Trans actress Nicole Maines will play the role.
Samuel Leighton-Dore

23 Jul 2018 - 10:24 AM  UPDATED 23 Jul 2018 - 10:24 AM

The CW's Supergirl series is set to make history - and for all the right reasons.

Comic book fans were thrilled over the weekend to learn that trans actress Nicole Maines has been cast to play TV's first ever superhero in the fourth season of the show, which also stars Melissa Benoist.

Maines will play Nia Nal, AKA the superhero Dreamer - a "soulful young woman" with "sparkling wit and biting humour".

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In an interview with Variety, Maines said: “It feels fitting to say with great power, comes great responsibility."

She added: "I’m nervous because I want to do it right.

“We can be whoever we want, we can do whatever we want, we can be superheroes, because in many ways we are," she said.

“We’ve had trans representation in television for a while but it hasn’t been the right representation.”

Describing the pain of seeing male actors play trans women, Maines said: “They’re men in dresses and that was damaging for a long time.

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“I think we’re in a time right now where more than ever representation in the media matters. And what we see on television has a very dramatic effect on our society.”

She continued: “I think that cis gender actors don’t take roles out of malice, it’s just a failure to realise the context of having cis gender people play trans gender characters.

“We don’t see the same issue with sexuality, we see straight people play gay all the time. With trans folks we have a lot of people accusing us of just playing dress up for whatever reasons and that’s just not true.

“Having trans people play trans roles shows that we are valid in our identities and we exist.”