Strong female characters are hard to come by. Even characters that many consider to fit are there merely as eye candy for men or have issues performing mundane tasks so they can be ‘rescued’ by the male lead characters. I am waiting for the day to see a non-sexualized superheroine that is autonomous from needing male support while at the same time not considered anything negative. Obviously, if I am waiting today, they were still waiting in 1984 after Supergirl was released. I can write an entire article about a complete lack of strong female characters and role models for girls in fiction but that may be for a different forum. Needless to say, Supergirl did not help women take a step forward towards full equality on any level.
Beautiful blonde alien crash lands on Earth in order to regain an object to save their people. Not only is this the plot from Thor it is also the plot of Supergirl. Much like our Norse friend, Supergirl (Kara Zor-El played by Helen Slater) is unfamiliar with our customs and ways of doing things. She goes as far as putting on a bra over her clothes in a scene that can only be described as not as interesting as it sounds. It seems that the director thought the plot would be aided by having scenes with Supergirl flying aimlessly and while understanding some customs like marriage is completely oblivious to underwear.
Jeannot Szwarc primarily directed TV shows and made for TV movies and he was good at it. While he hasn’t directed a movie that anyone would call good, this is his worst movie (at least on Rotten Tomatoes at 7% in January of 2015). It would seem that he learned from that mistake and has gone on to direct episodes of Supernatural, Smallville and Fringe.
Slater’s portrayal of the vivaciously vapid and vacuous Kara reinforces the stereotype that a pretty face can get you far. I can’t relate to that but what I can do is assign alliterative attributes to abhorrent acting. All of my Dr. Smithing aside, other more modern examples of this phenomena are Paula Patton, Megan Fox, and Malin Ackerman. I don’t mind a pretty face but at least make an attempt to emote beyond that of a cat’s face while taking the SAT. I’m glad that Slater got over Supergirl and eventually became a decent supporting actress on various film and television. Just imagine, your first attempt at something creating being easily considered awful by most. That really has to make you feel terrible. I feel for Slater having Supergirl as her first big role and I’m glad that this horrible failure of a movie didn’t make her quit.
Instead of going on and on about the various plot holes and their implication at a complete lack of detail, I will just point out a few questions I had after watching this.
What is 6th dimensional geometry?
- What is innerspace?
- When did she crash into the water?
- Is innerspace located in a small lake on Earth?
- Where did the Supergirl suit come from?
- If she was underwater, how did she get super powers without being exposed to the sun’s rays?
- She slapped the one truckers hand. How did it not break?
- She blows a guy through a fence (not in that way) so the other guy pulls a knife on her?
- How does she know who Clark Kent is?
- How does she know English?
- Why does Zoltar have an accent and she doesn’t?
Isn’t she supposed to find the power source for her city and save everyone she knows? Why is she attending classes and playing lacrosse?
- Why does Selena give a crap about the landscaper?
- Does Selena live in a haunted house?
- Selena goes after the precious landscaper with magical construction equipment?
- Why doesn’t he just get in the bumper car? Can you even get run over by a bumper car?
- The ground is all shaky why didn’t she fly?
Supergirl’s powers also include flight, flower blooming vision, super strength, rapid hair color changing, invulnerability, instant clothes changing, x-ray vision, super aim, space flight, and telekinetic door opening.
My movie, Superman: Fight for Earth would have a universe with Superman (Tom Welling) and Supergirl (Emily Kinney, Beth from The Walking Dead) being the only super powered heroes that end up fighting a huge menace. The movie ends with Supergirl getting blasted and seemingly dead. Doesn’t matter who but it could easily be something to tie in with the other movies and shows (Anti Monitor or Darkseid). Supergirl would get bounced into the universe with CW’s Arrow and The Flash and have episodes on there where they send her back. Then she gets her own movie where her Superman is already dead from another menace. She beats that thing and when the universes merge, she gets him back but it’s a Superman (Henry Cavill) from a slightly different universe.