Batwoman Season 2 Episode 4 dug into Ryan’s past and proved that she’s much more connected to the happenings of Gotham than we previously believed.
The search for Kate continues as Commander Kane announces at a press conference that he thinks his daughter is alive. The million dollar reward lead many to believe this is a futile attempt to right the wrongs of his past, but he’s adamant he’s just a dad looking for his baby girl.
And he is… but he’s unaware that there’s so much bubbling below the surface, which becomes more evident as the search for Kate continues and is revealed to be very layered.
Everyone in town has some kind of ulterior-motive.
For starters, Alice and Sophie team-up because of the deal Alice made with Safiyah. This isn’t a partnership I’d ever thought we’d see, but it brings a new dynamic to the series.
When you share a common goal, the enemy of your enemy is your friend and all that. These two need each other, but they also have to keep each other at arm’s length.
Sophie isn’t totally on-board with helping Alice as she double-crosses her and learns that it’s not so easy to pull a fast one over Alice; she’s too quick and informed.
Sophie and Alice may have the same goal of finding Kate, but the endgame is much different. Sophie, like the Commander, wants to bring Kate to safety. Alice, on the other hand, still wants to kill her sister.
And thus, the race is on. Who can get to Kate first? (I’m over here still wondering if there’s even a Kate to save!?)
Sophie wasn’t the only one making poor decisions to find Kate. Commander Kane followed a lead without backup, which almost cost him his life as he came face-to-face with the False Face Society, a new gang producing a psychedelic party drug that induces visions of fear and fantasy and has been taking over the streets of Gotham.
My guess is that whoever is at the head of the secret society is somehow involved with Kate’s disappearance and linked to Safiyah.
After all, all the roads seem to be intertwined here. But for now, it’s uncleared how this new drug or gang fits into the bigger picture.
The society was working with the Candy Lady, quite possibly the scariest villain to ever grace our TV screens because she was an inconspicuous white woman hiding behind her perfect suburban life.
No one batted an eyelash at a middle-aged woman in a minivan because there’s no reality where she could be perceived a danger. In the same way, no one batted an eyelash when a black kid, especially a black kid in the foster system, went missing, which is who she preyed on for her child trafficking ring. It was a heartbreaking look at how isolating the foster system is, and how easy it is to prey on a foster child’s biggest fear.
In this case: wanting a family. The Candy Lady was able to break these children down by making them realize no one cares for them and forcing them to want a family that much more.
As Ryan aims to find the Candy Lady’s latest victim, Kevin Johnson, she’s forced to relive the most brutal moments from her own kidnapping at the hands of Candice Long.
Who knew jelly beans could be so terrifying?
Ryan’s an intriguing character because she’s gone through hell and back. She has every right to be corrupt, to do bad things, or to give up, and yet, she never does. Instead, she fights for the people who couldn’t fight back; she fights for those in the same helpless situations she once found herself in.
Peeling back her layers gives us a better understanding of the character, the trauma she endured, and the motivations to fix things and do better.
When she faced the Candy Lady this time, she was still caught off-guard, which was kind of annoying, but at least she could fight back in a way she couldn’t when she was younger.
Ryan’s past isn’t just connected to the present through the Candy Lady — it’s how she escaped the Candy Land that matters also.
Her ex, Angelique, who we knew was going to come into play sooner or later, was responsible for rescuing her. In the beginning of the episode, Ryan is hesitant to reach out because they’ve drifted. In previous episodes, she alludes to the fact that Angelique rolls with a bad group now.
However, when she does finally reconnect with her ex, Ryan calls a truce and says she misses her. Is this part of a larger plan? Or does Ryan really want to find common ground with her ex again?
Regardless, it seems like Ryan didn’t do her due diligence as Angelique is the same woman we saw Sophie and Alice fending off when they arrived at Ocean’s place.
Angelique made it seem like she was just trying to case the place, but it’s obviously not a coincidence that she was looking for the same man that the two women working for Safiyah.
