Spoilers Batwoman - Season 2

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by dahj, Dec 9, 2020.

  1. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Heh. If NuKate is going to be a part of the series going forward, something tells me her arc will be strictly tied to the family story (e.g., how she responds to Alice--who has been trying to save her, and feeling out any sort of family unity between Jacob and Alice).

    Again, I believe Sophie would be the best choice to get into another leadership position in law enforcement, discover that she starting under water, but not in another Crows-type of situation.
     
  2. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, they've done so much to develop Ryan at this point, I just can't see them putting Kate back in the Batsuit. I could maybe see her helping out occasionally, but probably not in any kind of costume.
     
  3. Mr. Adventure

    Mr. Adventure Admiral Admiral

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    That makes sense, I kind of think of him with his peers. It was really just one of those random thoughts not really serious.
     
  4. Tuskin38

    Tuskin38 Admiral Admiral

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    Ah good, I was hoping it wouldn't be that easy for Kate.
     
  5. DEWLine

    DEWLine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    But everything's moving really quickly, as per usual...
     
  6. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Batwoman
    Season 2 - Episode 16 - "Rebirth"

    Last time on Batwoman, Luke was treated with a derivative serum from the "Desert Rose" flower and recovered from his wound. Jacob dismantled the Crows and Alice asked Jacob for help restoring NuKate's memory...

    Luke Fox / Diggle:
    When BW needed him, Luke was non-responsive, hanging out on the rooftop of the Wayne building, instead of being in the Batcave, saying he needs time alone. Later, Luke enters a bar/gambling hangout catering to law enforcement, trying to enter a poker game, and happens to be let in by none other than Tavaroff, who is free on bond. They exchange words, but as Tavaroff leaves (for the moment), Diggle shows up, trying to mentor Luke. Wilder finds Luke, wanting to help him...and asking for his help. He tells Wilder he'd rather be dead with his father instead of reality where he was shot.

    At the game, Diggle detects Luke is holding some sort of grudge, with Luke trying to prod Tavaroff by winning a hand, and rubbing it it (SEE NOTES). Wanting his money back, Tavaroff beats Luke in an alley, but is rescued by Diggle. Diggle tries to bond with Luke over losing fathers, and tells him to use his anger to stand for justice. Soon, they see the Bat-signal flashing a Morse code signal for Luke's help....

    At the Batcave, Wilder and Mary finally tell Luke that Kate is still alive....

    Wilder/BW / Mary:
    BW fights off Whisper--who attempted to kill a man running off with an attache case. Mary manages to discover Circe's relationship to Black Mask/Roman, and panics about the implications of said relationship.

    After NuKate escapes Safiyah's ambush, she's nearly hit by the Batmobile. BW asks if she is the real deal. NuKate says she swill have to get back to her about that. She's taken to the Wayne building, but fails to recognize Mary. Adding insult to injury, Sophie just so happens to show up, but NuKate seems to remember her....

    Having a series of painful flashbacks, NuKate is triggered and strangles Mary, but is pulled off of her by Sophie and Wilder, and is subsequently drugged into unconsciousness by Mary, thanks to Plot Convenient syringes she just carries around.

    Recovering, Sophie questions NuKate, who constantly stares at her self in the mirror, trying to see within herself and detect if she really is Kate.

    That evening, NuKate returns to Roman and asks if she's Kate Kane. When Roman tries to manipulate her again, she stabs Roman's hand--pinning it to a chair, just as Safiyah walks in, blabbing about NuKate choosing who she wants to be.

    Jacob / Alice: Jacob and Alice find and kidnap NuKate from her home. A DNA match confirms that Circe is Kate, but the woman tries to escape, and is quickly knocked out by Alice. Ocean shows up, introducing himself to Jacob, whispering that he's old-fashioned, but he wants her father to like him. Anyone even half awake through this knew what was going to happen to Ocean. So predictable.

    Using Kate's possessions, Jacob and Alice try to jog NuKate's memory, but the woman feigns disinterest, until she has flashbacks to to the night she was kidnapped. She believes she was taken to the basement where Alice had been locked up, and recalls being a child, standing on one side of the door, thinking Beth might be on the other side. Eventually, she does remember parts of her life as Kate. Jacob informs Mary about Circe, Roman and Safiyah; Mary panics (again), warning him about Circe and her connections, but at that moment, he is attacked by Safiyah's men. Alice frees NuKate, telling her to escape, while Safiyah captures Alice.

