It’s not surprising that DC’s shared television universe has expanded as much as we’ve seen so far. Even before last year’s giant crossover event tying together past and present DC film and television projects, the comic publishing giant’s deep bench of superhero talent has always made it easy for the CW network and DC Universe to find fresh, exciting new content.
The next generation of shows is no different. In fact, one of the early releases indicates we are about to see a lot more of the DC universe’s lesser-publicized characters in years to come.
Introducing Stargirl and the JSA
In May, DC Universe’ new program Stargirl debuted to critical acclaim. The show focuses on Courtney Whitmore, who becomes the title character when she inherits Starman’s staff and powers. The story takes place years after Starman was head of the Justice Society of America (JSA), and the first season focuses on bringing together several of the next generation incarnations of famous JSA faces, including Hourman. CW aired the episodes just days after their premiere on DC Universe, and by the end of the first season’s rollout, the television network committed to including Stargirl in its slate of network original DC superhero programs.
Season One Cast of Characters
Stargirl benefits from the creative direction of the character’s co-creator Geoff Johns, who also wrote the Stargirl comic that influences so many of the show’s storylines. That means the TV series delve further into the original creators’ vision for the character. At the same time, it gives screen time to popular DC favorites who have long publishing histories and short filmographies.
The first season introduces Courtney (Brec Bassinger) as well as her friends, one of whom turns out to be a new version of Hourman. The show also features Luke Wilson as Courtney’s father, who turns out to be the former assistant to Starman. We also get to know a few of Courtney’s friends and classmates, several of whom are tied to her future as Stargirl in ways that are too fun to spoil for new viewers.
Rebooting the Justice Society of America
Fans of the CW superhero shows that have already aired in the Arrowverse are familiar with the JSA as the 1940s-era superhero team encountered by the Legends of Tomorrow. Those brief appearances, however, didn’t do more than pay homage to the deep history of DC’s continuity.
With the Stargirl-led reboot of the group, more of their history and background lore is sure to be revealed, giving fans their biggest glimpse into the classic lineup in a generation or more. While many DC heroes like Superman and Green Arrow have appeared multiple times in either their own series or as guests on other DC shows, most of the JSA lineup is either unknown or known only through modern reboots that are almost unrecognizable, like the Sandman.
Get Ready for Season 2
The second season of Stargirl will debut on CW with inclusion on the CW streaming app alongside other originals like Batwoman. This expanded platform and exposure is also sure to set the stage for bigger storytelling opportunities, whether the show ties directly into the Arrowverse or charts its own course like Black Lightning.
It also represents the second wave of successful DC online debuts, following the path paved with titles like Birds of Prey last year. It’s encouraging to see CW continue committing to the superhero super-franchise on air and online, and even more encouraging to know that creators who make great content for DC’s web outlets will have a chance to move to the larger audiences represented by a broadcast network.