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Series / Batwoman (2019)

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"Time to be powerful."
Batwoman is a 2019 superhero series on The CW, based on the DC Comics character of the same name, the fourth original live-action installment of the Arrowverse and the seventh live-action installment overall.note  The series premiered on October 6, 2019.

The series initially focused on Kate Kane (Ruby Rose), who returns to her hometown of Gotham after several years living overseas, being welcomed by her father and head of the Crows Security firm, Jacob (Dougray Scott), stepmother, Catherine Hamilton (Elizabeth Anweis), and stepsister, Mary (Nicole Kang). By that point, Batman has disappeared from Gotham for three years, after an incident involving him having to break his strict moral code, and the city is being threatened by the anarchist Wonderland Gang, led by Alice (Rachel Skarsten). Although Kate dislikes Batman for not being able to save her mother and sister years ago, her position softens once she finds out that Batman is actually her cousin, Bruce Wayne. Realizing that the city will forever be unsafe so long as it has no protector, Kate carries on Bruce's legacy by becoming Batwoman. She is assisted by Luke Fox (Camrus Johnson), son of Batman's late ally Lucius Fox, and Sophie Moore (Meagan Tandy), her ex-girlfriend and member of the Crows Security, in her endeavor.

On May 19, 2020, Ruby Rose announced her departure from the series after the first season, forcing a mid-series Retool. The second season introduces Ryan Wilder (Javicia Leslie), a homeless ex-junkie who discovers Kate's Batwoman costume after she disappears in a plane crash. Ryan, who has a grudge against Alice for the death of her adoptive mother, temporarily dons the costume in her attempt to apprehend her, intending to return it to the Bat Team afterwards. However, as Kate remains missing in action, Ryan chooses to succeed her as Batwoman. To give her arc closure, Kate later returns for several episodes, with Wallis Day replacing Rose in this capacity. The rest of the cast remain, though their dynamics are altered as they are no longer anchored by Kate's presence. In the third season, the Bat Team receive a new ally in Renee Montoya (Victoria Cartagena) note , who answers to Gotham's mayor, while also delving into Ryan's past, as she learns that not only her biological mother, Jada Jet (Robin Givens), is still alive and heads a famous tech company, she also has a half-brother, Marquis (Nick Creegan).

Batwoman is notable for finally introducing a member of the Bat Family to the Arrowverse after many Easter eggs and mythology gags, as well as being the sixth live-action television series (following Batman, Birds Of Prey, Gotham, Titans, and Pennyworth) based on elements of the Batman mythos. The first season's first arc, featuring Kate battling Alice and the Wonderland Gang, is heavily inspired by Greg Rucka & JH Williams III's Elegy story from the comics.

Before the series started, Kate appeared in the Elseworlds crossover, with the actual series pilot being set before and the rest set after it. The series also participated in Crisis on Infinite Earths, though since the series was relatively new only Kate and Luke were featured. Batwoman was originally announced to head 2021's Arrowverse crossover event alongside Superman & Lois until the event was canceled because of the difficulty coordinating the crews during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

On April 29, 2022, it was announced the series would not be renewed, becoming the fourth Arrowverse series to end, wrapping up three seasons and 51 episodes.

Batwoman contains examples of the following tropes:

  • Adaptation Dye-Job:
    • Kate and Jacob have brown hair here rather than red. However, the Batwoman suit eventually is modified with a red wig, just like her comic look.
    • In Season 2, Stephanie Brown, who is blonde in the comics, became a redhead.
  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul: Overlaps with Adaptation Name Change. In the comics, Bette Kane is a cousin of Kate's. On the show, however, Mary Hamilton, a character loosely based on Bette, is Kate's step-sister.
  • Adaptation Name Change: Jezebel Jet becomes Jada Jet in this adaptation. Both are rich black women, and have associated with the Black Glove society. The name change was most likely done to avoid the unfortunate implications of the term jezebel when applied to black women.
  • Adaptational Gender Identity: In the Batwoman comics, Wolfspider is a cisgender man. Here, Wolfspider is genderfluid.
