As you may already know, “Supergirl” is coming to CBS. The character, usually depicted as the cousin of Superman, has had her own supporting casts as long as she’s been in publication, but unsurprisingly, members of her cousin’s supporting cast also tend to make appearances as well. It looks like that will be the case in this new show, but with a definite twist.
According to Variety, actor Mechad Brooks (“Necessary Roughness,” “True Blood”) has been cast as James “Jimmy” Olsen, and will serve as Kara’s primary love interest in the series. According to the piece at Variety, Jimmy in the show will be, “an attractive photographer at CatCo, the media company where Kara Zor-El works as an assistant to Cat Grant (yet to be cast). Recently, Jimmy has been living and working in National City, though the reason is still a secret.”
Brooks, a handsome and muscular African-American man, shows a departure from the generally depicted iterations of Jimmy from both the comics and in other media. In the comics, Jimmy is a nerdy white kid, and has generally been portrayed as a teenage intern at the Daily Planet, with scruffy red hair and freckles on his face. He becomes a very capable photographer, famously taking the first up-close pictures of Superman, who became his “pal.” In the New 52, Jimmy is now closer in age to Lois and Clark, living as Clark’s roommate in a more equal friendship.
Jimmy has largely held true to his original comics iteration in his other media appearances, from being portrayed by Tommy Bond and Jack Larson in the 1940s serials and 50s television series, respectively, to Marc McClure, Michael Landes, Justin Whalen, and Sam Huntington from the Christopher Reeve films, to “Lois and Clark,” and Superman Returns. Jimmy did not appear in Man of Steel.
Although a departure, it should prove interesting to see what the show’s creative team will choose to adapt from the comics character, and what they’ll leave out. “Supergirl” arrives on CBS this fall.
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