“Supergirl” appears to have found its first villain.
David Harewood (“Homeland”) is joining the CBS drama as Hank Henshaw. In the comics, Henshaw is a supervillain also known as the Cyborg or Cyborg Superman. In the series, Henshaw is a former CIA agent who now runs the Department of Extra-Normal Operations (DEO), which tracks extraterrestrial threats.
Harewood’s casting was announced Thursday, along with news that “Grey’s Anatomy” actress Chyler Leigh will play Supergirl’s foster sister, Alexandra “Alex” Danvers, a doctor whose fascination with her sister’s powers inspired her lifelong obsession with science. The name Danvers is a nod to Linda Danvers — the name of several alternative versions of Supergirl throughout comics history.
Supergirl, comics fans know, is Superman’s cousin Kara Zor-El. Like Kal-El, Kara escaped Krypton before it was destroyed and arrived on Earth after her cousin, with whom she shares an array of superhuman abilities. The show will focus on a 24-year-old Kara who is ready to stop hiding her powers and become a hero.
Harewood and Lee join a “Supergirl” cast that so far includes “Glee” and “Whiplash” alumna Melissa Benoist as the hero, “True Blood” star as Jimmy Olsen, Calista Flockhart (“Ally McBeal,” “Brothers & Sisters”) as media magnate Cat Grant and Laura Benanti (“Nashville,” “Nurse Jackie”) as Kara’s mother, Alura Zor-El.
“Supergirl” will be written and executive produced by “No Ordinary Family” team Greg Berlanti (“Arrow,” “The Flash”), Ali Adler (“Chuck,” “Glee”) and Andrew Kreisberg (“Arrow,” “The Flash”), with Sarah Schechter (“Pan”) also executive producing.
It won’t be Supergirl’s first time on screen; Helen Slater played the character in the critically panned 1984 film “Supergirl,” which also starred Faye Dunaway. More recently, Laura Vandervoort portrayed Kara Zor-El in “Smallville,” the Superman origin series on the CW.
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