WEEKEND SUPERHERO: Comic-Based TV Series I’d Look Forward to, If Only….

Melissa Benoist Jeremy Jordan Supergirl

Some early looks, at the upcoming superhero slate, say “keep looking.” Things that always make season finale time great: satisfying climaxes/ resolutions, merciful ends (with the occasional I-spit-on-your-grave opportunity), and anticipating what comes next. As far as that last point goes, it’s one part question of “where does a returning show go from here,” and one part question of “what’ll they dig up to capitalize/ compete with this thing I’ve been watching.”

Narrowing the field to comic book/ superhero geekery, a number of first-runs & spin-offs are out with promos, aiming to make early claims on our viewing calendar. Barring a few outstanding efforts (Lucifer looks to be a hoot ‘n’ a half – and not entirely in a Mentalist sort of way), however, I’ve been underwhelmed by the offerings, so far.

It’s not that these promos have been bad, per se. The property peddlers did their best (considering that comic book/ superhero properties are still doing gangbuster business, they had a lot to work with), and all things considered, these shows could still wind up getting my attention, but if only….

Supergirl didn’t play so much like Gossip Girl.

They kinda lost me at the Cat Grant (Calista Flockhart) justification of the term ‘girl;’ but more to the point, the trailer seemed to dwell more on the small town girl, alone in the big city, trying to simultaneously live up to her boss, her idol, and her cousin’s enormous shadow. All well & good, for today’s tween, looking for a role model; but anyone who expected Lois & Clark to be more superhero than soap themed missed the point to the title – just as the promoters for Supergirl did.

For once, I actually found myself less concerned with the show’s more worn out superhero elements (another member of the House of El preventing a plane crash, and superpowerful aliens getting attached to singular points – and people – on this backwater planet), on account of its focus on more pedestrian worn out elements. Going by the underplayed elements, to the trailer, Supergirl should be the official place-holder for classic Superman lore (since the big screen treatment punted on the secret identity angle, and now serves as a shoe-horn to Justice League); but instead, we seem to be getting more girl, than super. Not that there’s anything wrong with that; but, again, title….

DC’s Legends of Tomorrow didn’t seem so campy.

Let’s face it: Legends of Tomorrow is a frozen dinner rehash, meant to keep the momentum of The Flash going, by scraping together elements from both The Flash & Arrow. Not an unreasonable plan, and these elements do have their merits; but the trailer paints a picture of a side project trying to sell itself as light-hearted fun, while taking itself way too seriously, and not really pulling off the mixture. Worse, it hopes to raise itself on the name of DC comics’ other immortal arch-villain, Vandal Savage. Given the mixed results from Arrow’s harnessing of Ra’s al Ghul, the move does not inspire confidence. I won’t even go into the whole Time Lord Masters thing.

The trailer left me feeling that the show’s ambition (no doubt buoyed by SFX heavy The Flash) outstrips its budget, and ending it on the Atom (Brandon Routh) demo really didn’t help. Heck, it was just silly.

Heroes hadn’t burnt so many bridges.

The best thing I can say, about the original run’s end, was that it finally ended. One reason the first run ran afoul of fans, was the seemingly random treatment of front-and-center characters – some being written off, some having their roles/ abilities changed, and some just disappearing, altogether. Throw in a lot of timeline meddling, and the notion of a new crop of unknowns (ie. barely any of the original cast agreeing to return) could likely smack of more-of-the-same.

It’s hard to grant a show a do-over, when repeated do-overs were part of the reason it got done in, in the first place. As for the new cast, only the image of Kiki Sukezane really stood out; and yet, I couldn’t help but think of Masi Oka (one of the few who will be returning), so I’m just not getting any fresh vibes from the project. Maybe I should reserve judgement until I see a trailer; but it would be useful to them if we were given a reason to care – even at this point. A new version, of a bad product, still has to overcome bad brand name recognition.

Ah, well. It’s still early, yet; and there’s a whole summer, ahead. Time enough for word on better projects (Preacher & Fear The Walking Dead, I’m waiting), and better sale pitches for what could still be weak tea (take your pick from the above).

It’s a buyer’s market, either way; so who am I to complain? “Here we are, now….”

For more Supergirl news and developments, visit our Supergirl Page; more DC’s Legends of Tomorrow news & developments are on our DC’s Legends of Tomorrow Page; more Heroes Reborn photos, videos, and news, on our Heroes Reborn Page; and more editorials can be found on our Editorials Page. Subscribe to us by Email, “follow” us on TwitterTumblrGoogle+ or “like” us on Facebook.

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About the author

Sam Joseph

Sam is an Avid consumer/observer of Geek culture, and collector of Fanboy media from earliest memory. Armchair sociologist and futurist. Honest critic with satirical if not absurdist­­ wit with some experience in comics/ animation production.

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