    Roman Sionis/Black Mask / NuKate: Roman is pissed off at Jacob (watching the presser from the previous episode) for being lauded for his info-dump on the Crows. Safiyah--working with him--is revealed as the one responsible for Kate's fight accident. Learning that Alice was responsible for providing Circe's new face, she spits at Roman for bringing Beth anywhere near her sister (for fear of not only Kate regaining her memory, but to prevent Alice from reuniting with her sister).

    In the clutches of Roman, Jacob is threatened: if he tries to hurt the Sionis family in any way, Roman will reveal that mass murderer Alice is his daughter, and he's been actively helping her. Promising to turn evidence about Roman over the GCPD, Roman's Black Mask thugs remove their masks, and put on their GCPD badges, pretty much letting Jacob know the entire department might be working for Sionis.

    The GCPD officers place him under arrest for aiding a known killer (Alice). Alice--watching his arrest on TV--sees Jacob defend her as his child--Beth--and says she's not a monster, adding that for anyone who would judge her to remember her as Beth. not the mass murderer. Alice touches the image of her father on the screen, but is interrupted by Safiyah and Whisper, with the former saying Alice owes her an island.

    In custody, Jacob asks for a change of venue to Metropolis. Talking to Mary--despite his own troubles--he asks her to help her step-sisters, and that he loves her.

    Safiyah fires accusations at Alice, but BW arrives and wants to trade her mother's Desert Rose for Alice. Safiyah calls BW stupid for giving up her mother's rose for someone she does not know, but accepts the offer. Not letting the opportunity to gloat pass, Alice gets a dig in by telling Safiyah she will give Ocean--(referring to him as her boyfriend) her regards, but the jealous Safiyah has sent Whisper to kill Ocean.

    After arguing with BW over priorities, etc., Alice soon makes her way back to the subway, where she runs into and fights Whisper, killing her with a knife to the throat. Entering the subway car, she breaks down, sobbing "no" as she finds the corpse of Ocean--also killed by a stab wound to the throat (SEE NOTES).....

    NOTES:

    Since the showrunners wrote the predicted "feel good" arrest of Tavaroff, and shoveled out other Very Special Episode sub-plots which failed (apparently, by design) to develop and seriously address one of black Americans greatest problems, it came as no surprise that their "remedy" for Luke's PSTD was to not go do something such as going public with his story and step over local officials to engage the state's elected officials and make that the crusade of his second chance at life, but this will lead to Luke becoming a costumed crimefighter. Thus, the shooting of Luke was--as noted time and again--the showrunners wanting to jump on the soapbox to appear relevant, but had not one ounce of integrity to actually undertake the daily, on-the-ground story that a black male (like Fox) endures not only after a violent encounter with law enforcement, but living in our skin, and having to see the world only for what it will be for millions like him, instead of the "what can be" the dominant society are free to dream and live.

    There's no damn excuse to follow up their weak current affairs episodes with no attempt to self-correct, with what should have been an honest exploration of a black man's struggles with corruption and threats from the criminal justice system (and serving as a full-on admission of willful ignorance about this subject). Instead, the showrunners/writers pulled a flaccid PTSD sub-plot from parts unknown, which shined no light on the far darker psychological pain a real world Luke would experience after his attack, which would not be trying to one-up the free shooter in a poker game, then getting his ass beat from the same man. Its just one incredibly offensive, gutless turn after another.

    Now, the audience is supposed to believe that Diggle's uninspiring bit of advice (using Luke's anger) coupled with Luke being told to do good (and probably some "what do we do? We need help!" forced moment) leads him to a Bat-suit.

    Oh gee, Ocean wanted to do the right thing and make a good impression on his girlfriend's father. Could it be that Alice will be involved in a somewhat normal, loving relationship? Hell no. The second Ocean shook Jacob's hand, it was clear he was a dead man walking. There was no way the showrunners would have Ocean last longer than the Safiyah plot needed him.

    Next week, the penultimate episode of the season two, where NuKate is still confused, but is handed the BW costume, as if to place Wilder at a crossroads about her future.

    GRADE: D-.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2021
  7. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Commodore Commodore

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    This was the first episode I have seen in many weeks. Last I saw think was when Kate was revealed alive to the audience. I watched for John Diggle. I hope his upcoming appearances in other are more involving than. Given his knowledge with ARGUS and Green Arrow it’s likely he knows or at suspects Luke’s connections with Batwoman. It’s implied at least. But Luke has no idea of any of that. So you have two strangers with no history who randomly meet in a bar...
    At least John knows some of the characters on those other series.

