Jonathan Cake Discusses The Shade’s Role in Stargirl Season 2

For the last two months, Stargirl fans have been watching Jonathan Cake terrorize Blue Valley as the series’ newest villain, The Shade. He’s a character who should have been very familiar to longtime DC fans. Regardless, The Shade is still a mystery to casual viewers. Luckily, tonight’s new episode will shed new light on the villain’s motives. Ahead of its debut, Cake spoke with CBR about what makes The Shade such a compelling adversary.

During the interview, Cake discussed the current season’s larger theme of bad vs. evil. Specifically, he addressed The Shade’s role in prompting viewers to consider the difference between those two concepts themselves.

“I think one of the things that really distinguishes this show is its interest in moral ambiguity,” explained Cake. “And particularly in how hard it is to be a morally unpredictable person, and how easy it is to be morally compromised, whoever you are, whether you are technically supposed to be ‘a hero’ or ‘a villain.’ There’s something that I think is particularly — or, at least, it seems so to me, because I’m playing him — particularly delicious in that for The Shade.”

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Additionally, Cake teased that tonight’s episode might lead viewers to see The Shade in a more sympathetic light than they previously expected.

“There’s a sort of interesting emotional PTSD about him, I think,” added Cake. “Which I find fascinating simply because that’s just the truth of how somebody who is over 200 years old and has gone through the things that they’ve gone through and had all their close people die — has outlasted them all. The sense of only being able to be really animated by things that are new and novel and original and therefore interesting to him I think is a really fascinating place to be.”

The next episode of Stargirl airs tonight at 8pm on The CW.

Have you been enjoying Cake’s performance on the series? Let us know in the comment section below!

Recommended Reading: Stargirl by Geoff Johns

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