In the middle of The CW Upfronts — the network’s annual schedule announcement, and attempt to sell as much advertising as humanly possible — some big news dropped for DC Comics fans. Announced by Arrow star Stephen Amell, next year’s Arrow-verse crossover will introduce Batwoman, a.k.a. Kate Kane. Not only that, but we’ll get to see a glimpse of Gotham City, something that’s been hinted at before, but never seen.
And fans were not pleased.
Or at least, that was the reaction on our Twitter feed, when we rather innocuously posted the news, and asked who fans would cast:
Who would YOU cast as Kate Kane? pic.twitter.com/yVkj9EjSom
— Comic Book Club (@comicbooklive) May 17, 2018
For a little bit of background, Batwoman was introduced in 1956. She’s gone through a few reinventions, but a 2006 reboot focused on the character Kate Kane has become phenomenally popular. Kate is ex-military, works with her father, and was friends/cousins with a young Bruce Wayne. She’s also a lesbian, one of the biggest LGBTQ+ characters in comics.
That last part is probably the one that’s the sticking point with fans. Shockingly, not that The CW would be adding a lesbian character: the Arrowverse already has a number of bi characters, including White Canary (Caity Lotz) and Alex Danvers (Chyler Leigh). But rather they’re freaked out that the network, which has an arguably iffy relationship with LGBTQ+ characters, will do right by Kate.
They're gonna kill off every girlfriend Kate gets https://t.co/v0oTchJ1sh
— d.va's girlfriend (@azulapologist) May 17, 2018
You already know they’re going to make Kate weak to prop up their Dollar Store Batman with the one emotion. https://t.co/bIDgdmkKWL
— Adam (@AdamMcDee) May 17, 2018
Please no, don't touch batwoman with your dirty hands CW https://t.co/YFK40f8cQE
— kattswift (@kattswift13) May 17, 2018
They better cast an actual lesbian I’m not playin this time. https://t.co/qetMS7E62J
— Villanelle Supremacist Victoria| Sorry Baby x🖤🌹 (@TargaryenHalsey) May 17, 2018
On the other hand, The CW has presented some of the more diverse characters on TV, in shows like The 100 and Black Lightning. (Though fans would point particularly to The 100 for playing into the hated “Kill Your Gays” trope). And The Arrow-verse may lean hetereosexual, but that doesn’t mean characters aren’t allowed to experiment, or even be in long term LGBTQ+ relationships.
Previous crossovers have focused on the time-traveling villain Vandal Savage, and an alien invasion by The Dominators. This year will be a little more character focused and less world-threatening — presumably to take the time to properly introduce Gotham to the casts of Arrow, The Flash, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, and Supergirl. As for how well they’ll treat Kate? We’ll have to stay tuned.
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