DC’s Stargirl has become a runaway hit and fans are eagerly anticipating season 2. The show brings to life a colorful cast of interconnected heroes and villains in its heartland setting and has become known as a show whose hopeful characters and dynamic plots make it great for families to watch together.
Stargirl is a story that originated in the 1990s before being adapted for television by executive producer and showrunner Geoff Johns. Even though Johns has become well-known for his involvement with global DC movie hits like Aquaman and Wonder Woman 1984, he first broke into the comics industry by creating Stargirl and his passion for the character shines through on-screen.
With so many popular series now based on DC comics, what do new fans discovering Stargirl need to know about the show? Here are some basics.
Stargirl Takes Place in the Arrowverse
The Arrowverse is the collective name that has been given to the interconnected TV programs based on different DC Comics characters that have become a mainstay on the CW. The first of these programs, Arrow, starred Stephen Amell as a brooding beefcake version of the playboy-turned-vigilante Green Arrow. Many spin-offs followed — including The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, Supergirl, Superman and Lois, Batwoman, and Black Lightning — and in a giant crossover event called Crisis on Infinite Earths it was revealed that Stargirl takes place on an alternate Earth to the one in Arrow.
Stargirl is Set in Nebraska
Stargirl has been praised for the high quality of its cinematography and the unique look of its settings and scenes when compared to other CW superhero shows. One reason for this is that, unlike other Arrowverse series that shoot primarily in Vancouver, Stargirl is shot in Georgia. The sunny heartland Nebraska setting is critical to the series, and the subtle warmth added by being able to film near Atlanta increases the authenticity of the fictional town of Blue Valley.
Stargirl Features Stories About Finding Family
One of the most wholesome appeals of Stargirl is how much the show succeeds by leaning into heartfelt stories about how hard it can be for teenagers to have deep and supportive relationships. Courtney Whitmore’s journey to becoming Stargirl is rooted in family tragedy. It is only by embracing the unknown of her widowed mother’s relocation to Nebraska and her mysterious stepfather’s hidden past that she becomes the person she is called to be. Pat Dugan, the former superhero sidekick who is Courtney’s stepfather and reluctant mentor, has his own tortured relationship with creating bonds after seeing his best friends killed by the Injustice Society.
Other characters throughout the series portray the complexities of parents and children, and more than one of these relationships leads to bloodshed. But the beating heart of the show is Courtney’s found family in the new Justice Society of America that she inspires. It is the bond between Stargirl and her friends Hourman, Wildcat, and Doctor Mid-Nite that keeps fans coming back for more.
It can be daunting to start a new series with as many characters as Stargirl. You don’t need to have watched any other CW superhero shows though to enjoy this warm and rewarding heartland adventure.