EISNER-WINNING comics writer Brian Michael Bendis has a knack for creating female characters that resonate with readers. From Jessica Jones to Layla Miller and Daisy Johnson, he’s got a stable of creations who leap off the page. In 2019 he added Naomi McDuffie (aka Powerhouse), a teen discovering her metahuman origins, to his list of bespoke DC heroes.
Bendis’s six-issue Naomi run (a collaboration with co-writer David F Walker and artist Jamal Campbell) caught the attention of Ava DuVernay, who developed it into the new CW series of the same name. Showrunning the season is Arrow and Sweet Tooth writer Jill Blankenship, who tells Red Alert how besotted she became with the character after reading the comics following a meeting with DuVernay.
“I got sent them on a Friday night. I was like, ‘I’m gonna read one and then read the rest this week’,” Blankenship remembers. “And then I read all six in a row in two hours, because I think it’s just so unique.”
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