Monday, 1 June 2015

Something Super This Way Comes! - Supergirl: Pilot Review

I’ll admit, I was sceptical when I saw the Supergirl trailer. The heavy focus on Kara as a magazine assistant, combined with that sickeningly cheesy song at the end didn’t fill me with much confidence. It looked like an Ugly Betty-esque romantic comedy series about a girl with superpowers trying to fit in with every day life, which would appeal to some audiences, sure, but not me. However, being the open-minded individual  that I am, I decided to check out the pilot, to see what was going on, and boy am I glad I did.

Because holy hell, I haven’t been so wrong about anything in a long time.

Sure, there are elements of Ugly Betty, and romantic comedy in there. Kara works as a bumbling assistant to magazine owner Kat (Cat?) Grant. She has a goofy colleague/potential love interest who’d love to ask her out on a date, but can’t because she’s on a date with some sleazy guy she met online, who can’t put down his phone.

Oh yeah, and there’s a alien with a super axe on the loose, looking to take revenge on her and the entire city after escaping from an intergalactic prison that escaped the phantom zone. The trailer left that part out though.

Trust me, the trailer didn’t do justice to what this show has in store. It showcased the romantic elements that you’ll find in any show, leading viewers to believe that this was a show aimed at a more female fanbase, which in a way, it is. It gives a strong female character, who teases at some sense of feminism (her Supergirl/Superwoman rant was fun to watch, if a little goofy), but also boasts some impressive and explosive set pieces as she saves a falling aeroplane, tackles various crimes, and faces off against the first Supervillain of the series.

 None of it feels rushed either, aside from one moment where she’s “captured”. That moment happened very quickly and abruptly – look away from the screen for a few seconds, and she’s gone from a cheery montage where she tries out various costumes, to being strapped to a slab by kryptonite restraints, but given that this is the pilot, and theres a lot to cram in, this can be forgiven.

What surprised me most though is how likeable Melissa Benoist is in the role. Much like Grant Gustin took to the Flash, Benoist fits this role wonderfully, giving us a likeable character who we enjoy spending time with. We didn’t get to see a whole lot of the supporting cast, and nobody really made a lasting impression, but we can see where the other characters go in future episodes.

After entering with some pretty low expectations, Supergirl surprised me, leaving me both pleased and a little embarrassed for prejudging it. In a world becoming saturated with superheroes, Supergirl finds her place amongst them, offering a strong pilot with both human drama and some impressive comic book action. Think of it as Man of Steel’s light hearted cousin…because it kind of is. We’re definitely looking forward to seeing more of her adventures when the series lands fully in November.

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