Alexandra “Alex” Danvers and Hank Henshaw Cast for Supergirl

david-harewood-chyler-leighOne of the most intriguing characters of the new series, Kara’s foster sister Alex Danvers, has finally been cast.

Here is the original casting call for Alex:

Alexandra “Alex” Danvers

26-year-old Alexandra “Alex” Danvers is Kara’s gorgeous, brilliant, science-minded foster sister. Growing up, Alex was partly jealous of her sibling yet also fascinated by her abilities, prompting Alex to learn as much as she could about alien anthropology, sociology and culture. Today, Alex works for a secret government organization and, alongside her heroic sis, will face many challenges, both mundane and super.

I discussed my reaction to this description previously.

Deadline announced on Thursday that Chyler Leigh has been cast as Alex. Leigh previously starred on Grey’s Anatomy as the lead character’s half-sister Alexandra “Lexie” Grey, which is kind of hilarious.

[Chyler] Leigh plays Alexandra “Alex” Danvers, Kara’s confident foster sister. Fascinated by Kara’s powers from a young age, Alex developed a lifelong obsession with science which inspired her to become a doctor.

But not just any kind of scientist. Alex works directly under Hank Henshaw, the scary ex-CIA agent who runs the Department of Extra-Normal Operations (DEO) which tracks extraterrestrial threats on the planet Earth.

Alex is a hard character to read. Is she a friend or foe?

From one of the leaked audition tapes:

Possible Scene in Episode 1

Kara uses her powers to help people for the first time and is met with a disapointing response from her foster sister:

ALEX: Why can’t you just text me whatever your big thing is? I’ve got a meeting with Henshaw in five…

KARA: I can’t see your face over the phone.

ALEX: OK, you have three seconds.

KARA: I did it, Alex. I did what you always wanted me to do.

ALEX: Your hair looks exactly the same.

KARA: No, I saved them. It was me. The metro line train that derailed off west side, it wasn’t the engineer’s miraculous training or reflexes — I did it, I stopped the train going off the bridge, those people are alive because of something I did.

ALEX: Kara, you could’ve been killed.

KARA: How? I could bend this steel desk into a little ball if I wanted to, you’ve seen what I can do.

ALEX: Then they could’ve been killed. It’s not like you’ve had a lot of practice stopping trains.

KARA: You always said that if you had my powers, you’d use them to change the world. I came here to say you were right, I’m going to.

ALEX: How?

KARA: By finally being the person I was sent here to be.

ALEX: You haven’t thought this through. You expose your powers outside, in daylight, to the general public. What do you think the odds are that someone took a photo, or a video, of you lifting a train with your HANDS. I’m going with 100%. You’re probably already trending.

KARA: But they would’ve died without me. I don’t get it, I thought you’d be proud.

ALEX: Our whole childhood, you hid your abilities like they were disabilities. You made me, our family, your co-conspirators. And now you walk in here announcing a career change? What’s next, law school?

KARA: Today felt like the first day of my life. I felt like I was back home.

ALEX: In Midvale?

KARA: On Krypton. I had to do something spectacular just to feel normal.

ALEX: Whatever you’re going through, it’ll pass. Just don’t do something you’re gonna regret.

KARA: I just told you about the best moment of my life, and you can’t even be happy for me.

ALEX: Kara… You may have his abilities, but you’re not him.

KARA: No. You’re right, I’m not. I am Kara Zor-El. Daughter of Alura. And I’m gonna start living like it.


There is another exchange between Alex and Hank Henshaw from a leaked audition that was more spoilery, but I won’t print that here because it could easily be changed for the actual pilot.

Deadline also announced that David Harewood has been cast as Hank Henshaw. Harewood is known for playing David Estes, the Deputy Director of the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center on Homeland.