TV Surf Report: Super Heroes, Are We Done Yet? (Answer: No, So Stop Asking!)


Santa Monica, CA — Are we there, yet? Are we done with the Super Hero shows? No? Well, I have a suggestion and a few thoughts, and maybe, a List.

Meanwhile, I just can’t keep up anymore. There are so many super hero and super hero-ish shows on the air right now from Broadcast to Cable to Streaming, and the landscape is getting more competitive by the day.

The current smash at the box office, Black Panther, ensures that the Super Hero Trend will continue on screens both big and small. Expect Disney and Marvel to somehow expand Wakanda to TV either via ABC, Freeform or its upcoming streaming service.

And Super Heroes are not just dudes with capes, btw. They are also Witches (Charmed, Sabrina), and Jedi Knights (Star Wars), as well as Texas Preachers (Preacher). And, American Gods (Starz). And Vampires (The Vampire Chronicles — TBD).


Fox is crazy for DC Comics (Gotham, Lucifer) and has Marvel’s X-Men properties to exploit (Legion, The Gifted).

I don’t really watch The CW, so I am not really up to speed on the latest shenanigans on Arrow, The Flash, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, but I am kinda interested in checking out Black Lightning though.

Pretty soon, The CW will reboot Smallville.

Am wondering why ABC hasn’t thought to reboot Batman, the classic ’60s series? That gets my vote. Would love to see contemporary actors take on those fun super villainous roles opposite a new Dynamic Duo and Batgirl. The series is owned by Fox, so that might make things difficult. And yet, a live-action reboot would fit in well with Fox’s Sunday night lineup anchored by The Simpsons. Just me?

Warner Bros. and DC are really taking their time with that Batgirl movie as Joss Whedon just dropped out of making the feature citing his failure to come up with a good Story. Writer Roxanne Gay may have booked the gig via Twitter. Good for her!

Roxanne Gay’s Cool Tweet to DC Comics

TV showcases kick-ass women far more effectively and would be a better medium for her, I think, based on these series: Supergirl, Agent Carter, Buffy, Alias, Xena, Wonder Woman.



Here’s that List I promised.

Am way behind on watching most of these Series, mostly due to lack of interest, but that doesn’t mean I won’t rediscover them eventually, somewhere down the viewing road:

  • Supergirl is now in its 3rd season on The CW after a debut season on CBS.
  • Arrow, The Flash, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow on The CW continue to dominate the netlet’s schedule which expands to Sundays this year.
  • Black Lightning on The CW has made a lot of noise with its great reviews and winning casting.
  • Charmed is getting a Reboot pilot at The CW. Yes, Witches are super heroes. The original cast is pretty vocal on social media with Holly Marie Combs blanching at the reboot’s vow to be more feminist.
  • Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. hits its 100th low-rated episode on ABC thanks to that Disney synergy. Just never got into this show. I tried!
  • Inhumans at ABC has been cancelled after a dismal few months on Friday nights following the fading Once Upon a Time (also cancelled).
  • Agent Carter was not as fortunate, and yet Peggy keeps popping up in the movies.
  • Xena Warrior Princess Reboot at NBC is on ice, but give them time and a new writer. The suits in Burbank should be hopping all over the enthusiasm for the similarly themed Wonder Woman, but it sure doesn’t look like it.
  • Lucifer and Gotham at Fox are both DC Comics properties and well into their third seasons.
  • The Gifted at Fox has earned a S2 renewal continuing the studio’s X-Men relationship, but how much longer will that last as Disney acquires Fox?
  • Legion at FX earned a second season, as well.
  • Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, The Punisher are each still going at Netflix, but that relationship is most definitely finite. S2 of Jessica Jones premieres March 5th with all episodes available to binge.
  • Sabrina the Teenage Witch at Netflix is a spinoff from The CW’s Riverdale and features Sabrina in Magic School.
  • Marvel’s Runaways at Hulu has been well-reviewed, but Future Man not so much.
  • Squirrel Girl got punted by Freeform which is about to launch a YA Mermaid-themed series, called Siren.
  • Cloak & Dagger at Freeform is also in the mix. Has that aired yet?
  • The Magicians on Syfy is now in its third season, which is a win for the basic cabler. I never embraced the casting or the adaptation of the Story.
  • American Gods on Starz is a far superior adaptation of a novel. Pity that showrunners Bryan Fuller and Michael Green left the series after S1. Am loving the new takes on the Old Gods, though. Jessie Alexander is the new EP for S2.
  • Preacher on AMC is heading into its third season. I enjoyed S1 but need to catch up.
  • Watchmen at HBO is in development with Damon Lindelof starting from scratch with the graphic novel.
  • Good Omens at The BBC is a comedy from Neil Gaiman based on his work with Sir Terry Prachett. Michael Sheen and David Tennant star. Jon Hamm guests as the Angel Gabriel.
  • The Vampire Chronicles have yet to land at a network, but Paramount did recently hire Bryan Fuller (American Gods, Hannibal) to showrun alongside Christopher Rice and Anne Rice. My money is on Showtime due to corporate synergy (Viacom) but am hoping for elsewhere (BBC America).
  • Teen Titans, now called just Titans, will be a centerpiece of DC Comics’ digital streaming service that premieres this year. Robin or Nightwing leads the ensemble of youthful crimefighters.
  • Star Wars will be the centerpiece of Disney’s new Streaming Service. The EPs of Game of Thrones have been tapped to expand the Universe for Television.
  • Doctor Who on The BBC is television’s longest-running hit drama series, and this year, audiences finally get a female Doctor (Jodi Whitaker).



Am sure I have omitted a few shows or forgotten some recent cancellations (Powerless on NBC comes to mind). Let me know if I have unwittingly excluded your favorite.

Meanwhile, settle in and binge away. The Super Hero trend is going to be here for a good, long while.

N E X T    U P:

Question: Who’s Up for The New Adventures of Hermione Granger

 or that Trinity/Matrix Standalone Film?

Answer: Me! Features Are Slow To Catch Up To TV When It Comes To Women.




About Surfing Hollywood

Steve La Rue is an internationally recognized leader in Film & Television with 20+ years experience as a Development Executive championing such series as Buffy The Vampire Slayer, The X-Files, The Simpsons, King of the Hill, Battlestar Galactica, and Farscape. He writes, blogs, and consults on All Things Entertainment from his home at the beach in Santa Monica, CA, where he balances his life by surfing every damn day.
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