Comic book shows and movies have a tricky problem to deal with when they want to be taken seriously: the often-ridiculous nature of their source material. That’s not meant as a dig at comic books, though, which are often beautiful and bright and wonderfully stupid, in ways that can be incredibly fun. But the urge to be seen as something that’s not just “for kids” does lead to a lot of things that are dumb in less enjoyable ways, like Batman riding around in a military assault vehicle instead of a souped-up sports car, or Superman dressing himself in the national colors of the United States Of Drabmerica.
So it’s cool to see the designers on CBS’s upcoming Supergirl just kind of going for it, showing off pictures of the antagonistic Red Tornado where he looks pretty darn goofy, in an appealingly comic-book way. Sure, Tornado (played by Iddo Goldberg, from Salem and Peaky Blinders) looks a little more Mauve than Red, as per the ironclad anti-primary color rules that bind all superhero costuming departments. But it’s still a dude who’s been covered in body paint, and then had a Jack Kirby-looking helmet slapped on his head and his initial stitched into his chest, which pretty much screams “comic book bad guy” to us.
Of course, Red Tornado is only one of several villains imperiling Melissa Benoist’s Supergirl in the show’s first season; it remains to be seen whether Livewire, Reactron, or Non will get similarly enjoyable designs when Supergirl premieres on October 26.