Welcome back to your weekly Batwoman recap! This episode further establishes the show’s, and Alice’s favorite story, with its titling: S1E3 “Down, Down, Down.” It also takes us deeper into its motifs of dual identities, introduces an old friend in a new light, Rachel Skarsten says the words “you’ve made everyone horny for Batman,” and Ruby Rose spits mad game.
Enjoy – and don’t forget to check out our recaps from weeks’ gone by if you haven’t already.
This is a full recap of Batwoman S1E3: AKA beware of spoilers.
“Will you come and join the dance?”
This episode begins, not with a monologue from Kate as we’re used to, but from her sister and rival, Alice and, to be honest, it’s pretty spooky! She tells a story about a snail and lobster, being chased by a porpoise. In conception it sounds a bit ridiculous, but in execution we get something very eerie as a young Beth opens a chest filled with water and a disembodied face rises to the surface, waking Alice from her nightmare.
Cue title card!
And now it’s time for Kate’s monologue. She journals about her uncertainty about taking on the mantle of the Bat, admitting to herself and to Bruce, that she is not him. It’s a quick motif establishment for the episode that we’ll check back in on later.
For now, Alice is fudging the Batsignal, where she’s discovered by Kate. Alice, always inside her sister’s head, realizes that Kate is now in over her own and calls her out before bringing up the true reason for their meeting. If you recall from last episode, Batwoman kicked the rear end of Alice’s turncoat Crow boyfriend, and now has him held captive. Alice wants him back. Kate makes an offer. If Alice can go 24 hours without doing a murder, she can have her boytoy. Alice is annoyed, but compliant.
In an extremely dystopian commercial, a snooty businessman worries viewers into buying property in his gated community, complete with Crow security. Yes, Elliot Estates is here to “make Gotham safe again,” which itself is a statement as dystopian as the slogan its evoking. While this plays, a huge black truck breaks into Wayne Tower.
“You’re married. Are you happy?”
Although Sophie’s training with her husband, her thoughts are with Kate. She pins him, gets a notification that Commander Kane is available, and dips just after a hesitant smooch. Up in Kane’s office, Sophie has a proposal for a special assignment.
A quick cut-in from Vesper Fairchild reveals that, as Alice said just a few scenes ago, Gothamites are, indeed, “horny for Batman,” before we head over to Mary’s clinic. After a long night of work, she arrives back at the Kane penthouse, stuffing her labcoat in a purse just before she runs into Sophie. Assuming she’s here for Kate, Mary takes the opportunity to assure Sophie that her step-sister is definitely dating again and thriving. It’s great. Anyway, Sophie cuts through salt and right to the chase: “so your father just made me your bodyguard.”
Kate, meanwhile is over at Wayne Tower, where she meets snooty businessman himself, Tommy Elliot. If you’re a fan of Batman comics, you may recognize the name – but the CW is asking us to stay on hush on the majority of this character’s story arc. Here are the spark notes: he’s a childhood friend of Bruce, obsessed with one-upping him and, like everyone else, is also horny and bitter for Batman. Tommy’s back in Gotham and wants Bruce at his upcoming shindig.
Kate gets a call from Luke, who’s dealing with the aforementioned break-in (cue Chekhov’s gun Batgadget). Kate’s phone rings again. On Gotham’s streets, a man in a Batman suit is hanged and Kate blames herself.
Thanks to a ‘The Quad, Gotham University’ sign, we know our location for the next scene, in which Mary becomes increasingly frustrated with the privacy intrusion known as Agent Moore. Sophie uses the time together to snoop a bit more into why Kate chose not to join the Crows and what she’s doing instead. Taking a stand for her step-sis, Mary says that Sophie herself is the reason Kate could never be a Crow (heck yeah, Mary).
In the Batcave, Luke shows Kate a few of her suit’s strengths and weaknesses. The latter of which was, of course, only invented by Bruce to use in the event that someone stole the suit; I.E. the suit’s silver bullet. Kate and Luke theorize over who broke into Wayne Tower, which leads them away from Alice and towards another suspect. Upon realizing that, Luke takes a turn we’ve all been waiting for. He tells Kate to put on the Batsuit and go kick some ass.
Elsewhere, Alice is up to no good. Shocker, huh? For details on what exactly she’s up to here, you’ll have to watch the episode itself.
“What about you, Kate? What brings you to an adult frat house?”
Outside the realm of Do Not Reveals, Kate is heading to Tommy Elliot’s party, where she runs into Mary and Sophie for a beautifully awkward elevator ride. Kate heads over to get a drink and activates her Batflirt technology on the bartender – only to run into Sophie’s hubby, who, it turns out, has never heard of Kate before now. Womp womp. On the bright side, the bartender, Regan, IMMEDIATELY picks up what’s going down. She puts out where Tommy is and Kate makes her move with a soft, albeit intimidating threat.
On the other side of this episode’s villain spectrum, Alice gives Commander Kane a call with her latest evil plot. While he tracks the call, Alice finally makes headway in convincing him that she really is his lost daughter. He dispatches the Crows to take her out and clears his family out of the party.
Kate has other plans, though. Knowing Tommy feels the pressure, she follows him up to his private room and he lays his cards on the table. In revealing that he knows his childhood friend is the caped crusader, Tommy says he “paid someone to riddle him the answer,” and if that’s not a tease for a future villain, truly I don’t know what is.
And, from here on out, we enter hairy territory as far as what we’re allowed to reveal. In a nutshell, Kate and Luke team up to take down the baddy, she finally puts on the wig thanks to some upgrades to the suit and Sophie confirms to the audience, and to Mary, that she’s lied to her husband about her history with Kate. Also, Mary is the best doctor.
Oh and the best part! In the final few minutes of the episode, Kate and Regan meet back up and trade numbers right in front of Sophie which, honestly, is one of episode’s most satisfying payback plots.
Moreso than the previous two episodes, Batwoman S1E3 “Down, Down, Down” asks audiences not to think too hard about the nitty-gritty of every plot point. Prodding and pulling at the loose narrative strings will lead to bald spots scratched into skulls – but that’s okay! If you’re here for the drama and the characters, the ride is still a fun one. This episode is full of jabs and jokes (some on purpose, others not) and, especially in Sophie’s case, alluding to a couple ticking time bombs of drama.
As far as the original inspiration is concerned, this show is veering pretty far from the “Eulogy” plot at this point and instead leaning more into the contrast between Bruce and Kate. Given that most people who are new to this character first ask about the difference between the two, it’s a smart move that’s paid off. It makes sense that Batwoman is constantly compared to her predecessor, plus this episode’s retooling of a prominent Batman villain turned out to be a perfect opportunity to develop Kate’s perspective on being a vigilante.
Tune back in to the CW next week, then grapple your way right over here.