But not like that! Ruby Rose is out, but so is Kate Kane…literally! As it appears the move has been made to introduce an entirely new character to step into the Batcave when Batwoman returns for its second season!
And the cowl goes to… Fans of The CW hit series were dealt another blow this week when The Hollywood Reporter posted a story that after the recent departure of its lead actress Batwoman will get retooled when it returns for Season 2. Ruby Rose shocked the primetime landscape when she announced on the heels of the show’s Season One cliffhanger that she would be leaving the show. The actress first stepped into the famous cape and cowl of the DC Comics heroine in 2018 when she was introduced in that year’s “Elseworlds” crossover event.
It wasn’t long before Batwoman would get the green-light and join its primetime contemporaries in The CW’s winning DCTV line-up. Rose was cast as Kate Kane, the first-cousin of billionaire philanthropist Bruce Wayne whose alter-ego The Batman lurks in the shadows of Gotham City protecting the innocent. A one-time military cadet, Kane is discharged when it is uncovered that she has been engaging in a same-sex relationship with a fellow cadet. Rather than hide who she really is, she is discharged and asserts her own path.
It isn’t long before she learns about her cousin’s dual identity, and when Gotham City’s defender goes absent, Kate steps into The Batman’s shoes to combat the chaos that is threatening her city as The Batwoman! In its premiere season, the series broke ground with the first openly gay character and an actor in the lead that identifies as LGBTQ. Batwoman was a centrifugal part of this season’s epic 5-part “Crisis on Infinite Earths” crossover, which was expected would reboot the DC TV primetime landscape, but when COVID-19 hit, many of the shows were halted!
Out of the Cave!
At the conclusion of the first season, a surprise revelation was made that is certainly going to shake things up when Batwoman returns in 2021. Due to the pandemic, productions have been put on hold and it is anticipated that series will begin to get back on set sometime in the fall with The CW pushing most of its fall line-up to the winter. Rose who had sustained an injury during the production of the first season completed shooting all her episodes and in a startling turn announced that she would be leaving the show at the end of the season.
Berlanti Productions, the production company behind The CW’s DC primetime series, released a statement in support of the actor’s decision, wishing Ruby Rose luck and also stating that it would be recasting the part hopeful that it will find another openly identifying LGBTQ lead. This week, several entertainment outlets were surprised when a casting breakdown for Batwoman stated that when the series returns it might not be Kate Kane under the mask at all, but an entirely new character named “Ryan Wilder”.
The breakdown describes Ryan Wilder as “likable, messy, a little goofy and untamed.” Nothing like the often-disciplined Kate Kane, and not related to Bruce Wayne. Wilder is described as having been on the wrong side of the law, and a “dangerous type of fighter”. The character will be a lesbian and not your stereotypical All-American Hero. Though Ryan Wilder is not a character familiarly connected to the Bat-Family mythology in the comics, and might indeed just be a cleverly positioned placeholder, what will it mean for the show when it returns to TV?
Is in fact this decision to not only recast the Batwoman’s identity entirely a ploy to give Ruby Rose a backdoor reentry into the series that she helped launch successfully? Many speculate that it is possible the actor had a change of heart, and this is a way to give her some time to make up her mind; indeed how are fans going to react to an entirely new character moving into the territory that Rose had so significantly marked? We’ll have to wait and see. Stay tuned for more news and it develops!
Batwoman | Season 2 | Returns in 2021 on The CW.