Batwoman Season 3: Why Alice Needs Her Own Arc - VRGyani News and Media

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Thursday, September 2, 2021

Batwoman Season 3: Why Alice Needs Her Own Arc

Rachel Skarsten’s Alice (a.k.a. Beth Kane, Kate’s long-lost twin sister who was kidnapped as a teenager and held captive for roughly 13 years) has spent the first two seasons of Batwoman wavering as a villain. Sometimes she has put her vendettas aside to help the Bat Team, but sometimes she has crossed the line and gone full-blown villain, like the time she murdered her step-mother, Catherine Hamilton (Elizabeth Anweis).

One thing is for sure, though: Alice’s story has been primarily led by the characters around her. Her being a villain, her potential for redemption, it has all fallen back on how it impacts the main characters, whether that be her sister, her step-sister, or her father. However, now that Kate and Jacob Kane (Dougray Scott) have been written off of the show, at least temporarily, what’s next for Gotham’s mischievous mistress?

As we head into Batwoman Season 3, it’s intriguing to think about where Alice’s story has been influenced, particularly by Kate, and where she can go from here. She’s been tied to Kate since the beginning, as the twin sister of the protagonist, but she’s finally… free. (Not literally, as she’s currently locked up in Arkham Asylum, though she’ll surely escape soon.)

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Season 1

Over the course of Batwoman Season 1, Alice was the Big Bad for Kate Kane (Ruby Rose) to take down, though Kate had to figure out a way to stop her and also get around her feelings for the sister she knew was still in there deep, deep down.

Despite Alice being the Big Bad, it never really felt like we were able to see her embrace her truest potential as a villain. Aside from murdering Mary’s mom, Kate held Alice back at every turn. Everything Alice did rounded back to Kate, from her potential redemption to her abilities as the main villain and leader of the Wonderland Gang. So many of Alice’s actions were stopped because she had started to emotionally connect with her sister and the girl she used to be before being imprisoned at August Cartwright’s farm.

Alice still managed to be a great villain, a great nemesis, and become the favorite character for many watching, and it surely did wonders for the possibility of her to redeem herself down the line. After all, she had recently escaped captivity before she turned to terrorizing Gotham. However, we’ll never know what would’ve happened if Alice was allowed free reign to explore her dark side or what kind of villain she would’ve truly been. There’s no doubt that Alice would’ve been on Joker’s level if she was truly fleshed out as a villain, but it’s hard to see that ever happening given all of the growth she’s experienced since the series premiered.

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Season 2

Alice’s story on Batwoman Season 2 was unexpected, to say the least. Due to Ruby Rose’s exit from the show, Kate went missing, opening up a very exciting door for Alice’s story. Kate was never able to save Alice after she went missing all of those years ago, which haunted both of them, and now Alice was tasked with finding Kate. It was an interesting opportunity to put the sisters in each other’s shoes, something that wouldn’t have been possible without the last minute casting situation.

At first, Alice’s desire to find Kate stemmed from wanting to kill her sister after Kate locked her away in Arkham (the first time). Slowly, Alice started to regain a piece of herself that she had once lost with the help of her very own love interest and the emotional weight of Kate’s disappearance, then presumed death, then miraculous revival.

But with this opportunity came a cost: Alice’s story, once again, focused almost entirely on Kate. Even Ocean (Nathan Owens) made their relationship about Kate, as he consistently asked Alice to choose between him and her sister. While Alice did everything in her power to save Kate after discovering who had kidnapped her, Kate basically gave up on her to leave town in the Season 2 finale.

Instead of finding out who Alice would become after everything she had been through, it had once again become all about Kate. Her rivalry with the new Batwoman (Javicia Leslie’s Ryan Wilder), a woman that blames Alice for her mother’s death, couldn’t really even begin because even that was made to be about Kate. Because Ryan, over the season, very much felt like she was just keeping Kate's shoes warm until her return, she always had to think about the impact of her actions as Gotham's Crimson Knight. Despite almost stopping Alice once, Ryan was consistently torn between what she wanted and what Kate would've wanted, which included making sure her sister didn't die. Their rivalry never fully got a chance to form until the Season 2 finale, as Kate left town and Ryan immediately confronted Alice in Arkham to taunt her.

Season 3 and Beyond

As we head into Batwoman Season 3, Alice has a chance to truly blossom as a character without Jacob or Kate Kane around. For the first time, there’s no one to really hold back Alice from embracing her dark side, and the responsibility to be held accountable for her actions is on herself. If she wants to be a villain, she’s free to unleash her darkest self against Gotham. If the show, like some of the comics, has Alice become an anti-hero, it’s Alice that is going to have to understand and prove to herself what lines she is willing or unwilling to cross.

Without Kate, in particular, Alice’s feelings for so many of these characters would be different. For instance, Alice’s reluctant occasional partnership with Sophie Moore (Meagan Tandy), Kate’s initial love interest, would not have been quite so interesting. Kate and Jacob leaving Gotham is a bit of a fresh start and a chance to explore Alice on her own. What is Alice searching for from life? Is redemption something she really wants or was it something she simply considered for the possibility of reconnecting with her beloved sister? There are so many questions and avenues to explore.

Of course, Alice’s step-sister Mary (Nicole Kang) is still around as a vital member of the Bat Team, but Mary is more keen to see the worst sides of Alice after her mom was murdered. Mary isn’t going to go out of her way to help Alice find redemption or to “teach” her how to be a hero in any capacity. Mary has always allowed Alice to exist in her orbit because of Kate and Jacob’s feelings for her, not because she wanted to.

Given Ryan’s mission to destroy Alice and Mary’s close relationship with Ryan, Mary could go either way on how to handle Alice’s misdeeds from now on. Is a relationship with Alice something she could ever want after everything they’ve been through? Seeing Beth Kane from another Earth, one where she wasn’t kidnapped, gave Mary a version of her sister to look back on fondly. Is that something she’d want to try to find in Alice without Kate and Jacob pushing her to do so every time she’s mentioned?

It’s exciting, really, because we’re finally going to see how all of these relationships play out when the characters aren’t trying to consider what Kate would want at every turn. We’re finally going to see Alice without her loved ones influencing her every decision. In the long run, it’s possible for Kate and Jacob to return and accept Alice should she find redemption and clean up her act, but that doesn’t have to be at the forefront of her mind with her feeling that they have, essentially, abandoned her.

Alice is going to be allowed to find herself, the good and the bad parts of Beth Kane, for the first time in her life.

Batwoman Season 3 premieres on Wednesday, October 13, 2021. The first two seasons are streaming on HBO Max.

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