In the world of superheroes, Marvel may dominate film, but DC commands the small screen and on Saturday at San Diego Comic-Con, they proved it with back-to-back panels, including: SUPERGIRL, LEGENDS OF TOMORROW, and THE FLASH.
From Greg Berlanti, the man behind this popular universe, this series debuted on CBS with its first season. However, when it returns this fall, it will be joining its brethren shows on The CW and really, it seems now like it was always destined to be there.
The energy in the crowd at this panel was electric. While the show may have had some stumbling blocks during its freshman season, it got stronger and stronger with each episode, and it’s already built a solid fanbase, which should only get bigger with its move.
Star Melissa Benoist was on hand at the panel, and joined by her fellow cast mates David Harewood (J’onn J’onzz), Chyler Leigh (Alex Danvers), Mehcad Brooks (James Olsen), Jeremy Jordan (Winn Schott), Tyler Hoechlin (Superman), and executive producer Sarah Schechter.
The audience enjoyed a sizzle reel from the first season and the cast immediately launched into what it’s like being on the show. Benoist discussed how she feels like she’s grown alongside Kara and is doing things she never thought she could. There was a lot of love in general for the actress being the heroine. Schechter praised her by stating: “We’re lucky to have an actual super girl playing Supergirl.”
Brooks and Jordan both theorized about their own characters and the futures in story, such as Jordan mentioning that maybe Winn could lighten up the DEO by getting a job there. Meanwhile, Brooks said there are ups and downs ahead for James and Kara’s relationship.
He also discussed the nature of his James Olsen and bringing him into the 21st century. When he was first cast, he was shocked and asked his agent repeatedly: “They know I’m black, right?” But he commented on when the character of Jimmy Olsen was first created and that now they’re “re-writing the inequities of the past.”
A lot of the buzz from the panel centered around Hoechlin. He’ll be playing Superman in the first two episodes of Season 2 and he gushed about the great qualities Superman has and how excited he is to take on the role. However, when asked about the suit, he replied he hadn’t tried it on… yet.
Legends of Tomorrow
The CW’s superhero team show involves a lot of time travel, shenanigans, and fun characters both new and familiar (hailing from The Flash and Arrow).
Executive producer Marc Guggenheim and showrunner Phil Klemmer led the cast on stage, including Arthur Darville (Rip Hunter), Brandon Routh (Ray Palmer), Caity Lotz (Sara Lance), Franz Drameh (Jefferson “Jax” Jackson), Victor Garber (Martin Stein), Dominic Purcell (Mick Rory), and newcomers Nick Zano (Nate Heywood) and Maisie Richardson-Sellers (Amaya Jiwe).
The latter two are playing the heroes Citizen Steel and Vixen, respectively, and will be joining the team come Season 2. From the panel, we learned that Vixen and Rory especially will have a push-pull relationship as Vixen is more morally staunch as an original member of the Justice Society of America and takes issue with Rory’s cavalier heroism.
Speaking of the JSA, Guggenheim revealed the team members we will meet in Season 2: Doctor Mid-Nite, Obsidian, Stargirl, Commander Steel (different from Citizen Steel), Hourman, and the aforementioned Vixen. At the panel, they were described as “your grandparents’ superheroes.”
We saw a sizzle reel from the upcoming season, which included dramatic scenes from Nazi-occupied France, and plenty more. Now that the Time Masters are gone, Rip and the team are the universe’s new time police and they have a lot of work ahead of them. We also found out that Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) will be in the Season 2 premiere.
So who is the Legion of Doom? Reverse Flash (Matt Letscher), Damian Darhk (Neal McDonough), and Malcolm Merlyn (John Barrowman) – who made a dramatic entrance on stage when he was announced, to thunderous applause. This confirms our theory about Malcolm being a big bad of the universe.
The time-traveling adventures will continue this fall on The CW.
As the highest-rated show across The CW, The Flash panel was filled to the brim with excitement and energy. Panelists Grant Gustin (Barry Allen), Candice Patton (Iris West), Jesse L. Martin (Joe West), Keiynan Lonsdale (Wally West), Tom Cavanagh (Harrison Wells), Carlos Valdes (Cisco Ramon), Danielle Panabaker (Caitlin Snow), newcomer Tom Felton (Julian Dorn), as well as Todd and Aaron Helbing (executive producers).
Most of the panel revolved around the Flashpoint plot, which was put into effect in the Season 2 finale when Barry went back in time and saved his mom’s life.
A montage of new footage included Wally’s Kid Flash (which received plenty of cheers), Barry and Iris getting to know each other for the first time, Cisco as a tech billionaire, and more. It’s going to be an entirely different Central City and Barry’s going to have to come to terms with what he’s done.
The Helbings also revealed Season 3 will have two big bads: an unnamed speedster and Dr. Alchemy. This is the first time this show is pitting its heroes against more than one villain.
The Flash boasts a lot of great character relationship and some favorites, like the Wests and Hary and Cisco, were brought to the forefront, with the cast talking about how rewarding it is to develop characters with each other and through relationships. The fans definitely loved it, especially as the cast got up to more and more shenanigans throughout the panel, such as Gustin beatboxing and Gustin and Martin doing a tap dance number.
Even Felton, who’s a new addition and will be first seen in Season 3, got a warm welcome, but how could he not when he hails from the Harry Potter franchise? In fact, he made a quip about that, commenting on the fact that the last time he was at Comic-Con, he was representing another franchise with a lightning bolt as the logo. Very clever.
His character is a CSI at the CCPD and he is not a fan of Barry’s. Felton teased the audience that Julian immediately ruffles some feathers within our core group, so it sounds like he’ll be an interesting addition to the show.
There was a lot of love for all these shows at Comic-Con and fans are ready for them to come back this fall, especially with the planned four-way crossover.
Anya Crittenton | Associate Editor