Batwoman: Season 1 Review

Batwoman: Season 1 Review

Note: this is a spoiler-free review of Batwoman Season 1. The entire season is now available to purchase in Digital HD or stream on HBO Max. Find out how you can subscribe to HBO Max here. [poilib element=”accentDivider”] At what point does the Arrowverse become too big for its own good? That’s certainly a question that’s become more pressing over the past year, as Batwoman has joined the CW ranks and the network moves ahead on other spinoffs like Superman & Lois (premiering in January 2021) and potentially Green Arrow and the Canaries (status still TBD). Do fans really need yet another superhero drama on the CW, even one that finally shines a light on the Arrowverse’s little-seen version of Gotham City? Early on, the answer seemed to be a resounding “no,” but it’s a testament to Batwoman’s dogged perseverance that it eventually manages to carve its own niche in a very crowded landscape. Building on 2018’s Elseworlds crossover, Batwoman puts Ruby Rose’s Kate Kane in the spotlight, as Bruce Wayne’s younger cousin comes out of hiding to defend a city that’s struggled without a Batman for three years. Early on, one of Season 1’s biggest mistakes is the decision to circle back and chronicle Kate’s superhero origin story rather than simply continuing where Elseworlds leaves off. That really hinders the show’s momentum early on, without actually adding much to the character or her journey by way of compensation. There’s no apparent reason why the series couldn’t have simply started out with Batwoman already established as Gotham’s new protector and filled in the details of her past when and where necessary. [widget path=”global/article/imagegallery” parameters=”albumSlug=crisis-on-infinite-earths-crossover-photos&captions=true”] Batwoman’s other fundamental mistake is sticking far too closely to the standard Arrowverse formula. So many characters in the early episodes feel as though they’re being shoehorned into traditional DC TV molds. Like Oliver Queen, Kate is the wayward rich kid who has finally come home to save her city. Luke Fox (Camrus Johnson) is the seemingly obligatory sidekick who provides Kate with all the gadgets and snarky banter she could ever need. Characters like Kate’s stepmother Catherine (Elizabeth Anweis) and stepsister Mary (Nicole Kang) recall that early Queen family drama from Arrow’s first two seasons. Early on, Batwoman feels entirely too much like a fusion of Arrow and the Dark Knight movies (in much the same way Arrow itself played like a mash-up of The Dark…
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