Family is important to Chyler Leigh. Fittingly, it's also very important to Alex Danvers, her character on The CWs.Super Girl. As Kara Zor-El's adoptive sister, Alex is the Girl of Steel's most important link to her family here on Earth. However, that dynamic is about to change with the long-awaited return of Jeremiah Danvers in tonight's pivotal new episode, Homecoming. played bylois and clarksDean Cain, the girls' father believed dead, is reunited with his family and the DEO. But while the Danvers may be excited, others close to them are a little more suspicious.
We recently caught up with Leigh about Jeremiah's return and how she feels about it.big womenthe willingness to tackle societal issues this season, including Alex's recent departure, and whether we last saw Alex as an action hero. (In short, no way!)
How does Alex feel about Jeremiah's return?
From the beginning, there was always hope that he was still alive. This has always been something Alex aspired to: finding out what happened, the why behind what. When it was revealed in previous episodes that he was alive, it really started to motivate her. So when she sees him enter the D.E.O. comes, it's a big moment where she comes running and he's 30 feet away. It's a moment he's been working on for over ten years, and in it you see young Alex again. It's in his eyes.
You just want to believe that your dad is the best. You want to believe that you are right and that it reflects all the wonderful, positive memories you have. She wants so badly to believe him, but then when questionable things come up and you see that there's something wrong with that image, it leads you to realize that all of a sudden you're like, "Ohhhh... shit."
Do you think the family tends to blind these characters a bit?
Absolutely. Alex, Kara and J'onn are characters who love each other very much and as such the anger they feel is very intense when something happens between them. Love is very real. That's exactly what Alex is. She isn't vapid about anything. She's in this for the long haul.
Seeing this heightens tension between Alex and Kara as Kara backs off a bit with the help of Mon-El, who isn't really emotionally involved. Mon-El is the one who says, "Let's really put this together, because when you think about all these things, something just doesn't add up."
A rift develops between Kara and Mon-El until she begins to see what he is seeing. He then backs off a bit and when she confronts Alex about it, Alex simply says no. There's a great scene where Alex says you're part of the family or you're not. It is difficult. It's a tough episode.
So far we've only seen small parts of CADMUS. Will we see more of them in this episode?
How bad are they?
You are bad enough! Alex is determined to make Lillian Luthor pay for what she did to Jeremiah. She's determined to do real damage. You will see parts of CADMUS. You see this world.
This season,Super Girlit really seems to be tackling some societal issues under the guise of clever storytelling. How do you feel about that and what was it like for you as an actor? Your character is pretty much the focus of everything.
I think that's something that really sets our show apart, we're addressing these societal issues. It's still in the comic book realm, but at the same time it's very relevant to what's going on in the world today. There's an episode called "Exodus" that really addresses the issue of alien immigration on the show and that they're not wanted on the planet. It's very timely.
Then, of course, there's Alex and Maggie's story. The community and people we reach and touch are amazing. There was an overwhelmingly positive response. I think, to be honest, about this relationship in a comic book series, you cross so many genres and bring people together who maybe didn't have that common ground. But people find out and decide to try it.Super Girlto see what everyone is talking about. I think that's an amazing quality for us. You have the action and all that, but you have a lot of depth with these characters. There's a lot of heart in this show, and a lot of it is driven by Kara and being as real and authentic as who she is and what she aspires to be. We have something really unique and I get that.
One thing I noticed is that in the first season, Kara was the inspiration at the core of the series. Especially girls would go crazy over her. But I feel like this season a lot of those inspirational qualities have transferred to you and it's a different, underserved audience that is responding. How was it for you?
It was a very exciting trip. Was really. I'm learning a lot about myself as a person and as an actor. Alex was so secretive last season. You really only saw her vulnerable in those moments with Kara or J'onn. With Alex being so vulnerable this season and really having to come to terms with himself through this Maggie story, I actually felt a little uncomfortable even putting myself in Alex's shoes like that. The dialogue was really difficult because I wasn't used to saying things like Alex. But the best part is that it translated so well because Alex was also struggling to get those words out of her mouth.
It's an incredible move. That's really what we created - we started this "Sanvers" movement. Just being on this journey and helping as many people as we're helping... I've been married a long time and we have three kids. My time with my family is precious and on a show like this it's hard to juggle that with the time I spend on set. So I need to know that what I'm doing is worthwhile and that this has become what it is and that through what I'm doing I can speak to people and encourage people who are in dire need. . Needing encouragement is good like being a housewife and me becoming a mother too. It's very rewarding for me and makes me feel that what I'm doing makes a difference. I see thousands of messages on Twitter and Instagram. People just express where they are and relate to that. People say they never thought of watching a comic book series, but now they love it because despite all the aliens and explosions and superpowers, it's so real!
In fact, that's another part I'm very grateful for. You don't need to have superpowers to be a hero. The good thing about Alex is that he is an original character. We had a lot of fun figuring out who she is and what she can do. I'm a lady, but I can kick ass. It showed me what I'm physically capable of. It pushed me forward in so many ways.
This actually ties in perfectly with my last question. I always really liked the physical strength that Alex has in the series, despite not having any superpowers. That's one of the best things about it.Super GirlThe action on the show doesn't just focus on Supergirl. Can we expect more of this from Alex? I know you've been focusing on her relationship with Maggie lately.
Yeah, I was actually a little worried about that. I didn't want to lose that side of Alex, his integrity in terms of how hard he works at what he does and the fact that he can really kick ass. I think that shows his strength, not only from an emotional point of view, but also from a conviction point of view. And yes, also from the point of view of physics. I love stunts. I do as much as I can, or as much as they let me do. I'm just not like that in real life. I'm at home like mom and all of a sudden I go into my D.E.O. Outfit, I have the gun in my waistband, and there's something that gives me this confidence that I really didn't know I had.
When I was first cast on the show, I thought, "Really? Do you love me?" But then when I took on the role, I realized that I'm very grounded in Alex because I can bring a part of me to life that I normally wouldn't, and I suck at having fun, I love what I do.
Supergirl airs Mondays at 8pm. (7 p.m. CST) on The CW.