TV Line is reporting that CBS is currently looking to cast a male actor around the around of 13 with “future leading man looks” as a young Kal-El, whom will grow up to become Superman, for their “Supergirl” series.. This young version of the Man of Steel is expected to show up in the thirteenth episode of this season early next year. Teen Supes will be showcased in a series of flashbacks within the episode that detail the bond between himself and Kara.
First things first, this doesn’t make too much sense. While “technically” older than him, Kara is now physically younger than Superman. The pilot established that she was a decade or so older than him on Krypton when they were both sent to Earth. He was an infant at the time. Thing is, her pod was thrown off course and she remained trapped in suspended animation for a long time. After finally landing on Earth and being found by a now-adult Superman, she was dropped off with the Danvers.
Now that Kara is a young adult, Superman…having passed her in age due to the hijinks above…should be at least a decade or so OLDER than her. If fully-grown Superman found her after she crashed on Earth, how is Kara going to interact with a teenage version of him? After all, the last time they saw each other before that was on Krypton and he was still an infant then. Either there’s some serious retconning going on in this show already or something else is up.
Logistics aside, my reaction is simply this: please stop. The constant references and comparisons to Superman in the first two episodes of this series where almost unbearable. Worse yet, they were sending a terrible message to the young female audience. “You’re pretty good at being a hero, but Superman is better”. That is literally telling little girls that they aren’t as good as their male counterparts, no matter how hard they try.
The third episode went a long way towards fixing this by having Kara finally put her foot down not only with her own friends, but with Superman himself. Supergirl wants to stand on her own and be known through her own deeds, not have them constantly compared to her cousin’s. Last week’s episode and this week’s managed to avoid the reference pitfalls for the most part, so I honestly believed that all of the ugly build-up in that regard had been for a reason. It looked like we were now past it all and things could move on with the sole focus being on Kara.
It looks like I was wrong. Bringing Superman out of the shadows and actually making him a character on this series is a TERRIBLE idea, no matter how he is presented. I don’t care if it is teenage Clark in flashbacks or glimpsing marvelous feats of daring do by adult Superman, I don’t want to see it on this show. Once again, it sends a very clear message: Supergirl isn’t good enough. Not only do the characters apparently have no faith in her, but the same looks to be holding true for CBS and the producers as well.
I gave Greg Berlanti & Co. the benefit of the doubt across the first few episodes and at the time, I was glad I did. Now I’m wondering if I was too trusting. I don’t care what reason they have for doing this. Whatever it is, it’s not good enough. It’s beyond time to let Kara stand on her own as a character, but apparently that’s not going to happen.
If you are going to fill your Supergirl show with Superman, then why even make a Supergirl series to begin with? Why not just do a better version of “Smallville” (which was terrible, let’s not kid ourselves) and be done with it? If this is the direction the series is headed in, then I’m not sure I want to root for it to succeed anymore.
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