Thursday, August 09, 2018

A Rose By Any Other Bat

A funny thing happens when we get what we’ve been asking for. Sometimes, we’re still not happy. Earlier this week it was announced that Ruby Rose had been cast as Batwoman for a crossover and then stand-alone series about the superhero for The CW. You may recall that casting for the role has looked for an out lesbian actress to play the out lesbian superhero, a.k.a. Kate Kane.

Now, I’m not a Ruby Rose stan. But I’m not a Ruby Rose hater either. I am glad an out actress with some star power has been cast in the role. It might help attract more viewers to a show that will probably have a niche audience, at least to start. And, let’s be honest, her face is undeniably not bad.

Do I have some questions about her acting abilities? Sure. But she also hasn’t been cast in the greatest roles. I actually liked her in “John Wick 2,” though to be fair she does not talk at all in the film – just scowl and make hand gestures. She was OK in “Orange Is the New Black,” but to be fair she was mostly there to look pretty and make Alex Vause jealous.

But I think she could do fine, perhaps well even, as a Batwoman. She has displayed some good physicality in “John Wick 2” and got chewed up by the turbine exceptionally in “Resident Evil: The Final Chapter.” Granted, I am not a Batwoman expert. I know when the modern Batwoman debuted around 2006 as an out lesbian who got kicked out of military school for being gay and now is a street fighter on a mission of social justice. And she has long flowing red hair. But, you know, wigs exist so we’re fine.

This casting has apparently set off a torrent of unhappy gay lady reactions on Twitter and elsewhere. Many centered around her acting skills. Others complaining she was an obvious choice – which is kind of funny because there was a time not so very long ago that there were zero obvious choices when it come to out lesbian actresses. And then some seemed to be mad, I think, that she was too traditionally attractive and therefore dudes (and straight gals) dig her too much.

For what it is worth, Batwoman co-creator Greg Rucka seemed pretty cool with Ruby Rose as Batwoman.

Look, are there other actresses they could have found for the role – certainly. I’ll put in my plug for more diversity, always. But, again, I have no real issue with Ruby Rose. This isn’t Shakespeare; it’s a superhero show. And, as a person, I do not believe Ruby Rose has done anything so heinous to have scorn heaped on her by the community. To my knowledge she hasn’t stolen trans roles or played a white-washed character or dated union-busting tech billionaires or said we need to give Donald Trump a chance or anything similarly morally repugnant. She’s just been in some movies that weren’t possibly the greatest. That’s not a sin, that’s Hollywood.

p.s. While Ruby may have posted (and then promptly deleted) some dumb Instagram comment buried in a thread of comments about Lovato back in 2013 (and outing isn’t good, obviously), they appear to be extremely friendly and very supportive today. So, again, it doesn’t seem an unforgiveable offense. Stupid and thoughtless, maybe. Also, people really read deep into celebrities Insta comments? Who knew.


Helena said...

Well said , agree with your sentiments.

Anonymous said...

Well, she outed Demi Lovato out of spite (and while Demi was dating Wilmer Valderrama). I saw many people criticizing the casting based on that.

Carmen SanDiego said...

It just reminds me of that old After Ellen Interview with Christine Vachon

“I can’t win with the queer community, to be honest. When I first started making movies, I was accused of only making movies by men. I was like “I’ve made two movies! Give me a minute!” Then I produced Go Fish and I was accused of making a lesbian movie that was ageist. Every single movie, there’s been some complaint, and I just keep my head down and keep making them. Imagine I Shot Andy Warhol and the ripple that had. Stonewall, which I thought “How can anybody begrudge this movie?”—it was picketed. I just can’t keep track.”

Ami Chancellor-Phillips said...

I'm excited to see her take on this role. She hasn't had the most exposure and we haven't plumbed the depth of her acting ability, but I'm eager to see what she brings to the table. I'm thrilled that they cast an out lesbian actress for an out lesbian role. (About time!) I think we need to give her a chance.

Speaking of wigs, even Kate Kane's Batwoman hair is a wig. She actually has short hair, about the length and style that Ruby Rose has. It just needs to be red. Hair dye anyone?

Anonymous said...

Well said DS. I personally would hate be a part of giving a fellow gay lady crap, we have enough shit to deal with as it is in this world outside of our community. I’m totally down to give it a chance and I’m thrilled that they actually cast a lesbian.

Anonymous said...

I wish people would at least give her a chance before they come for her throat. As for her acting she’s ok and let’s be real the cw does this all the time. Most of there leads are newer actors that get better as they go. I knew of feel like this is part of the reason we don’t get as many queer lady characters, we’re never happy. If she were out here manking racist or transphobic comments roast her but she’s just living and it’s not her fault she is attractive to men and women alike, sometimes I think we just need to take a breath.

Anonymous said...

Was all for Ruby Rose until I followed your link and saw her feet. I guess they can focus on her face. I like her and want to see more of her and who in the f cares about acting in an action movie?????

Anonymous said...

And overly judgemental people in the LGBT community are why I don't actively seek out friends or activities specifically geared towards the community... For a group striving for acceptance, we have a lot of people too quick to judge/put others in a box

Tanzania said...

Everyone's gonna complain about something.

We have a lesbian superhero tv show in the works. That's fantastic news.

Ruby Rose will do whatever she'll do and I personally wish her well in the process.