Though the DC Comics-based sitcom "Powerless" has been picked up as a pilot for NBC, very little is known about the insurance agency office-based comedy. Described as being described as similar to "The Office", but set in a world filled with superheroes, the network has kept quiet on whether it would feature known characters, or simply create all-new ones for the show.
In an interview with IGN, NBC executives Robert Greenblatt and Jennifer Salke spoke about the comedy, explaining that yes, it takes place in the DC Universe, and yes, it will not only feature characters discussing the classic heroes fans know and love, the pilot's main hero is a "recognizable" one.
"This is a world where superheroes are not only just on green screen out the window of this insurance office, but they're also running into you on the street and wreaking havoc," Salke said of the show's over-arching premise. "The idea isn't that it's the creme de la creme of the superheroes. It's a world where there's a whole population of superheroes with all sorts of all challenges themselves. So you're seeing quite a range of characters in that realm in addition to our great, kind of grounded human ensemble."
Asked if major characters like Superman or Batman exist in this version of the DC Universe, Salke replied in the affirmative. "Oh, yeah. They've namedropped everyone. I don't think they’ve said anyone's off limits... Just creatively, what I've seen so far of the pilot, the main superhero that's featured is not one of those [Batman or Superman-type heroes], but it's someone recognizable."
"[T]hey're in the background," Greenblatt said, elaborating on how the show will deal with the everyday superhero existence. "They're wallpaper I suppose, as opposed to they're not the main characters in the show, so you may see them blowing up a building out the window or something."
"You're definitely hearing about them about them because they exist in the world," Salke adds. "It's a question of speaking parts and it's a wide range of superheroes."