Get ready to see a very different Supergirl in season 3.
Following the events of the finale, Kara (Melissa Benoist) will take a dark turn in season 3, pushing aside her humanity in a bid to deal with the overwhelming loss she suffered by setting off the lead dispersal device. With Mon-El (Chris Wood) gone, Kara buries herself in work, much to the dismay of those around her.
“She’s really fragile at the top of the season, but only people closest to her will see that, because she’s almost solidified on the exterior and is really trying to push down whatever pain she’s felt about losing Mon-El,” Benoist tells EW. “In turn, she has made this massive decision to say goodbye to her humanity and really embrace being an alien. We hear her say quite a bit in the first five episodes, ‘I’m not a human, I come from a different planet, so this doesn’t apply to me.'”
Naturally, the loss of the bubbly and optimistic side of Kara Danvers will not sit well with those around her. “All of the friends, Alex included, are trying to help her through it, but she’s just shutting a lot of people out, as a lot of us do in real life,” Chyler Leigh says. “Alex does everything that she can to give space, but it comes to a head pretty quickly just because Alex is obviously very honest, and the two of them have such a great and supportive relationship.”
It’s especially difficult for Lena (Katie McGrath), who blames herself iforhelping to tweak the device that was created by her brother Lex. “What you’re seeing with Lena is the guilt of feeling that she is somehow responsible of ruining this great love of Kara’s,” McGrath says. “So while she’s feeling good that she saved the world, or helped save it, she feels very responsible that her best friend is hurting and she’s trying to, in a way, bring Kara back to the friendship that they had, [because] she’s lost that a bit.”
Kara may also find solace in her Kryptonian heritage, with Smallville‘s Erica Durance joining the show in a recast of Kara’s mother, Alura — which ostensibly means we’ll see much more of the character this season. “It is different,” Benoist says of the new dynamic. “I loved Laura Benanti, but Erica brings something really fun to it. I’ve only had a few things with her so far in hologram, and we’ll see her more often. That’s always a really touching experience for Kara, to be able to talk to her in any shape or form, so we’ll definitely see more of that.”
Kara also isn’t the only one struggling with what it means to be human at the top of the season. We’ll see new villain Reign discovering her lineage (more on that here), J’onn learning he’s not the last Green Martian with the introduction of his father (more on that here), and Alex figuring out what she wants in life in the lead-up to her wedding to Maggie (Floriana Lima). “When we come back, they’re in the process of planning the wedding,” Leigh says. “It becomes quite an uncomfortable position for Alex, because obviously when you’re planning a wedding, you’re talking about inviting family and one of the most important people to her is her dad, and he’s not going to be there. So for her it’s bittersweet. You see them work through quite a few things where you have your worlds colliding, where they’re continually learning new things about each other. For the first several episodes, Alex is figuring out more and more who she is, and what she wants.”
Supergirl returns Monday at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.