A lot of amazing TV shows have come out in the last few years, all with their own unique ways of making the audience feel and think. But what many people are looking for right now is something different from the usual dark, moody, deep shows that generally make top 10 lists. A show like DC’s Stargirl, described by executive producer Geoff Johns as “optimistic energy I wanted to put back into the world”, is exactly what people need right now.
Everything about Stargirl seems to be designed to leave audiences feeling happy and positive. Everything from the bright, colorful production design and costumes to the nostalgic undercurrent makes this show feel comforting and easy to watch. The show borders on cheesy without going over the top and is a welcome respite from dark storylines and moody ambiance. The fictional town the story is set in has a vintage-style main street, complete with an ice cream parlor and diner.
A lot of the charm in this series can be credited to the casting choices. Luke Wilson makes an unexpected appearance as Pat Dugan, the new stepfather of Courtney Whitmore, aka Stargirl. Luke Wilson’s delivery is perfectly dry to pull off Pat’s dad jokes, while Courtney’s energetic vibe conveys the embarrassed teen daughter perfectly.
Brec Bassinger plays Courtney’s transition from a normal high school student to a superhero with ease, exuding both confidence and relatable trepidation. She feels different from her fellow high school students, and not just because of her secret identity; her mother has moved them from California to Arizona.
But Courtney’s true identity spills over into her high school life, where she is kind to everyone and defends weaker characters from their bullies. She’s hard not to love, and hard not to root for. And rather than seeming hungry for power and glory, it’s easy to see that Courtney wants to become Stargirl because she knows it’s what the world needs. Over the course of the show, Courtney slowly grows into her role as a hero and makes the audience believe she’s really capable of saving the world.
Other touches throughout the show are guaranteed to give audiences the warm and fuzzies, like the staff containing the powers Courtney uses to become Stargirl. Somehow, this inanimate object becomes just as much a character as anyone else, and the way Courtney interacts with the staff is both awkward and endearing.
Plus, you get to witness Courtney and her stepfather begin to bond as a real father-daughter duo. The relationships between the characters in this show are what make it really special. Rather than focusing all their artistic talents on intricate fight scenes and CGI villains, the creators decided to give audiences a human story, full of both vulnerability and healing warmth.
In a world that is increasingly unstable and full of uncertainties, Stargirl might just be the hero everyone needs. If you’re looking for a new show to watch, try giving this one a try. You might be surprised at how quickly this cheesy superhero story pulls you in and makes you root for the hero to win.