As Supergirl draws to a close, fans of the show are anxiously awaiting to discover whether the relationship between Kara (Melissa Benoist) and Lena (Katie McGrath) will finally commit to screen.
After five years of ‘will they/won’t they’ moments, the final season has pulled out the big guns, teasing a possible romantic segue between the pair and it’s been intense to watch. If the longing glances weren’t enough to convince you that these two could be endgame, the heavy undertones in the writing should certainly do it. These have been planted throughout the series since Lena’s introduction back in season 2, which hasn’t gone unnoticed by fans, though were initially angled to emphasis a platonic bond. Friendly or not, Supercorp has managed to become one of the show’s most popular ships.
There is absolutely no denying that leading ladies, Melissa Benoist and Katie McGrath, share remarkable chemistry. It is what captivated fans in the first place after all and as the series progressed, Lena and Kara’s compelling dynamic became near impossible to miss, even for non-shippers. Both actresses have expressed their support of this pairing at past events, validating the relationship in all of its forms. What is so great about the Supercorp connection is that they work as both best friends and a potential couple – it’s clear as day on-screen. However, fans wishing for the latter believe they are being taunted by the mere possibility of them being more than pals… And they’re not wrong to feel as such.
Let’s set the record straight (no pun intended), if this were a man and a woman and they’d received half as much of the attention that Supercorp has, there’d likely be wedding bells by now. It’s a clichéd trope in 2021 but it’s not one that will tire soon, unless the favoured relationship is between two leading women apparently. Even Arrow (2011 – 2020), the foundation of all things ‘Arrowverse’, explored what was initially a fan-ship with Oliver (Stephen Amell) and Felicity (Emily Bett-Rickards) after viewers adored their chemistry together. Not to mention the parallels between Supercorp and literally every heterosexual couple in its sibling shows (and reflections on the Superman franchise by mirroring major ‘Clois’ moments).
With Supercorp, fans have taken to social media to express their distaste of the execution of queer-baiting, where networks will generally tease out a same-sex relationship to increase viewership. In most episodes, especially as of recent, Kara and Lena are dependent on one another to save the day with them stating that whilst Kara protected the world, Lena protected her and she was the only one Kara trusted enough to do so. Just whack a label on them and be done with it because if that isn’t the behaviour of two love interests, why has it been at the core of Oliver and Felicity? Clark and Lois? Barry and Iris? You get the picture.
Exploring LGBTQ+ relationships is not a foreign concept to the show, yet it’s still not at the forefront. Series regular, Chyler Leigh, became an immediate fan-favourite as Alex Danvers, who later came out as a lesbian in season 2 and embarked on a sweet romance with Maggie Sawyer (Floriana Lima). Alex coming out to Kara has been hailed as one of the show’s most authentic and genuine scenes. Though set to wed Kelly Olsen (Azie Tesfai), with whom she now shares a daughter, fans believe Alex’s love life has taken a backseat with the couple lacking screen-time together, or at least when it comes to showcasing their relationship.
Fans were also quick to point out the hypocrisy of the budding romance with supervillains, Lex (Jon Cryer) and Nyxly (Peta Sergeant), that evolved exceptionally fast over the last few weeks – the anti-Supercorp if you will. Many questioned why elements of dialogue were used as a convention of true love for the so-called Lexly whilst Supercorp were resigned to gal pal status despite Kara and Lex making similar confessions. The only difference is that one duo exhibits magnanimous chemistry that’s created an opportunity for an incredible slow-burn romance, whereas the other has been shoehorned in for dramatic purposes. It’s easy to understand why fans feel betrayed over their favourite ship.
There is little to suggest that Supercorp shippers will see them blissfully ride off into the sunset together on Tuesday, but that’s not to say they’ll be left totally empty-handed. Everything is there, basically having written itself; the subtext is no longer subtle, the lingering looks, skyrocketing chemistry… They’re practically a power couple already, it just hasn’t been explicitly acknowledged.