We all have our private guilty pleasures. I’m no different in that regard, except mine might not be what you expect – at least not the ones I’m willing to admit to. For example, I’m an avid fan of a couple of television shows (that I watch in the early hours thanks to streaming services). Chief among them is Marvel’s Agents of Shield (and the mid-winter break Agent Carter). Followed almost as closely by Supergirl, which moved to the CW.
Now, between you and me, I never had any interest in the CW as a network. I’m definitely not in their target market and I saw little value in the fluff I thought they produced. Yet when Supergirl went there, I had no choice. But still, Supergirl was it, the hell with those other shows.
Then they did something dastardly. Earlier this year they did a crossover with Barry Allen, aka The Flash. From the show, The Flash (convenient, eh?). Now he showed back up and requested Supergirl’s help…. But her help was to be continued on his show. Damn it! I had to watch The Flash now. Grr… and that meant getting caught up. Double grr.
So I did it. I watched it. All of season 2, in fact. And once I got past the cheesiness so inherent in the DC universe, I found myself enjoying it. Not quite as hooked as Supergirl, but it’s made my mornings more difficult because once a week I have to squeeze in time to catch up on that show too. Unfortunately for me, the CW went another deeper level into hell and at the end of the combined show with Flash and Supergirl, they continued it on next night’s Arrow show. WTF?!
This time I drew the line. No way, no how, was I going to catch up on Arrow. There’s nothing about Arrow that interests me. I’m a bow hunter and I love shooting bows and arrows (and guns), so I can only suspend my disbelief so far. That and the characters don’t really interest me very much. Nonetheless, I had to continue the combined storyline, so I did by watching the single show that has multiple characters mingled together – and discovered that the story arc would continue into DC’s Legends of Tomorrow the following night. #$%$%^@!!
Legends of Tomorrow, I quickly discovered, is very addicting. The eclectic cast is superb. Sure, there’s cheesiness in the extreme – they travel through time to stop aberrations that would screw up the timeline, after all – but the cast of characters is so well rounded and each character so full, it’s impossible not to get sucked in. Characters I thought deserved a red shirt exposed vulnerabilities and interesting traits that changed my mind completely. And, most interesting of all, is Mick. He’s the jerk / muscle of the group. A former criminal with questionable moral character. And I love him! He is the Jayne Cobb of the show. And if you don’t know Jayne Cobb is, go watch Firefly right now. That’s an order.
Legends of Tomorrow has some of that same Firefly flavor to it, which is maybe why I’m so drawn to it. Not as good, but nothing else on television ever has been. But the point here isn’t to wax on the injustice of Fox cancelling Firefly, but to talk about the CW story arc among superhero shoes. And to that end, Legends of Tomorrow ended the story arc and everybody went back to their own shows – except now I have four shows to watch each week instead of only two (Agents of Shield, Supergirl, The Flash, and Legends of Tomorrow).
I ask myself what makes these shows so interesting? Complex characters with a lot of quirks has a lot to do with it. Cool concepts and premises as well, as far as the show is concerned. Admittedly, The Flash is the weakest on these things, but it makes up for it by exploring a lot more what-if type scenarios.
Speaking of characters, I’m a sucker for a strong female character. They do such a better job of showing how well balanced they are between strength and weakness than male characters do. I’m exposing a double standard there, I admit, because when I see a male lead get soft and emotional I scowl and mutter bad things about them. I’m certain I’m not alone in that, but it doesn’t make it right.
Well, I can work on sensitivity training for myself, but those who know my best don’t hold out much hope there. On the flip side, I can continue to enjoy kick-ass female leads without reservation. And I can promote a few and share their stories as they appear to me. For example, in a couple of days I have a new book coming out that’s part of a shared universe (not unlike what the CW did with their DC superhero shows). Character’s interact between books written by myself and multiple other authors – and they are all being released on December 10th, this Saturday.
Mine is called Arrested in Peace and you can pre-order it now. It follows the main character, Valerie (Val) Washburn) as she attempts to put the horrors of her past behind her on an alien planet while trying to decide which of the metahumans she’s dealing with are friends, and which are foes. For now that’s all I’ll share – look for more in a couple of days!