"Supergirl" Season 4: Nicole Maines Talks Dreamer's Impact on Transgender Representation

Though we're still in the early days of summer, before we know it we're going to find ourselves in the middle of the fall – and knee-deep in our fsvorite CW "Arrowverse" shows. With Arrow shuffling off the network's programming coil after an abbreviated eighth season (making The Flash the "elder states-show" of the "Arrowverse"), Ruby Rose-starrer Batwoman joining the family, and a looming "Crisis" crossover that could change things dramatically (more on that below), the 2019-2020 season isn't exactly going to be lacking in change. One person who is playing a major role in the evolving "Arrowverse" is Supergirl's Nicole Maines, whose Nia Nal aka Dreamer is not only television's first transgender superhero but also an integral part of "Team Kara" in a short period of time – a testament to both Maines and the show's writers.

Supergirl — "Blood Memory" — Image Number: SPG411a_0342b.jpg — Pictured: Nicole Maines as Nia Nal — Photo: Diyah Pera/The CW — © 2019 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

The actress and active advocate for transgender rights spoke with Entertainment Weekly about joining Supergirl and how it's changed her life – and one of the key changes is how the role has given her a stronger social media presence. With that level of exposure, Maines is able to broaden her advocacy rights work and send a strong, positibe message to a larger audience:

"I love Twitter, not just for comedy reasons, but because I'm able to interact with people directly. I'm able to see exactly how Dreamer has affected younger trans kids in rural areas who really didn't have anyone before. One of my favorite parts is just [being] able to interact with folks on social media in a very, very dark time and getting to share that kind of positivity."

Supergirl — Image Number: CW_Dreamer_First_Look.jpg — Pictured: Nicole Maines as Nia Nal/Dreamer — Photo: Katie Yu/The CW — © 2019 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Maines credits shows like hers as well as FX's Pose for offering accurate trans representation, and looks to Supergirl season 4 episode "American Dreamer" (directed by J'onn J'onzz humself, David Harewood; story by Dana Horgan; teleplay by Daniel Beaty and Jess Kardos) as her opportunity to express her own experiences through Dreamer when she comes out as a transgender, half-alien, half-human woman.

"That inadvertently [broke] the fourth wall because as Nia's doing that, so am I. I'm going on television and declaring my identity as a trans woman, proudly, unapologetically, and in hopes of inspiring people."

Supergirl — "American Dreamer" — Image Number: SPG419a_0065b.jpg — Pictured (L-R): Melissa Benoist as Kara/Supergirl and Nicole Maines as Nia Nal/Dreamer — Photo: Diyah Pera/The CW — © 2019 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Speaking of "Crisis on Infinite Earths"…

Viewers can't say they weren't warned in advance. At the end of 2018's CW Arrowverse "Elseworlds" crossover that brought together The Flash, Arrow, and Supergirl (and nearly DC's Legends of Tomorrow, but they let it go to machine – way too busy for all that), we saw that the end was only the beginning… of the end. As Barry (Grant Gustin) and Oliver shared what felt like a final toast and Kate Kane's Batwoman (Ruby Rose) returned to protecting the streets of Gotham – with a sense that something felt a little off –  we got a small taste of what's still to come in 2019…

"Crisis on Infinite Earths!" Worlds will live! Worlds will die!

And the CW's "Arrowverse" will never be the same…

At CW's 2019 May Upfronts presentation, the network offered a few "'Crisis' management" clues for info-starved fans. This year's "Crisis on Infinite Earths" crossover will include Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, DC's Legends of Tomorrow, and Batwoman; the entire story will be five hours long; and the event will air over two quarters (3 episodes in December 2019, 2 episodes January 2020). There were initial concerns that DC's Legends of Tomorrow would not be involved – as the series won't be returning until midseason – but the announcement resolved that matter.

Curiously enough, Black Lightning is not listed as participating in the crossover event – surprising considering the "infinte earths" aspect lends itself to "guest appearances" from a number of televised DC properties (past and present) that aren't directly connected to the CW's properties. With that said? We're trusting our instincts, which tell us the Pierce family will be residing in the "Arrowverse" by the time the red skies clear.


For most of their respective seasons, things have been "All Quiet on the 'Crisis' Front" when it came to Arrow, The Flash, and Supergirl – but that changed in a big way during their respective season finales… even for DC's Legends of Tomorrow!

In the seventh season finale of CW's Arrow, the Monitor (LaMonica Garrett) returns to cash in on the favor that Oliver owes him: help him save the multiverse – taking a moment to tell him the "fine print" that Oliver's going to die during "Crisis" and there's nothing the Monitor can do to stop it. From there, the Monitor visits "Future Felicity" (Emily Bett Rickards) and takes her away to see Oliver… somewhere… and it's apparently a place she can't come back from.


Over at The Flash season finale "Legacy," some recent maneuverings with Time moved up the date on Barry's "red skies/2024" newspaper warning just a wee bit… to say, 2019?

The fourth season finale of Supergirl "The Quest for Peace" had The Monitor speaking to a hooded figure, telling him that now is the time for him to lead "his people" and to take revenge on his captor… and brother: J'onn J'onzz (David Harewood). Meanwhile, just because Lex Luthor (Jon Cryer) may have shuffled off this mortal coil (???) doesn't mean his role in the upcoming "Crisis" is over quite yet…

DC's Legends of Tomorrow season finale "Hey, World!" found the plan to take down Neron (Brandon Routh) resulting in a major status quo change for Zari (Tala Ashe) – a change that the suddenly-appearing Monitor does not appear to approve of in any way, shape, or form. At least he got some popcorn out of it – and yes, that is The Book of Destiny he's using to balance it.

Entertainment Weekly

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Ray FlookAbout Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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