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The CW’s hit series, “The Flash” has cast Jordan Fisher as “Bart Allen” in their latest season coinciding with the series’ 150th episode anniversary.

Bartholomew “Bart” Allen, in the television series, is the son of Barry Allen/The Flash (Grant Gustin) and Iris West-Allen (Candice Patton). Like his father he is a speedster, but hails from the future, fighting crime alongside The Flash as “Impulse.”

jordan fisher cast as bart allen impulse

The Flash (Barry Allen) and Iris West-Allen

Bart’s appearance marks the second of The Flash’s future children to visit them in the past; the first being Nora Allen, their daughter in Season 6 of the series. Actor Jordan Fisher is best known for his roles in “Grease: Live,” To All The Boys I’ve Ever Loved: P.S. I Still Love You,” and Disney’s “Teen Beach Movie.” This also marks the first time an African-American has portrayed the character.

In the comics, however, Bart is not The Flash’s son, but his grandson, being the son of Meloni Thawn and Don Allen, the latter being The Flash’s son and one of The Tornado Twins, twin speedsters with powers similar to their father’s. Bart grows up to become the second Kid Flash and the fourth Flash  There is currently no word on why The CW’s version of the character does not have the same origins.

jordan fisher

Jordan Fisher

Fan response to Fisher’s casting has been largely positive, however:

Jordan Fisher’s casting only confirms The CW’s commitment to inclusivity and diversity, as it found itself re-examining its policies and show castings following issues on “Riverdale.”

As you may recall, the show was riddled with accusations of racism by Riverdale actress, Vanessa Morgan, for its mishandling of Black characters by writing them off, paying them less than their White co-stars, and making Black characters “sidekicks.” The network responded adding more Black characters to various shows and will try not underutilize black characters or portray them as criminals.

The air date for Jordan Fisher’s debut as “Bart Allen/Impulse” has yet to be announced.

 

Television & Radio

Donald Faison Cast as “Professor Utonium” in Live Action “Power Puff Girls!”

Donald Faison has found his latest role as “Professor Utonium,” the creator/father of “The Power Puff Girls” in The CW’s forthcoming live action series, “Power Puff.”

“Power Puff” will show the girls as disillusioned twentysomethings, resentful of having spent their childhoods fighting crime. However, new threats to the world may force them once again to band together.

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donald faison professor utonium power puff

Donald Faison has found his latest role as “Professor Utonium,” the creator/father of “The Power Puff Girls” in The CW’s forthcoming live action series, “Power Puff.”

“Power Puff” will show the girls as disillusioned twentysomethings, resentful of having spent their childhoods fighting crime. However, new threats to the world may force them once again to band together.

donald faison professor utonium power puff

Donald Faison is best known for his comedic performances in hit series like Clueless and Scrubs. His casting comes as a surprise to many, especially since Professor Utonium is literally a square-jawed Caucasian man. In “Power Puff” Faison’s Utonium will be middle aged, and although very proud of his girls, desperately trying his best to repair his relationships with his now adult daughters.

professor utonium

Professor Utonium using “sugar, spice, and everthing nice”

As you may recall, from the original cartoon series from the nineties brought to fame on Cartoon Network, Professor Utonium accidentally created The Power Puff Girls–Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup–when he accidentally mixed in the mysterious substance, “Chemical X,”while mixing in “sugar, spice, and everything nice” to create “the perfect little girl.” The Professor then took to raising the girls as well as being their mentor.

The reception of Faison’s casting has been met with mixed responses on social media; with some fans praising the news and others already trashing the show:

Alongside Faison’s casting, it was announced earlier this month that Chloe Bennet, Dove Cameron, and Yana Perrault will take on the roles of Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup, respectively. There is currently no word on casting for other characters in the series like The Mayor, Miss Bellum, Mojo JoJo, Fuzzy Lumpkins, Him, Princess, or The Rowdy Ruff Boys.

“Power Puff” marks one of the few superhero series on The CW not connected to its famous interconnected series based on DC Comics superheroes known collectively as “The Arrowverse” (Superman & Lois, Supergirl, The Flash, Batwoman, Black Lightning, DC’s The Legends of Tomorrow, and Stargirl) The new series will premiere this upcoming Fall on The CW.

 

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Television & Radio

“Batwoman” Reportedly Canceled After Season 3, Javicia Leslie To Return

The days of Gotham City’s “Scarlet Knight,” are numbered. It is being reported The CW’s “Batwoman” is being canceled after its third upcoming season.

