Nadria Tucker, a writer who was fired from The CW’s Superman & Lois show, has spoken with Huffington Post about her experience working on the show.
“In the grand scheme of things that have happened to people in the course of working in Hollywood, I have not experienced a fraction of the worst stuff that happened. But the level of microaggressions and toxicity is just so pervasive that it’s almost unavoidable,” Tucker told HuffPost. “What’s crazy is that it never felt completely toxic at the time. As a writer, you pitch things and you expect to get your pitches rejected. And then, cumulatively, you realize that all of your pitches that are getting rejected are a certain type of pitch.”
Tucker, who says she wasn’t the only woman or POC on staff, says she spoke up about things she saw as potentially problematic, like the show’s main Black character being depicted as a villain from the beginning, Me Too jokes, and a lack of meaningful dialogue between female characters.
“I said, ‘You know, this is not a good look. You want to have representation so that people of color are not only depicted as the villains,’” Tucker recalled. “And [showrunner Todd Helbing] responded with, ‘We’ll see what we can do. We may have to ship them in because there are not a lot of Black people in Canada [where the show was filmed].’” Black Canadians form the third-largest visible minority group in Canada, after South Asian and Chinese Canadians—especially in places like Toronto.
Anyway, eventually when Tucker was dropped from the show, she says Helbing told her that her “outline and draft were not where he needed them to be for a writer at my level.”
Tucker had previously worked on WGN America’s Underground and SyFy’s Krypton, the latter being another Superman mythos show.
“It was just bizarre, after having previously heard from him, you know, ‘This looks great. This is great. Good work. Nice work,’” she explained. “It was like a wild turn out of nowhere.”
Tucker then later tweeted that her contract hadn’t been extended, and representatives reached out to her for an exit interview, during which she says she went into detail about her experience and provided supporting documents. As of this interview, she says none of this has been followed up with.
HuffPost says a spokesperson for Warner Bros. TV declined to comment on the record.
Tucker’s story is disappointing and part of the reason I have not watched Superman & Lois, despite finding that clip of Clark saying his mom made his costume for him painfully endearing. As someone who has learned not to trust The CW when it comes to really getting race and gender, beyond the surface level, I don’t doubt Tucker’s experience. Especially considering all the other issues surrounding Warner Bros. at the moment.
(via HuffPost, image: Dean Buscher/The CW)
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