It’s been a rough few weeks for the producers of The CW’s Batwoman series (and also, y’know, everybody), as they continue to grapple with the sudden news that star Ruby Rose won’t be returning for an already-renewed second season of the superhero show. Controversy and questions have surrounded the move, first with the news that the show would not recast Rose’s character, Kate Kane, and then with rumors that it might kill her off completely. Now, showrunner Caroline Dries has issued a statement about the series’ plans, hoping to assuage fears that Batwoman will indulge in the much-derided “Bury Your Gays” storytelling trope.
“As a lesbian who’s been working as a writer for the past fifteen years, I’m well aware of the “Bury Your Gays” trope and I have no interest in participating in it,” Dries said, referencing a media phenomenon in which LGBTQ+ characters like Kate are abruptly killed in order to infuse some unearned tragedy into the narrative. (It’s something that lots of shows, books, and films have been guilty of over the years, with The CW itself getting stridently called out for it with its handling of The 100 a few years back.)
That’s why it’s important to me as the showrunner to clarify any misinformation out there about Kate Kane and recasting Batwoman. Like you, I love Kate Kane—she’s the reason I wanted to do the show. We’ll never erase her. In fact, her disappearance will be one of the mysteries of season two. I don’t want to give away any of our surprises, but to all our devoted fans, please know that LGBTQ+ justice is at the very core of what Batwoman is and we have no intention of abandoning that.
Per Deadline, Dries and her team are floating the name Ryan Wilder as the new Batwoman, although there’s no word on who’ll be playing her, or whether she’s a character with any existing footprint in the D.C. Comics universe.