What’s the deal here? And is Ryan’s new relationship with her ex going to cause a problem for her?
There’s also Alice’s flashbacks to meeting Ocean in Coryana, which she’s seemingly blocked out. Was there a romance here? I can’t blame her if there was because he’s one good looking man.
Is Safiyah betting on the fact that Alice won’t be able to complete the mission to get her sister back because of the suppressed feelings for Ocean?
And what does Saifyah want from Ocean? How is he connected to Kate?
What does the Joker’s painting have to do with Kate’s disappearance?
There’s also the possibility of a Bat-Crow team-up, which naturally makes sense. The Commander always saw Batwoman as a villain when, in reality, they’re both fighting for justice and taking down the same criminals.
They could accomplish so much more if they just worked together and shared resources.
Mary is much more involved this season, which is probably the best thing about the season next to Alice’s snark. Mary is the only one who has been open and welcoming to Ryan — heck, she even offered her a place to stay.
While she’s likely trying to fill a Kate-sized void, Mary also admitted that in order to get closure, she needs to figure out what happened to Kate and that involves embracing the possibility that Alice is right and Kate is actually alive.
If anyone is to unearth the truth, my money is on Mary!
Other Notable Moments
- Ryan and Beth had another thing in common — they were both kidnapped around the same time, and they both had to look out for themselves. This makes it that much more impressive that Ryan went down the “hero” route, while Alice went down the rabbit hole and wants to dish out revenge to everyone who “gave up on her.” Especially because Kate never gave up on Beth, while Ryan didn’t have that many people looking out for her.
- Luke Fox’s reaction to learning that Sophie and Alice were working together was great!
- I love that Batwoman isn’t above helping the kids who feel invisible. She’s an equal opportunity hero who cares about everyone!
The episode was interesting, but the series is weaving quite a tangled web with very few explanations for now. Let’s hope they don’t get caught up in it and it all begins to make sense sooner rather than later. We all know that the audience begins to lose interest the moment the narrative loses them!
Batwoman Review – Gore on Canvas (2×05)
An unlikely partnership formed on Batwoman Season 2 Episode 5 between the Batwoman and The Crows.
The organization and the vigilante (and her team) put aside their differences to pursue a common goal: nab the Jack Napier (Joker) painting and get information on Coryana, the mysterious island where Safiyah is reportedly holding Kate hostage.
The whole save Kate motivation is pretty whatever in my opinion since I’m convinced that Kate (played by Ruby Rose) is no longer part of the show, but it’s nice to see these unlikely characters work together in a way we’ve never seen before.
It has also set up some pretty intense confrontations that question everyone’s morality.
Batwoman was against working with the Crows initially, and for good reason — they’ve ruined her life for their enjoyment.
We see the way Sophie talks to her when she’s just Ryan, and it’s a stark difference from the way she treats her when she’s the Bat.
But when it came down to it, Luke’s “I hate the Crows” reason trumped Ryan’s as the organization was literally responsible for his father’s death.
If he could put that aside to save Kate, Ryan could surely look the other way for one night.
However, that ended up blowing up right in her face as she learned the most important lesson: always trust your gut. All of her concerns about the authoritarian-like organization come to pass.
We knew the Crows were a corrupt and dangerous organization, but we’ve never seen it pan out in such a way where two of Sophie’s men run over the Wolf Spider who nabbed the painting before Batwoman could, retrieve the painting, and leave him for dead.
What’s worse is that one of the men is reluctant to go through with it while the other doesn’t want to be dragged for excessive force. It’s evident this is the series’ way of working in real-life issues stemming from the Black Lives Matter movement in a subtle way, and it works.
Batwoman basically gives Sophie an ultimatum — me or them, and Sophie tries to explain that she wants to be the change within the organization. Again, it’s a subtle depiction of the Black versus Blue situation we watched play out all summer, and it also works in the context of the story.
