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NBC's "Powerless" claims professional brings positive insurance character to television viewers.

By Eric Gilkey

It’s tough to avoid the Marvel and DC Comic universes this summer (not that anyone around these offices would, of course). Against the backdrop of stories about Captain America, Batman, and Superman playing out in theaters, however, was an announcement in May by NBC that it had greenlit a workplace comedy called “Powerless.” It’s a show that will tell the stories of the regular folks living in the land of DC Comics superheroes who are tasked with the cleanup after yet another world-ending crisis has been averted.

More interestingly, “Powerless” will focus on the story of a claims professional played with sunny cheer by Vanessa Hudgens, whose character is described as “loving her job because she gets to help people.” Another synopsis of the series says the character “might just discover that being a hero doesn’t always require superpowers.” 

Is anyone else’s mouth agape? Could it be that all of our efforts to redefine the claims profession in-house and beyond worked so well that even Hollywood took notice? Has the day arrived in which claims professionals really are recognized for the heroic work they do each and every day amidst a staggering sum of responsibilities and expectations from policyholders and supervisors?

Apparently, we’ll all get the chance to see. The pessimist in me worries that while the claims professional may wear the halo, the depiction of the insurer might take a less enlightened visage—the monolith against which our claims professional must push back against. The optimist in me, however, welcomes the change in perception—even if it’s an incremental one.

Eric Gilkey is executive editor of CLM Magazine, a publication of the Claims and Litigation Management (CLM) Alliance. He may be reached at eric.gilkey@TheCLM.org.

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