  • Adaptational Jerkass: Thomas Elliot, in his first comic appearance, was able to pull off still being a close friend to Bruce even while plotting against him; here he comes across like an arrogant scumbag from his first scene.
  • Adaptational Protagonist: The series initially follows the adventures of Kate Kane, as in the Batwoman comics. However, after the sudden departure of star Ruby Rose, the showrunners were told to create a new protagonist, and thus the show became focused on Ryan Wilder, the daughter of Jada Jet who finds the Batsuit in the same plane crash in which Kate disappears.
  • Affirmative-Action Legacy:
    • In Season 2, the mantle of Batwoman is taken over by Ryan Wilder, a black woman from an underprivileged background.
    • Luke Fox becoming Batwing after Season 2 can also be seen as this, since the Batwing suit was based on Luke's childhood drawings of a "black Batman".
    • In Season 3 the Asian-American Mary Hamilton becomes a new version of Poison Ivy.
  • Age Lift: In the comics, Bruce and Kate are usually depicted as being around the same age, give or take a few years. In the series' continuity however, Bruce is well over a decade older than Kate, who regarded him as a much older brother.
  • And the Adventure Continues: The show was not renewed after the third season, but the season-turned-series finale ends pretty conclusively to give the main characters resolution. The exception is a possible new villain arising from the wreckage where the Marquis's/Joker's acid bombs were dropped, indicating Ryan/Batwoman and the Bat-team's duty of defending Gotham isn't over yet and will continue, even if viewers aren't there to see it.
  • Artistic License – Economics: To save some digital ink, just assume that anything that happens with Wayne Enterprises in Season 3 just absolutely would not happen in real life.
  • Artistic License – Military: Kate claims DD-214 means a dishonorable discharge, when, in fact, that's the general discharge form for anyone exiting US military service, regardless of reason. Additionally, her discharge under DADT would not have been dishonorable anyway, as those are essentially the same thing as a felony conviction; they're reserved for only the most serious offenses and require conviction at a general court-martial.
  • Badass in Distress: Sophie Moore, who is the Crow's top agent and a capable fighter, is kidnapped by Alice, which is what leads Kate to return to Gotham and become Batwoman to save her.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: By the end of the initial eight episodes, Alice's plans have come together flawlessly while the heroes' lives have turned into utter train wrecks.
  • Batter Up!: Alice whacks a captured Kate in the face with a cricket bat. Edge-first.
  • Being Good Sucks: Only eight episodes into the show and literally everything about Kate's life has already gone straight to hell from the moment she put on the Batsuit for the first time. Her family life is a wreck, her love life is even worse, she was forced to go against several of her own core beliefs and character traits, and none of her sacrifices have really paid off yet both for herself and the people around her.
  • Big Bad:
    • Season 1: Alice, Kate's twin sister, with Mouse and eventually Tommy Elliot / Hush as Co-Dragons.
    • Season 2: Roman Sionis / Black Mask (the crime lord who faked Kate's death) and Safiyah Sohail (Alice's Evil Mentor), working together to destroy the Kane family.
    • Season 3: Pamela Isley/Poison Ivy (the iconic Batman rogue) and Marquis Jet (Ryan's deranged half-sibling who's becoming a new version of the Joker).
  • Bisexual Love Triangle: The first season featured one of these between the main character, Kate Kane, her ex-girlfriend, Sophie Moore and Sophie's husband, Tyler, although unusually it wasn't Kate that had to choose between the two but Sophie. Tyler was a legitimate crime fighter, not to mention a more socially accepted love interest, whereas Kate was a Hot-Blooded vigilante and a woman.
  • Bookcase Passage:
    • The elevator to the Batcave is hidden behind a bookcase in Bruce's office and activated by turning a display case of Martha Wayne's pearls rather than the more conventional book-lever. In a homage to the traditional example, Mary is shown pulling books out at random trying to activate the door. When Luke asks what the hell she's doing, she has to feign an interest in reading The International Periodical of Technology and Innovation, Vol.2.