Ryan has never been a fan of Sophie, and vice-versa if Sophie knew Batwoman’s real identity, but knowing Sophie will stand by such corruption just escalates Ryan’s feelings.
It’s an interesting dynamic because both women have so much in common and yet are so different.
Sophie’s a Black woman who is intelligent and has a high-level job, but she’s still choosing to fight for the “bad guy” with no redeeming qualities.
When will it get to a point where she can no longer defend them and the injustice they dish out?
Ryan’s anti-Crows sentiment makes sense, but it’s unclear why Jacob Kane still holds so much resentment towards Batwoman. You’d think that after finding out his missing daughter used to be the caped-crusader and now, another brave soul has taken the mantle in her absence, he’d be more welcoming to the idea of working with her. She’s only saved his life twice already.
And why isn’t he a better fighter? For a “Crow at the top,” he didn’t even seem to know how to throw a punch when confronting one of Coryana’s men in the alleyway.
You’d think that after everything that’s transpired, Jacob would want to evoke a change within the organization, but he’s still allowing his ego to get in the way of any true progress.
It was obvious that the Wolf Spider was Evan, and I’m kind of glad it was. He wasn’t just some other villain being introduced as he told Mary that his motivation was to get the painting for Kate.
I love that there’s someone outside of Kate’s immediate circle who feels like they owe her because she helped them become their true selves. I kind of hope Evan becomes involved in the series in some way!
Everyone’s efforts proved to be futile because the Jack Napier painting turned out to be a fake in the long-run.
But the original isn’t missing at all — Ocean has it. Remember the guy that Alice was tasked to kill before she had a vision that revealed she knew him during her time on Coryana?
Well, she successfully tracked him down at a bar, and who would have thought I’d enjoy Alice toning down the theatrics for a week to down five tequila shots with an attractive man while having an ulterior motive?
I can’t blame Alice for being intrigued by Ocean because I too want to know more about him and his time on the island.
For starters, why can’t either of them remember that they knew each other? Or most importantly — that they were in love?
Giving the show’s resident psycho a love story is one way to shake things up.
But is it going to cause Alice to go soft? It’s already happening as she opted against killing Ocean despite having so many chances, as he so graciously pointed out.
While I don’t think she’s ever going to let up on being completely unhinged, we’ve never seen Alice actually in love with someone. Love changes people!
The two of them made a great team as they took out Safiyah’s men, and their time together unveiled some of the most crucial bits of information: he has the painting (which we know is a map to Coryana hidden under the guts of one of the Joker’s victims), they have amnesia for some reason, and Ocean referred to Safiyah as his “sister.”
What does this all mean? Safiyah must have erased their memories for a reason, but wouldn’t she know that bringing them together would unlock them? Unless that’s what she wants.
There seems to be a larger game at play here for Safiyah than just returning Kate Kane. It’s almost as if she’s the cat and Alice, Ocean, Batwoman, and the Crows are her little missing, which, you know, fitting.
Other Batty Moments
- Angelique and Ryan rekindled their relationship, which gave us insight into the past. Ryan took Angelique’s drugs when she was spiraling and was caught with them by the Crows, which led to her 18-month stint for something she didn’t do!
- We know Angelique was at Ocean’s apartment, and seeing as though she was at the Collective party and still selling drugs (despite being sober), it’s safe to say she’s working for someone who is looking for the Napier painting. This leads us to believe that she’s wrapped up in something that’s going to make her relationship with Ryan quite difficult.
- Nothing better than Alice telling some cocky man at the bar that she killed her mouse. It was a joy to watch him run off. I’ll have to try that line next time!
- Can Ryan take care of that injury like for real? I know she doesn’t want Luke and Mary to think she’s not capable of being Batwoman, but she really doesn’t understand what she’s dealing with her. How does she expect them to trust her or be honest with her if she doesn’t return the favor? And the Kryptonite is already causing her to fumble while she’s trying to nab the bad guys!
- How stunning did Javicia Leslie look in that borrowed couture?!
