Friday, April 12, 2024

Batwoman Digs into Frigid Plots And Budding Relationships

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Batwoman opens on a chilling scene (pun intended), with a person who’s frozen solid being observed by a man with a black hat that looks like trouble. When Frozen-guy tries to stand he crumples to pieces, literally. Black Hat’s only reaction is to make a note of the failure and a 24-hour deadline. And the creepy isn’t done yet. The next scene is in a park, with the only ray of sunlight to be found in Gotham. Oh and also Mary being unwrapped from vines. She wakes up, confused, pulling a thorn from her arm.

Meanwhile, Ryan and Luke are at the loft dealing with another kind of crisis. Ryan’s on Gotham’s ’30 Under 30’ and it’s thanks to Marquis she made the list. Not that Ryan isn’t baller enough to get on the list on her own, which she is. Luke’s not thrilled about a public appearance at an event where the brother she’s meant to be avoiding is going to be, but Ryan has to do it, lest the press come hammering down the doors of Wayne Enterprises.

Also, Sophie’s going to be there. Sophie’s going to be there because Jordan is also on the list for her work at the community center. (Shout to best girl, Jordan Moore making waves in Gotham, even if it’s mostly off-screen) Did I mention Sophie’s going to be there? 

Mary bursts in right then. Ryan eyes her in yesterday’s clothes and asks if she was out with a boy. Mary says she slept on a park bench and Luke and Ryan have the most non-reactions possible, like they don’t live in a city that’s constantly beset by mutated replies or umbrella welding mobsters. Luke’s still mad after Mary spilled the tea on him and Ryan’s distracted by the everything else that’s happening.

Maybe Gotham’s so wild, ‘sleeping on a park bench’ seems normal by comparison.

 At Arkham, Alice is seeing the nanobots in her skin again when a nurse comes in with mail for her. She realizes the letters are another illusion. She snaps the nurse’s neck, but when she calls for the guard he doesn’t react because no one is actually there with her. Alice uses her phone call lifeline, aka, Renee.

At the Gotham Expo Hotel, where the 30 Under 30 event is being held, Ryan’s working the cameras and press until Marquis shows up, throwing her off her game. She gives him the cold shoulder and Marquis seems a little disappointed to get shut down.

Ryan Wilder
If I were Gotham press, I too would be climbing the walls of Wayne to get a picture of this smile.

Meanwhile, across the room, the Moore sisters are there having fun sibling banter. Sophie’s looking fly in a blue suit and Jordan is looking nervous about her upcoming speech. Sophie’s surprised that Jordan wanted to be there at all, considering this isn’t her usual scene. But Jordan wants to use the exposure to bring more attention and funds to the community center. Sophie is so proud of Jordan and she tells her as much.

But then her eyes drift across the room and find Ryan’s as her words trail off. There’s a soft and simple string of musical notes in the background. And their smiles. Are. So. Soft. Jordan, in a classic little sister move, wastes no time in taking the mick out of Sophie for staring.

Sophie Moore
Sophie, your hearteyes are showing.

Then Sophie admits she had a dream about Ryan! Where Ryan was taking care of her with soup! Jordan is dying for the details (and so am I). She’s giddy with delight when Sophie says she woke up before she could try the soup. A classic dream about longing. Sophie’s already regretting telling her sister anything, and she insists it wasn’t a sexual dream. Jordan asks if Ryan brought a flower with the soup and Sophie’s expression is answer enough to confirm her suspicions.

Sophie is surrounded by overachievers like Jordan, Mary, Luke, and Ryan while she’s still got no career and her mind is begging she at least get a girlfriend but said girlfriend doesn’t have to be Ryan. Jordan pulls an Uno reverse card and points out how good they could be together. She also catches Sophie staring, again. When Sophie steps away to get a break from the teasing, the same black hat guy from earlier approaches Jordan, knocking her out and dragging her away.

Jordan Moore
Jordan Moore, captain of the Wildmoore ship.

Meanwhile, Jada sees a picture of Ryan and Marquis together and isn’t happy. She makes a call to Vesper Fairchild with the promise of a big scoop.

At Mary’s clinic, there is another kind of sisterly ribbing happening. Alice is rolling around the clinic, intrigued by Mary’s new plant babies in her office. Mary wants to know why Renee dropped Alice off when there isn’t a lead on a trophy. Alice told Renee she had a lead on a rogue trophy that doesn’t exist and Renee believed her because she said it in a lower voice. Mary threatens to blow Alice’s lie to Renee, but she stops her with her own threat of exposing that the Bat team is taking a personal day instead of hunting for missing trophies.

Siblings. Siblings. Siblings. Siblings.

