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  1. #1
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    Default SUPERGIRL TV show

    As many of you know by now, Supergirl is likely getting her own network television show on CBS next year (a series commitment at this point, no formal order yet).


    If it goes through, SUPERGIRL will be the unprecedented FIFTH live-action Superverse TV show in history, following the 1950s ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN show with George Reeves, the 1980s SUPERBOY show with James Hayne Newton/Gerard Christopher, the 1990s LOIS & CLARK show with Dean Cain & Terri Hatcher, and the 2000s SMALLVILLE show with Tom Welling.


    I think there will be 4 basic types of viewers regarding this 2010s SUPERGIRL show:

    1.) Non-fan viewers = viewers with zero previous attachment to anything Superman-related (these will make up virtually all, like over 95%, of the viewership ... IF the show is successful)

    2) Superman-first fan viewers = viewers who love Superman first and foremost, and thus watch the show due to its proximity to their alpha hero.

    3) Supergirl-first fan viewers = viewers who love Supergirl first and foremost, and thus watch the show to see their heroine get her due spotlight.

    4) Superverse-general fan viewers = viewers who love almost anything Super-related, be it -Man, -Girl, -Boy, -Woman, -Dog, -Cat, -Monkey, -Horse, Steel, Mon-El, etc.

    5) Superhero/Comic Book fan viewers = viewers who support almost anything comix-related


    A few pieces of information about the upcoming show are known currently.

    This report from ScreenCrush

    This report from CinemaBlend


    Both reports point to the idea that most of the new show's roster of characters are tentatively being filled out by Superman's supporting cast.

    In addition to Kara Zor-El / Kara Danvers (mid 20s female) as the lead role, we have

    - James "Jimmy" Olsen (late 20s/early 30s male, open ethnicity) as Kara's love interest

    - Catherine "Cat" Grant (40s female, open ethnicity) as media mogul and Kara's boss

    - Winslow "Wynn" Schott (20s male) as a stalking co-worker type of Kara's,

    - Henry "Hank" Henshaw (40s male) as a CIA agent tracking Supergirl,

    and

    - Alexandra "Alex" Danvers (20s female) as Kara's foster sister


    The reports seem to indicate we'll get an actual in-costume Supergirl doing public heroic deeds. No mention of how they'll deal with her more famous cousin (I have a solution to that in mind).

    Taking all of this with a HUGE grain of salt, what do y'all think about this setup as is? And if you do watch SUPERGIRL on CBS, which of the 5 types of viewer descriptions would best fit you?

  2. #2
    Incredible Member Xhatch's Avatar
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    3 & 5 for me

    I like what I've read about this show so far except for her being 24 years old. Would much prefer if she was a teenager.
    I think Superhero tv shows are in a very strong place currently and I hope Supergirl will do well because I love the character & I just love seeing comic book things doing well in the mainstream. From films, tv shows, comics, it really is a great time for comics and comic related things!

  3. #3
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    I'm type 3. And I think it sounds pretty good. I do hope they're serious about both the costume and powers (including flights), it sounds like they are. Having seen The Flash, I know there's no reason why they can't do both at this stage, and I think repeating the Smallville 'no flights no tights' formula now would be ridiculous (that's also why I'm glad she's an adult and not a teen in this show.) I mean I'm rewatching Lois & Clark, and they did flights and other powers on that show in the 90s on a modest budget. Like The Flash now, that show knew that putting the characters first and keeping the action scenes short and punchy is how you get this genre to work on TV. I'd have to imagine this is going to work in a similar way.

    I think demographics 1 and 5 are going to be the key ones though. I've been told CBS normally goes for an older demographic and a very different kind of show, CBS must want the show for a reason. More young viewers? More women, perhaps? Both L&C and Smallville had big female followings, I'm told both had women in mind from their inception. I'd have to believe that's the case here too.

    It is still very early days yet, however. It's hard to discuss anything more than speculation at this stage when there isn't even a cast.

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    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    My thoughts on these earliest reports regarding the SUPERGIRL tv show on CBS.

    There appears to be an awful lot of using SuperMAN's supporting cast, as opposed to any of SuperGIRL's supporting cast. That's not necessarily a bad thing, as Superman would be the far more familiar and bigger audience draw (personally I'm a type 2 viewer: the more Supes, the better IMHO). But the character description of Alexandra Danvers sounds way too similar to SMALLVILLE's Lex Luthor. Also, the description of Jimmy Olsen as a full-grown "alpha male" man in his late 20s/early 30s is more than a little troubling.

    SUPERGIRL, at this early stage, sounds like the Superverse's TV answer the Batverse's BIRDS OF PREY television series.
    Last edited by daBronzeBomma; 11-07-2014 at 08:49 AM.

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    I do have to ask, as someone who's never been that fond of Jimmy Olsen, what is it about this change to him that bothers people? I understand he's nearly always been in his late-teens or early twenties before, but I've seen plenty of different characterisations for him. I never considered him an important enough part of the package that changing his personality type in an adaptation would be such a cause for concern.

