt mound cause she couldn’t make the turn. Though a cape to add drag could in theory actually help a turn I suppose.

    4.Heh I always love the held up the plane with two hands thing though….I’m pretty sure that wouldn’t work.

    5.Dammit I guess she’s not “Linda Danvers” here….that kinda sucks.

    Other than that….it doesn’t look bad actually….But dammit Ally McBeal…..

    Edited to Add: heehehehehehehhheeeee….According to the IMDB cast List….Dean Cain plays her DAD and Helen Slater plays her Mom!…OK it wins for that hilarity…this will be watched and I don’t watch TV!

    1. krellen says:

      2. Yes, there are people that find thin women attractive.

      Casting: That is f-ing brilliance. Thank you for telling me that.

      1. SharpeRifle says:

        No Problem I had to share that when I saw it!

        And you misunderstand what I meant…it isn’t “Thin Women” in general its more like… (you’ll want to step back for this)…*Coughs*


        *coughs again* Sooooo…yeah not a fan.

        1. Chris says:

          I regret having the same reaction to Calista Flockhart in this trailer as I reacted to seeing Andrea Thompson (Talia Winters from Babylon5) on an recent-ish episode of CSI. I was surprised at the change that time has wrought. And then I got mad at myself for thinking “Wow, she looks older..” because the fact is most actresses disappear from the screen once they look older. Guys can age, but heaven forbid women do.

          Calista is in this because she gets to be a badass CEO, the show is cool for making her the badass CEO. She isn’t there for sex appeal, in the same way that Molly Weasley in the Harry Potter movies is not there for sex appeal.

          1. George Monet says:

            It’s because men tend to age more slowly and age well while women age faster and poorly. That’s reality without any of the sugar coating. People are watching a movie/show to be entertained. Old women simply aren’t appealing to the larger demographics minus a few exceptions.

    2. Chris says:

      Yeah, I’d prefer Linda to Kara, but then I liked the plot where she gained angelic powers and fought demons. I would have preferred a show where Constantine could have had a guest appearance. But this is waay better than grim-dark emo mode, Superman was at his worst when placed in a Batman-space. Of course, I watched Smallville for Lex. :D

      That “coffee” statement didn’t work, but I felt like it didn’t work because it basically has been so over-done. The military is forever telling people who can handle the problem to back off. I wouldn’t be surprised if its a trope. (I won’t check, I have lost too many hours to the TV Tropes page as it is.) Last time I remember seeing it was Fantastic Four 2, which I had to watch because Silver Surfer, and all of a sudden the top military guy is telling Dr. Richards to go back to his lab. When will the media stop portraying the military as macho, wrong-headed, dude-centric asshats? Sure those guys can end up in the military, but you don’t get rank if you don’t have some brains.

      I feel the need to say what a wonderful change James Olsen is. First off, hot! Second, the character has been a joke for forever, it is nice to see something that makes him something else. The idea that James, a good friend of Superman, might be the one trusted to give a pep talk to Kara is sweet.

      Am I the only one who wants Zatanna to get a movie/show? That’d be awesome! Constantine has been an entertaining show, but it would be nice to have a magic-wielding chick get the spotlight. There would be the risk of her turning into Batman with magic and an hourglass figure though…

      She-Hulk should totally get a movie, although I’d currently settle for her human-self showing up in the Daredevil Netflix show.

      1. SharpeRifle says:

        She-Hulk would make a good TV show in my opinion, the problem is that Deadpool couldn’t cameo so they could have a 4th wall breaking competition!

        1. Chris says:

          Aw, dude, that would be awesome! I’d love if they had She-Hulk in a show where she actually knows its a show. Deadpool could be the product of an altered mental state after a fight with Mysterio, so there is no reason he couldn’t be there… or Howard the Duck instead of Deadpool. Or Howard the Duck versus Deadpool.

 other news, Dayquil just might be too much caffeine for me.

          1. Taellosse says:

            Deadpool couldn’t show up because Marvel hasn’t got the film/TV rights to him – he’s tied to the X-Men, which is why the Ryan Reynolds movie they’re making of Deadpool is being made by Fox.

  54. GTRichey says:

    I think we’re definitely going to get more female led superhero stuff. Agent Carter (no comment on tone/genre since I haven’t watched it at this stage) had very good viewership numbers (premiere:

    Finale: )

    This being only the second major property is still pretty slim on choice, but I don’t think this one show will determine the future of woman led properties thankfully.

    1. SharpeRifle says:

      Yaknow every time I look at modern ratings I thank a higher power for there now being so many choices out there that companies can produce something with only 6 million viewers and have it be a “hit”.

      Here’s to diversification!

  55. MichaelGC says:

    I assume people are dragging their expectations into this discussion

    When I got to the ‘I don’t blame people who loathe it’ part it did take me a moment to realise Shamus was saying he’s not in that group, purely because the piece starts fairly critical, and then the positive portion isn’t suuuuper-celebratory. I scrolled back a bit and all became clear – and the main reason that’s noteworthy is that it is so seldom necessary around here! (And I’m certainly not complaining, which would be like criticising a basketball player who’s just sunk 999 perfect 3-pointers in a row, but missed the 1000th.)

