Comics-based TV shows and movies have been huge hits in recent years, and CBS has a project in the works that could take it back into the comic book adaptation game. A series based on DC Comics’ Secret Six is in the works at CBS, and it could bring one of DC’s lesser-known groups to primetime.
The Secret Six project is slated to follow six strangers who are all morally ambiguous in their own ways. They’re brought together thanks to blackmail courtesy of a mystery figure. They have no choice but to work as a team in order to expose corruption in the world around them, both political and corporate. Although details about the six characters are currently scarce, each will bring unique skills (and enigmatic pasts) to the table.
Secret Six has received a pilot production commitment from CBS, according to Variety, so the odds are pretty decent that this developing project could become a series. The success of other comics-based projects could certainly be motivating to CBS, although it’s worth noting that this would mark CBS’ second attempt at a DC Comics-based TV show in recent years.
Supergirl, which has carved a nice little niche for itself as part of the Arrow-verse over on The CW, started out at CBS with huge ratings. Those ratings died down, and due to a number of factors, the decision was made to move Supergirl from CBS to The CW. The move likely saved Supergirl from cancellation after its first season, although it did come at the cost of Calista Flockhart, who did not remain on board as a regular for the move to Vancouver.
Rick Muirragui is on board as writer and executive producer. After his work as writer and co-executive producer over on USA’s hit legal drama Suits, he clearly knows how to make hit television. Interestingly, there have been multiple versions of the Secret Six team on the pages of DC Comics over the years, and we can only guess at this point which of them will or won’t be adapted for the show, if it gets a series order.
The first incarnation of the Secret Six team was comprised of a group of undercover operatives brought together via blackmail by the mysterious Mockingbird, and they made their debut in 1968. A second incarnation debuted in 1988 and saw the introduction of a whole new group of heroes after the previous batch died. Another version was comprised of villains whose missions often resulted in a body count, with members including Catman, Deadshot, and Cheshire.
My money is on CBS’ Secret Six being more or less based on the first version of the team in DC Comics. I imagine that recognizable DC villains will generally be saved for DC Universe or the Arrow-verse, which continues to introduce new comic characters. (It’s worth noting that the Arrow-verse did already introduce a Deadshot.) If CBS goes with some lesser-known characters, viewers have the chance to go in with limited preconceptions and open minds.