    I have been reading some descriptions of episodes I have missed. I have bounced back and forth in my opinion on what should be done with Kate since Ruby Rose left. Now seeing how they have actually handled it - Huge Mess.

    I am not sure where to begin. They should have just recast the role. Maybe done a shorter identity crisis arc with a new actress as Kate. With an existing character/actress being a temporary stand in as Batwoman. Instead the writers have created a really phony scenario where we are supposed to both accept a contrived series of events of how Kate has been away and changed her appearance completely and a whole new character as the lead. That is supposed to be embraced and excepted as a permanent replacement for the original. All of which is happening only in this show’s 2nd season. The show had yet to really even find its identity or footing last season. None of this has helped at all. This is not a criticism of Javicia Leslie herself.

    Anyways I will go back to reading episode descriptions.
     
  8. Mr. Adventure

    Mr. Adventure Admiral Admiral

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    The follow-up with Tavaroff was a bit strange. You'd think Tavaroff would've been at least slightly taken aback that Luke was on his feet so quickly. And then, he didn't seem to have an issue with Diggle so it wasn't even so much he was racist as he just didn't like Luke and actually thought he was a car thief. That he was just waiting to be hired again does seem to actually reflect real life problems with bad cops.

    The show does have an odd laxity with the characters' heroicness sometimes. This week with Luke just not being present in his post without apparently telling Batwoman and then presenting a life-threatening emergency he's culpable for ignoring.

    However, all that said, it fits with how the show has treated all of its elements all along. It's always been quick stuff that moves briskly from soapy/pulp moment to moments without stopping too long for reflection. I think when Ruby Rose was around it was better at selling the veneer. I think that's where Gotham got away with so much because it was anchored with Ben McKenzie's never wavering straight performance no matter what was happening around him. Javicia Leslie doesn't quite project that same presence IMO which makes it easier to start to poke at the seams as a viewer.
     
  9. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    The racist belief is not "All black people are criminals, and I like shooting them". Which is about glee. Which of course happens, but that's a different problem.

    It's "All black people have a gun and they will all try to shoot me, given the opportunity." Which is about fear.

    Criminals shoot at cops.

    It happens, and the police have to be careful.

    They just happen to be three times more careful than they have to be around black people than white people, which is profiling and racist.

    The specifics of this actual case?

    Tavaroff knew who Luke was, and knew that he was the head of security for Wayne Enterprises. He knew that Luke had just been released from Jail hours earlier, which he claimed was a factor in choosing to shoot to kill.

    Deciding to doctor his body cam, is something either he does so often it's second nature, which makes him a serial killer, or he had to prepare the cam beforehand, and prepare the server beforehand, which means the entire effort was premeditated.

    Was it a hit?

    It's the Riddler.
     
  10. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I liked the stuff with the Kane family. It was rather touching. Jacob and Alice bonding over their shared desire to get Kate back, actually managing to make a connection; Jacob speaking up in his daughter's defense to the public after hating Alice for so long; and Jacob finally telling Mary that he loves her and trusts her.

    And I liked it that Batwoman negotiated with Safiyah and spoke from the heart about what the plant meant to her, so that Safiyah would know how sincere she was. I knew that something would have to happen to get the desert rose out of the Bat-team's hands, since you can't give your heroes an easy escape from death on an ongoing basis. But I expected it to be destroyed at some point. Having Ryan give it up in order to save someone was a nice alternative.

    I'm amazed by how well-cast Wallis Day was. She really is convincing as an alternate Kate, with a very similar face and performance style. And she's every bit as gorgeous as Ruby Rose, in much the same way.


    Yeah. Only two days since Alice gave Kate/Circe her new face, and she already looks stunning and has already filmed a cosmetics commercial? No way. Serialized shows need to get out of the habit of pretending every episode takes a single day and follows right on the previous one. Give the characters some time to recover between episodes, or during them -- let an episode span multiple days if it needs to.


    Tavaroff wasn't saying he actually believed Luke was a car thief -- he was saying that the public would believe that, that Luke's reputation would be ruined and Tavaroff would get away with the lie as he always had before. He was boasting of his ability to shape the narrative however he wanted, regardless of the truth.

