Watching CBS' Supergirl trailer, I was struck by how different it felt compared to Man of Steel. The more I think about it, the more it crystallizes something that's always nagged at the back of my mind about that movie.

Man of Steel was a fine science fiction movie, but it didn't feel like it was about Superman. Superman is a positive character, a story filled with optimism and hope. He's the polar opposite of the dark, brooding Batman, who was born out of tragedy and pain. He's confident, he believes in the goodness of mankind, and he's got a purity of character that few superheroes can match.

But instead of embracing that optimism, Man of Steel substituted it with angst. It probably sounded great on paper — the loneliness thing, where he's "the only one of his kind," and spends his whole life feeling so very different than anyone else. There's plenty of drama to mine there. But in indulging that side of the character so heavily, the movie lost sight of one of Superman's defining traits. There was no heart.

Supergirl, if this trailer is any indication, nails that very thing.

It delivers that optimistic tone in spades, largely thanks to its instantly likeable main character. She lacks confidence, she's socially awkward, she's relatable. She's the underdog. When she succeeds, she feels like she's on top of the world — and so do we.

To put it in simpler terms, Supergirl gave us this...

...while Man of Steel gave us this.

What does it say about DC's cinematic universe when this Supergirl TV series from CBS (of all places) feels more like Superman than Man of Steel did?

Reactions to the trailer so far seem to be overwhelmingly positive. It's as if everyone is pleasantly surprised at just how much they like what they see.

The trailer also serves as an interesting counterpoint to the recent conversations about Black Widow, who some believed was made a weaker character from the events of Avengers: Age of Ultron. Supergirl makes a decisive case for female empowerment, and could very well become a new symbol for it.

Let's hear it for optimistic girl power. Supergirl premieres this fall on CBS.

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