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Why Supergirl's Dreamer deserves her own show

The CW series Supergirl is headed to greener pastures. After an announcement on September 22 from the CW, Warner Bros. TV, and Berlanti Productions, we now know that the show's sixth season will be its last. Due sometime in 2021, this final run will be longer than the show's average, but it will bring the series' story to a close.

It's likely that some of the cast will find themselves on other CW shows, but we can't help but feel that there's at least one member of Team Supergirl who would be perfect for more than just a cameo in another series — Nia Nal, a.k.a. Dreamer (Nicole Maines). Dreamer's power set goes beyond just seeing dreams of the future — she has superhuman strength and durability, she can astral project, and she can manipulate her Oneiric energy to create a shield or shoot out an energy blast. 

We've only begun to see Dreamer utilize some of these abilities. Dreamer has come a long way since her first appearance on Supergirl in the 2018 episode "American Alien," and there's clearly so much more of her story to be told. She doesn't just need to appear on another show — she needs a show of her own.

Exploring Dreamer's home

One of the great things about the character of Supergirl (Melissa Benoist) is that she has a wealth of backstory to pull from and a ton of pathos, too. Just like Clark Kent, Kara Danvers is an alien without a home. Even though Krypton is gone, there are still tons of ways that its story lives on. There are surprise Kryptonian survivors, the Phantom Zone, and Daxamites who the Kryptons once waged war with.

Nia Nal was born on Earth, but she is descended from aliens, too. Part of Nia's family comes from the planet Naltor, where many people have the gift of precognition. While Dreamer grew up in Parthas, a town full of aliens from different worlds, her primary connection with Naltor is her powers. A Dreamer TV series would give Nia Nal a chance to discover her roots. With only one season left to go, Supergirl probably won't have time to explore where Nia Nal comes from, but her own series could really get into it.

Speaking of Dreamer's hometown, Parthas is also a great set piece to explore further. Dreamer growing up in a town full of aliens who don't necessarily pass for human shapes how she views the world in a fundamental way. A Dreamer TV series would be a chance to get to know other residents of Parthas and explore another side of the Arrowverse through their eyes.

Expanding on Dreamer's dreams

Dreamer's powers grow all the time, but her precognitive ability, especially, is one that would be really fun to explore on a Dreamer TV series.

Back when the CW was the WB, one of the network's most popular franchises was Buffy the Vampire Slayer. On Buffy's spin-off show Angel, one of the main characters had visions which Angel's team used to help people. Using visions to drive the story was a great format for Angel, and it would work really well for a Dreamer show, too.

Why does Dreamer have the specific visions she does? What is the source of the Naltorians abilities? The very nature of seeing and altering the future opens up the question of destiny vs. free will in a way that Supergirl doesn't really explore. If Dreamer had her own show, all the nuance and symbolism of Nia Nal's dreams could be explored.

Not only are there different ways to use visions to tell a story, but there's also a tremendous opportunity to explore the visual style of Dreamer's visions. On Supergirl, there's a somewhat uniform style to how the show is shot and how it looks. A Dreamer TV series is a chance to reevaluate how the audience experiences Dreamer's visions.

Dreamer loves Brainy

No one would be mad if Dreamer wound up as a supporting character on another show, but if that happened we wouldn't get nearly enough focus on romance. There's a lot about Nia Nal's personal life worth exploring, but sometimes you just want love stories. Dreamer and Brainy are a very interesting pairing, and we haven't come even close to exploring where their story might go yet.

Brainy struggles with his emotions because he's an alien robot who was designed less for human interaction and more for function. In fact, since Brainy is a descendant of Brainiac, he's a little bit designed for destruction. We've seen how Brainy will sometimes do questionable things to protect Dreamer at great risk to his own happiness and safety — is that love? More importantly, is that the kind of love Dreamer wants?

As a transgender woman, Dreamer's romantic interests come baked in with a lot of complex feelings. Even when the question of "Will they still love me if they know I'm trans?" is answered in the affirmative, there's still a lot of distrust about how far that love will extend. That's true for anybody, but being trans can add a significant extra anxiety to cope with when dating. A Dreamer show has the chance to explore that in an open, honest way.

On the flip side of that, Nia Nal having her own show would probably come with the fun melodrama of love triangles. Who else might Nia Nal develop feelings for? Getting to see her explore romance with someone other than Brainy would be exciting, too.

Dreamer is TV's first transgender superhero

Dreamer is the first transgender superhero on television. Nicole Maine's casting was a big deal when she was announced for Supergirl and it's still a big deal now. There are more and more shows featuring transgender and non-binary characters as part of their casts, but to have a Dreamer TV show — with a transgender superhero as the title character — would be absolutely massive.

Supergirl has had incredible moments of pain and triumph for Nia Nal. Dreamer's powers pass genetically from mother to daughter, and one of the most validating things about Nia's story is that her mother's powers do pass to her. Supergirl, as a show, used that as a metaphor to say, without reservation, that trans women are women.

Supergirl also had the courage to show how even the most staunch trans allies sometimes fall short. Nia's sister Maeve (Hannah James) supported Nia until Nia got the Naltorian powers Maeve thought were rightfully hers. Maeve went from being supportive to questioning Nia's womanhood the moment Nia's transness inconvenienced her. The nuance in Nia and Maeve's relationship reflects real life. That story is unfinished, and a Dreamer TV show would be a chance to explore their conflict in an honest and helpful way.

Similarly, a Dreamer TV series would give audiences a chance to get to know Nia's roommate Yvette (Roxy Wood) a little better, too. Yvette has only been in a few episodes of Supergirl so far, but a Dreamer TV series is a chance for a trans woman of color to be a main character. Yvette and Dreamer may both be trans, but their stories and their struggles are completely different. A show starring Dreamer would have the chance to explore the friendship between two very different trans women, and that's exciting.

Nicole Maines still wants to be Dreamer

When it was announced that Supergirl was ending after its sixth season, a lot of people who work on the show added their voices to give the news context. Nicole Maines released a statement on Twitter, too. "I think we can all agree that we haven't seen the last of her," Maines wrote about Dreamer, "and I cannot wait to see where she pops up next."

There are a number of places across the Arrowverse where we could very well see Dreamer again. The format of Legends of Tomorrow is built for a rotating cast, and Superman & Lois will likely draw from a number of Supergirl characters and elements appear when it premieres. Dreamer would be a natural addition to either of those shows.

Wherever Dreamer winds up next, there will be more opportunities to explore sides of her that we never saw on Supergirl. A Dreamer TV series would just provide more opportunities — opportunities that Nicole Maines and company should absolutely get to explore. 

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