    And I'd say Tavaroff did show veiled contempt for Diggle, talking down to him as an outsider who didn't understand how things were done in Gotham. A lot of racism is coded like that. If it were always overt, it wouldn't be so insidious. After all, racism is ultimately rooted in cowardice -- the fear that the mere existence of people different from yourself is somehow a threat to what you have or to your sense of self-worth. So naturally racists hide their hate in contexts where they can't safely be open about it. They cloak it behind excuses and pretenses and rhetorical dog-whistles. They find other ways to insinuate that someone "isn't one of us" or "doesn't belong."

    Or, to put it more simply, Tavaroff is a bully, and bullies are more likely to pick on someone Luke Fox's size than John Diggle's.
     
  11. Mr. Adventure

    Mr. Adventure Admiral Admiral

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    ^ perhaps, though it would be a rare moment of subtlety for a series that plays pretty broad most of the time
     
  12. DEWLine

    DEWLine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'd have expected the remaining reconstructive surgery for Kate-as-Circe v.2 to need additional months.

    Same goes for the rolling-up of Crows Security as a corporation. I'm sure everyone here has local examples of companies that went under that needed months to properly shut down.
     
  13. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The entire Luke story was rushed BS, so the writers were never going to have Tavaroff even think about Luke's condition.

    Agreed--Tavaroff did not exhibit any racism toward Diggle, only contempt for this outsider stepping into "his" world.

    Since the GCPD is corrupted by Roman, that might be the next employment venue for Tavaroff--unless he ends up having a conflict of his own with the establishment.

    The very reason why this series--its showrunners were all ill-equipped to understand and examine a subject like racism and its ancient roots in hate-fueled tribalism. To the showrunners, they hold to talking points pulled straight from Left wing pundits, who live in a fantasyland that glosses over what racism is, how its applied and the psychological damage its caused across the life and times of black people in America, all to make themselves feel good by pointing a finger / write would-be feel good moments having no parallels to how this plays in reality. But again, the showrunners want to jump on every possible soapbox, but the idiotic mishandling of this subject stands as a revealing contrast, showing just how much they invest in other issues, and how this one was treated as a quickie, Very Special Episode, with Luke being an American black male in name only.

    The series was better off when they pretended that the problem of the age--racism--did not exist, and just stuck to Kate trying to re-establish her life in relation to her family. ...and on the subject of Kate, it was pointless to even keep the Kate character alive if the series / costumed identity that was based on her journey is no longer hers. Despite the "handing over the costume" clip from the teaser, I do not see NuKate reclaiming the identity she created, or having NuKate and Wilder switch off. The showrunners lacked the stones to not string Rose fans along and just kill the character off, and now they have Wallis Day in the role, who is a completely different body type than Ruby Rose (and two inches taller), and that cannot be hand-waved away in a "Darrin Stephens" manner.

    Leslie's issue is that she's not a strong actress, and projects too much of a personality that ranges from asshole-ish to uncaring, that's less about the character's experiences and more about the showrunners wanting Wilder to be "forceful" and lacking any subtlety / adding layers that would make anyone interested in her life at all.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2021 at 9:02 PM
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  14. DarKush

    DarKush Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    ^
    I did look at this week's episode, mainly because of Diggle, but I also wanted to see Luke's turn to Batwing and see if the show was going to pull that off convincingly. Before I get into that, I wanted to say regarding Tavaroff's treatment of Luke versus Diggle, the way Tavaroff might have treated them differently doesn't mean he isn't racist. It could be that Tavaroff thinks that Diggle is a 'good' one (an exception to the rule) versus Luke who 'is like the rest of them'.

    As for the episode, it might not be fair to me to judge it since I haven't looked at many of the preceding episodes, but taking it alone as a single episode, it felt more like a lot of set up where little happened. I thought Diggle just showing up and dispensing sage-like advice felt awkward, but at the same time that's not surprising for this show. I hope Diggle comes back so we learn what the neurological treatment thing is all about. I did like the interactions between Batwoman and Luke for the most part (though this episode did little to convince me that their version of Luke would make an effective Batwing; to me, why have another hero learning the ropes? Wilder's Batwoman is not at the level yet where they can move her beyond that point and so it feels a bit redundant to take Luke in that direction at this point in the series. I suppose they see an opening with the end of Black Lightning and the dearth of other black male superheroes on television or in movies at the moment, to make hay with turning Luke into Batwing. I have little confidence though in the Batwoman writing staff that they can make their Batwing a competent superhero. Hopefully they will bring in some of the Black Lightning writers; while I did have some issues with the writing on BL, I thought it was much better than anything I've seen on Batwoman).

