Friday, September 19, 2014

SUPERGIRL Gets Series Commitment from CBS

You just know Marvel has to be feeling some pressure on the TV front right about now.

Less than a month after the project was announced in development, TV Line reports that the Supergirl television series has received a series commitment from CBS.  According to the article, Supergirl will focus on DC Comics character Kara Zor-El, the cousin of Superman, "who escaped the planet Krypton amid its destruction.  Having hid all this time on Earth the powers she shares with 'her famous cousin' (as the official logline cheekily puts it), 24-year-old Kara decides to embrace her superhuman abilities and 'be the hero she was meant to be.'"

Arrow and The Flash executive producer Greg Berlanti and Ali Adler, who worked on Berlanti's ABC series No Ordinary Family, will executive produce the series along with Sarah Schechter of Berlanti Productions and Warner Bros. Television.  The series will indeed be called Supergirl, despite previous reports that the name might not have been available due to legal reasons.

Supergirl is the latest of an ever-growing number of DC Comics properties airing on television or being developed, including Arrow, The Flash and iZombie on The CW, Gotham on Fox, Constantine on NBC, Preacher on AMC, Titans on TNT, Ronin on Syfy and Scalped on WGN America.  More notably, it's also the first television series about a female superhero since Birds of Prey aired on The WB for 13 episodes in 2002.

Created in 1959 by Otto Binder, Al Plastino and Curt Swan, Supergirl first appeared in Action Comics (vol.1) #252 as Kara Zor-El, the daughter of Jor-El's brother Zor-El and cousin to Superman. She was the last survivor of Argo City, which had survived the destruction of the planet Krypton until meteorites of Green Kryptonite penetrated Argo City's protective barrier. Sent to Earth by Zor-El to be raised by her cousin, Kara acquired powers similar to Superman and adopted the secret identity of Linda Lee, a young girl at Midvale Orphanage.

In the current New 52 continuity, Kara's ship lands as part of a meteor shower in Smallville, Kansas, but burrows through the Earth and emerges in Siberia. Kara has no memory of the destruction of Krypton and believes herself to be dreaming. The military tracks her arrival, and a group of American soldiers in mechanized suits immediately attack her. Her powers start emerging as the fight goes on and terrify the surprised Kara. Superman arrives after she defeats the soldiers and tries to convince Kara that he is her cousin, but Kara, still believing that only three days have passed since she last saw baby Kal, accuses him of being an imposter and attacks him. Eventually, Kara accepts that Krypton has been destroyed and that Superman is indeed her grown-up cousin.

This will be the second time Supergirl has been depicted in live-action television, after Laura Vandervoort on the WB/CW series SmallvillePreviously, Helen Slater portrayed the character in the 1984 film Supergirl that was a spinoff from the Superman films starring Christopher Reeve.  The character has also appeared a number of times in animation, including Superman: The Animated Series and Justice League Unlimited (voiced by Nicholle Tom), and the Super Best Friends Forever DC Nation animated shorts (voiced by Nicole Sullivan).

Presumably, Supergirl will air on CBS sometime in Fall 2015.

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