25th Jun2021

‘Batwoman 2×17: Kane, Kate’ Review

by Jason Brigger

Stars: Javicia Leslie, Rachel Skarsten, Meagan Tandy, Nicole Kang, Camrus Johnson, Dougray Scott | Created by Caroline Dries

Batwoman’s second season is coming to a close next week and while this season has been a strange one, the series has rebounded with the leaving of Ruby Rose and is now a much stronger ensemble show. Not only did this episode set up the season finale, but it also loaded up on the Batman Easter Eggs! Let’s take a look at this week’s episode.

What Happened This Week?

What’s Wrong with Kate?

After finding Kate Kane drinking tequila with half the bar, Team Batwoman takes her home to help her recover from her poor drinking choices. Ryan, Luke, Mary and Sophie continue to struggle with the realization that Kate is back and it’s even more difficult when Kate doesn’t remember everything from her past. This is even more reason for Team Batwoman to be more cautious of Kate but unfortunately, they want to believe Kate has returned that they continue to reveal their secrets to her in hopes of helping her with her memory loss. In a twist everyone saw coming, Kate is still working for Roman and is still evil. I don’t mind Kate being the villain but at the same time, it really doesn’t have that much of an impact when the twist seems obvious.

Luke attempts to help Kate remember her past as he gifts Kate with her personal journals that she wrote in throughout season one. It also is the same journal Ryan writes in, so it’s only a matter of time until Roman learns Ryan’s secret too.

With Kate back in the picture, Ryan is feeling left out as she understands that it’s only a matter of time until Kate is back to being Gotham’s favorite vigilante. Ryan decides to pack up and go back to living in her van and back to her old life, much to Sophie’s disapproval. Unfortunately, Ryan is soon arrested by crooked Gotham police officers, at this point it seems everyone in government is corrupt, as they plant Snakebite on her. At this point, just burn this whole town down.

Ryan being arrested is only for Roman’s own pleasure as he enters the police car Ryan is being held in and begins to monologue about how he will take over Gotham. Ryan pleads with Roman to see the right side, that despite his daughter’s death, taking over the city and causing pain to innocent citizens will not heal his heart or bring his daughter back. Ryan’s words do little to change Roman’s mind and he still plans on killing Ryan and fulfilling his vague plan.

After years of not being able to accept new people in her life, Ryan is finally able to open up and trust people…first Mary and Luke and in this episode, she has no choice but to tell her parole officer (Rebecca Davis) during an interrogation at the police station that she is Batwoman. The parole officer, after multiple attempts to convince her, finally believes Ryan and just in time too as the corrupt police officers attempt to kill both of them. Ryan takes down the police officers and in the process, convinces her parole officer that not only is she Batwoman, but that Black Mask set her up.

With Ryan away, Team Batwoman turns to Kate to become Batwoman again and once they give her the keys to the Batcave, Kate reveals herself to be Circe and turns on Luke, Mary and Sophie. She tranquilizers our heroes, trapping them in an elevator and then Kate goes on a shopping spree in the Batcave, taking her old suit, souvenirs from villains of the past, and even some new weapons.

Just as Kate is about to kill Team Batwoman, Ryan arrives to save the day and stop Kate/Circe. Unfortunately, Kate, after a brief fight, gets the best of Ryan but Sophie is able to grab a crossbow and threaten to shoot Kate if she doesn’t leave Ryan alone. Kate knows Sophie isn’t a killer and just wanders off while Sophie watches her. Seriously, Sophie, shoot her! Luke informs Ryan that Kate has all the weapons, the suit and the bike and Team Batwoman has nothing left to fight Kate and Black Mask.

Alice’s Redemption

The death of Ocean in the last episode seems to be the turning point for Alice as she has finally grasped the heartache that comes with losing someone she loves. After all these years of being the one to cause the pain, Alice is finally on the receiving end and it’s causing her to question her whole criminal life. If Team Batwoman has any hope of stopping Black Mask, Alice is going to have to leave her former life behind and help our heroes in order for Gotham to stand a chance in this fight.

While Alice is releasing Ocean’s ashes into Gotham Harbor, Safiyah ambushes Alice and asks for a truce in their war. Safiyah feels they are now even: Alice burned the Desert Rose garden on Coriana and Safiyah murdered Alice’s one, true love. Seems fair. Safiyah wants Alice to return to the island with her and help her regrow the Desert Rose garden and restart their empire with the help of the plant Batwoman gave her on the last episode as well as using a plant from Poison Ivy’s personal collection.

Alice, after all these years, has finally seen the light and is no longer controlled by Safiyah. Alice pretends to hug Safiyah, but it’s only a trick to get closer to her and stab Safiyah with the Desert Rose knife. Unless the knife is removed from Safiyah, she will remain dead. Not only does Alice stab her, but she also tells a dying Safiyah that she is going to make her suffer for a long time. Alice is not the villain you want to make mad and Safiyah did that by killing Ocean.

Rise of Black Mask

While Safiyah is off dealing with Alice, Roman is busy growing his army as he fills the ranks with former and present Crows and Gotham police officers. Tavaroff is especially excited about this new opportunity to unleash evil, but he doesn’t want to be just another cog in Roman’s machine. Roman sees the potential in Tavaroff and offers something greater to our most despicable Crow…Bane, version 2.0! Yes, Roman offers the super-strength drug, Venom, as used by the original Bane, on Tavaroff in order to become his new enforcer. I didn’t expect that twist, but I appreciate the new “take” on prior Batman villains.

Venom isn’t the only weapon that Roman has, thanks to Kate/Circe robbing the Batcave. Roman now has his hands on bio-weapons, everything from Scarecrow’s Fear Toxin to Clayface’s molding formula that allows people to look like anyone they see. Again, I have no idea what Roman’s master plan is, but with these weapons, I’m guessing it’s not good for Gotham. At this point, why would any normal citizen willingly choose to live in Gotham?

Easter Eggs

  • We learn this week that Batman was a hoarder and liked to keep souvenirs from his defeated villains. While Kate is exploring the Batcave for weapons, she comes across Batman’s display case housing memorabilia from his most famous villains: Joker’s flower prop, Killer Croc’s tooth, Scarecrow’s Fear Toxin, a plant from Poison Ivy, and Bane’s superstrength drug Venom. It was a nice touch to showcase the history of Batman while keeping fans guessing what else is in the Batcave.

Episode Grade: B (Good)

Batwoman’s final episode before the season finale sets everything in motion for a potentially action-packed finale. While the collection of weapons from the Batcave gives the villains the upper hand, I like the idea that Team Batwoman has to go back to their roots and figure out a way to stop Black Mask. They cannot rely on their technology and must do something Batman always did, outsmart the enemy. My prediction is Alice will join up with Team Batwoman, which should provide some funny scenes, in order to stop Black Mask from taking over Gotham. Overall, this week’s episode was another strong episode and sets up the season finale perfectly.

You can catch Jason Brigger on the geek-centric podcast, The History of Bad Ideas, as new episodes are released every week at www.nerdly.co.uk or subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher and other podcasting apps. You can listen to their latest episode right here.

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