    I liked Safiyah and Black Mask is alright. I wish Wallis Day had been chosen for the Batwoman role from jump. The series might have been stronger out the gate if that had happened with a stronger lead actress than Rose. I'm still iffy on Alice. The actress isn't bad, but it's something about the writing that leaves me cold, like they write her too over the top or something. They want her to be the Joker and Harley, and I don't know if they can pull off turning her from mass killer into a sympathetic anti-hero, but they are going there.

    Though I mostly agree with Trek_God's take on how the series has fumbled racism, to their credit once they decided to pick a black woman as the new lead of the series they knew they couldn't avoid dealing with racism, not in the current social climate, and not coming on after series like Marvel's Luke Cage or the Arrowverse's Black Lightning or even network mate All-American. I don't think, from what I've seen, they've done a bang up job with how they've handled it, but I'll give them credit for not pretending racism doesn't exist. Even Supergirl used to cough up the once-a-season Jimmy Olsen 'race' episode, Legends also had a racism episode or two, whereas Diggle made a crack or two on Arrow and that was about it. So it would make sense with Batwoman now being black that the series would take on race as lived part of Wilder's experience.

    The one Arrowverse series that eschews talk of race the most IMO is Flash (to be fair here I stopped looking at Flash consistently after the third season and only come back time to time, and so I'm basing my opinion on those first three seasons more than anything) and that's unfortunate seeing that Barry is a white man raised in a black family and is now married to a black woman. It's not so much that there need to be soapbox moments but more so little things that would denote that, like the music he listens to, movies he likes, books he's read, how he dresses, different food (I've seen Joe mention his grandmother's cooking once so I'm thinking more along that line than 'very special' episodes). To illustrate, the push for Juneteenth to become a national holiday. Juneteenth is something that has been celebrated/commemorated by some (but not all) African Americans for a long time now, and is just now coming to national (i.e. white) attention. I could see Barry knowing about Juneteenth and it's importance if/when Joe and the West family knew about it or celebrated it, long before it became a topic of national conversation.

    It's very rare in Hollywood that we see white people raised by black people (we often see the opposite), and I think it's been a missed opportunity to go 'colorblind' in not depicting how some of that experience could be different on Flash.

    The desire to say we 'are all the same' sometimes homogenizes cultural/historic differences and undermines the idea of truly appreciating and valuing diversity.

    Just saw this. Hopefully it helps illustrate my illustrative point:

    https://www.yahoo.com/news/most-americans-know-little-nothing-114755896.html
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2021 at 2:50 PM
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  15. Caretaker

    Caretaker Commodore Premium Member

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    I found the chronology a little confusing. Diggle made it sound like he was still operating out of Star City, which would place this before the scene in "Fadeout" where Lyla and Diggle pack up to leave for Metropolis. I guess the Arrow finale could have taken over a longer period of time, months, before Diggle and Lyle made the move to Metropolis, although Diggle there made it sound like they were moving soon after the funeral (maybe they changed their plans on when they were moving).
     
  16. DarKush

    DarKush Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Perhaps he or they moved back to Star City?
     
  17. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    They actually wanted to deal with this in a Flash/Black Lightning crossover, where Barry and, I think, Iris were going to have dinner with the Pierces, but they never got a chance to.
    It's definitely after the last scene with Diggle in the Arrow finale, they said in an interview about Diggle's Arrowverse appearances that the headaches will be kind of the arc through them, and
    that they are connected to what he found in the box.
    It's sad how believable it is that Tavaroff would get off that easily.
    I can kind of understand what they were trying to do with Diggle's appearance, but it felt really random here. Are all of his appearances happening this week, or are they being spread out through the season?
    Sionis getting Jacob sent arrested was a surprise.
    We got some good stuff with Jacob and the others trying to bring back Kate. I'm starting to like Walis Day's take on Kate.
    I was curious how they were going to get rid of the Desert Rose, it was just to much of an easy out for them to keep it around for too long.
    Poor Alice, everyone she cares about just keep dying on her. First Mouse, then she thought Kate died, and now Ocean has.
     
  18. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    According to IMDb and the Arrowverse Wiki, David Ramsey's remaining appearances will be on Legends on June 27 (not as Diggle), The Flash on July 6, Superman & Lois on July 27, and Supergirl on September 21.
     
  19. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    OK, thanks.
     
  20. DEWLine

    DEWLine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Looked like signature weapons from Bane, Mad Hatter, Joker, Poison Ivy, and who else in that biohazard vault?