    • The cellar where Beth was held captive for 11 years is hidden behind a textbook example.
  • Breather Episode: “Drink Me,” a mostly light-hearted episode follows the pretty heavy Post-Crisis story arc with Beth. Luke leans on the fourth wall by saying that going after a supposed vampire villain will be a nice change of pace.
  • Broken Masquerade: Kate seems to have trouble hiding her double identity, at least with people who she's familiar with - Alice straight up knows, and Sophie becomes suspicious after one meeting. Sophie is eventually convinced otherwise, but Julia Pennyworth shows up in Episode 7 and figures it out even faster because Batwoman uses a fighting move that Julia taught Kate.
  • Bulletproof Vest: The Batsuit is this to an insane degree. Described by Luke as "military-grade kevlar woven with enriched carbon nanotubes of [his] dad's own design," it can stop a test-fired .50 caliber round without a scratch, making the wearer effectively immune to handguns. Kate does mention that getting shot still stings, though. Its toughness is such that Bruce designed a handheld railgun so he'd have a weapon capable of piercing the armor if it was stolen.
  • Canon Foreigner: Ryan Wilder, who takes over the mantle of Batwoman in Season 2, is a completely original character created for the series. Though she has since made an appearance in the comics as well, making her a Canon Immigrant as well.
  • Can't Kill You, Still Need You: This seems to be Alice's rationale behind saving Kate from Tommy.
  • Car Cushion: In "It's Best You Stop Digging", Angelique shoves Batwoman off her fire escape and Batwoman lands on a car parked beneath.
  • Casting Gag: Rachel Maddow plays an unseen radio host who feels that the first Batwoman telling everyone she's a lesbian is "too political". Maddow is an openly lesbian woman.
  • Cheated Death, Died Anyway: In one episode, Alice and her good alternate-reality counterpart Beth are both dying because only one version of them can exist in the same reality. Beth's stepsister Mary manages to find a medical cure that will keep her alive just long enough that she'll outlive Alice, at which point she'll survive by default. Unfortunately, as Lucas is transporting Beth to a safe place to recuperate, Beth gets shot by a sniper who mistakes her for Alice, against whom he has a grudge.
  • Clark Kenting: Alice is Gotham's Number 1 Most Wanted, but she is able to walk around the city with little to no changes to her appearence.
  • Coming-Out Story:
    • Kate comes out as a lesbian in her Batwoman persona (she'd already been out as herself), after hearing a sad story from the hacker in "How Queer Is Everything Today?" who'd been forcibly outed by her lover.
    • Sophie eventually admits to her mother she was involved with a woman at Point Rock (without naming Kate as the one), and she really never loved her husband, saying she wants to rekindle things with her former girlfriend. Her mother's unhappy and leaves, which makes Sophie cry.
  • Cool Bike: Kate's civilian ride is a Harley-Davidson Sportster Iron 883. She gets another Batwoman-specific one in the second half of Season 1.
  • Cool Cars: The Crows have a few in the form of International-brand armored trucks and a customized MXT variant.
    • In Season 2, no less than the Batmobile makes its debut on the show.
  • Cool Guns: Crows agents use Walther P99s as sidearms, and have the option of MP5 or UMP submachine guns.
  • Dead All Along: It is revealed that the Joker has been dead for years rather than locked up in Arkham, as Batman killed him before his disappearance.
  • Fantastic Drug: Snakebite, introduced in the second season, is a compound of psilocybin and Fear Toxin. The two parts of the drug are stored in separate syringes of a custom-made two-pronged injector and mixed inside the user's bloodstream. The injector itself comes packed in a slick cardboard box.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: In the pilot, Rachel Skarsten’s hair as Alice is a very obvious wig. The wig she wears afterwards is a lot more straight and convincing.
  • Elites Are More Glamorous: Crows Security is comprised mostly of former Green Berets and Navy SEALs.
