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Batwoman Grinning from Ear to Ear Review Batwoman Grinning from Ear to Ear Review

Batwoman

Batwoman Review – Serial Fashionista AKA Joker’s Daughter (1×14)

Credit: Batwoman/ The CW

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Batwoman’s episode wasn’t titled “grinning from ear to ear” because Batwoman and Sophie were still on cloud 9 from their kiss, but rather, it earned the title because it introduced a new villain to the city that had a thing for carving smiles into people’s faces. Sound familiar?

After dealing with a blood-sucking wanna-be vamp last week, Gotham City was plagued by Duela aka the serial fashionista aka Joker’s daughter in the DC Universe.

Duela was in-line with what you’d expect from the female-joker, and yet, the series left all that potential to deliver a promising, complex villain untapped.

That seems to be a flaw of ever Batwoman villain as of late — they’re one-dimensional and used as a plot device rather than someone that brings true danger and crime to the city.

Batwoman responded because it’s her job, but it felt like she was just going through the motions.

How can she be this disillusioned with the job so early on in her career?

What Batwoman seemed to want to be doing was dealing with what truly mattered — her love life with Sophie.

Yes, I’m complaining about the series focusing on character growth because it’s happening in all the wrong places.

Batwoman should be kicking ass, shouting her successes from the rooftops, and giving us some boss babe vibes while doing her best to maintain her anonymity, but instead, she’s sneaking around with her ex-girlfriend (who doesn’t know it’s her) and wanting to have her cake and eat it too.

Batwoman is putting her energy into the wrong things and it shows; her performance as the masked vigilante was lackluster and uninspired because she was preoccupied.

Kate wanted to believe that she could be the hero and have the girl, but all along, she knew deep down inside that it wasn’t possible and she’d be putting Sophie in danger. Sophie can take care of herself in a regular situation but with the label of Batwoman’s girlfriend, she’d become a target for every unhinged criminal in the city.

She’d become collateral.

Kate doesn’t even seem to have as much free time as Supergirl/Kara to lead a double life, so it wouldn’t work unless Sophie was fully on team Bat, and we all know she’s never going to permanently walk away from the Crows. Even if she wanted to, Jacob needs her.

Sophie didn’t even realize she enjoying the relationship solely because it was a secret until Kate gave her the option of fully knowing her identity and having a real relationship. Sophie then decided to back out because she realized she only liked the forbidden and fantasy-aspect of it.

Sophie has been hiding who she truly is for so long and having a relationship with a powerful woman whose identity she didn’t know kept the charade going.

When the realization dawned on her, she knew that it was time to take the first step in being honest about who she is and what makes her happy.

As expected, coming out to her mother did not go well and she was hit with the dreaded “I’m disappointed.” There’s nothing more painful than that.

Her arguments about Sophie going up against obstacles such as being a woman and being a black woman were valid, but they had absolutely nothing to do with also being gay. Just like being a woman or black weren’t Sophie’s choice, being gay wasn’t either.

However, those things may be obstacles but they’re also something that should be celebrated; they aren’t burdens.

While it was heartbreaking to see Sophie’s mother turn her back on her and refuse to accept that her child wasn’t what she wanted her to be, but it’s great that Batwoman highlighted the difficulties that come with coming out.

Much of the episode felt anti-climactic and like it was setting up the action for future episodes.

Alice was on the hunt for Cartwright and teamed up with Duela, though, again, there was so much potential here that went to waste.

Really, the only show-stopping thing Duela did was slit her mother’s throat.

Alice used and disposed of the “interesting little psychopath” after she got what she wanted… her face.

Yes, she quite literally cut off her entire face to use as a mask to sneak into Dr. Campell’s office aka Cartwright’s office undetected.

It was messed up on so many levels, but it’s just a reminder that Alice is deranged, and we shouldn’t forget it even when she does nice things like save Mary’s life.

