Comical character actor Thomas Lennon is moving to National City. He has been set to recur in the back end of ‘Supergirl’ Season 5 as Mr. Mxyzptlk, the mischievous imp from the 5th Dimension. Viewers may recall that Mxyzptlk has already appeared on ‘Supergirl’ in two episodes from the second season, in which he was played by Peter Gadiot, but it appears that his change of appearance is being explained away by the fact that he is magical and can change his form. In those first two episodes, Mxyzptlk came to National City to woo the Girl of Steel. It has not been revealed why he is returning. (And actually, is there even a National City to return to?)
Mr. Mxyzptlk (pronounced “miks-yez-PIT-əl-ik”) was first introduced in 1944 in ‘Superman’ #30 and has proven to be one of the more persistent pests of the DC Universe, due to Superman and Supergirl’s vulnerability to magic. He was never a real “villain,” but more of a mystical pain in the ass who simply derived joy from messing with Superman and at times, his fellow heroes.
Batman was later given his own “Mxyzptlk” in the form of Bat-Mite, while Aquaman was sometimes bothered by a similar water sprite named Quisp.
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Mxyzptlk has appeared in numerous adaptations, going back to the 1966 ‘The New Adventures of Superman’ animated series, followed by the ‘Super Friends’, ‘Superman: The Animated Series’ (voiced by Gilbert Gottfried), ‘Batman: The Brave and the Bold’, and ‘Justice League Action’. In live-action, he appeared on the early ’90s ‘Superboy’ series, ‘Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman’ (played by Howie Mandel), and ‘Smallville’. In the comics and cartoons, Mxyzptlk looks similar to a little person, but so far, he has only been portrayed by average-sized actors.
Lennon first gained notice on the 1990s MTV sketch comedy series ‘The State’, and he has gone on to be one of those familiar faces that pops up on nearly everything. He is perhaps best known for starring as the leggy Lieutenant Jim Dangle on ‘Reno 911’, which it was recently announced was getting a revival on mobile streaming service Quibi.
Of course, the Arrowverse is in the midst of the titanic “Crisis on Infinite Earths” crossover, so who knows what “The State” of things will be when Lennon makes his debut. But fans will probably be in need of a laugh, so his coming should be quite welcome.