  • Enhance Button: Downplayed. After Alice and her goons kidnap Sophie in the pilot, the Crows are able to enhance a low-res surveillance camera feed to make out an inscription on a cricket bat. However, the lettering still isn't clearly legible. Kate only figures out what it says because she recognizes it as the motto of the Burnside Orphanage, where she and Beth used to sneak around.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Alice expected Kate to share her joy that Catherine is dead and Jacob framed for it as revenge for their roles in falsely declaring her dead, but just failed to understand that, no matter how Kate felt about her parents, she still didn't want either of them to suffer, particularly since Kate can recognise that Jacob didn't do anything wrong. Even Mouse calls Alice out on still believing that Kate will join her after everything she did.
  • Experimented in College: Invoked; when Sophie reveals her three-year relationship with Kate to her husband, he points out that is longer than any relationship he had before they met, and therefore claims that it's not something she can dismiss as a college hookup "unless you were drunk for three years."
  • Failed a Spot Check:
    • Luke doesn't notice Kate holding a paperclip before he handcuffs her, which allows her to pick the cuffs and use them on him.
    • Alice is able to steal Jacob's gun while he's stunned over Kate committing murder.
  • Fictional Counterpart: The United States Military Academy (West Point) has become the fictional Point Rock Academy.
  • Fighting Fingerprint: How Julia recognizes Kate as Batwoman.
  • Filler: Although there's a very definite Myth Arc, there are some episodes that stand out as filler due to their standalone nature or their deviation from the Story Arc:
    • "Drink Me", season 1 episode 13 has a plot focusing on a female vampire and The Beautiful Elite with little connection to Kate Kane's story arc.
    • "Fair Skin, Blue Eyes" is more about the new Batwoman's backstory than tying into the current story arc about the False Face Gang.
    • "Gore on Canvas" in Season 2 has a Filler Villain who has no effect on later stories and seems more Villain of the Week; if anything, it's an episode that's more about a Mad Artist than the story arc.
    • "Time Off for Good Behavior", Season 2 episode 10 is as much about Cool Car and a homage to Grand Theft Auto but it's largely filler, with Julia's story arc being more prominent.
  • Fingore: When Catherine sends some mooks to assassinate Alice, she retaliates by chopping off one of their pinkie fingers with some garden shears to send a message.
  • First-Episode Twist: The end of the pilot reveals that Alice is actually Kate's long-thought dead twin sister Beth.
  • Five-Second Foreshadowing: Because it's so obvious where it will lead, said First-Episode Twist sets up the fact that Beth's body was never found barely a minute before revealing that Alice is almost certainly Beth.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Safiyah Sohail appears to be this for season 1. She's stated to be located outside Gotham, in Coryana, but has an influence on many of the events that happen in the season, and is connected to a number of the characters, including Alice. However, she never directly appears in the season.
  • Hairpin Lockpick: Kate uses a paper clip to pick the handcuffs Luke puts her in when he apprehends her at Wayne Tower. On another occasion she removes a hobnail from her motorcycle boots for the same purpose.
  • Heteronormative Crusader:
    • Kate and her girlfriend Sophie fell afoul of this attitude at Point Rock Academy. When they were cadets there, "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" was still military policy, so when they were caught kissing, both soon got brought up on charges. Kate refused to deny their relationship and was expelled. However, Sophie denied it in order to stay. Though naturally Kate is dismayed by this, Sophie counters that unlike Kate, she isn't from a very wealthy background and can't simply land on her feet afterward, needing the education the academy provides.
    • Years later, Kate and Sophie run into another one when the owner of a fancy restaurant where they were having dinner attempts to throw them out after spotting the pair holding hands. Kate takes her revenge by purchasing the derelict building across the street and turning it into a gay bar.
    • The hacker in "How Queer Is Everything Today?" had this as her backstory. She'd been reluctant to come out as her parents were religious conservatives. Her girlfriend insisted though, and told them when she wouldn't. Kate later also comes out as a result in her Batwoman persona (she'd already been as herself), thus eliciting some negative comments from a popular talk show host who complains of superheroes getting politicized (who, ironically, is voiced by the openly lesbian Rachel Maddow) after saying, "Not That There's Anything Wrong with That".
