Although his arrival is a few episodes away, the casting for a hero to help Supergirl has been confirmed: His name is Brainiac 5. For those of you who may not obsessively follow the comics, you may be asking yourselves: Who is Brainiac 5 on Supergirl? Good news for Kara is that, despite him sharing a name with a villain, she's got nothing to fear from him.
Originally reported by TV Line, the hero Brainiac 5 will be played by Jesse Rath, whom you may have seen before in Defiance (2013), Being Human (2011), or Assassin’s Creed: Lineage (2009). Coming from the future (the 31st century to be exact), Brainiac 5 is half-man, half-supercomputer with clearly superhuman levels of intelligence. While his explicit purpose for coming back in time will likely be to help Supergirl defeat Reign, there's more to him than just what he can offer Kara.
According to TV Line, former Supergirl showrunner Andrew Kreisberg previously said that, “Someone down the road will like Kara a lot, which will be a lot of fun.” It seems now that he may have been referring to Brainiac 5, as he crushed on Supergirl in the comics. Perhaps Supergirl will be open to new love too since things with Mon-El can tend towards the complicated.
It wouldn’t be the first time a Supergirl would have had feelings for a Brainiac 5. In the animated television series: Justice League Unlimited, Supergirl even stayed with Brainiac 5 in the future, after an adventure had made her, among other heroes, time travelers. It also may interest some of you to note that the Brainiac 5 iteration in Supergirl won’t even the first live-action one. In Smallville, Brainiac 5 was portrayed by James Marsters.
Speaking of other mediums, though, Brainiac 5 didn’t get his start in that animated series. Like most superheroes, his origins are in the comic books. Also known as Querl Dox, Brainiac 5 is a Coluan, a green-skinned alien race known for their advanced intelligence and technology. Having descended from the Superman villain Brainiac, Brainiac 5 became a superhero to atone for his ancestor’s actions.
According to TV Line, Brainiac 5's first appearance on Supergirl will be in the Episode 10 of Season 3, titled: “Legion of Super-Heroes.” That title also confirms that this season we will see the beginning of the Legion of Super-Heroes: A team formed as a symbol of unity of life between planets within the universe. Fans also have confirmation that the team will appear this season because of another casting choice.
According to Comicbook.com, Saturn Girl (played by Amy Jackson) will make an appearance on this season of Supergirl. As a founding member of the Legion, it’s pretty clear that’s the direction Supergirl’s writers will take her character — especially with Brainiac 5 being a member of that team as well.
Of course, that does raise other questions. In the comics, the Legion was formed by three heroes: Cosmic Boy, Live Wire, and Saturn Girl. However, neither Live Wire nor Cosmic Boy have been mentioned to appear in this season. That means that either the writers of Supergirl are going to change some lore or we’re in for a few more new characters before the new season is complete.
While the confirmation of the Legion of Super-Heroes is cool, that arguably isn’t even the most exciting part of the announcement of Brainiac 5 and Saturn Girl. Though nothing has officially been announced, it would stand to reason that a supervillain team could be formed as well. After all, Reign isn’t the only Worldkiller; while she’s the leader, she’s one of five of her kind. Each one of those fatal five have a range of superpowers and the ability, as their name implies, to destroy entire planets.
No matter how many Worldkillers or superheroes in the Legion we end up seeing this season, all of these new developments are clearly building towards something major. Perhaps they’re building to a huge clash the likes of which superhero fans haven’t seen since big productions like Captain America: Civil War and Batman v. Superman. Whatever battle occurs, and between who, it's going to be one to watch.
Editor's Note: On Nov. 10, Variety reported that producer Andrew Kreisberg had been suspended after several allegations of sexual harassment and "inappropriate physical contact" by employees and former employees. On Nov. 29, Deadline reported that Kreisberg had been fired. Warner Bros. TV issued a statement on the matter saying, "After a thorough investigation, Warner Bros. Television Group has terminated Andrew Kreisberg’s employment, effective immediately. We remain committed to providing a safe working environment for our employees and everyone involved in our productions." Variety also reported that "Kreisberg strongly denies the allegations" made by the 19 sources mentioned in the article.