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David Harewood Likens His Supergirl Role to Shakespeare: It’s “As Good as Playing MacBeth or Hamlet”

For someone who had never read a DC comic book before accepting a role on Supergirl, David Harewood sure has a lot of respect for the comic book universe and its sense of gravitas. Incidentally, you should already be completely caught up on Supergirl by now, but just in case you aren’t, back away from this article now, okay?

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Since learning the the super-twisty twist that his character on Supergirl isn’t Hank Henshaw and is, in fact, Martian Manhunter, Harewood has doing a lot of research. He tells ComicBook.Com that he didn’t even learn this fact until a couple of weeks before the audience did (in the scene embedded via YouTube, above). Harewood grew up reading a ton of Marvel comics, but apparently he’s only now become familiar with the DC world:

I have been reading Martian Manhunter comics now for the last three months — four months? — and they’re just awesome and he’s such a wonderful character …

It’s been a really wonderful journey, as an actor, to play this comic book character, who isn’t all macho and, “I want to save the world!”. Is somebody that was brought here completely by mistake and has learnt to understand humanity and has decided to help it and, you know, he’s the center of the Justice League and that’s just awesome! I just had no idea!

I didn’t really know about the Justice League because, obviously, again, you look at Marvel you think about the Avengers. I didn’t really know about the Justice League until I started reading these comics and it’s been such a wonderful journey, so I’m really excited to see where this could go and to be a part of it. It’s just a great character to play. This is as good as playing MacBeth or Hamlet to me. This is a great character.

Harewood also shared some small details about story-lines to come. In Episode 11, which airs on January 4th, we learn more about the back-story of Martian Manhunter — which any DC fan would already know, of course.

There is – in Episode Eleven – we have a visitor from another planet who’s a White Martian. There are two Martian species – it feels really weird talking about this (laughs). I’ve not been able to say anything about it. There is a Green Martian species and a White Martian species and the White Martians, in our story, are responsible for the death of the whole of the Green Martians. It was a fire and they burned them and we get to see a lot of that.

It’s very emotional. It was a very emotional episode for me, just thinking about the whole idea of genocide and, you know, people being burned alive. I think it was around the same time as the Paris attacks. It was very emotional.

What do you think about Harewood’s portrayal of Martian Manhunter on the show so far? If you’ve been following along with our recaps, then you already know we’re into it!

(via ComicBook.Com)

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Maddy Myers
Maddy Myers, journalist and arts critic, has written for the Boston Phoenix, Paste Magazine, MIT Technology Review, and tons more. She is a host on a videogame podcast called Isometric (, and she plays the keytar in a band called the Robot Knights (

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