So the Interwebs was abuzz this week with all sorts of Kryptonian news about SUPERGIRL and its extended trailer. Then in a swift move, perhaps cutting us off at the pass, the entire pilot episode was leaked online. Was this just savvy marketing by the bigwigs at CBS? A good six months ahead of time? This Junkie does not care because what I just watched was a heckuva lot of fun. Admittedly, I immediately posted on our Facebook group that the trailer was a little lame and corny in the vein of Ally McBeal but damn it if actress Melissa Benoist doesn't nail this role.
I am a Bat-person by trade but grew up on Christopher Reeve's iconic SUPERMAN flicks. By no way am I comparing those to this because this, well this is on a much more manageable scale. No need to get into all of the craziness of the pop zeitgeist. I am just taking this pilot as a sample of what I hope is to come. Benoist is flat out adorable as the awkward and clutzy Kara Danvers (Kara Zor-El on Krypton) and cousin of the big guy himself. Although it's not really that universe, there is only talk of that universe but I honestly forgot about it because I was actually, surprisingly, really enjoying the pilot episode. And if it ends up ending as THE FLASH did, well then I will probably be DVR'ing GOTHAM on Monday nights. SUPERGIRL was just more fun.
The devout Kryptonians will have something to say about the pilot but I'm not gonna nitpick on what I thought was going to be a colossal disaster. Benoist has this weird knack of silly and adorability where she really is like Clark Kent is when Supes is pretending to be Clark Kent! She is a total mess in her regular life. She didn't come here as a baby, she arrived as an awkward tween. Kara knows both worlds after arriving here years after Kal-El after a stint being stuck in the Phantom Zone for some time. By day she works for Catco, run by media magnate Cat Grant played with a whole lot of gumption by Ally McBeal herself, Calista Flockheart. She is all bluster and tough and actually sells it when she comes up against the very soft around the office Kara. And hey, she hands off a hearty "Mazel Tov" to Kara with no problems. Seriously. Watch it. ...it happens...
The big reveal of Kara's powers are far less of a discovery for her because she was cognizant at the time of her arrival and you know, walking and stuff. In on the secret adoptive parents are played by Super-alum's Dean Cain and Helen Slater who have just a brief appearance in the beginning. It is her sister, Alex Danvers played by Chyler Leigh who is living in National City as well and has a big part in the narrative. See she is Agent Danvers of the Department of Extranormal Operations or the DEO. Kara is the reason that the DEO exists because as they say on the show, they knew there would be immigrants when Kal crashed. So its safe to say that every state has one of these agencies I guess. The plot device does work well here where normally I would think it was too far gone off course.
And that's okay here, it works. As far as the baddies go, I was not 100% certain who exactly they were except that they were prisoners put away by Kara's birth mother back on Krypton. Their ship, well, their prison dubbed "Fort Roz" was also destined for the Phantom Zone and followed Kara's tail to earth leaving the inmates to run rampant. So when Kara gets into her first scrum with one of the bad guys, she realizes that her sister is her biggest detractor and ally in the costume game. Justice prevails and good triumphs over evil as my dad would say. Its all in the pilot 101 book for superheroes and Benoist sells it to me with a surprisingly strong supporting cast rounded out by the "in on the secret and was sent here from Metropolis to look over you, Jimmy Olsen. Sorry, James played by Mehcad Brooks.
But Supergirl has never really struck me as very in line with the Super-universe in the DC world. I think that a crossover with THE FLASH would be great with these actors but it will never happen so long as the Lex Luthor's of the world are running the networks. The flash of SUPERGIRL sits squarely on Benoist's shoulders and it stands up to much better than I had hoped. You can most certainly count this Junkie in to watch this Fall.