Nothing on The CW’s Batwoman has been the same since Ruby Rose left after season one. The series now stars a new Batwoman, played by Javicia Leslie, and they’re making that transition during a pandemic. Ruby Rose’s exit felt abrupt to many in the audience, but would it be possible to see the actress return as Kate Kane for an episode or two in the future? While The CW hasn’t addressed it, Rose has now said she would absolutely return for an episode.
This is the first time anyone involved has publicly said Ruby Rose would or could return to the show, even for a single episode. Her departure from the starring role was announced after the end of season one in May 2020. During a recent interview with ComicBookMovie.com, she said that the pandemic played a role in her decision to leave the show, but in the past she has also said that her 2019 back surgery played in her decision to leave the series. The surgery was needed after Rose was injured on the set of Batwoman.
Since her departure, Ruby Rose has been in three films, including SAS: Red Notice, which releases March 16, 2021. During her interview for SAS: Red Notice, she was asked about returning to Batwoman for an episode to provide more finality for Kate Kane. Ruby Rose said that she would return to the show, however, “I don’t think it would serve the story because I think building the new Batwoman is more important than going back too far into Kate Kane.”
The actress didn’t say if she has ever discussed the idea with anyone still involved on Batwoman. Caroline Dries, the showrunner for Batwoman has left the possibility open in the story. While they could have recast Kate Kane, Caroline Dries said that possibility felt too weird to her. Instead, they created a new character in Javicia Leslie’s Ryan Wilder, who is now the new Batwoman.
While that decision made sense, audiences have felt weird about the show. Recasting the main character obviously shifts what the audience can expect from Batwoman. While the show has had lower ratings in its second season, they are now averaging around the same viewers as before Ruby Rose left the show. The CW clearly still has faith in the show, as they renewed Batwoman for a third season.
Could Ruby Rose returning for an episode or two improve Batwoman’s dropping ratings? It may revive interest from audiences that abandoned the show after her departure. If audiences come back to see Kate Kane again, they would have the opportunity to get to know Ryan Wilder. That could do something to regain interest, but would it be enough?
While the showrunner decided not to recast Kate Kane, the Arrowverse has still definitely been left with an awkward hole they haven’t known how to fill. Recently, audiences were put off during an episode of Superman & Lois. During the Crisis on Infinite Earths crossover event, Ruby Rose’s Batwoman played a major role. When Superman & Lois covered these events during a special episode, they erased Batwoman from the narrative altogether. This did not go over well with audiences dedicated to following the entire Arrowverse. If you care a lot about the overarching story of these shows, it’s terrible to feel like the writers are betraying it. If they had the participation of Ruby Rose, could they come up with a way to better tie off Kate Kane’s storyline and avoid such moments?
We’ll have to wait and see if The CW notices this statement from Ruby Rose and decides to take advantage of her willingness to return to the show.