Sophie Carter-Kahn
August 11, 2015 2:20 pm

We’ve been pretty excited about the new Supergirl series from CBS ever since it was first announced. Now, we’ve got a brand new trailer to fangirl over! (Also, who is starting a Tumblr called “Superfangirl” to do photo recaps of every ep of this show? Please somebody do that.)

This trailer shows our hero, Kara, kicking butt and saving a plane and generally coming into her own. We’ve written before about the potential for this show to make a female superhero show that actually gives a girl some work to do (WERK, SUPERGIRL, WERK) and every trailer is helping to reinforce that hope. Kara/Supergirl doesn’t need anyone to help her — except the female role models in her life, her no-nonsense boss and her high-powered sister.

Supergirl narratives always have the potential to seem sidekick-y to the original superhero, Superman, he of the strong jaw and low score on the interesting scale. Thankfully, we only see Clark “Boring Man Of Boring Steel” Kent one time in the trailer, and Kara refers to “my cousin” in kind of the same way you refer to “cousin Andy” who always insists on telling you a lot about his new spider (sorry, Andy, I meant “arachnid.”). Kara’s journey to saving the world and learning about herself is going to star just herself, front and center.

Although it might seem obvious that a show called Supergirl would focus on Supergirl, the common treatment of female superheroes as essentially sidekicks to a bigger, male-centered story makes Supergirl a notable exception. For example, Marvel isn’t planning to release a female-led superhero movie until 2018’s Captain Marvel. When Marvel head Kevin Feige talked to Movies.com in 2013, he said, “I’d say we already have great female heroes that are showcased,” referring specifically to Thor’s love interest Jane and Iron Man’s love interest Pepper Potts.

The recent release of Ant-Man and the severely under-utilized potential of character Hope (aka Wasp) only served to underscore the vacuum of superpower movies given to women. As Gavia Baker-Whitelaw wrote on The Daily Dot, “The film’s female lead [Hope] is so much more competent than Ant-Man, it’s hard to see why she wasn’t the main character instead.” Black Widow is of course a kick-ass ladyhero, but her treatment in the recent Avengers: Age of Ultron was so irritatingly inactive that it resulted in a SNL spoof.

Studio heads’ reticence to give 50% of the population a superhero on screen that looks like them remains a frustrating mystery. Thankfully, TV is usually ahead of the movie game. Along with the fantastic Agent Carter, Supergirl will (hopefully) continue proving that female-led superhero vehicles can be popular and good. Welcome, flygirl, to National City!

Related reads:

http://comicbook.com/2015/08/10/supergirl-a-hero-will-rise-trailer-released/

What we know about TV’s kick-ass new Supergirl, Melissa Benoist

It’s here! We’ve got a ‘Supergirl’ first look!

Here’s what we know about the new feminist-minded ‘Supergirl’ series

The new ‘Supergirl’ trailer is exactly what we needed to see

(Image via CBS)

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