Supergirl bosses preview Lena's new role and 'life or death stakes for Kara'
When last we checked in with the CW superhero drama, the villainous Lex Luthor (Jon Cryer) was still at large, and Brainy (Jesse Rath) was on the verge of death in Leviathan's toxic ship. In the new season premiere, Kara and the rest of the Superfriends go to battle first with Gamenmae (Cara Buono) before turning their attention to Lex, who used the Obsidian platform to brainwash half the world. Unfortunately, what Kara does to defeat the megalomanic will have major repercussions on her in the first half of the season — all of which is in service of setting up the Girl of Steel's final journey.
"She is going to really sacrifice her life and put her life on the line to save her friends and humanity," co-showrunner Jessica Queller tells EW. "That challenge, she's going to face her mortality in a way we've never done on the show. That's really the focus of the first run of seven episodes. It's life or death stakes for Kara, and it's very introspective. So, all of the soul searching and taking stock of the past six years will happen in the beginning, and then she'll put it all into play in the second half."
When season 5 ended, Kara and Lena (Katie McGrath) started taking steps toward reconciling after their falling out over Kara's secret identity, and you can expect that journey to continue in the new season. In fact, Lena will take on a new role in the show.
"Lena is going to become a more integral part of the Superfriends this season than ever before," says Queller. "So I think that's going to be really satisfying and have emotional resonance for her because she's always kind of felt like an outsider, not just with Kara's secret but with the whole group. Now she is going to be a full on insider, so that will change the dynamic for Lena and the group."
Real-world political and social issues have inspired Supergirl's last two seasons and that will remain the case in the forthcoming run, especially in the back half of season 6 as the show turns its attention to power. Following the destruction of the DEO last year, the Superfriends must figure out how to superhero responsibility now that they're operating without government oversight (you know, with great powers comes etc...).
"The theme that we really decided to focus on this year is about power, and the abuse of power, and the limits of powers, and from without and within. So including not just our bad guys, which is very easy, but in terms of our heroes making decisions [because] their power is almost limitless. How [do] they decide where the line is?" says Queller.
Co-showrunner Robert Rovner explained they were inspired by both the Black Lives Matter movement and how some people felt "somewhat disempowered because of the circumstances that we're all living in with the pandemic," he said. "We were trying to reflect on that and kind of try to address what empowers people, and what our heroes could do to help both set an example and kind of explore some of the issues that keep people from feeling empowered."
Supergirl returns Tuesday, March 30 at 9 p.m. on The CW.
Kara (Melissa Benoist) steps out from her super-cousin’s shadow to become Supergirl and defend National City in the third Arrowverse show.