Fans were shocked last week when it was announced that Ruby Rose had left her freshman CW series ‘Batwoman’, part of the network’s “Arrowverse.” Many have wondered about the circumstances that led to this fracture, but while Rose hasn’t offered an official explanation, Variety reports that insiders close to the production have stated that she was unhappy with the long hours required of her as the star of a weekly action show. This unhappiness, it seems, led to “friction” on the set. Essentially, it sounds as though Rose didn’t keep her misery a secret, so it was a joint decision to let her go and recast the role of Bruce Wayne’s cousin, Kate Kane.
It should be noted that ‘Batwoman’ Season 1 consisted of 20 episodes. These days, season lengths vary wildly, with many hour-long dramas only devoting 13 episodes to each season. So 20-22 was already on the more demanding side, and add to that the fact that this is a stunt-heavy action series that mainly shoots at night and it’s understandably a much harder gig than the norm. Last year, while filming, Rose was badly injured and had to undergo emergency surgery. Insiders state that this accident was not part of what led to Rose’s departure, but it surely didn’t help.
Another factor that probably didn’t play a role is the online abuse Rose received after her casting was announced. Kate Kane is a lesbian, so producers insisted on casting a lesbian to play her. But after Rose landed the role, she was bullied so harshly that she quit Twitter. Once again, that likely didn’t help.
“Family, those whose hearts are breaking break mineee… What’s important: we have a season 2. We will work our freakin butts off to give you an amazing season 2 that continues to represent the lgbtqa+ communities and people of colour… We will keep going strong. Believe that.”
Shortly afterward, he followed that up by writing:
“Okay wow I just posted this and the positivity is already flowing in… This is what I mean! We will continue to make y’all proud because we love this series and you all so FRIGGIN much, I mean it. AND IF YOU THOUGHT YOU SAW OUR A-GAMES BEFORE OOO BABY JUST WAIT.”
Nicole Kang, who plays Kate’s step-sister Mary Hamilton tweeted:
“Hi. I’m thinking of all of you. Big hug. Keep my head up if you keep yours up. Xx”
Neither mentioned Rose.
Collider spoke to executive producer Marc Guggenheim after the announcement, and he discussed moving forward. Essentially, he seems to have embraced this as an “opportunity.” As he said:
“I was talking to one of the Batwoman writers, the other day, and we were saying how, in this, is a great creative opportunity. I think there’ll be people who come to the show, quite frankly, just to see how the writers choose to handle this. I’m a big believer that anytime you face a production challenge, and sometimes it’s in cast while sometimes it’s just logistics, in that challenge, lies a creative opportunity. I was actually talking about that with Beth Schwartz, the other day. We were talking about how, once production presumes posts the pandemic, how are we going to work with all these different limitations? And it’s the exact same thing, which is that, in those limitations and in those challenges lie the chance to do something new and different, and come up with a clever creative solution. That, to me, is the fun part of the job.”
Everyone seems to be looking forward and not backward.
The producers intentionally cast a lesbian as Kate, but it’s unknown whether they will still stick to that plan for the recasting. ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s Stephanie Beatriz, the WWE’s Sonya Deville, ‘The Magicians” Jade Tailor, and… er, Billy Eichner have thrown their hats (cowls?) into the ring as potential replacements. And of course, fans are suggesting their own picks.
One thing that is certain, ‘Batwoman’ will return, despite buzz online that The CW will replace it with a ‘Batman’ series, now that Bruce Wayne has sort of made his debut in the Arrowverse, sort of played by Warren Christie.
‘Batwoman’ is expected back for Season 2 in January, along with the majority of The CW’s shows. Writers are planning a crossover between ‘Batwoman’ and the new series ‘Superman & Lois’, in place of the typical grand crossovers that incorporate all of the DC Comics shows. But that timeframe is dependent on quarantines being lifted. Like most of The CW’s shows, ‘Batwoman’ films in Vancouver.
What would you like to see from the second season of ‘Batwoman’? Will you still watch without Ruby Rose in the lead?