    • Diane Moore clearly dislikes Batwoman for coming out as a lesbian. Sophie coming out to her also makes her quite unhappy, believing her daughter's "choice" will simply make things harder for her.
  • Hidden Depths: Mary Hamilton is a socialite and Instagram influencer by day, but by night she runs a secret medical clinic for Gotham's have-nots.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Every episode title of the first season, with the exception of the pilot and crossover episode is taken from one of the two ''Alice'' books.
  • If You Kill Him, You Will Be Just Like Him!: Ryan says as much in "It's Best You Stop Digging," telling Mary and Luke that if she killed Alice, she'd be as bad as Alice.
  • I Need to Go Iron My Dog: Kate is really bad at thinking on her feet when explaining her sudden departures to Reagan. It ties into a voiceover mentioning that Kate strives for personal honesty, and becomes one of the reasons their relationship crashes and burns after just a few days.
  • Info Dump: The first three episodes, particularly the pilot, contain a lot of exposition.
  • Keeping Secrets Sucks:
    • The main theme of episode 3. Kate, as an out and proud gay woman, has never had/wanted to hide any part of herself from anybody whatsoever. So having to hide being Batwoman is a personal hell for her. It doesn't help that she's a Bad Liar when it comes to making things up on the spot.
    • Lampshaded when Kate and Luke are talking about Bruce being Batman.
      Kate: How did Bruce make living a double life look so easy?
      Luke: Oh, he didn't; he was miserable.
  • Legacy Character:
    • The premise of the series. Kate Kane as Batwoman takes over from her cousin, Bruce Wayne/Batman, as Gotham's vigilante protector.
    • In Season 2, after Kate's mysterious disappearance, Ryan Wilder takes over as Batwoman.
    • Luke Fox, the son of Lucius Fox, serves as Kate's Gadgeteer Genius, a role his late father previously played for Bruce.
    • At the end of Season 2, Tavaroff gets injected with Venom, becoming the new Bane, though he doesn't take up the title specifically.
    • The final scene of Season 2 indicates that we'll be getting versions of these for Mad Hatter, Penguin, and Poison Ivy as well.
    • Season 3 gives us new versions of Mad Hatter and Killer Croc - the former being a fan of Alice who finds the Mad Hatter's hat, and the latter being someone who was infected by Croc's tooth and mutated.
    • Season 3 also introduces a new version of Poison Ivy - Mary, who is infected by the real Poison Ivy's vines.
    • As of the Season 3 midseason finale, Maquis Jet is on the path to becoming a new version of the Joker.
  • Law Enforcement, Inc.: The Crows, a private security force run by Jacob Kane to supplement the GCPD.
  • Locked Out of the Loop: In a teaser for Crisis on Infinite Earths, Harbinger informs Kate that the multiverse is in great danger. Kate's response? "I'm sorry, the what?"
  • Masculine–Feminine Gay Couple: Kate and Sophie were an example during their relationship. The former is quite butch in her looks, while Sophie's very feminine. The same goes for Kate with Julia and Reagan, who are both very feminine too.
  • The Masquerade Will Kill Your Dating Life:
    • Kate comes to this realization by the end of "Who Are You?", and stops whatever she could have had with Reagan in its tracks.
    • In "Grinning From Ear To Ear", she realises that romancing Sophie as Batwoman won't work either. For them to have a proper romance Kate would have to take off the mask for her, trapping Sophie in another closeted relationship she would have to keep secret.
  • Misplaced Retribution: Alice's anger at Catherine for basically faking her death can be justified, even if Catherine did it because she genuinely believed Beth was dead and wanted to help the Kanes move on from a search that was basically destroying them. However, Jacob and Kate's only 'crime' was believing two independent lies that Beth was dead, and yet Alice still acts as though they are all equally guilty for leaving her with her abductor.
  • Missing Mom: Gabi, Kate and Beth's mother, was killed in their childhood when a bus the Joker hijacked rear-ended the car she was driving (with them inside). It was run off the bridge she had been driving on-Gabi was decapitated and killed instantly on hitting the water below. This traumatic event overshadows her daughters afterward (particularly with Beth, as we see it helped lead her to become Alice).
