Exclusive: with a spoiler for the first episode and the first issue of the comics, it looks like there’s something special coming to DC’s Naomi.
Production is now underway on Naomi, the CW series based on the comics by Brian Michael Bendis, David F. Walker and Jamal Campbell. Whereas many of the CW series are set in a shared ‘Arrowverse’, Naomi takes place in another reality. This doesn’t mean that big-ticket comic book characters can’t, or won’t appear.
What follows will spoil both the original comics’ first issue and also the first episode of the TV show. Read on if you don’t mind finding out a first act plot point – albeit a rather major one.
In the first issue of the comic, nascent superhero Naomi McDuffie witnesses a fight between Superman and a character called Mongul. It’s pretty spectacular stuff for the small town where Naomi lives, far away from Metropolis.
Things are amplified somewhat in the TV adaptation, written by the pilot’s director Ava Duvernay and series executive producer Jill Blankenship. This iteration of Naomi, as played by Kaci Walfall, is going to be even more surprised to see Superman fighting in the sky over her town because, as far as she’s concerned, Superman is a fictional character.
The TV Naomi appears to be living in our world, or something very like it, where Superman is known from comic books, movies and shows. But still, suddenly, there he is, The Man of Steel, up there in the sky.
What we don’t know yet is whether Tyler Hoechlin, the current CW Superman, will be taking the role for the pilot episode of Naomi too. Seems like a good bet but… well, it could just as easily be an unknown. Or (somewhat less easily) Brandon Routh, maybe? Or how about Henry Cavill?
In some respects it’s a shame that Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Superman has (almost certainly) not been cast yet because this would be a truly wild way to give them their debut.
Later issues of the Naomi comic bring her face to face with many other characters from DC Comics. To integrate them into the TV series would require more multiverse shenanigans, and therefore we expect they’ll appear rather less regularly, if at all.
But the big Superman fight is there, right near the opening of Naomi’s story, even if it’s not exactly how it was in the comics…
It’s safe to say that Naomi starts to spin its own mysteries from episode one out, not least because it has to keep its eye on a longer game plan than a totally faithful adaptation of a six issue comic could allow.
Our hunch is that audiences are going to fall in love with the main character. Rooting her in a world like ours, and making her a ‘huge Superman stan’ (not our words) only adds another dimension of relatability.
This could be another huge hit for the CW’s DC machine. We’re certainly keen to see Naomi come to life under DuVernay and Blankenship’s guidance. Expect to see the show on TV screens later this year.
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