A Bat-mystery has been solved.
Batwoman showrunner Caroline Dries has shed some light on the decision to not recast the role of Kate Kane, in the wake of Ruby Rose abruptly parting ways with the CW series, but instead create “a whole new character” to slip into the cape and cowl for Season 2.
As recently reported, Batwoman has put out a casting call for a new character (possibly code-)named “Ryan Wilder,” who is described as “likeable,” “goofy,” and a “highly skilled [but] wildly undisciplined” fighter. She will, hopefully sooner rather than later once Season 2 arrives in early 2021, come to adopt the vigilante persona of Batwoman.
A June 3 TVLine op-ed called into question the change-up, given how it will likely render meaningless so much of what was established during Season 1. Now Dries, in an ATX Festival At Home Q&A with fellow CW showrunner Julie Plec (of Legacies), spoke about the decision for the first time since Season 1 ended.
“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,” she told Plec. “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.'”
In addition to paying “respect to everything that Ruby [Rose] put into the Kate Kane character” during Season 1, Dries said, “it also helps the audience, because we’re not asking them to address ‘the elephant in the room'” by accepting a new face as the same person.
Dries went on to affirm that “Ryan Wilder” is “a whole new character who in her past was inspired by Batwoman, so she is going to take on the mantle,” adding that the scrappy twentysomething who lives in a van, with her plant, “is maybe not the right person at the time to be doing it, so that’s what makes it fun.”