With the will of a head of state and the looks of a model, Wallis Day's Nyssa Vex is likely to become a fan-favorite character as soon as Krypton debuts next week -- but Day says that the idea of a "strong female character" archetype is not something they actively pursued on the show.
Instead, she explains, traditional gender roles as they are known in most of the industrialized world are simply not part of Kryptonian culture, and there are women operating at the highest levels of government, the military, and other areas of culture where it is simply...not a conversation.
"On Krypton, it's quite gender,fluid, almost," Day told reporters during a recent visit to the set. "I think that was actually in the conversation. There's not really a male species that's stronger than the female species. For sure, all the female characters, like the male characters, are powerful and independent and strong, strong women who have set goals and have worked f---ing hard to be in the position that they're in. So there's a general respect for the characters. For sure, we do go head-to-head. The female characters go head-to-head and those scenes, I think you're going to absolutely love. They're incredibly strong scenes. Emotional, strong, powerful scenes. You're going to see a lot of that."
Indeed, the head of the military guild is General Zod -- but not the one you're expecting. Alura Zod, grandmother to the guy whose neck Superman snapped in Man of Steel, rules over her domain with an iron fist, challenged only occasionally, and usually by her daughter Lyta Zod. Nyssa Vex makes it clear very early on that she is, to some extent, pulling her powerful father's strings.
Not only does it make for some interesting scenes, but it makes for a somewhat more quietly subversive energy to the show than you get in most superhero fare. Even series like The CW's Supergirl and Black Lightning are fairly overt in their political messaging, whereas Krypton takes the X-Men route of making audiences look at the world in front of them and draw conclusions without much in the way of guidance.
Friendly reminder, too: Krypton makes its world premiere at SXSW today, so expect spoilers if you get too deep into conversation about the show over the next week.
Are you excited to see more of Superman's birth world? Chime in below to discuss your hopes, expectations, and reservations.
Krypton is coming to SYFY on March 21.
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