    To me, the key advantages in adapting characters from Clark's traditional supporting cast and incorporating them here is that it sidesteps a major weakness in the Supergirl mythos that has existed since Loeb reintroduced her - she doesn't have a supporting cast. They never bothered to properly create one for Kara, compared to Peter David's run with Linda Danvers where he introduced a lot of interesting characters right from the start. I mean, honestly, who did she have in Supergirl vol. 5? Captain Boomerang when written by Kelly, and Lana Lang (also a Superman character) when written by Gates. That's it, aside from other characters shared with Superman like Lois, Jimmy and of course Alura, Thara and other Kryptonians during New krypton. And now three years into Supergirl vol. 6, they still haven't given New52 Kara a supporting cast either, her book has a reucrring character count of precisely 1: Siobhan Smythe, the Silver Banshee, not seen since May's issue. I'm not counting Michael because he's appeared precisely twice and the end of Bedard's run had been announced before Michael even showed up. Every new writer says they're planning to give her a supporting cast, but they never actually do it, Perkins and Johnson have me hopeful for their upcoming run because they've actually named the multiple new characters in interviews already which is more than Nelson or Bedard did with their vague waffling before they took on the book.

    A comic can survive - just - with a tight focus one one protagonist and a weak supporting cast, but a TV show cannot, they absolutely live or die on their characters. To me, if Berlanti and Adler have looked at the comics, presumably with the input of Johns, and decided that it's better to just adapt names from Superman's canon instead of building on such a flimsy foundation that you could never make a TV show out of, I don't blame them one bit.

  6. #6
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by confusiongrows View Post
    I do have to ask, as someone who's never been that fond of Jimmy Olsen, what is it about this change to him that bothers people? I understand he's nearly always been in his late-teens or early twenties before, but I've seen plenty of different characterisations for him. I never considered him an important enough part of the package that changing his personality type in an adaptation would be such a cause for concern.
    True, there have been many different characterizations of Jimmy Olsen in the last 70-odd years. But the one constant among them is that he is the face of youth in Superverse. He ranges from very young (about age 12 in the Golden Age) to the young-ish (about age 24 in the Post-CoIE DCU). But there's never been a 30-something "alpha male" version of Jimmy Olsen. It's like if there was a Batgirl TV show with a 30-something alpha male Dick Grayson. That would raise eyebrows, I assure you. These types of characters (Jimmy Olsen and Dick Grayson) were never meant to age beyond a certain point (i.e. cross the "25" mark) become full-fledged mature adults the way their mentors were.

    That's not to say it can't be done, just that aging them to full adulthood fundamentally changes that type of character to the point where you may as well use a new or different character altogether. If SUPERGIRL needs a 30-something alpha male character and won't create their own new character for the show (a la SMALLVILLE's Chloe Sullivan), then why not use, say, Steve Lombard? Or Richard White (Perry White's son and Lois Lane's husband ... and the most likable character in SUPERMAN RETURNS)? Why change one character that drastically mentally ... and probably physically as well: did you notice in the link the casting call for Jimmy said "open ethnicity"? So if the character both doesn't act like Jimmy Olsen (who is never presented as an alpha male in the comics) AND also doesn't look like Jimmy Olsen (who is always drawn white with red hair), then why call this character Jimmy Olsen? To draw in SuperMAN fans who will howl and whine about the proposed drastic changes? Doesn't seem like the best way to do business.

    To me, the key advantages in adapting characters from Clark's traditional supporting cast and incorporating them here is that it sidesteps a major weakness in the Supergirl mythos that has existed since Loeb reintroduced her - she doesn't have a supporting cast. They never bothered to properly create one for Kara, compared to Peter David's run with Linda Danvers where he introduced a lot of interesting characters right from the start. I mean, honestly, who did she have in Supergirl vol. 5? Captain Boomerang when written by Kelly, and Lana Lang (also a Superman character) when written by Gates. That's it, aside from other characters shared with Superman like Lois, Jimmy and of course Alura, Thara and other Kryptonians during New krypton. And now three years into Supergirl vol. 6, they still haven't given New52 Kara a supporting cast either, her book has a reucrring character count of precisely 1: Siobhan Smythe, the Silver Banshee, not seen since May's issue. I'm not counting Michael because he's appeared precisely twice and the end of Bedard's run had been announced before Michael even showed up. Every new writer says they're planning to give her a supporting cast, but they never actually do it, Perkins and Johnson have me hopeful for their upcoming run because they've actually named the multiple new characters in interviews already which is more than Nelson or Bedard did with their vague waffling before they took on the book.
    I think here we have to address an unpleasant truth: Supergirl will never have as good a supporting cast as Superman due to the fact that she herself is already part of HIS supporting cast. She's a direct derivative character: she derives directly from Superman. You can't tell Supergirl's story without Superman (but the opposite is clearly not true). She's been around since the late 1950s, had her own movie in 1984, and still doesn't have a reliable supporting cast half a century after she debuted. It's probably never going to happen. Such is the fate of a direct derivative character

    A comic can survive - just - with a tight focus one one protagonist and a weak supporting cast, but a TV show cannot, they absolutely live or die on their characters. To me, if Berlanti and Adler have looked at the comics, presumably with the input of Johns, and decided that it's better to just adapt names from Superman's canon instead of building on such a flimsy foundation that you could never make a TV show out of, I don't blame them one bit.
    Neither do I. But, the way I see it, you can EITHER alter the character's personality (adventure-loving nerd / weirdness magnet vs alpha male) OR their appearance (white vs black / Latino / Asian, boy vs man), not both. Because once you change both vectors, you may as well just use a entirely different or new character than deal with the inevitable backlash.