  • Moving Beyond Bereavement: Much of season 2 is about Kate Kane's loved ones coming to grips with her apparent sudden death.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Suggested to have at least played a part in Batman's disappearance, considering that he violated his rule against killing by killing the Joker.
  • Myth Arc: The mystery behind Batman's disappearance will play a big role in the show, including such revelations as Batman killed the Joker before his disappearance.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Crows Security takes its name from the Murder of Crows, the nickname given to a group of special operations personnel who trained Kate in the comics, and who are Jacob's closest friends in that community.
    • The map of Gotham used in the series is the same one used in most other contemporary depictions of the city.
    • Batwoman's suit seems to synthesize several of its other depictions elsewhere. The nose of the mask looks like the way it was drawn in 52, the belt and portions of the gauntlets resemble the design in Batman: Bad Blood, and the bodysuit has similarities to a resin statue made by Sideshow Collectibles.
    • Her very first suit, without any red elements (including the wig), resembles the version of Batwoman seen in Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman (albeit black rather than grey).
    • The display alcove for Batman's batsuit looks similar to the one from the DCEU.
    • The Batcave features an octagonal section of walkway that surrounds a tree, which is a reference to Kate's HQ in the comics (an octagonal panic room in her apartment with a tree that grows though the center of her building).
    • Also in the Batcave: a toy T-Rex, which references the much larger version seen in the comics.
    • Kate mentions Bruce's birthday is February 19th, which is the one usually given in the comics.
    • The film shown at the "Movie in the Park" event is The Mark of Zorro, which has traditionally been the film the Waynes were watching shortly before the murders.
    • Kate and Beth's favorite Belgian waffle stand was called Grand Place. In the comics, the twins were on their way to the actual Grand Place in Brussels to get waffles for their birthday when they were kidnapped.
    • A news report reveals that The Joker in this universe is Jack Napier. Another passing mention is that of a Mayor Cobblepot.
    • Kate has the same hairstyle here as a cadet that she did in the source.
    • Some newspaper clippings in the Batcave mention relatively obscure Batman villains, such as Maxie Zeus or the Penny Plunderer.
    • The Batcave has 60's style computers and devices in the background, with even the main console taking on this style in design (just not in functionality). This appears to allude to the 60's Batman show, which had similar equipment in its batcave.
    • Ryan Wilder was once saved from muggers by Batwoman, an event which later inspires her to take on the mantle herself. This is similar to how in the comics, Kate was once saved from muggers by Batman, which inspired her to create the Batwoman persona.
    • When Batwoman balks at making a HALO jump onto the island of Coryana, Luke warns her that if she misses her jump window, she'll land in the ocean, and notes that "There's no shark repellent on the utility belt." He has no explanation as to why.
    Batwoman: Well, why not?
    Luke: Because that's stupid. Now go!
  • "Not So Different" Remark:
    • Alice goes to a lot of effort to make Kate accept this, to the extent that even Kate wonders if she's right after Kate murders August Cartwright in a fit of rage, but feels no guilt about it afterwards.
    • Alice says that like her years of captivity, Sophie has also been kept "imprisoned" in a sense with being closeted about her attraction to women.
  • One-Steve Limit: Kate's full first name is "Katherine", which is pronounced the same way as the name of her step-mother, "Catherine". This is consistent to how it was in the comics.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Ruby Rose and Dougray Scott mostly do okay American accents, but the occasional word will slip. This is made all the more noticeable by their natural accents being rather pronounced.
  • Origins Episode: The pilot is one, set before Elseworlds.
  • The Password Is Always "Swordfish": The password to get into Wayne Enterprise's mainframe is "Alfred". Lampshaded when Kate tells Luke that he might wanna change it.
  • Pistol-Whipping:
    • Kate does this to one of Alice's goons with his own pistol.
    • In "Off With Her Head", Kate stops an attempted rape and despite being shot several times by the criminal concerned, just hits him with his own gun.
