The 1 Thing Audiences Love About ‘Stumptown’ So Far

It looks like ABC has a hit with Stumptown. The show stars Cobie Smulders (How I met Your Mother) in a role like no one has ever seen her in before.

While there are many things about the show that both Smulders and the fans the new show has already amassed love, there is one aspect in particular that the audience loves.

One of the best female leads in television

IOANNA GIKA as her character in Stumptown
IOANNA GIKA | Tony Rivetti/ABC via Getty Images

In Stumptown, Cobie Smulders plays Dex Parios, a woman who has been to Hell and back and is just trying to figure out how to keep her head above water.

What the fans love about Dex is that she is a strong woman who isn’t afraid to do whatever it takes to survive. Unlike many strong female characters, who are so together they come across as perfect and are therefore unrelatable, Dex is also deeply flawed.

She makes mistakes, she has demons, and she has surprisingly relatable problems. It’s the perfect character in this pro-feminist era.

A little about Dex

The Stumptown pilot did many things well, including providing a good introduction of Dex Parios. By the end of the pilot, viewers understand that during her time in the Marines, she served in Afghanistan, where she developed PTSD. She is also struggling with gambling addiction.

She’s left the Marines and returned to Portland, Oregon where she is struggling to stay financially afloat while she works as a private investigator.

She is forced to take a job she’d rather avoid, partly because she is in debt to the client, but mostly because she must support her brother who has Down syndrome and is counting on her.

The pilot does a great job of showcasing how Dex is innovative, clever, observant, and experiencing a great deal of internal pain. It also leaves no doubt that this show is a unique blend of action, drama, and comedy.

‘Stumptown’ history

Not many people realize that Stumptown didn’t start out as a show. The show is based on a comic book series by the same name.

The comic was created by Greg Rucka (writer) and Matthew Southworth (artist) and has enjoyed a moderate amount of success.

So far, it looks like the small screen version of Dex Parios bears a close resemblance to the comic book character, though it’s difficult to say if the show decides to make changes to the character as it evolves.

Is Cobie Smulders up for the challenge

To some, the idea of Cobie Smulders in a hard-hitting, wisecracking role like Dex Parios seems hard to grasp. The majority of her fans know her from her time on How I Met Your Mother, where she played a one-hit wonder former pop star and friend to a group of goofballs.

The role left no doubt that she’s a brilliant comedic actress, no one expected her to take on a role that involved so much drama and action. 

The first real hint that Cobie Smulders was more than a pretty face with a great sense of humor was when she stepped into the Marvel Universe as Maria Hill.

While her Marvel role was small, it did prove that she could handle herself in a role that didn’t rely on pure comedy and also gave her a taste of what it was like to shoot a project that is set in a comic book world.

Smulders is quick to say that Stumptown is not like any other project she’s ever worked on. It’s more physically and emotionally demanding, but since she appears to be thriving, that’s okay.

The great thing about Stumptown is that, so far, it appears to be a completely unique program that features characters like we’ve never seen before.