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batwoman javicia leslie

The days of Gotham City’s “Scarlet Knight,” are numbered. It is being reported The CW’s “Batwoman” is being canceled after its third upcoming season.

batwoman ruby rose and javicia leslie

Ruby Rose as “Batwoman” and Javicia Leslie

“Batwoman,” as you may recall initially starred Ruby Rose as “Kate Kane,” making history as television’s first lesbian led superhero series. It entailed Batwoman taking on her demented twin sister, Alice, as she attempts to destroy Gotham City. However, in a surprise move, Ruby resigned after the first season of the series, and was subsequently replaced with African-American actress, Javicia Leslie as “Ryan Wilder.”

Although fans and the public have largely embraced Javicia as the new Batwoman, the ratings for the second series have been abysmal. Many blame Ruby’s departure and the recasting of the role with a Black actress instead of another Caucasian one as the lead.

Javicia leslie as batwoman

Reaction to the cancellation news has been mixed with some fans outraged. Not only did League take away Lux’s BA Animations from me today but I’m finding out [The] CW wants to cancel Batwoman after  S3 [Season 3] too???? What the actual f**k? How do they expect me to live without Alice?”@ENTIR3HEARTS tweeted. While others felt the show’s cancellation is overdue. @itisrealz tweeted “Showing men of color in a negative light is not bad at all, they’re being treated like any other white villain character and not made to feel special or cringey unlike ‘Batwoman’ that thinks Black people are something special when they’re just humans.”

Despite the series’ impending demise, sources are reporting this will not be the end of Javicia Leslie as the famed vigilante, instead she will make appearances in other surviving “CWverse” shows (a network of other intertwined superhero based series on The CW, creating a television “multiverse” similar to the Marvel Cinematic Universe).

Currently, neither The CW or any member of the Batwoman cast have released any official statement on the cancellation reports on the series.

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Television & Radio

National Geographic Scores A Hit w/ “Genius: Aretha!”

National Geographic’s latest original series, and miniseries, “Genius: Aretha” is amazing. The series serves as a biopic on the life and early career of the late legendary singer, Aretha Franklin, portrayed by actress, Cynthia Erivo.

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genius aretha movie poster

National Geographic’s latest original series, and miniseries, “Genius: Aretha” is amazing. The series serves as a biopic on the life and early career of the late legendary singer, Aretha Franklin, portrayed by actress, Cynthia Erivo.

The series will consists of eight episodes detailing Aretha’s childhood, complex relationship with her father (played by Courtney B. Vance), marriages, and of course her rise to fame and power as she fights to find her own sound in an industry dominated by White mainstream music and men.

The first episode, “Respect,” is set in 1976, and showcases Aretha as she not only struggles to find her first real crossover hit, while also dealing with her jealous husband/manager, Ted White (Malcolm Barrett). Ted’s latest outburst costs her time with a talented band, and subsequently forces her to end her marriage, find new management, and fortunately come into her own as a songstress and woman.

Cynthia Erivo and Aretha Franklin genius aretha

Cynthia Erivo and Aretha Franklin

Cynthia Erivo proves herself to be a genius in her own right. She truly seems to become Aretha towards the end of the episode as she lifts her voice to sing, “Something He Can Feel.” The tone, lighting, framing, and even details of her hair and nails are reminiscent of the real Ms. Franklin. You actually feel as though you are in the room with her. There was much skepticism as to whether Cynthia was the appropriate choice for this small screen biopic, but she definitely seems to hold her own.

genius aretha

The premiere episode was debuted over the weekend in a live virtual advanced screening hosted by National Geographic and Essence. Celebrities, socialites, and influencers from around the world gathered to watch the first episode and see exclusive performances by Cynthia Erivo as she covered a few of Aretha’s hits.  Aforementioned, viewers sent gift boxes as well, containing miniature vinyl records of songs from the series’ soundtrack, as well as record player.

The premiere episode has been met largely with rave reviews praising Cynthia’s singing and acting. “Aretha was just a genius. A true child prodigy. This miniseries really gives you insight on her life, young and old…you also get to see how the men in her life, like her father and husband really affected her career…It really makes you want to know more about Aretha and other African-American idols…I originally was not a fan of [Cynthia] Erivo portraying yet another African-American legend, but she was amazing and her voice was angelic. Ms. Frankin would be proud that she put some R-E-S-P-E-C-T on her name and legacy.” Gabrielle King, states.

“Genius: Aretha’s” “Respect” episode is not be confused with another biopic on the famed singer, premiering this summer, also entitled “Respect” starring Jennifer Hudson.

You can watch “Genius: Aretha” beginning this Sunday, March 21st on National Geographic. Thereafter, it will air weekly, with reruns of it running on Hulu the following day.

 

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