What did you think of the episode? What do you think Safiyah truly wants?
Are you digging Ocean and Alice?
Batwoman Review – Bat Girl Magic! (2×03)
For a show centered around a vigilante hero, the supervillains sure do steal the spotlight quite frequently.
On Batwoman Season 2 Episode 3, the mystifying Safiyah was finally introduced as the show took a little getaway trip to Coryana.
But while Alice and Sophie were away, a highly-skilled assassin by the name of Victor Zsasz was creating havoc back at home in Gotham.
The episode kicked off with a pretty gruesome scene featuring the prolific killer wiping out a man and his mistress. While the murders were simply for dramatic effect, they helped paint a clear picture of Zsasz’s specialized skills and ruthlessness — he’s a man who logs his murders by carving a tally onto his body.
Watching him self-inflict cuts offered up one of the most disturbing moments of the series despite the show’s attempt at injecting some humor about there not being enough room on his body for any new kills.
Is there a qualification for the assassins/villains to be chatty and jokey? He reminded me of Alice’s male counterpart.
Zsasz then infiltrated Hamilton Dynamics — in broad daylight, might I add — to steal a drive filled with names of regular people. At first, it didn’t make much sense until Mary discovered that one of her patients with stage 4 cancer is now cancer-free. And the patient was treated for bat bites with the dessert rose, which seems to be a universal cure-all for every single illness and disease.
Yeah, no wonder Safiyah isn’t pleased with Alice for exposing her miracle plant.
While it’s not clear if the Batwoman team went out of their way to protect every person on that list, it did tie in the events happening in Coryana.
Safiyah may not look like a cold-blooded killer, but she seems to play more of a mental game. And those are usually the ones you have to look out for. I haven’t gotten a firm reading on her vibe just yet, plus, I felt conflicted with everything that transpired between her and Alice.
Alice’s plan to kill Safiyah as revenge for killing Kate didn’t really go as planned. Instead, she found out that Safiyah wasn’t responsible for killing Kate… because she said Kate is on the island!
It seems as though the series keeps wanting to sell the narrative that Kate is still alive and somehow making it back to Gotham City, but we know Ruby Rose exited the series permanently. So, what’s the deal here? Was Rose’s exit simply part of the story-arc?
After their little trip, which took up a good chunk of the episode but did little other than provide calming spa music in the background, Sophie and Alice now have a renewed sense of hope that they’ll find Kate. Sophie even transferred that hope over to the Commander.
However, Mary is the only one being semi-logical by breaking it down for Luke that if Kate was on that plane, there’s no chance she made it out alive.
Of course, the caveat being “if” Kate was on the plane, which according to Safiyah, she wasn’t. Who knows, honestly. But if she is out there somewhere, Mary is going to feel rather guilty for giving up hope so prematurely.
However, Kate’s cell phone was definitely on the plane and the Commander learned she was looking into artwork by Jack Napier aka the Joker?
What’s the connection here?
You would think spending a whole episode in Coryana with little to no action between these friends-turned-nemesis would unearth more intel or give fans some kind of insight as to what the series has planned.
Even if Safiyah is telling the truth, why does she have Kate? We know she wanted the weapon capable of penetrating the Batsuit before, but what could she want this time? And what does she want Alice to do in Gotham?
And I’m not convinced she didn’t blow up the plane, even if Kate wasn’t on it. Because if you were to get away with a successful kidnapping, you’d hide your tracks by blowing up said plane and making everyone believe the person you kidnapped died. Right?
The trip did give us a little background into Alice, who we now know ended up being Safiyah’s apprentice on the island for five years before going to Gotham to reunite with her sister. And it seems that for a time, Alice wasn’t as vengeful as she is now.
Sadly, the stunt she pulled with Dessert Rose cure has now made Mary a target, and I’ll be damned if anyone hurts a hair on sweet Mary’s head. Not only is she insanely fashionable lately, but her performance is stellar.
