CBS dropped the first trailer for its ambitious new Supergirl series at the network’s upfront advertiser’s presentation at Carnegie Hall on Wednesday.
The series stars Glee‘s Melissa Benoist as Superman’s cousin Kara Zor-El, Calista Flockhart as her Devil Wears Prada-styled media honcho boss and Mehcad Brooks as Jimmy Olsen, and looks to be a pretty cool if somewhat formulaic superhero caper.
Toward the beginning of the trailer, Kara, who escaped to Earth from her home planet of Krypton, fetches coffee for her demanding boss.
“I’m calling about the Correspondents dinner,” she says on the phone while walking busily down the street. “I need to make sure Ms. Grant doesn’t end up next to Bill O’Reilly again.”
It is not that O’Reilly can’t take a joke, or that dinging conservative media figures is anything new. It just seems ill-advised for a network looking to draw broad viewership to its flagship program to criticize a host who draws more eyeballs than anyone else, by a long shot, every night.
CBS has a tall and commendable task ahead in moving forward with a female-driven superhero series amid a sea of male-driven superhero fare like the CW’s Arrow and The Flash. Additionally, according to Variety, the show’s Monday night, 8 p.m. scheduling marks the first time a drama series has occupied the Monday night leadoff slot since 1949.
These shows are expensive to produce, and any new series is tough to get off the ground. Why risk alienating a huge potential portion of the audience on a throwaway line?
Also on Wednesday, new Late Show host Stephen Colbert introduced himself to the network’s advertisers from the stage at Carnegie Hall. Colbert’s presentation opened with a mock video in which he tells CBS head Les Moonves he needs to go to India to “find himself” before taking the late-night hosting gig.
“Advertisers want young eyeballs,” the former Colbert Report host told the crowd, “and not just the ones Rupert Murdoch buys on the black market.”
Supergirl premieres on Monday nights this November, while Colbert takes over Letterman’s chair for the first time on September 8.