News and Commentary

FIRST LOOK: The CW Releases First Photo Of LGBTQ Batwoman In Costume

On Tuesday, The CW and Warner Bros. TV released the first look at the new live-action Batwoman coming to the small screen in December.

The character, who will appear in a December 9 crossover event, will be the first LGBTQ character to have her own series in the “Arrowverse.” Along with the her lesbian identity, The Hollywood Reporter points out, Kate Kane comes “armed with a passion for social justice and flair for speaking her mind.”

Here’s the first look at actress Ruby Rose (“Orange Is The New Black”) as Batwoman, along with some enthusiastic responses:

Batwoman was introduced in the 1950s as a potential love interest for Batman, but by the next decade the character was phased out. She was reintroduced and re-imagined in 2006 in DC’s “New 52” as a lesbian. Her passion for social justice follows DC’s increasing embrace of social justice themes.

As The Daily Wire’s Emily Zanotti reported a few weeks ago, Rose felt compelled to quit Twitter after #RecastBatwoman began trending in response to her supposedly being “not gay enough” for the lesbian role:

Rose, who typically dresses as female but identifies as “gender fluid,” was cast as the first openly gay superhero to headline a network television show last week, making entertainment — and comic book — history. Critics hailed the casting as “perfect,” and Rose described the role as a “childhood dream.”

But LGBT and other leftist activists weren’t happy; Rose is gender fluid, they complained, and Batwoman’s alter ego, Kate Kane, is a self-declared lesbian which means Rose isn’t gay enough.

“A #RecastBatwoman hashtag started circulating, with people also wondering why the role couldn’t have gone to a lesser-known LGBTQ+ actress in need of an acting break,” women’s magazine Glamour reported. “Critics also accused Rose of not being a lesbian since she also refers to herself as gender-fluid.”

When the backlash first began, Rose tweeted, “Where on earth did ‘Ruby is not a lesbian therefore she can’t be Batwoman’ come from — has to be the funniest most ridiculous thing I’ve ever read. I came out at 12? And have for the past 5 years had to deal with ‘she’s too gay’ how do y’all flip it like that? I didn’t change.” She eventually decided to take a break from Twitter.

THR notes that with casting Rose to play Kate Kane, “The CW’s superhero stable now includes an out lesbian superhero played by a lesbian actress as well as a trans actress playing a trans superhero, with activist Nicole Maines joining Supergirl as a series regular this season.”