Between “Arrow’s” Olicity and “The Flash’s” WestAllen, it’s pretty clear that the CW superhero shows know what they’re doing when it comes to romance. The lastest couple to take social media by storm is “Supergirl’s” Alex (Chyler Leigh) and Maggie (Floriana) Lima.
At a special screening of Monday’s (Feb. 27) episode, we got a first-hand account from Leigh and showrunner Andrew Kreisberg about the Sanvers relationship, and how the fans reaction to this new couple has affected them.
“It’s been wonderfully overwhelming,” Leigh says. “The response has been so positive — so much more positive than negative. Everybody’s got their opinion, and you’ve got to respect that and appreciate that — and in one way or another, they’re still investing in the relationship.”
While some fans are not perfectly happy with the relationship, it’s clear “Supergirl” is trying its best to depict the Sanvers romance with as much complexity as possible. From Alex’s coming out story to the everyday couple moments she shares with Maggie, it’s easy to tell that a lot of thought and effort have been put into not only telling a coming out story, but a love story as well.
“It’s not even in the scenes that are about being gay or about coming out, it’s in the scenes where they’re just two people in a relationship who love each other and are there for a each other,” Kreisberg says.
According to Leigh, Alex’s discovery of her own sexuality has been a particularly rewarding story to see play out.
“One of the things that I get the most comments about it that Alex is … figuring this out about herself, and having those light bulb moments and putting these things together and going, ‘Oh my gosh, this makes so much sense now,'” Leigh says. “But being older, it’s like you’ve already built up all these things in your mind about who you are, and where you’re going. To have it almost be derailed in a sense, that’s been a big part of the response — going ‘Oh my gosh, this is my story. This is where I was.'”
There’s something to be said for demonstrating the normality of LGBTQ characters, and their relationships, but the journey itself can often be forgotten, in favor of telling stories about characters who have already accepted who they are.
“You see so many characters on shows right now, they come in and they’re already established as lesbian, gay, transgender — whatever it is, they’re already in that place,” Leigh says. “This is where you get to see somebody coming to a point where she’s just figuring it out. I think that’s what people have just been really excited about.”
Despite a few bumps along the way, Alex and Maggie have reached a very loving and intimate place in their relationship — but because this is TV, that won’t last forever.
“There’s an ‘obstacle’ episode [for Alex and Maggie] coming up, that we just did,” Kreisberg teases. “Then there’s what’s probably my new favorite episode, that [Chyler] doesn’t even know about yet, that is a Kara/Alex/Maggie story … It becomes a story about the sister and the girlfriend who both love her, and are debating the best way to save her. It’s a really great story. We’re really excited about it.”
While that story is further down the line (the wait will no doubt be painful) Kreisberg and Leigh did tease some “Team Sanvers bonding” in Episode 15. “Alex and Maggie go rogue,” Kreisberg says.
“Supergirl” airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.