Oct 23, 2013

Gay Supervillain in Training: The Thundermans

The latest in the "my secret" teencoms is Nickelodeon's The Thundermans, which premieres on November 2nd.  It's about is a retired superhero, Thunderman, who is trying to live a "normal life" incognito in Hiddenville (!).

First thought: you might want to change your name.

Hank Thunderman (Chris Tallman) and his wife Barb (Rosa Blasi) are the standard fat-doofus-husband-hot wife couple that we see everywhere on tv, but Hank is particularly doofus-like.  He's constantly trying to revive his superhero powers and failing miserably, like a former high school football player trying to relive his gridiron glory after losing the battle of the bulge.

We aren't told exactly why they have to go incognito, but I suspect that it has something to do with Hank's increasing impotence around supervillains.

Their four kids also have superpowers to hide.

Teenage Phoebe (Kira Kosarin) is a "good girl," a straight-A student who plays by the rules, including the rule of "no non-supes in the house," which sort of keeps her from having friends and negates the desire for a "normal life."

She has a best friend, Cherry, who suspects her secret.

Her twin brother Max (Jack Griffo who doesn't want you to say "gay") is a wannabe supervillain who wants to attend Villain University in a few years.  Apparently he's going to be a stereotypic gay villain, pushing up the feminine-coded mannerisms, although he'll be dating a girl by the third episode.

The younger kids, Billy (Diego Velazquez) and Nora (Addison Riecke), have super-speed and heat vision, respectively.

Oh, and there's Dr. Colosso, a supervillain transformed into a bunny who acts as Max's mentor and confidant.

There is an inevitable comparison with the Disney Channel's Wizards of Waverly Place, about a family of wizards, complete with a Dad who has lost his powers, two teenagers, one conniving and one straitlaced, a best friend who suspects the secret, and a rambunctious preteen.  It's too soon to see if it will have as many gay subtexts, or as much beefcake.


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