Back in Gotham, Ryan was doing her best to perform Batwoman’s duties, but since the suit wasn’t outfitted for her, she struggled quite a bit. Why doesn’t the thing come with a manual?
Despite the stumbles and fumbles, Zsasz’s critique of her sense of self-identity and confidence inspired her to debut a brand-new look that was more her speed.
Even a superhero needs to feel confident in her body!
And by now, the residents of Gotham are not only realizing there’s someone new under the cape and cowl, but they’re also embracing the diversity and just glad to have someone watching their back again.
It’s not surprising that Ryan is feeling a bit like an imposter as everyone, aside from Mary, thinks she’s just a temporary place holder, but as she begins to own this new role and feel more secure in it, I think she’ll prove them all wrong.
She’s also getting back on her feet and had landed a job at The Hold Up to cover for her vigilante work. Though, I couldn’t help but chuckle at her parole officer raving about Batwoman yet looking down on criminals who seem to follow the same code. A classic case of rules for me, not for thee.
There was a lot going on that it was easy to miss the subtle introduction of Snakebite and False Face Society. The Crows are looking into the new drug laced with Scarecrow’s fear toxin, and they may already have the man at the top of the command chain: the Black Mask.
Of course, this makes that Jack Napier reference all the more interesting because on Earth One, the Joker was the leader of the False Face Society.
How does it all connect?
And we can’t forget that Zszasz and Ryan, who somehow run in the same circles, by the way, mentioned her ex, Angelique Martin. It was easily missed, but if she wasn’t important, they wouldn’t take the time to clue us in on her. There’s no doubt she’s going to appear sometime soon and create a mess for our hero who is slowly getting her life on track.
We’re now three episodes into the rebooted season, but it still feels like the season is setting up its play versus actually digging into the material, which has the potential to alienate a lot of fans, especially if you’re not familiar with or are loosely familiar with the comic-book canon.
What did you think of the episode? Did Safiyah make an impression on you? Are you worried for Mary? Do you think Kate is alive?
Batwoman Review – Bat Attack (2×02)
Bats are attacking Gotham City and the only person that can stop them is Batwoman… the new one, who is deathly afraid of bats.
Alice’s plots are always so poetic, you have to give her credit for bringing the creativity and keeping the town on its toes.
We already know Alice is deranged, but Batwoman doesn’t waste a moment trying to remind fans just how next-level she really is. The way she strapped that rat to Mouse and then unleashed bats onto his body was, well, disturbing. And we’ve come to expect nothing less.
But the remainder of the episode fell flat since she unleashed a plague and delivered the cure in one fell swoop. Sophie and Mary know that Alice is too cunning and must have a larger motive, which we learn involves triggering Safiya, so while her “master plan” was just the opener to something bigger and badder, it felt wasted in the context of the episode.
Also, was it Alice’s plan to make Hamilton Dynamics look like the heroes by delivering the cure? Or was it just an unforeseen outcome of “doing the right thing?”
Or will the Desert Rose eventually prove to have some undisclosed side effects that will take a toll on Mary and the rest of Batwoman’s supporters who suffered bat bites? Because then, she’d be exacting revenge against Safiyah and taking down Hamilton Dynamics at once, which is, well, bloody brilliant.
Alice’s plan isn’t entirely clear at this point, but she seemed to achieve part one which was getting Safiyah’s attention. Why was she so upset about the Desert Rose being used? What does Alice hope to gain from their meeting? Does she think that Kate is still alive and Safiyah has her?
Ryan Wilder stepped in to save Gotham from Alice’s wrath, and while wanting to be a hero surely played into her decision to step into the batsuit again, she was also ecstatic over the opportunity to throw some punches Alice’s way. Plus, she now knows that Alice is responsible for killing her mother and Mary’s mom, so she has a lot of rage inside.