Back at the Expo, Marquis tries talking with Ryan again, this time with a ‘brilliant’ disguise on. (The brilliant disguise is an ‘I love Gotham’ cap). Sophie joins them, looking for Jordan. Marquis introduces himself as Ryan’s brother. When Sophie introduces herself, she hesitates a beat before she can say her relationship to Ryan, which Ryan fills in with ‘her very good friend’. And two seconds later she says ‘my girl comes first’ when her publicists wants her at the next interview.

In the Batcave, Luke is trying to get his father’s AI to work again, frustrated by the lack of a response. Ryan calls the cave for some tech support in finding Jordan. Luke helps them find Jordan’s cell phone, but no Jordan. Marquis gives Ryan and Sophie a tip that someone looking like Jordan was seen in one of the hotel rooms. They find Jordan in the room, frozen solid. 

Sophie’s going through it, knowing this happened to her sister on her watch. She’s trying to make sense of it the only way she knows how, by taking action. Ryan stops Sophie from trying to move Jordan. She promises they’ll figure this out. Together.

At Mary’s clinic, she confirms the serum is similar to Victor Fries’, but now the process is happening without the aid of a cryo chamber. Sophie begs Mary for a way to help her sister. And Alice is there to try to lighten the mood by offering to get a hairdryer. Mary doesn’t even try explaining her presence, but she does think she can reverse the effects on Jordan if she can get some of the serum.

Oh, and Alice just so happened to figure out who’s behind this by going through Jordan’s phone. It’s the Bee Gees. She then looks disappointed when Sophie and Mary don’t automatically know what she’s talking about: The BGS, aka the Black Glove Society. It’s a shadow organization made up of old money from the Gotham elite. Jordan and her friends had uncovered information on the ground and she was going to use her speech to blow one hell of a whistle.

Sophie wonders why Jordan didn’t tell her about this. Alice points out that Jordan knew ‘Special Agent Play-It-Safe’ would try and talk her out of it and she’s surprisingly earnest when she tells Sophie this. Jordan’s condition starts getting worse and Sophie can’t just stand by and watch anymore. She takes Alice to Jordan’s apartment to look for her information the BGS.

Back at the hotel, Ryan sees the guy who shattered at the start of the episode being taken out by the coroner. Luke’s suspicious about Marquis having potential connections to the BGS, prompting Ryan to ask him how he knew about Jordan. He explains has connections with the hotel staff and he’s a little insulted by the insinuation he might be involved. He only wanted the chance to know Ryan. The ruthless Jada Ryan’s been trying to avoid is the same woman Marquis had to grow up with. He was hoping Ryan would finally be someone to have his back.

And because none of my girls can catch a break this episode, the rain on Ryan’s parade continues. Her publicist Charlie informs her that Wayne stock is plummeting because Vesper leaked the new CEO stealing millions from company accounts. Ryan knows Jada is involved but since she can only deal with one crisis at a time, she prioritizes helping Jordan.

Luke confirms Jada didn’t fake the accounts. The ‘missing’ money is what keeps the Batcave’s lights on. On the BGS front, Ryan can’t find any clues in the room they found Jordan in. Luke tries looking for other rooms they were working in by looking for cold signatures, but when Ryan notes heat lamps in the room he switches the search and finds one room that’s a hot spot.

Suiting up, Ryan finds someone’s melted remains in the room. She and Luke are able to get an ID as one of the person’s on Jordan’s group chat. Luke also finds out the body taken out by the GCPD was the other person, meaning Jordan is the only one left.

Sophie and Alice
I understand this is a tense point in the episode, but I’d like to appreciate these fits.

At Jordan’s place, Sophie and Alice split up to search the apartment. The nurse Alice ‘killed’ earlier shows up again for a chat. Her own hallucination points out Alice can’t tell what’s real or not about the world around her because she doesn’t know what’s real about herself. She does find Jordan’s info on the BGS and skims through just enough of it to see Jeturian offices highlighted before the Bee Gees are there. Alice takes a shot that this is another hallucination but hands over the files in resignation once she realizes it isn’t. She and Sophie try to fight, Sophie taking down three of the guys before the leader knocks them out.

Back at the clinic, Mary is struggling to keep Jordan’s temperature stable. Luke calls to check-in and also low key throw some shade, which Mary does not have the time for. While talking with him she gets an idea by looking at the plants on her desk, based on plants’ ability to survive freezing temperatures by creating their own antifreeze.

Sophie wakes up in Jordan’s apartment to the smell of gasoline and tied in a chair with Alice. There’s a gasoline-soaked line of books leading to a smoking toaster with a rag in it. Alice has to appreciate the flair of the scene. Sophie’s pissed that Alice let this happen because she couldn’t tell what was real and yes, Sophie did notice what was happening with her.

In the second surprisingly earnest moment Alice has with Sophie this episode, she opens up about her psychosis getting worse and no one at Arkham helping.  The toaster catches fire, seemingly about to put an end to her problem. Sophie gives one last apology to her sister before the flames reach her.

