Supergirl’s Legacy and What Made It a Breakthrough Show on The CW

Supergirl offered a new idea of ​​who a superhero is, becoming a role model for her viewers.

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With super girl now complete, it is important to remember what this particular character managed to do for the imagination of young girls and boys. Created as the female counterpart of Superman in 1959, Supergirl’s many incarnations have been both revered and reviled. From her debut as a shy girl who possessed the same superpowers as her cousin, a Hollywood film in 1984 that was devastated by both critics and audiences, and finally a six-year-running series that left an indelible mark for future female superhero shows.

For over 60 years, Supergirl’s fusion of strength and compassion has created a relevant standard for complex superheroes who constantly question their identity and purpose. Traditionally, the superhero genre has been nothing more than an escape for white and cisgender men. With massive success in television and film, the genre has managed to evolve and recognize that it has the ability and responsibility to creatively reflect and shape culture.


Related: Why The CW’s Batwoman Is An Important Figure On TV

Supergirl redefines a traditionally male view of super strength

First Look at Superman in Supergirl Season 2

After a stellar opening season of 10 million viewers, viewership for subsequent seasons dipped to just over a million. The lackluster ratings aside, Supergirl’s importance cannot be understated. For years, vigor and strength were attributed only to male characters, while their female counterparts were written to elevate them. The general belief for many female characters is that emotion cancels out strength. super girl, on the other hand, combined strong emotion with incredible physical prowess. Supergirl’s “coming out” showed her physical strength by rescuing a plane full of passengers in street clothes. The show wanted to move beyond its traditional costume and focus more on power and strength. Indeed, Supergirl’s revealing costume was eventually updated by designer Colleen Atwood, to minimize the excessive sexualization of another superheroine. Her belly was covered and the hem of her skirt lowered. Season 5 included pants, losing the traditional skirt.

Supergirl evolves the character’s past cartoons

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Although over time he’s garnered a bit of a cult following — and it’s not that awful in terms of sheer nostalgia and love for the character — the 1984 film adaptation made Helen Slater Super Girl a cartoon. Unlike Benoist’s, Slater’s interpretation was a combination of insecurity and uncertainty. Although she was loaded with super abilities, it was as if she was still waiting for a man’s approval for her next move. Also, Benoist demonstrated that Supergirl has the ability to fight any super villain, regardless of gender or galactic origin. Many male super-villains like Agent Liberty, Maxwell Lord, and Lex Luther have challenged Supergirl over the years and, more importantly, suffered the same death.

Supergirl Proves Strength Isn’t About Sex

Supergirl Season 5 Trailer Arrives From Comic-Con

Changing ideas about love, gender, and gender identity in society were also reflected in Supergirl’s storylines by the cast of actress and trans activist, Nicole Maines. Maines also plays TV’s first trans superhero, Dreamer. Inspired by the DC Comics character, Dreamgirl. The relationship between Dreamer and Brainiac 5 manages to propel the romance to intergalactic status. Additionally, Supergirl’s sister Alex coming out as a lesbian and falling in love with Jimmy Olson’s sister Kelly Olson and their eventual nuptials reflect what’s casually happened in American culture. These topics have been part of the public and political conversation for years, though it has taken some time to find the right set of social conscience figures to push the issues forward. While there’s still a lot to do politically, it’s good to pick up a pace and reflect on the progress that’s been made and realize that our societal thresholds are generally reflected in our storylines and characters. The visibility is enormous for portions of the population who have never been able to recognize themselves in the entertainment.

Related: Exclusive: Javicia Leslie Feels Empowered by the Responsibility of Being TV’s First Black, Queer Batwoman

Supergirl pushed the boundaries of television

The Supergirl Team Uses Extra Downtime To Rewrite The Season 5 Finale

Now that the final episode has aired, audiences will be able to reflect on the social conscience the show has had over the past six seasons, with super girlThe strongest statement is that strength has nothing to do with physique or sex. Indeed, love has nothing to do with someone’s sexuality, and gender isn’t just about physics. The tradition of superheroes is usually about breaking the boundaries of our imagination while making strong, thought-provoking commentary on popular culture. They sometimes test the palate of public acceptance. Fans can now see that Supergirl’s evolution from essentially Superman’s sidekick to an unwitting social activist is inspiring other writers and creators. Supergirl’s alien upbringing has always been an allegory for those who feel like outsiders in their own environment. Or maybe a guest in his own country? The essence of the character is to be an outlier who demonstrates that acceptance is worth fighting for and that diversity is, in fact, a strength.

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