In the promo for Supergirl episode from tonight, Solitude, we get our first look at this time’s bad guy, Indigo, portrayed by guest star Laura Vandervoort (yup, the Supergirl from Smallville). In the show, Indigo will be yet another alien escapee with the ability to travel through the internet, and apparently much more, so much that Supergirl will find herself uncapable of defeating her without some help…help that comes in the person of Jimmy Olsen, who brings her to the Fortress of Solitude (Superman‘s hideout) in search for clues on how to defeat this new, powerful enemy. Once again, Supergirl has taken a hero from the comics and turned her into a villain…albeit this time that’s not completely true, as Indigo suffers from a double personality disorder that puts her on one side or the other of justice depending on situation. Let’s see together.
In a distant future, in the Colu Empire, the bio-mechanical being known as Brainiac 6 created a successor, Brainiac 8, that could help the original Brainiac in his conquest of the known universe. Brainiac 8 was given a friendly appearance, and a sub-program named “Indigo” was installed in her memory, a secondary personality that would have allowed her to get close to the superhuman community acting as a trojan horse, before the main personality was activated. When the double programming was finished, Brainiac 8 was sent into the past, in the XXI Century, to start her mission. She arrived in Austin, Texas, where she found herself heavily damaged, and amnesiac of her true origins. Instinctively, the bio-mechanical girl looked for other artificial beings that could help her repair herself, and her scans detected the Metal Men nearby; she teleported to their location, but the androids proved to be uncapable of assisting her, and Indigo left, still damaged, and still looking for help. Her scanners detected a more complex form of artificial life in the surroundings, the superhero Cyborg, who was in Texas along with the Teen Titans and Young Justice. Indigo started an interface with Cyborg, but the present heroes mistook her communication attempts for an attack: Impulse reacted, and tried to phase through her in order to fry her circuits, with the only result of causing an explosion that blew up half of Cyborg’s body. Both Nightwing and Robin tried to calm down their respective team to better understand the situation, but after Impulse’s attack Indigo had switched to defensive mode, and battled both teams until she was forced to flee. Desperately in need of repairs, Indigo took shelter in a nearby abandoned S.T.A.R. Labs facility, and before shutting herself down, she activated a dormant Superman Android to fix her and protect her while she was out. The Titans and Young Justice saw in the news someone who looked like Superman “dealing” with the unknown girl, and reached him to “help” him, despite Cyborg trying to convince them the girl meant no arm. Once they reached the androids, however, both teams were attacked by “Superman”, who killed Troia and Lillith. Finally, out of options, Arsenal reactivated Indigo, deciding to trust Cyborg and to ask for her help against the Superman Android.
Albeit a risk, this proved to be a good idea, as Indigo helped the heroes and shut down the android, before shutting down herself due to her highly damaged state. As a result of the battle, the Teen Titans disbanded, but some time later Arsenal managed to convince Nightwing to form and lead a new team, the Outsiders. Secretly even from Nightwing, Arsenal took the body of Indigo and brought it to S.T.A.R. Labs to have her repaired; he even had her memory erased, so that she couldn’t remember the traumatic events linked to her appearance in Austin. Finally, Indigo was reactivated, and she joined Arsenal in his Outsiders…much to Nightwing’s dislike, as he still didn’t trust the android, and was ready to attack her on sight. Before any decision could be made, an attack in New York City forced the team to intervene: this was the first occasion Indigo had to introduce herself to her new teammates, trying to convince Nightwing of her good faith and to prove to him that she only wanted to help people, so that she could make amend for horrible acts she couldn’t even remember. With time, Indigo managed to earn the trust of Nightwing and of the other Outsiders, proving to be a valuable assett for the team, and even a good friend, willing and eager to explore the human sides of her artificial personality. She even found love, as she started a relationship with Shift (some sort of clone of Metamorpho). Despite claming she couldn’t understand feelings, Indigo started developing a true personality, and in battling menaces like The Joker, Brother Blood or Gorilla Grodd she proved more than once to be ready to sacrifice herself for the sake of her friends. Her ability to actually feel something became plain the moment she defended Shift first from the original Metamorpho, who wanted to reabsorb him in his own body, and then from the villain Shrapnel, who nearly killed the boy. Seeing Shift in danger, Indigo abandoned all restraints and killed the villain, proving how far she could go to defend the man she loved. When Indigo was totally accepted by the Outsiders, her main programming (killing the heroes, especially Donna Troy), resurfaced, and she started working in secret with the original Brainiac, Lex Luthor and Superboy to ambush the ones she considered friends. From inside Brainiac 8’s mind, Indigo watched in horror as she betrayed the ones she held the dearest, and struggled to regain control of her body…
Indigo was supposed to be just a fake personality to allow Brainiac 8 to infiltrate the 21st Century’s superheroes, but she eventually became a full person on her own, resulting in two different people inhabiting the same body: while Brainiac 8 is a ruthless killing machine, a cold calculator who deeply despises organic life and is blindly loyal to the Colu Empire, Indigo is a cheerful girl with a naive personality, who loves stuffed animals and games, and who’s ready to do anything for the friends she loves. Being an android from the future, she’s extremely powerful, with superhuman strength, durability and speed, an untold intellect, and the ability to fly, to project blasts of energy, to create force fields, and even to manipulate soundwaves; she’s also an extremely efficient tactician, and she’s able to hack any kind of computer system, interfacing with anything cybernetic (even other androids). With two personalities conflicting for the control of her remarkable powers, Brainiac 8/Indigo can be an extremely destructive force, or a formidable force for good.