Supergirl stars Chyler Leigh and Floriana Lima attended the GLAAD awards on April 1st and, on the red carpet, spoke at length about their fans and the importance of their characters. Supergirl was nominated in the Outstanding Drama Series category for the storyline between Leigh’s Alex Danvers and Lima’s Maggie Sawyer this season. Alex’s storyline has been one of the best LGBTQ storylines on TV, because of how real and relatable her coming out process has been.
Leigh found out that Alex would be coming out right around the time of the Pulse shooting in Orlando and was determined to get the story right. She’s mentioned in multiple interviews that she spent about an hour and a half talking to creator Greg Berlanti about doing it right. Neither she nor Lima had any idea that the storyline would get the response it has. In an interview with PEOPLE on the GLAAD red carpet, Lima talked about being “humbled” and “proud” of the story they’re telling.
Whenever the two actresses talk about the roles and the storyline, you can tell they get it and understand the importance and that makes all the difference. It’s one thing to be playing such an important role; it’s a completely different thing to be making such an effort to educate yourself on representation. On the day of the awards, Leigh posted a picture on Instagram and talked about how grateful she was to be telling the story they’re telling.
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Grateful. That's the word I've had on repeat in my mind all morning as I'm getting ready for the #glaadawards tonight. To be honest, I've had quite the mix of emotions leading up to this. I've been so honored, and excited, and proud, and… kinda nervous. To me, tonight isn't about a categorical win or loss for @supergirlcw per say, though I know I can speak for all of us that we are humbled and thankful to be recognized (among so many incredible nominees) for the blood, sweat, and tears we've lovingly sown into telling this powerful story. Personally, I believe it's about the opportunity to stand #united as a community that is undermined and over discriminated upon. This is an opportunity to represent a growing, beautiful and healthy lesbian relationship, which unfortunately holds as a rarity in today's media. It's amazing that we as a people can make so many unbelievably amazing scientific discoveries and achievements and yet our sense of compassion towards ALL of humanity is still so discriminative, so minimal, so broken, so sad. So there's a part of me that's nervous about tonight because I want to make sure I get the representation right and make the LGBT community proud. And then I remember that this isn't about "getting it right", it's about simply telling the truth. And the truth is… You are #loved • You are #beautiful exactly as you are • You are #worth celebrating • And friends, that's when the nerves simmer down and the gratitude takes over. Thank you for your acceptance and appreciation of #Sanvers. Thank you for your trust and your investment into this relationship. @florianalima and I will stand tall tonight as we walk hand in hand in solidarity with all of those who are tired of hate and injustice. We stand with YOU ❤️ #truedat
Leigh and Lima often take photos together on set and share them with fans when the episodes air. They make a point to respond to fans who tell them their stories and what Alex and Maggie’s story has done for them. Leigh described those stories as “soul food” and said they “give all the more reason for us to be doing what we’re doing, to be standing up for a community that really, really needs it and to be doing something that’s truthful and honest.”
Leigh, Lima, and the Supergirl writing team deserve all the praise for the story they’re telling. They’re doing a great job giving us a healthy and real relationship between the two characters. However, it’s not without some minor issues, namely the imbalance of the physical intimacy between Alex and Maggie compared to the straight couples on the show. The growing emotional intimacy is evident in every episode, while the physical intimacy is noticeably lacking. I can’t help but wonder if it’s because of how much they’re stressing doing it right and wanting to give the fans much needed positive representation that they’re overcompensating. That they’re so worried about oversexualizing them or having them fall victim to the male gaze that they’re just limiting the intimacy. I’m not asking for a sex scene or anything, I just want to see them wake up in bed together.
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