But then the flames freeze in their tracks. Literally. Not a moment too soon, Ryan’s there with the freeze serum. And Sophie? Sophie looks like she forgot how to breathe. As Ryan cuts them free, they share brief soft smiles. AGAIN!

Sophie, girl, remember you need air.

The Moore sisters are reunited at the clinic. Jordan hasn’t recovered enough to speak yet, but Sophie’s still so grateful her baby sister is okay. Ryan takes Sophie’s hand (!!!) and pulls her aside. She apologizes that they don’t know more about the Bee Gees yet, but she promises they’re not going to get at Jordan again. Sophie isn’t about to sit this one the sidelines.

Sophie fills in Ryan and Mary about Alice’s psychosis and Mary doesn’t doubt that for a second the subpar treatment at Arkham isn’t actually helping. Ryan knows it’s going to become the whole team’s problem if Alice’s judgment is compromised. Alice, who naturally was listening in this whole time, suggests a supervised work release agreement with Renee to get her out of Arkham. Ryan asks who’s going to be her babysitter and with a resigned huff, Sophie knows she’s the best person for the job. 

At Wayne, Luke and Charlie have worked out a cover story for the missing money, saying it was funding for a hidden research grant with ARGUS (Diggle coming in with the save, once again). But the board still wants Ryan to resign and Charlie believes that would be for the best of the company. Luke can’t lose the place his father helped build, but Ryan Wilder has never gone down without a fight.

Later, in the cave, Luke reinstates the failsafe in his suit, which brings his dad’s AI back online. He asks his dad if he’s ready to wear the suit. Lucius’ answer is one he already knows. He’s not.

At the Hold Up, Ryan’s meeting with Marquis. She wants to form an alliance to go against Jada. And speaking of, the woman herself is meeting with the black hat wearing Bee Gee. The people they froze were part of an experiment to find a way to safely put someone on ice for Jada. Now that the technique is complete (thanks to the Bee Gees stealing Mary’s fix for the problem) Jada knows the first person she’s going to use it on: Marquis.


I am so here for Sophie and Alice, roommate adventures. I am thrilled by this development. Any chance to give Alice more opportunity to play off the other characters is going to be screen time well spent. This could also mean we see Sophie in the more casual setting of her own home. How casual will she actually be able to be with Alice there? We’ll only really know if and when we get those scenes. Regardless, shenanigans are bound to happen. If one of those shenanigans happens to be Alice calling out Sophie’s feelings for Ryan, you won’t find me complaining.

Speaking of! The Wildmoore slow burn continues to be the gift that keeps on giving. Right now it’s found this tantalizing balance of giving a steady dip of development while also holding back just enough.

Meanwhile, what is happening to Mary? Were those vines Ivy? Were they not? Is anyone going to listen to her any time too soon? The questions and mystery continue to mount.

And on the topic of mysteries, the Black Glove Society has been introduced as, potentially, an overarching villain for the rest of the season. Was the charming but evil redhead from the last episode also working for them and that’s why they were after Nora and the freeze serum? Season three of Batwoman could have been an episodic romp through Batman’s rouges with a twist to each one, with one or two of the bigger threats staying around for more than one episode and I wouldn’t have complained. That by itself was an interesting enough concept to carry the season. But, I’m intrigued by what they’re building with the Bee Gees and Jada.

Both Jets fascinate me, enough that even though Jada being connected with the BGS didn’t surprise me, I’m still fully invested in seeing how this plays out. And with the next episode being dinner with the Jets, it won’t be long to see how some of this plot unfolds.

Bat-astic moments

  • “Feel the shoulder. Come on, feel it… Cold as they come.”  “Okay.”
  • Sophie really had a dream about Ryan taking care of her. That’s canon. Not from a fic. That’s 100%, said in the episode, canon.
  • I don’t blame Montoya for falling for Alice’s fake rouge because I was halfway to googling Icarus wondering how obscure a character he was that I’d never heard of him before she said she’d made him up.
  • Last season Ryan might have taken offense when Sophie asked about there being more freeze serum after she said she got it off the streets, gone on the defensive and picked an argument. But now she gives an honest answer and her concern never shifts away from Jordan or Sophie.
  • “Hey, no sass, you lived in a sewer.”
  • Sophie taking down three guys, while dressed in that suit, thank you for that.
  • “You think this could be a way to safely unfreeze Jordan?” “No, I just thought it was a fun fact about plants.”
  • “Stop trying to make Bee Gees happen!” – A Mean Girl’s reference? In my Batwoman episode? More likely than you think.
  • I caught Alice eyeing Ryan and Sophie while Ryan was cutting them free. She knows what’s up.
  • “I’m sure Ry-Ry can convince Renee-nay, it’s for the best.”

Images courtesy of the CW

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