The multiverse of superheroes will get a bit more crowded, if that’s possible, with the addition of out Aussie model and Orange Is the New Black alum Ruby Rose as lesbian superhero Kate Kane, aka Batwoman.
Variety reports that Rose will make her debut as the caped crusader on The CW’s annual “Arrowverse” crossover event, swinging through The Flash, Arrow, Legends of Tomorrow, and Supergirl.
“Armed with a passion for social justice and a flair for speaking her mind,” Batwoman is still working on the whole “hero” thing as she “must overcome her own demons before embracing the call to be Gotham’s symbol of hope,” according to Variety.
The CW is also developing a Batwoman series slated for the 2019–20 season, that (if it is picked up) will make her the first openly gay superhero to headline a live-action show or movie.
A wealthy heiress with a penchant for kicking some criminal keister, Batwoman was first introduced in 1956 as a love interest for Batman in an attempt to quash the homosexual aspersions made by psychiatrist Fredric Wertham in his book Seduction of the Innocent, which claimed that comic books were corrupting the youth of the nation. Though, honestly, I don’t know where Doc Wertham could’ve gotten the idea that a single bachelor and his practically-adult ward—spending their nights traipsing around in tights and carousing with flamboyant men wearing more makeup than the Gabor sisters—were anything more than friends.
Very special friends.
As the Batman series started taking itself far too seriously, Batwoman was phased out in 1964, only to return in 2006 as, ironically (considering the character’s roots), an out Jewish lesbian. That year, in a sign of DC getting with the increasingly diverse times, also saw the revival of another queer super, Midnighter. On the very queer-friendly CW, however, Kane/Batwoman will be in fine company with Black Lightning’s Thunder (comicdom’s fist black lesbian superhero) and CW Seed’s animated The Ray representing for the LGBTQ community.
The CW was reportedly on the hunt for an out lesbian actress to portray Batwoman and found their perfect heroine in Rose. Best known for her role as Stella in Orange Is the New Black, Rose, who identifies as lesbian and genderfluid, has previously cut her ass-kicking chops in Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, xXx: Return of Xander Cage and John Wick: Chapter 2.
Rose took to the Instagram to celebrate the bat-tastic news, calling her casting a “childhood dream”:
The Bat is out of the bag and I am beyond thrilled and honored. I’m also an emotional wreck.. because this is a childhood dream. This is something I would have died to have seen on TV when I was a young member of the LGBT community who never felt represented on tv and felt alone and different. Thank you everyone. Thank you god.
Sounds like Batwoman is in good hands.