    It's super-early, so all this can change. I believe CBS is hoping to get the SUPERGIRL pilot episode to air next fall.

  7. #7
    Astonishing Member protege's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daBronzeBomma View Post
    My thoughts on these earliest reports regarding the SUPERGIRL tv show on CBS.

    There appears to be an awful lot of using SuperMAN's supporting cast, as opposed to any of SuperGIRL's supporting cast. That's not necessarily a bad thing, as Superman would be the far more familiar and bigger audience draw (personally I'm a type 2 viewer: the more Supes, the better IMHO). But the character description of Alexandra Danvers sounds way too similar to SMALLVILLE's Lex Luthor. Also, the description of Jimmy Olsen as a full-grown "alpha male" man in his late 20s/early 30s is more than a little troubling.

    SUPERGIRL, at this early stage, sounds like the Superverse's TV answer the Batverse's BIRDS OF PREY television series.
    Well, SuperGIRL doesn't have much of a supporting cast to speak of, particularly since the new 52 reboot. (Suddenly, I'm thinking of Karen gillan as Silver Banshee.) I'm curious as to how they're going to proceed with Kara, if she's going to be the only kryptonian on earth, or if Superman exists somewhere. I'm also hoping that Winslow Schott becomes the Toyman at some point.

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    Astonishing Member protege's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xhatch View Post
    3 & 5 for me

    I like what I've read about this show so far except for her being 24 years old. Would much prefer if she was a teenager.
    I think Superhero tv shows are in a very strong place currently and I hope Supergirl will do well because I love the character & I just love seeing comic book things doing well in the mainstream. From films, tv shows, comics, it really is a great time for comics and comic related things!
    I don't want her to be a teenager on the show, simply because Kara is a teenager currently in the comics, and all I've seen so far is angry emo teen, or thinks she knows it all in Justice League united. I'd kind of like to have her angst issues out of the way at the start please.
    Last edited by protege; 11-16-2014 at 01:34 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by protege View Post
    I don't want her to be a teenager on the show, simply because Kara is a teenager currently in the comics, and all I've seen so far is angry emo teen, or thinks she knows it all in Justice League united. I'd kind of like to have her angst issues out f the way at the start please.
    These are creative choices, not requirements. Teenagers aren't all that way any more than all comic book readers are socially challenged nerds, scientists are lab-coated villains, or any of the other commonly used stereotypes and tropes.

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    Default I vote emily kinney as the new supergirl on cbs!!!!

    Since her character on walking dead is finished she gets my vote. She shows she can be compassionate and strong when need. And she has a wholesome quality that would make her perfect for the character.

  11. #11
    pygophile and podophile Dr. Cheesesteak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Batavenger View Post
    Since her character on walking dead is finished she gets my vote. She shows she can be compassionate and strong when need. And she has a wholesome quality that would make her perfect for the character.
    cool spoiler
    Comics were definitely happier, breezier and more confident in their own strengths before Hollywood and the Internet turned the business of writing superhero stories into the production of low budget storyboards or, worse, into conformist, fruitless attempts to impress or entertain a small group of people who appear to hate comics and their creators. -- Grant Morrison, 2008

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    Actually not a spoilier since it has already shown twice on AMC and was discussed on the talking dead!

  13. #13
    Mighty Member C_Miller's Avatar
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    I'm pretty sure there's a more than 3 hour window on spoilers...

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    pygophile and podophile Dr. Cheesesteak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Batavenger View Post
    Actually not a spoilier since it has already shown twice on AMC and was discussed on the talking dead!
    It's called "Time Zones", OP
    Comics were definitely happier, breezier and more confident in their own strengths before Hollywood and the Internet turned the business of writing superhero stories into the production of low budget storyboards or, worse, into conformist, fruitless attempts to impress or entertain a small group of people who appear to hate comics and their creators. -- Grant Morrison, 2008

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    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    OK, a couple things about this thread ...

    1) OP, you definitely should have used the SPOIL & /SPOIL html tags in the actual content of your post. I'd be rightfully annoyed at something of that nature being spoiled if I was a devout watcher of that show.

    It should have read:

    "Since

    spoilers:
    her character on walking dead is finished
    end of spoilers

    she gets my vote. She shows she can be compassionate and strong when need. And she has a wholesome quality that would make her perfect for the character."


    2) Mods, shouldn't this thread be merged with the existing SUPERGIRL on CBS thread (I'll be bringing this up there in a bit anyway)?

    3) Mods, or at least moved to the Superman forums?
    Last edited by daBronzeBomma; 12-01-2014 at 07:05 AM.

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