Watching her confrontation with Cartwright was so satisfying because he thought she was dead, but it served as a second reminder that he’s a sick dude who kept children hostage and has no remorse for his actions.

Before she attempts to get her revenge, Alice needs to find Mouse, who is being pumped with fear toxin as we speak.

For those not familiar with the comics, fear toxin was a weapon used by Scarecrow that induced a victim’s mind with irrational fears that drove them insane. It was last used in Elseworlds in 2018!

You might wonder how much more insane Mouse and Alice can really get, but we’re about to find out.
It’s unclear why Alice didn’t take it upon herself to look for Mouse at the old house. All roads always lead back there, so it should have been her first instinct. Similarly, in the trailer, the Crows and Kate are interrogating Cartwright and looking for Alice and never once did it occur to them to look at the place where it all began.
The Commander reached back out to Sophie because he realized he needs someone he can trust and that isn’t anyone on the Crows anymore.
And then there’s poor Mary, who gave Kate chance after chance to tell her the truth and confide in her, and yet, Kate didn’t budge.
After her last statement about “trusting her,” Kate has to know that Mary figured out her secret identity. It’s not like Kate’s made it all that difficult.
If Mary had any doubts, the fact that Sophie confirmed she shared a kiss with Batwoman was all the proof she needed.
Mary constantly feels like she comes in second next to Alice, and when she found out that Alice knew Batwoman’s identity (and Alice seemed to have confirmed it also), it was just a reminder that no matter how good she is, she’s not good enough.
I do hope Kate tells Mary on her own terms because she needs to build up a team she can trust. Mary is in danger no matter what because of her relation to Kate, so the least she could do is get a heads up, right? She’s always helping her anyway, so let’s get her on Team Bat!
She deserves to know for simply figuring it out. Meanwhile, Sophie, whom I thought was for certain about Batwoman’s identity, didn’t know it was Kate despite kissing her.
Other Gotham Thought
  • Did anyone catch the Uncle Harvey reference… as in Harvey Dent!
  • Watching Alice get psychoanalyzed was the best thing ever. Sorry to the doc who ended up dead, but he gave her some great advice — she’s still the scared little girl.
  • If the Commander overturns the conviction of the man who killed Luscious Fox, it’s not going to be pretty.
What did you think of the episode? Sound off in the comments below!


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Lizzy Buczak is the founder of CraveYouTV. What started off as a silly blog in her sophomore year at Columbia College Chicago turned her passion for watching TV into an opportunity! She has been in charge of CraveYou since 2011, writing reviews and news content for a wide variety of shows. Lizzy is a Music Business and Journalism major who has written for RADIO.COM, TV Fanatic, Time Out Chicago, Innerview, Pop’stache and Family Time.

Coffee Table News

‘God Friended Me’ Actress Javicia Leslie Cast As New Lead in ‘Batwoman’

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Javicia Leslie Cast as New Lead in Batwoman

The CW has found its new Batwoman!

God Friended Me’s Javicia Leslie has been cast in the titular role. She replaces Ruby Rose, who starred as Kate Kane/Batwoman for one season, and announced her departure shortly after the season finale.

Leslie already has Rose’s blessing as she took to Instagram to congratulate the actress writing: “OMG!! This is amazing!! I am so glad Batwoman will be played by an amazing Black woman. I want to congratulate Javicia Leslie on taking over the bat cape. You are walking into an amazing cast and crew. I can’t wait to watch season 2 you are going to be amazing!!”

Leslie will not be filling Kate Kane’s shoes. As previously announced, she will star as a brand new character named Ryan Wilder. Per the official description, Wilder is far from Kate Kate. She’s “likable, messy, a little goofy and untamed,” and “with no one in her life to keep her on track, Ryan spent years as a drug-runner, dodging the GCPD and masking her pain with bad habits. A girl who would steal milk for an alley cat could also kill you with her bare hands, Ryan is the most dangerous type of fighter: highly skilled and wildly undisciplined. An out lesbian. Athletic. Raw. Passionate. Fallible. And very much not your stereotypical All-American hero.”