  • Police Are Useless: After Batman's disappearance, the people of Gotham felt this about the GCPD, so Crows Security was hired by the city to bolster public safety. The GCPD is still around, but the Crows conduct many of the same activities: patrols, security, the hunting of fugitives, etc. ... Mostly for Gotham's wealthy elite.
  • Police Brutality:
    • Sophie comes dangerously close to crossing the line after Jacob is framed for murder. We see her pistol-whipping and threatening to shoot a suspect during interrogation.
    • Just as Batwoman's gotten through to Troy (and as he's lowered his weapons) the Crows shoot him to death. This could be considered murder, as Troy wasn't presenting an active threat. After that, they also try to shoot Batwoman dead, who's only saved by her body armor, which definitely is attempted murder as she had made no aggressive move toward them at all.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: In the comics, Kate and Beth are identical twins. Here they're fraternal. Pulling off identical twins as central characters would require either being lucky enough to find real-life identical twins who are both actresses, or using CGI on a regular basis to allow one actress to portray both in the same scene. Also, not being identical makes it more plausible that Kate and others don't recognize Beth right away.
  • Protagonist-Centered Morality: Several times throughout Season 2, extreme actions performed by members of the Crows are condemned by the show, despite Kate and Ryan doing the same things. The most easily comparable is Ryan using a spy app to find out Zsasz's client, but being outraged at the Crows trying to use the same method on her drug-dealing girlfriend three episodes later. In season 1, Kate killing a captive with her bare hands was depicted as a human mistake, and proof that she's fallible, but season 2 treats two Crows ramming a fleeing suspect with their car and leaving him to die as a justified reason for Ryan to demand that the entire organisation be dismantled, even though the perpetrators were fired immediately afterward.
  • Psycho Knife Nut: Alice loves flicking her butterfly knife open and closed while she talks, as well as being quite accurate with throwing it and other knives.
  • Put on a Bus: Julia Pennyworth, Jacob Kane, and Kate Kane all leave the show at various points in Season 2.
  • Race Lift:
    • Inverted for Julia Pennyworth, Alfred's daughter, is white on the show, reverting her to the original, Pre-Crisis version of the character, while she's mixed race in the more recent, post-crisis comic appearances that the show draws more from.
    • Catherine Hamilton-Kane, Kate's stepmother, is white in the comics, but is played by an Asian-American actress on the show.
    • Mary Hamilton, who is loosely based on Bette Kane from the comics, is Asian-American, while Bette was white.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: Kate Kane's disappearance at the start of Season 2, followed by Ryan Wilder taking on her mantle as Batwoman, was caused by Ruby Rose deciding to leave the series during the hiatus.
  • Retcon: Kate Kane being the acting CEO of Wayne Enterprises, something that was never mentioned at all in two seasons. Then out of nowhere, this is pointed out in Season 3 and the fact before she left, she made Ryan the acting CEO. In real life, the Board of Directors would be heavily against such an act, especially with Ryan's criminal past.
    • Wayne Enterprises being a functioning company is itself one. The Elseworlds crossover, and Season 1, established it as being a shell of its former self, with the Board of Directors having abandoned ship years ago after Bruce Wayne's disappearance (though some subsidiaries were implied to be operational). In Season 3, the Board of Directors are shown to be very much active, and the company functions well enough for Jada and Maquis Jet to have an interest in acquiring it.
  • Running Gag:
    • In the early episodes, Kate picking up or attempting to pick up various pieces of Bat-tech, and Luke stopping her from doing so.
    • People wanting Batwoman to pose for a selfie.
    • Criminals easily walking into the Crow's HQ parking lot.
    • Jacob being drugged, tied up, and/or kidnapped. Especially in Season 2.
  • Sadistic Choice:
    • In the pilot, Alice gives Jacob Kane a choice between warning a park full of innocent moviegoers about a bomb, or watching Sophie Moore get thrown to her death.
    • In "A Narrow Escape", a bomber called The Detonator returns, whose shtick is forcing people viewed as heroes into this. They're strapped to bombs, with a button disarming them which will trigger another bomb planted somewhere else which will murder people. It's to show they're not really so heroic, as they won't sacrifice themselves for others. However, it turns out this is a copycat using the same m.o. to cover up crimes for a different end.
