Friday, February 3, 2017

On The Air: Powerless (2017)

Everyone thinks Marvel has it over rival DC, at least at the multiplex. TV? Not so much.

DC/Vertigo is responsible for 7 dramas across 2 networks (Fox, CW). Marvel has just 1 (Agents of SHIELD), with a 2nd (Legion) debuting on FX on February 8. Comedy, it seems, is best left to animation.

Not anymore.

Powerless technically is DC's 1st live-action comedy series, but goes without a laugh track. The question really is, does it really need it? Not really.

Alan Tudyk (ex-Firefly, Suburgatory), who has done voice work in cartoons for both publishers' characters, is cast as Van Wayne, a otherwise obscure cousin of Bruce Wayne, placed in charge of Wayne Security's offices in Charm City (which could be construed as DC's equivalent to Baltimore, which, of course, is nicknamed Charm City). Van wants a promotion and move back to Gotham City, but his team just can't seem to find the right product to market for Wayne Enterprises.

Enter Emily (Vanessa Hudgens), an eager go-getter who has to whip her new team into shape, and very, very quickly.

Here's a trailer before we continue:

A couple of quickies:

Crimson Fox, who makes a cameo appearance in the opener, was introduced in the 80's as a member of the Justice League, and originally, twin sisters essayed the role, all the while maintaining their own business in their civilian lives. Jack O'Lantern, the DC version anyway, was originally a hero, created around 40 years ago, but there was a villainous version in the 80's, not to be confused with Marvel's villainous Jack, who was later discarded in favor of the Hobgoblin.

Hardcore comics junkies might want to consider this comfort food, a visual Alka-Seltzer, if you will, before they take a chance on CW's abysmal reimagining of Riverdale, which airs after Powerless signs off.

Prior to the launch, you might've thought Powerless was similar in concept to Marvel's two Damage Control miniseries from the 90's. It's known that Marvel had been trying to develop a TV version of Damage Control. If the ratings for Powerless prove strong enough, that would motivate Marvel to move forward with what would be their first comedy, don't you think?

Rating: A.

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