Who Is Ryan Wilder? ‘Batwoman’ Season 2 May Cast New Character in Superhero Role Following Ruby Rose’s Exit

This a major role for Leslie, who previously starred as Ali Finer in the CBS series, as it marks the first time a Black actress have been cast in the role of Batwoman in a live-action TV or film production. 

“I am extremely proud to be the first Black actress to play the iconic role of Batwoman on television,” she said in a statement, “and as a bisexual woman, I am honored to join this groundbreaking show, which has been such a trailblazer for the LGBTQ+ community.”

She shared the news on Instagram writing: “For all of the little black girls dreaming to be a superhero one day… it’s possible!”

Riverdale’s Vanessa Morgan was previously in talks for the role. 

It’s unclear how The CW series plans to move forward with the series considering many of the cliffhangers and major story arcs propelling the show into its second season focus on Kate Kane. 

The series is set to return in January as The CW delayed all of its scripted dramas to the 2021 TV season out of an abundance of caution due to the coronavirus pandemic.


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Editorials

Has ‘Batwoman’ Found Its Ryan Wilder in ‘Riverdale’s Vanessa Morgan? How Will Kate Kane’s Exit Change the Series?

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Will Vanessa Morgan Play Ryan Wilder on Batwoman?

Big changes are headed to The CW’s Batwoman when season 2 returns in 2021

When it was announced that Ruby Rose would not be reprising her role as Kate Kane aka Batwoman on the series, it was believed that the series would simply recast the actress and move on with season 1’s plotlines and cliffhangers in tact.

Imagine everyone’s surprise when it was announced that the series showrunners planned to introduce a brand new character to suit up in the cape and cowl of Gotham’s Scarlet Knight. 

The character of Ryan Wilder (which could still be a pseudonym) got the people talking because she was described as “likable, messy, a little goofy and untamed. She’s also nothing like Kate Kane, the woman who wore the batsuit before her. With no one in her life to keep her on track, Ryan spent years as a drug-runner, dodging the GCPD and masking her pain with bad habits. A girl who would steal milk for an alley cat could also kill you with her bare hands, Ryan is the most dangerous type of fighter: highly skilled and wildly undisciplined. An out lesbian. Athletic. Raw. Passionate. Fallible. And very much not your stereotypical All-American hero.”

Now, it seems like The CW has possibly nailed down their likable and goofy superhero as Vanessa Morgan, who currently stars as Riverdale’s Toni Topaz.

ComicBookMovie reports that Morgan is in talked for the titular role, which would definitely move Morgan up from the rank of “sidekick,” which she recently spoke out about when she explained she would no longer take roles that sidelined black women or used them as a token for diversity without giving them proper storylines. (Read: We Need to Acknowledge Vanessa Morgan’s Comments About Black Characters Being Portrayed as ‘Sidekicks’)

I loved Morgan in Finding Carter, and despite her limited role in Riverdale, she’s become a staple on the series. 

While Morgan absolutely deserves to be the star of the show, if she commits to a full-time role on Batwoman, what will that mean for Toni? Showrunner Roberto Aguirre Sacasa acknowledged her comments sparked by the Black Lives Matter, apologized and vowed to “do better,” and to “honor her and the character she plays.”

Many fans who like Toni and enjoy her relationship with Cheryl Blossom would likely love to find out what else there is to the Serpent. What’s her backstory? Who is she without a Blossom?

As Batwoman stands now, it’s hard to imagine any character in the role. We’re used to Ruby’s disposition and demeanor, and Kate Kane as Batwoman is the gist of every storyline on the series. 

Who Is Ryan Wilder? ‘Batwoman’ Season 2 May Cast New Character in Superhero Role Following Ruby Rose’s Exit

Without Kate Kane, the whole first season of Batwoman is essentially pointless. 