    • An inadvertent example occurs when an alternate Beth Kane who never became Alice is created from the collapse of The Multiverse in Crisis. Unfortunately, this anomaly causes both Alt-Beth and Alice to start dying, leaving Kate with the choice of which version she wants to save.
  • Sherlock Scan: How Kate finds the door to the Batcave. She notices that the display case containing Martha Wayne's pearls has been moved from where she remembered it as a child. Upon examining it closer, she finds the unlocking mechanism for the door built into the shelf, and simply has to reattach the case.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Shown Their Work: Aside from her ponytail, which would be out-of-regulation in this context, Sophie wears a pretty accurate recreation of West Point's "As For Class" uniform during a flashback (West Point being the real-life version of Point Rock Academy). It's really only missing pins for rank and class, but those may not be used at Point Rock.
  • Spanner in the Works: Alice loves being this. Once she gets demoted from the Big Bad position after Season 1, she spends the rest of the show playing both sides to get what she wants and willing to screw over either side for the most petty reasons.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Kate pulls a stealth bye on Jacob when she leaves for Alice's hideout after showing the Crows the surveillance footage of Sophie's kidnapping.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: Ryan is made acting CEO of Wayne Enterprises while Kate leaves the city. She is a former criminal who was just let out of prison for drug possession and her only recent work experience is being a bartender. Sure enough, it's not long until the company's stock tanks and people quit en masse, seeing it as a sinking ship.
  • Swiss-Cheese Security:
    • Wayne Enterprises seems to have the same level of security as STAR Labs. Not only is Kate able to break in through a seemingly unlocked window, but Tommy Elliot jokes that he just used a "hidden key".
    • The most unsecured location in all of Gotham, where people get kidnapped and wanted terrorists can just stroll in without any effort, appears to be the Crows HQ parking lot. Alice even lampshades this in one episode, telling Jacob to invest in better security for the parking garage.
  • Tap on the Head: Alice whacks Kate with a cricket bat hard enough to knock her out for an unspecified period of time, but Kate is fine with no visible head wound or bruising there after waking up, and seemingly didn't even need painkillers. Realistically, such a hit would probably have given her a concussion at best, if not outright cracked her skull.
  • Too Good for Exploiters: "Time Off For Good Behavior" revolves around a prison CEO using convicts to attack youth centers. His reason for this is that the less kids who stay out of prison because of these centers, the less money his prisons make.
  • Toplessness from the Back: Two for the price of one in "Who Are You?", with Kate and Reagan lying facedown topless in bed together after having sex offscreen.
  • Tragic Keepsake: Martha Wayne's pearl necklace. Bruce spent ages scouring the alleys of Gotham searching for it, until finally finding it in an auction house and spending literally a million dollars to buy it back.
  • Training from Hell: Jacob sent Kate on a long global journey for this purpose, ostensibly as a form of training so she could join the Crows. Kate is introduced during one segment of this, when she free-dives under a frozen lake with her ankles cuffed to retrieve the cuff's key.
    • In Season 2, we learn that Alice herself went through this on Coryana.
  • Ultimate Job Security: Kate and Sophie discuss this regarding their potential expulsion from Point Rock. Kate rationalizes that, since they're the Academy's top two cadets, the school won't actually expel them under DADT, even if they tell the truth and don't sign a denial. She ends up being mistaken about that, and Sophie is initially prepared to do the same before changing her mind.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: In flashbacks, it's shown that when Kate was brought up on charges for having a same-sex relationship with Sophie, Sophie just let her take the fall and be kicked out, along with telling Kate she didn't love her back. In the present, as Batwoman, Kate manages to save Sophie's life. She comes back to see how she's doing, clearly hoping they can reunite at last... and meets Sophie's husband.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Batwoman


Something happened out there

A reporter and cameraman in HAZMAT suits were reporting on the site were the Batblimp crashed and released poisoned gas. Something happened to them when they had an encounter with something... not human.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / FakeVideoCameraView

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