Season 2 of Batwoman is still underway amid the departure of Ruby Rose as the titular character. While the first season has been left in limbo with its cliffhanger and Rose’s exit, season 2 has been confirmed for a 2021 release together with the rest of the CW Arrowverse shows, including the newest in the lineup “Superman and Lois.” The upcoming season will take a drastic turn as The CW has finally casted Rose’s replacement in the show. Javicia Leslie is set to portray the new Batwoman for season 2 (pictured below).
Rather than taking on the Kate Kane moniker, Leslie is confirmed to be portraying a new character unique to The CW Arrowverse by the name of Ryan Wilder taking up the Batwoman mantle. Wilder’s official description reads as:
“She’s 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. Today Ryan lives in her van with her plant. A girl who would steal milk for an alley cat and 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.”
Leslie has also released a statement regarding her casting, expressing her excitement to take up the mantle after Rose:
“I am extremely proud to be the first Black actress to play the iconic role of Batwoman on television, and as a bisexual woman, I am honored to join this groundbreaking show, which has been such a trailblazer for the LGBTQ+ community.”
The statement was followed with a post on her official Instagram account saying that “For all of the little black girls dreaming to be a superhero one day… it’s possible!”
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Season 1 Batwoman actor Ruby Rose subsequently congratulated Leslie on Instagram regarding the casting.
Batwoman showrunner Caroline Dries previously explained the new casting as something that “respects everything Ruby Rose put into the Kate Kane character.” She also adds:
“To be honest with you, I did consider the ‘soap opera version’ [of recasting] for a hot minute, because selfishly we already had a couple episodes written, and transition-wise it would be seamless. But upon further reflection — and I think [Arrowverse EP] Greg [Berlanti] helped me make this call — he’s like, ‘I think we should just reboot Batwoman as a different character.’”
Leslie previously had roles in the Berlanti-produced God Friended Me, the BET drama Family Business, and CBS’s MacGyver.
This is not the first time that the Batwoman moniker has been used by a person of color. The 2003 animated film “Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman,” set in The New Batman Adventures animated series timeline, featured Kathy Duquesne and Sonia Alcana, a Black and a Latino-American character respectively.