Without Kate Kane, Alice’s vendetta to kill Batwoman/her sister becomes null and void. The introduction of Tommy Elliot with the face of Bruce Wayne, Kate’s cousin, doesn’t hold as much weight. We’ll no longer care about the dynamic between Jacob Kane and Batwoman because it won’t be if the person under the cape and ruby hair is someone other than his daughter.

None of the relationships will be as captivating — Kate’s love triangle with Sophie and Julia doesn’t make sense without the shared ex. The bond between Luke Fox, Kate, and Mary is gone. 

Plain and simple — everything that we’ve enjoyed about the show, everything that has held us captivated is gone without Kate Kane. 

The series may be early enough in its run to flip the script, but at what cost? No one likes a recast, but the payoff seems much better than introducing a new character to take up the mantle when there is so much build-up around the former caped crusader.

And for Morgan, this means that if she does take on the lead in a series, it may be a series that is reinventing itself without any guarantee that it still has something to stand on.

Morgan may be up for the challenge, but is it worth it?


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Coffee Table News

Ruby Rose Leaving ‘Batwoman,’ Role to Be Recast for Season 2 on The CW

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Batwoman How Queer Everything is Today Review

Someone send up the Bat-signal because Gotham has lost its Batwoman. 

Ruby Rose, who starred as the titular character also known as Kate Kate, is leaving The CW series after one season. 

“I have made the very difficult decision to not return to Batwoman next season,” Rose said in a statement according to Deadline.

“This was not a decision I made lightly as I have the utmost respect for the cast, crew and everyone involved with the show in both Vancouver and in Los Angeles.”

Will Katy Keene Be Renewed for Season 2 at The CW?

“I am beyond appreciative to Greg Berlanti, Sarah Schechter and Caroline Dries for not only giving me this incredible opportunity, but for welcoming me into the DC universe they have so beautifully created,” she said. “Thank you Peter Roth and Mark Pedowitz and the teams at Warner Bros. and The CW who put so much into the show and always believed in me. Thank you to everyone who made season one a success – I am truly grateful.”

In her statement, she did not give a reason for her decision. Warner Bros. TV/Berlanti Prods. provided no other explanation. Sources reveal it doesn’t have anything to do with the injury she sustained while filming the first season. At the time, it was reported that Rose’s injury left her facing paralysis and requiring immediate surgery.

The studio offered up this statement:

“Warner Bros. Television, The CW and Berlanti Productions thank Ruby for her contributions to the success of our first season and wish her all the best,” the two companies said. “The studio and network are firmly committed to Batwoman’s second season and long-term future, and we — along with the show’s talented creative team — look forward to sharing its new direction, including the casting of a new lead actress and member of the LGBTQ community, in the coming months.”

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Tonight…

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Rose made waves when she was cast as the first LGBTQ superhero in the summer of 2018. She made her debut in the Arrowverse realm in the fall 2018-2019 CW lineup. 

The series will be looking to recast the titular character ahead of the show’s second season. 

Earlier this week, The CW revealed the series will be returning in 2021 as part of the midseason programming alongside all other scripted dramas. This buys them some time to brainstorm, make some offers, and revive the show so that it doesn’t skip a beat or make too many missteps. 

However, since Supergirl was left off the midseason schedule, it’s safe to assume Rose’s exit was either unplanned or The CW is confident it can cast an equally as gripping and groundbreaking lead. 

Regardless of what you thought about Rose in the role, recasting is never good news for a series or fans, who have grown accustomed to a certain face when they think of that character. 

Are you shocked by the decision? Do you think there is someone else better suited for the role? Who will be able to fill out the cape and reddish-pink wig?

My suggestion: Phoebe Tonkin. She already proved that she’s more than capable of being an independent bada** on The Originals.

If you have a casting suggestion, drop it in our comments below! 


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