And I definitely enjoyed someone confronting Alice who actually has the guts to kill her. Yes, Batwoman’s M.O is “do not kill,” but isn’t it just a little fun when Alice knows that the new vigilante won’t hesitate to kill her?
Ryan once again proved that she what it takes to wear the suit. She put the people of Gotham first and chose to save them instead of pursuing Alice when push came to shove. She also thwarted the danger by successfully luring all the bats into a bus using the frequency that was attracting them to the rally.
And she provided us with a pretty cool Batmobile scene. Not to mention she did all of this while still being affected by her kryptonite wound. She might want to take care of that sooner rather than later.
However, taking on bats as an enemy is not like taking on Gotham’s worst criminals. And despite her desire to kill Alice, Ryan proved that she may need a little more training.
She has martial art skills and a firm understanding of the bad guys having spent most of her life around them, but the dangers looming over Gotham, like Safiyah, are a little above her pay grade. As Luke mentioned, Kate was at the top of her class and still struggled sometimes.
Ryan can definitely handle it — plus, it’s all they really have at the moment — but she’s going to need to lean heavily on Mary and Luke as they help craft her into the hero that can handle whatever and whoever comes her way.
As Mary helps Ryan get the ropes of this Batwoman thing, maybe Ryan can return the favor and give Mary some self-defense training? Mary has put herself in some dangerous situations over the years, and as she comes face-to-face with Gotham’s worst, like Alice, who seems drawn to her to replace Kate, she’s going to need to know how to fight back and protect herself!
The Commander was mostly in the shadows this episode, but he did grill Mary and Luke about Kate Kane being Batwoman. Obviously, neither of them talked, but if he wants to avoid history repeating itself, he needs to focus less on trying to find Kate and bonding with Mary, the one daughter he still has left.
While the Crows clearly use Mary’s clinic, he still has no idea about her work there or her involvement with Batwoman, which once again makes him the father that’s out of touch with his own daughter. And isn’t that a huge chunk of the issue in the first place?
Unlike Alice, who was just a child when she was kidnapped and tortured, Kate is a grown woman who is more than capable of taking care of herself. If she’s alive — and big “if” because obviously, Ruby Rose has left the building — she doesn’t need to be saved the way Alice needed it. And holding out hope instead of embracing the present isn’t any way to move forward. It’s dangerous for the city.
Also, is it me or does he still seem to hold resentment for Batwoman? Even the new one. Maybe he should try to work with her this time around to truly right the mistakes of his past.
Sophie is logical 75% of the time, but then she goes and pulls a stunt like ambushing Alice alone without any backup. I can understand not wanting to bring all of the Crows along, but why wouldn’t she at least bring Julia?
They may have had a personal falling out, but professionally, Julia is still her best and biggest ally. Also, it’s petty of Sophie to hold it against Julia that she kept Kate’s secret. If the roles had been reversed, Sophie would have kept Kate’s secret from Julia in a heartbeat. Why? Because they both loved Kate and wanted to protect her.
It wasn’t Julia’s secret to tell, and she shouldn’t be faulted for it. If anything, Sophie should be wondering why Kate never thought she could trust her enough to tell her the truth? Maybe it was all about protecting Sophie, but her anger should be more directed at Kate for lying.
Unfortunately, Kate is not around so Julia is Sophie’s punching bag. I’m eager for them to get past this and work together again cause I actually like them as a couple.
Hitting “reset” with a new caped crusader gives Batwoman a chance to right the wrongs of season 1, which alienated a huge chunk of the audience. However, these weak plots simply aren’t cutting it, and the series is still repeating the same mistakes instead of elevating and taking the show in a new direction.
My suggestion: spend less time talking about Kate and what Kate would do (she has her chance to do plenty) and embrace the new administration. Change is inevitable and also exhilarating. Ryan offers a new perspective and a new way of doing things, which may take some getting used to, but it’s necessary. She has a new skillset, a past that influences her decisions, and a new approach. The series needs to let her do it her way!
What did you think of the episode? Hit the comments with your thoughts!
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