Talk TV to Me: Give these “super” returning series a watch!

Columnist Gabriela Velasquez guarantees there is a superhero show out there for everyone.

By Gabriela Velasquez | Sept. 23, 2015

Tags: Talk TV to Me Television TV

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Unless you’ve been living under a rock with no Wi-Fi, you’re probably aware that superheroes are everywhere. No, I don’t mean that guy who jumped through lanes of traffic to rescue a cat on Vine, I mean the kind of heroes you’d see in comic books. With the release of the first Iron Man movie in 2008, Marvel set off a new age of action-adventure entertainment with superheroes at its center. Then came the wild success of movies like “The Avengers” and “Man of Steel,” and television networks were quick to jump on the money train.

As opposed to a few years ago, when the only decent superhero show on air was “Smallville,” there are now countless superhero shows out there, and each one offers something different. Even if you don’t consider yourself an action fan, I guarantee there is a show out there for you.

For fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, look no further than “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” After an admittedly slow, even boring, start, “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” found its footing after “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” turned the Marvel Cinematic Universe upside-down. “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” features exciting action sequences, sharp and fun dialogue and countless Easter eggs for dedicated Marvel fans, including cameos by Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury and Jaimie Alexander as Lady Sif. For fans looking for something grittier, I suggest checking out “Daredevil” on Netflix. You can find a more complete review of the series here.

Fans of Captain America will remember Hayley Atwell’s wildly popular character Peggy Carter. Much more than a mere love interest, Carter truly comes into her own in ABC’s “Agent Carter.” Set in the years following “Captain America: The First Avenger,” “Agent Carter” showcases Atwell’s seemingly endless wealth of charisma and talent as Peggy solves a conspiracy, all the while being underestimated by her male peers. Even with its subpar ratings, the excellent writing and talented ensemble, as well as a dedicated online fanbase, earned “Agent Carter” a renewal for a second season.

Despite issues of racial diversity in its first season, “Agent Carter” is a prime example of Marvel’s growing awareness of its female audience. It tackles issues of sexism in both subtle and obvious ways, and explores female friendship without the influence of any male character.

Although slightly behind on the cinematic scene, DC Comics has a strong presence on the small screen. Premiering the year after “Smallville,” the CW’s “Arrow” paved the way for today’s superhero series.

I can’t say enough about “Arrow.” Like many shows, it had a rocky first season, but when it found its footing, it ran with it. Stephen Amell spearheads the show as Oliver Queen, setting the bar high for any hero. Not only is his acting honest and wonderfully executed, but also the man does all of his own stunts. And of course, no one can review “Arrow” without mentioning its accidental breakout star Emily Bett Rickards, playing now-fan favorite Felicity Smoak. Rickards has created a character who is not only complex and dynamic, but absolutely hilarious. I could watch her babble endlessly.

Perhaps “Arrow’s” most valuable contribution to the television scene is its spinoff hit “The Flash.” Starring Grant Gustin, “The Flash” is like a breath of fresh air to the superhero franchise. While “Arrow” and shows like it have their lighter moments, “The Flash” doesn’t even try to take itself too seriously. It embraces the wild reality it takes place in, and conveys the sheer joy of comics that often gets lost in the transition from page to screen.

I’ll reserve judgment on this year’s newcomer “Supergirl” and the eventual “Agents of Shield” spinoff about fan favorites Bobbi Morse and Lance Hunter until they air, but if they follow the examples of their out-of-this-world predecessors, the upcoming television season is sure to be ... super!

I had to do it, okay?

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