The new season of Batwoman premiered on C4 last week. After a first season that never quite got off the ground with viewers, “Batwoman” announced that original star Ruby Rose would be leaving but that the series would continue without her. Whether that was a wise decision is in question. It seems that TV companies, having lavished money on a project are loathe to terminate without milking it far all it’s worth. The storyline necessary to arrange the passing of the baton stretches the imagination to the limits but then we are talking about a flight of fantasy.
Without divulging too many spoilers, the new series has to quickly establish the reason behind the sudden absence of Ruby Rose’s, Kate Kane. After introducing the first lesbian lead in a DC superhero program, frankly the character never really seem to work, the producers opted to create another surprise with an, African-American Ryan Wilder (Javicia Leslie) taking up the persona of the caped crusader. The opening sequences cover how Ryan gets involved while keeping the rest of the show on a very precarious course.
Executive producer Caroline Dries said the challenge was to integrate the Ryan character in a way that “feels organic” while maintaining the show’s other qualities.
Ryan does come with a back story that includes a motivation for taking down the psychotic Alice (Rachel Skarsten) the show’s OTT villain. Yet that still requires viewers to accept the rather hasty on-the-job training while Ryan comes to terms with the emotional aftermath from Kate’s disappearance from the scene.
The novelty of a new star does offer the opportunity of earning a second chance from viewers who were unimpressed with the first season or by grabbing the attention of viewers who missed it altogether. At the very least, continuing the story creates the prospect of not leaving the show’s fans hanging. But more than anything, the second season of Batwoman is little too contrived even for a world in which comic book heroes inhabit the planet.
“The city’s gonna need a Batwoman,” says the script. However does television need another dark series of the show which fundamentally looks very much like season one.