Batwoman has been struggling to keep its audience in its second season. The show hit its all-time lowest rating in terms of total persons watching. The average size of the traditional television audience for the episode on February 21 was 493,000. That does not include numbers from DVR watchers. We have not received the ratings for the most recent episode that aired on February 28, but if the trend continues to be a downward one, there could be a rocky future ahead for the CW superhero show.
Thankfully for fans of Batwoman, they should not be too worried about the show’s immediate future. The CW has already announced that the series would be coming back for a third season. It looks like the network is sticking behind the show regardless of how it is currently being received by viewers. The second season has managed to obtain some decent critical appraisal, but there also seems to be a strong contingency of “fans” that are vehemently against the show for any number of reasons. As with most aggregate review sites, the show looks to be the victim of brigading when it comes to user reviews.
However, one does have to wonder if Batwoman is seeing such a strong decline in some part due to the recasting of its lead. Ruby Rose portrayed the character of Kate Kane in the first season of the show but decided to leave the production. Because of this, the series made the decision not to recast Kate Kane but to hand the mantle of Batwoman over to a new actress and character. Javicia Leslie came into Season 2 as the show’s new lead, Ryan Wilder. In effect, the show has had to reboot itself in its second season and completely reestablish itself all over again. That is a tough hurdle for any show to overcome.
Batwoman is also finding itself in a very interesting position in relation to the rest of the CW/DC shows on the network. That superhero universe – dubbed the Arrowverse by fans – has been going strong for nearly a decade now but is starting to establish some new cornerstones to the franchise. Superman & Lois recently had its premiere (read our review) and looks to have been a solid success. Because of this, there is the perception that a new era for the Arrowverse has kicked off. While there are other stalwart shows in the Arrowverse still going, there does seem to be the feeling that the endeavor is reaching a turning point. Batwoman is caught up in the middle of this identity shift and could be getting dismissed by a lot of viewers because its stories don’t seem to feel as integral to the overall Arrowverse.
We will have to wait and see if the low ratings change the minds of the powers-that-be at The CW. Fellow CW show Charmed had even lower ratings – less than 300,000 – and has also been given a season renewal. Perhaps things will change for Batwoman after Leslie’s inaugural season is all said and done. Here’s hoping for the best.