For an episode with a lot of moving parts, Batwoman Season 1 Episode 14 managed to keep it together admirably and didn’t even bore me with the Batwoman-Sophie thing.
In fact, this was definitely the best Sophie outing (no pun intended) of the season.
I was pretty meh about the big lip-lock at the end of Batwoman Season 1 Episode 13 but the follow-through here is a fine example of sensitive and genuine writing about a hugely difficult decision.
Dare I say it, I actually appreciated Sophie in her role as Batwoman’s partner in butt-kicking as well as her courage in speaking truth to her mother.
Still not sold on Kate and her as a romantic pairing but if she grows into Jacob’s investigative Crow while pitching in occasionally on Team Batwoman, I could live with that.
Luke: You finally get Sophie off your tail and now you’re swapping spit with her.
Kate: I don’t think you know what kissing is.
Her mother’s unexpected appearance did a lot to move me into a Sophie’s Camp sort of perspective.
Unabashed homophobia does that.
Furthermore, Sophie’s realization that she needed to be honest about herself before committing to any sort of real relationship was a helluva lightbulb moment.
All it took was her husband leaving, being suspended from her job, kissing a vigilante, and her mother showing up.
If there is a single central theme tying all the bits together here — Duela Dent, Sophie, Jacob, Mary, and August Cartwright — it’s the idea of revealing one’s true face.
Duela’s self-mutilation is an attempt to turn her physical face into the distorted one she sees in the mirror.
Comic canon casts her as the character known initially as “The Joker’s Daughter” and eventually as “the Harlequin” (not to be confused with Harley Quinn) which is pretty fascinating.
However, like Magpie and Hush, I suspect that Duela Dent is simply the VotW here although her connection back to Dr. Campbell/August Cartwright was quite a masterful finesse of scripting.
The only difference between you and me is that I got institutionalized and you got famous.
And that takes us down Alice’s massive rabbit hole of revenge. I’m not sure how she was able to remove Duela face the way she did but OMG, yuck.
Sometimes, the whole face-swapping thing takes more disbelief suspending than I’m capable of.
The fact she could take Duela’s and just slap it on effectively and then snap off Cartwright’s Dr. Campbell mask just as easily makes me question exactly what sort of adhesive they could possibly use.
And how the faces don’t just fly off with a strong cross-breeze.
Jacob’s plotline is a bit of a sore thumb here since it doesn’t hitch up to Duela at any point.
We always knew that Reggie saving him from Dodgson was going to come back on him, didn’t we?
What was a surprise was that Reggie’s conviction was for the murder of Lucius Fox.
And that ties us all the way back to Batwoman Season 1 Episode 6 and Luke’s fear that exposing the corruption in Gotham’s legal system would mean his father’s killer would be freed.
That’s a really impressive commitment to plot development.
Jacob’s interest in pursuing the Crow’s involvement in Reggie’s apprehension feels a little out of keeping from what we’ve come to know about the Commander but it’s moving the story along so … sure.
Since the Executioner took down the three major players in the conspiracy, Jacob (and maybe Sophie) will find it challenging to suss out the truth.
Mary, as always, is a pure delight as she tries to be Sophie’s confidante while desperate to get Kate to open up about being Batwoman.
Her eagerness to help with the investigation is endearing and her verbose explanation of how various social media stars are interrelated is hilarious.
Everybody knows that Kimberly Wright has Miley McGinn’s nose….shape, slope, length. If you think about it, Miley copied Mia’s cheekbones, and Mia and Sina have the same chin which I believe belonged to Ariana at one point.
Meanwhile, Alice continues to know exactly where to turn the knife with Mary. First, she tells her about the transfusion, and then, she makes it clear that Batwoman’s secrets aren’t so secret to her.
Mary’s core peeve has always been that Kate chooses Alice over her in the sister competition. You would think the whole Beth thing would’ve put her more at ease but I guess we’re all entitled to our insecurities.
I mean, who would’ve thought Alice would seek out therapy about her feelings regarding confronting August Cartwright? Sure, she had the therapist killed immediately afterwards but that’s just typical Alice. She crazy.
My fear is that I will kill him instantly, forgetting to relish in a slow and painful demise.
In all of this, Batwoman/Kate kind of takes a backseat. She’s absolutely necessary to the story but she’s not really central.
The action focuses on Duela and the emotional development is all Sophie.
Jacob gets the part of the show that indicates a future conspiracy reveal while Alice and Cartwright lay the groundwork for Mouse’s resurrection as a potential Scarecrow.
But I guess the hair should’ve been a hint.
There is good reason to watch Batwoman online more than once. With so many plotlines — I think there’s at base minimum, FOUR — they’ve also seeded several potential future twists to Gotham canon.
Where will Jacob’s investigation lead him? Will Sophie rejoin the Crow team?
Will Sophie be able to respect a working relationship with Batwoman?
How will Mary feel about being the last one in on the secret (besides Jacob, obv)?
Will Mouse emerge as Scarecrow? Why the heck is August exposing him to Fear Toxin?
Personally, I’m really hoping the Pirate Queen of Coryana shows up soon. Or Julia Pennyworth returns. Or both.
At this point, it’s a no-hold-barred approach on cameo DC characters.
Who do you want to see brought to Gotham next?
Which VotW do you think will return first?
Hit the comments with your best predictions!
Diana Keng is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.