After the existence of an in-development Supergirl television show came to light just a few days ago, it’s just been confirmed that CBS, formerly the only network without a major comic book-inspired show, has given a full straight-to-series order to the Supergirl show, thus bypassing the early development and pilot stages completely! It seems that the show will simply be called ‘Supergirl‘ at this point, and as expected, it will be a one-hour comic book-style drama.
With a straight-to-series order already in place, it’s possible that Supergirl could begin airing as soon as next Summer! That said, it’s probable that CBS will want to save the show as a Fall network tentpole, particularly with the imminent conclusion of big ratings pullers like Two and a Half Men after this coming season. This would give them a big, fresh new show to hype up next year, particularly with the network having a bit of a reputation for clinging to shows that are long past their prime.
This is the second DC Comics-inspired show to be ordered straight-to-series. Batman prequel series, Gotham, which begins airing this Monday on FOX, also bypassed the pilot stage beforehand, and was given a wholesale commitment by FOX for this television season. The only condition was that the showrunners would have to pay a penalty if FOX decided to axe their plans for the show, but thankfully, they didn’t.
Formerly, the closest thing that the proper CBS network had to a genre series was Sherlock Holmes-themed modern mystery drama, Elementary, even if they also host ultra-popular geek-themed sitcom, The Big Bang Theory. This is of course not counting The CW, a network developed and shared between Warner Bros.’ and CBS’ parent companies, which hosts two DC Comics-inspired shows, Arrow and The Flash, both of which operate in a shared universe.
The CBS network picking up Supergirl straight-to-series means that virtually all major television networks now air a DC Comics-inspired series (assuming the in-development Titans is not passed up by TNT), with the exception of ABC, since it’s owned by Warner Bros.’ rival corporation, Disney, and is thus limited to Marvel-based programming like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Supergirl will be written and executive-produced by Arrow and The Flash show creator, Greg Berlanti, under his Berlanti Productions banner. He’ll be teaming up as a writer with Chuck’s Ali Adler, both of whom will also be executive producing the series alongside Sarah Schechter. The premise of the show predictably involves the title character, Supergirl, a.k.a. Kara Zor-El, the cousin of flagship DC hero, Superman, turning 24 and deciding to make use of the incredible powers that she has kept hidden for most of her life.
It’s unknown if Superman will ever physically appear in the series at this point, or may simply be mentioned in the background, particularly considering that Henry Cavill is currently realizing the Man of Steel on the big screen in the separate DC Cinematic Universe at this point.
Previously, Supergirl has been portrayed twice in live-action, once by Helen Slater in the infamous 1984 movie flop, Supergirl, and again during the later seasons of The CW’s Superman prequel series, Smallville, by Laura Vandervoort. Aside from DC Comics continuity, where several different characters have taken up the mantle of Supergirl at various points, Kara Zor-El has appeared in various cartoons and other such DC media, and had a playable LEGO variation in 2012 video game, LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes.
Since The CW is under the same banner as both Warner Bros. and CBS Corporation, it’s theoretically possible that Supergirl could cross over into the shared DC Television Universe of Arrow and The Flash at some point, but currently, no such plans are in place.
We at Eggplante will be continuing to follow the development of Supergirl, so keep flying back to us for all news and updates on this and other DC television projects.