Supergirl is an upcoming television series from CBS. But, prior to diving into this show, you’re going to need to know about her background. Don’t feel like reading every single comic book featuring her? This inclusive, yet concise, list is your sneak peak into the life of Supergirl.
1. Who is Supergirl?
A complicated, principled and haunted, yet capable, superhero; Supergirl has had many different costumes and many different names. Like many superheroes, she was gifted at birth with impressive capabilities. At birth she was also instilled with the basis for her being, to end suffering and to bring joy. In this aspect, she is similar to Superman. Unwilling to compromise the principles she holds above all, she makes astonishing sacrifices for the sake of others, less powerful or brave. She also attempts to break the bond of evil one finger at a time, through a series of small, yet important deeds. But it’s hard to relate to a character if they’re perfect, right? Thankfully, Supergirl doesn’t come with a unwavering personality. Those same principles that give her purpose often interfere with her needs and desires. In this way, she’s similar to a simple human. Despite all of her great accomplishments and competence, she still has the potential to fail.
2. Is Supergirl a New Character?
As Supergirl says herself, in the new CBS trailer, “My cousin… you may know his story, but you don’t know mine.” The idea of Superman has certainly been around for decades, but what about his superpowered cousin? In fact, she has too. Officially dubbed “Supergirl” in the late 1950’s, for the Action Comics comic books, Supergirl has appeared in popular culture several times since her inception. She even got to be the star of her own film, in 1984. But, she has never quite rivaled her cousin’s popularity (which may soon change). Therefore, even though she’s new to CBS, Supergirl has been around for nearly as long as Superman. If her upward trend continues, she may become just another household superhero name.
3. Where has Supergirl Been?
DC Comics has proudly featured her likeliness in dozens, upon dozens comics. However, these “Supergirls” may vary greatly from one another. While one may be a protoplasmic life-form, another may be a member of Superman’s Justice League. While one may have the power of invisibility, another may draw super strength from Kryptonite. This near constant switching of powers and appearances has made it difficult for her image to stay in the minds of the public. Additionally, she has often been relegated to a supporting character position, which may make her less memorable. No need to worry about that now, Supergirl fans. CBS has allowed her to take the reigns. According to legend, she’ll hold onto them with an unbreakable grip.
4. Why has it Taken this Long?
One could answer this with a single word, money. In decades prior, sexism may have been the hinge on which Supergirl was stuck. But in today’s more equality-driven world, there is an incredible demand for incredible superheroes, no matter their gender. Just take a look at The Avengers, Arrow, Batman, along with a litany of other groundbreaking (literally) superhero media. Breaking the mold of a superhero is what defines modern superheroes. While the idea of superheroes has been commonplace for some time, it seems that the present is ripe for superhero ideas yet to be tried. Perhaps a female lead character who possesses unbelievable strength? CBS may want to cash in on the superhero hype, but they did so in a way that expands the current idea of the superhero narrative. This appearance may elevate the feminine role from a damsel in distress to a girl you don’t want to mess with. That may be important for girls, young and old, to have somebody similar to them in a position of righteousness. Superman is certainly a capable role model, but some may view his masculinity as prejudice via exclusion. Supergirl perfectly compliments Superman by incorporating his powers into another complex, developed and flawed counterpart. This television show may be just what female protagonists need. By chiseling powerful female characters one at a time, the entertainment world will soon be dominated by them. In a similar approach to Supergirl’s good deeds, one female lead role at a time will snowball into an unstoppable fury of feminine badassery.
5. What should I Watch before Supergirl Premieres?
Supergirl has appeared in film, animation, television and video games. Among the most popular of her appearances was of that on Smallville, a television show based on the story of Superman. In this story, her Earth name is Kara (rather than her birth name of Kara Zor-El) and she has been in suspended animation for 18 years. She joins this shows during its seventh season and heavily contributes to the plot from that point forward. She also made guest appearances on television in Superman: The Animated Series, Justice League Unlimited and Super Best Friends Forever. For her role in Super Best Friends Forever, Supergirl collaborates with Wonder Girl to rid the world of evildoers. If television and film simply aren’t immersive enough, why not become Supergirl? She appears as a playable character in the games Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes, Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham and Infinite Crisis. Throughout all of Supergirl’s appearances, the core principles of justice and retribution have shone through her different storylines. See these principles in action when you catch Supergirl take on her enemy, Lumberjack, in the series premiere on CBS this November!