    Even that would be too strong – this wasn’t a ‘miss’: it just required a tiny bit more digging than usual to see the exact point, and it’s perhaps that tiny gap in comprehension which allowed prior expectations to rush in. That was where I went awry, anyway. And we all know what prior expectations are like: give ’em a Planck length and they’ll take a lightyear, the little blighters…

    May also be worth noting: even though large portions were perhaps based on misunderstanding, the discussion has been very interesting and illuminating, and I feel like I’ve learned a lot. Not all unintended consequences are bad! Also – and I’ll have to hope Shamus hasn’t needed to hire temporary server space to handle the load from the mod queue – 300+ comments on an emotionally-charged subject, and no one has started a flame-war! Sometimes I wonder if this is even the internet…

  56. Ed says:

    First: totally agree, not nearly enough genre TV with female main characters or created by women out there.
    Second: if you are willing to try some current marvel comics, there is great deal of female led series that are recent. Behold, the list:

    Captain Marvel: my favorite of the bunch, and the one being turned into a 2018 movie. The 2012 series is traditional superhero fare focusing around ideas of legacy and identity, while the 2014 series is more like flash Gordon, fun space adventures, dealing with themes of friendship, growth and loss.

    She-hulk: a wacky legal comedy, and an absolute blast. Dan Scott’s 2004 run is much deeper steeped in marvel insanity, so start with the 2013 run first

    Elektra: recently finished, with fantastic action scenes and artwork. Writing isn’t great, mostly because Elektra is kind of a nothing character, but great if you want pure action

    Black widow: much more understated, spy themes of course. Beautiful artwork.

    Fearless defenders: an all women team of marvel female listers. Takes few issues to get rolling, but great character interactions all around

    Ms marvel: the big one, featuring kamala khan, a teenage Pakistani American girl and her adventures. Early spider-man for the new millenia, also hilarious

    Thor: the wielder of mjolnir is now a woman, who kicks all kinds of ass. Fantastic, epic action and high fantasy and imagination story. Note that this series is a sequel of sorts to the previous. Thor: god of thunder series, so it helps but isn’t necessary to read that first.

    Now for the trick of spider women:

    Spider-woman: starring Jessica drew, the original spider woman, starts as a spider verse tie in(don’t ask) so start at issue 5, the new status quo. Don’t know much yet, series hasn’t gotten off the ground but I am a fan of the writers previous works

    Silk: featuring the other victim of the spider that bit peter Parker, Cindy moon has been in hiding for a decade since, now out and around, following her adventures

    Spider-gwen: set in an alt verse where Gwen Stacy got bit by the radioactive spider, following her versions of spider-man stories. Very good first issue.

    Unbeatable squirrel girl: comedy focused, and very bonkers, tons of personality

    Hopefully something on that list is of interest. Sorry I couldn’t give a better idea on the second half of that list, they haven’t or have barely started on unlimited yet.

  57. JAB says:

    I watch almost no current tv. I’ve watched a few episodes of Arrow, Flash, Agents of Shield, they were ok but didn’t grab me enough to make me watch them weekly.

    You could not pay me enough to watch an hour long version of that trailer.

    I’m not the target audience, and that’s fine. It’ll be interesting to see if there is a large enough audience.

    1. ChristopherT says:

      I totally understand and would not try to sway your mind. Would just like to note that the episode leaked, and that music in the trailer is no where to be found in the show. The music in the show has some light rock and a segment of “She’s a Bad Mama Jama” and so far the “love” part is just the two small parts in the trailer, scene whole. But, that being said I could still understand people not liking other parts of it, and still wanting to stay away because it’s not for them, that’s cool. Just wanted to note that the trailer is not that accurate thankfully.

  58. Talby says:

    I dislike the trailer, but what I dislike more is all the people saying that you must be sexist/have entitlement issues for not liking it. There was a heavily retweeted post on twitter that basically said anyone who disliked the trailer must hate women, which seems like overkill.

  59. Vorpal Smilodon says:

    Wait, what? People don’t like Ultraviolet? That movie is awesome!

  60. Paul Hewson says:

    it’s usually a fun, positive, and entertaining show, but the frequent, needless, anti-white, racist propaganda gets tiresome, such as “black Jimmy Olsen” tearing up as he tells his girlfriend, Lina, his absurd story of being handcuffed by police as a seven-year-old child for playing hide-and-seek on the grounds of a hotel where he was staying because the fictitious “racist” white cops couldn’t possibly imagine that a black boy could be the child of a guest at a nice hotel. this is just the latest of many such racially-decisive subplots the writers have so awkwardly, inappropriately, and offensively shoehorned into an otherwise family-friendly program.

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