After giving new Batwoman Javicia Leslie some time to settle in, The CW is reviving previous Batwoman Kate Kane—sans Bat-title—with the help of another actor familiar with the DC television universe. THR reports that Krypton star Wallis Day has been enlisted to replace Ruby Rose as a new and “altered” version of Kate Kane, though Leslie’s Ryan Wilder will retain the Batwoman identity. Rose played Kane throughout season one, which marked the first time a TV series featured a lesbian superhero as its lead. Following Rose’s surprise departure from the series, showrunner Caroline Dries enlisted Leslie to play new Batwoman Ryan Wilder, with Kane’s mysterious disappearance in a plane crash serving as a plot point in the second season.
This week’s episode concluded by revealing that Kane survived the crash, but her injuries have conveniently rendered her unrecognizable, allowing for Wallis Day to assume the role. In a statement released last summer, Dries addressed the role of Kate Kane in Batwoman and assured fans that she wasn’t interested in killing off the character—thereby playing into the “Bury Your Gays” trope that had become common on television:
As a lesbian who’s been working as a writer for the past 15 years, I’m well aware of the ‘Bury Your Gays’ trope and I have no interest in participating in it. 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.