10.27.2015

Supergirl Recap: You’ll Believe A Woman Can Fly — And She’s Having The Time Of Her Life Doing It

Supergirl Recap:  You’ll Believe A Woman Can Fly — And She’s Having The Time Of Her Life Doing It

by Michael P Coleman

Well, that’s the way (the) Cookie crumbles.  Empire is now my second favorite TV show.   

CBS has a winner with their new Supergirl.  It’s the first time a female superhero has carried the lead in 40 years, since Lynda Carter’s iconic Wonder Woman, also on CBS.  Last night’s Supergirl premiere was the highest rated of the fall season. 

I could go on and on about how good the premiere was, from the rapid fire intro that gave enough backstory to get everyone up to (super) speed, to the action sequences that are designed to — and succeed at — giving boys AND girls of all ages spectacle after spectacle to look at. 

You’ll LOVE an early training montage with our new hero, set to the soundtrack of Carl Carlton’s “She’s A Bad Mama Jama”! 

I was thrilled by the cameos by Dean Cain (who played Superman in ABC’s Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman in the 90s) and Helen Slater (who played Supergirl in the 1984 feature film) that made fanboys like me scream out loud. 

Melissa Benoist was masterful in the title role.  She wears the cape with authority, while perfectly portraying the slightly awkward alter ego Kara Danvers.   Benoist made me believe a girl can fly.  Christopher Reeve would be proud. 

Jimmy Olsen’s all grown up in this version of the story and he goes by “James” now.  SPOILER ALERT:  Olsen’s black now, and Mehcad Brooks’ (from True Blood and Desperate Housewives) chemistry with Benoist is perfect.  There’s some potential there for sparks to…fly, so I can’t wait to see how that plays out in future episodes. 

Calista Flockheart almost stole the show as the gloriously bitchy Cat Grant, media mogul and Kara’s & Olsen’s boss. 

I really liked the overall joyful tone of the new show.  After over a decade of brooding heroes, from CW’s Smallville to feature films like the Spiderman and Dark Knight flicks, it’s great to see a hero flying and kicking ass, and actually enjoying it. 

But most of all, I was impressed with the female empowerment message that permeates Supergirl.  In one scene, a waitress watching news footage of Supergirl in action comments about how great it is that there’s a female hero in town that her daughter can look up to.  Supergirl herself has to learn that the key to success is being true to yourself — a message she gets from her mother.  And near the episode’s climax, when an observer questions whether Supergirl is strong enough to win the battle she’s in and it’s alluded that he doubts her because she’s a woman, our hero kicks ASS. 

My own daughter’s are adults now, but last night’s Supergirl premiere made me wish they were young again.  I smiled when I realized during last night’s show that girls — and boys — now have that female hero to look up to that the episode’s waitress spoke about.  You will, too. 

Supergirl airs Mondays at 8pm on CBS.  Catch the series premiere before next week’s episode at cbs.com.

Michael P Coleman is a Sacramento writer and Superman fanatic.  Connect with him at michaelpcoleman.com or on Twitter:  @ColemanMichaelP