If you’re a fan of Supergirl on CBS, you’ll know that there was a huge character reveal in last night’s winter finale. If you’re not caught up and you don’t want to be spoiled, this is your last warning, because there’s going to be some spoilage happening in 5… 4… 3… 2… 1…
Still with me? Okay, then.
We’ve known for awhile that Hank Henshaw wasn’t who or what he seemed on the show. (They kept hitting us over the head with his glowing red eyes, after all). When Alex and Kara decided to start looking into Jeremiah Danvers’ death, all fingers pointed to Henshaw and some sort of hinky business. He was, after all, the last person to see Danvers alive and he also somehow managed to come out of whatever the encounter in the jungles of South America was, unscathed. At the end of last night’s winter finale, we learned why.
Hank Henshaw in is fact, J’onn J’onzz, also known as Martian Man Hunter.
For those of you that don’t know, Martian Man Hunter is a shape-shifting alien from Mars, with a multitude of powers that include super-human strength, the ability to fly, regeneration capabilities, telekinesis, telepathy and invisibility, just to name a few. He is one of the most powerful beings in the DC universe and an original member of the Justice League. That’s pretty huge.
So, what exactly does this reveal mean?
First off, it means that we’re probably not going to be seeing the character make his big screen debut anytime soon. It’s true that Warner Bros. has shown they have no problem with characters appearing in both their television and movie universes (Grant Gustin’s Flash will get some competition from Ezra Miller’s Flash when the latter makes his DCEU debut, either in Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice or more likely in 2017’s Justice League Part 1), but so far there hasn’t been a whole lot of crossover in regards to the main players. There’s no Batman or Superman mentioned in the TV universe and no plans (that we know of, anyway) for Green Arrow or Supergirl on the film side. While Marvel is keen to keep their universe flowing through both their films and television series (making for some interesting possibilities and the occasional hiccup), DC is taking the opposite approach and keeping things distanced, so that each of their universes are distinct entities, with separate origins and tales to tell. While both approaches have their pros and cons, I do think that keeping things separate, but having the same characters appear in both can lead to confusion, especially for an audience that doesn’t understand the big picture and isn’t all that interested in figuring it out.
So far, the Flash is the only character that has been confirmed to appear in both DC universes. I’m not sure if the studio is waiting to see how well it goes before announcing anyone else who’s already established on the television side, or if the Flash is the only character they currently have plans for. Either way, we’ll have to wait and see what happens. That being said, The Flash is a more well-known and popular character than Martian Man Hunter, to the general viewing audience at least (you know, the ones who don’t read comic books), so having the character appear on the big screen, even when there’s already a television incarnation, sort of makes sense. It’s also very possible that Ezra Miller’s version of the character may not be Barry Allen, which may or may not be even more confusing to some. When you have a superhero that’s been the alter ego of a number of people, it’s easy to play the name game to try to avoid these sorts of issues. Whether it actually works or not is another matter entirely. (Of course, The Flash television series has been introducing all the various people who have played the character over the years and the idea of alternate dimensions, so that probably won’t help with any confusion issues that arise).
The other big clue that Martian Man Hunter might be MIA when it comes to the Justice League on the big screen is the fact that there has been no mention of him, at all, from the Warner Bros. camp. We have our Flash in Ezra Miller, our Cyborg in Ray Fisher, our Aquaman in Jason Momoa and Dwayne Johnson as Black Adam in the Shazam adaptation. There hasn’t been a peep made about J’onn J’onzz, even though the character is one of the original seven founding members of the Justice League. He has been remarkably absent from everything to do with the upcoming film adaptation, which doesn’t bode well. This Supergirl just may be the reason why.
That’s not to say that the character won’t make his big screen debut eventually, because it’s definitely a possibility and this is all just speculation on my part. I just don’t think it’s going to happen for the reasons I’ve listed above. It doesn’t seem that Warner Bros. is moving forward with the character in regards to the DCEU. Letting Supergirl get first crack at him just doesn’t look good if you were hoping to see him make his big screen debut sometime in the near future. If they had real plans for him, they wouldn’t have let him go quite so easily, right?
Supergirl airs on Monday nights on CBS and Justice League Part 1 is currently set for release on November 17, 2017.
Make sure to check back for updates—right here on Geek Nation.
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