DC Entertainment has been expanding its reach of comic book-inspired series across a number of networks in recent years. The CW is perhaps most well-known for its DC Comics universe consisting of Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, and Supergirl (not to mention their DC animated series on CW Seed). Still, other shows adapted from DC Comics characters – and those of DC’s imprints – include Fox’s Gotham and Lucifer, AMC’s Preacher, The CW’s iZombie, Syfy’s in-development Krypton, and NBC’s upcoming workplace comedy, Powerless.
Powerless is in a particularly unique position as the first ever sitcom based on comic book superhero characters since it follows the employees of Wayne Enterprises subsidiary Wayne Security. High School Musical’s Vanessa Hudgens stars as Emily Locke, the new Director of Research & Development who, along with her team, is meant to develop products to keep bystanders of superhero battles safer. Emily is a bystander herself in the new promo for Powerless.
NBC debuted the second official promo for Powerless [above], which pokes fun at the classic Superman line: “It’s a bird… it’s a plane… It’s Superman!” Instead of concluding in classic fashion – and using Crimson Fox rather than the Man of Steel himself – Emily is interrupted by a cloud of debris. Plus, Danny Pudi’s (Community) character teases Emily for not being able to tell the difference between a bird and a plane.
Both the first TV spot for Powerless, and this new video, highlight the team of Wayne Security as well as their position in the show’s universe as the everymen and women – compared to the more fantastical characters that are the superheroes, who are typically the central focus of any comic book inspired show. Hudgens and Pudi are joined in the series by Alan Tudyk (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story), Christina Kirk (A to Z), and Ron Funches (Trolls).
Powerless saw a bit of a shakeup in terms of its creative team – original creator Ben Queen (A to Z) stepped down as showrunner just prior to resuming production on season 1. Although it’s unclear how much Powerless changed because of this shakeup, these new promos for the series’ premiere certainly look much different than the trailer that leaked online last spring and photos released from the original pilot.
That said, the new look and setting of Powerless – one of the notable changes to the show was its shift from Retcon Insurance to Wayne Security – teases a fun take on workplace comedy. It’s additionally clear from these promos that Powerless will be entrenched in a world of superheroes while not necessarily focusing on those heroes. Of course, whether NBC’s comic book sitcom is well received by viewers remains to be seen. But, with Powerless set to debut early next month, DC Comics fans will get a chance to see the series for themselves.
Powerless will premiere Thursday, February 2nd @ 8:30pm ET/PT on NBC.