Batwoman season 1 episode 19 review: It’s war

Batwoman -- A Secret Kept From All The Rest -- Image Number: BWN119_SG_0002r -- Pictured: Rachel Skarsten as Alice, Gabriel Mann as Hush, Linden Banks as Professor Carr, and Sam Littlefield as Mouse -- Photo: The CW -- © 2020 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved.
Batwoman -- A Secret Kept From All The Rest -- Image Number: BWN119_SG_0002r -- Pictured: Rachel Skarsten as Alice, Gabriel Mann as Hush, Linden Banks as Professor Carr, and Sam Littlefield as Mouse -- Photo: The CW -- © 2020 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved. /

This week’s episode of Batwoman sees Alice and Mouse desparately trying to crack the code in Lucius Fox’s journal — leading them straight to Luke as they do.

When Alice and Mouse discovered the key to killing Batwoman was written in code at the end of “If You Believe in Me, I’ll Believe in You,” it was clear that their journey to cracking Lucius Fox’s cipher would eventually lead them straight to Luke. And although Mouse and Hush do attempt to track down a few code-breakers without attracting the attention of the Bat, those efforts prove fruitless — especially with Alice hellbent on using Luke instead.

Of course, finding the first three code-breakers does allow Batwoman to properly introduce the villain Hush. This debut is one fans have been looking forward to, and the show did give significant amount of time to developing Tommy Elliot’s character — even if he winds up being somewhat of a joke when placed next to Alice.

That’s something Batwoman has struggled with since its very beginning, though. With Rachel Skarsten shining so brightly as the villainous mastermind and Kate’s nemesis, it’s difficult to focus on any other Batman characters who make cameos — especially since it’s obvious most of them won’t be around for very long.

Admittedly, Hush suffers from this less than the other villains who have made brief appearances on the show. But even if his kidnapping of the first two code-breakers stirs up panic in Gotham City, watching him run with his tail between his legs as soon as Batwoman confronts him makes for a less-than-formidable foe. With any luck, this won’t be the last we see of him, but it’s not entirely clear where he’s gone off to by the end of “A Secret Kept From All the Rest.”

A Day Without Luke

Before Alice, Mouse, and Hush attract Kate’s attention, Team Batwoman gets into a bit of a tiff when Kate reveals to Luke that Julia may have motives of her own for wanting his father’s journal. Luke, who has known Julia since childhood, automatically defends his friend — resulting in him storming out of and leaving Kate and Mary to find Hush on their own.

And although Mary has the brains to come up with a plan for finding Hush — namely, tracking him down through one of the victim’s pacemakers — she’s clueless when it comes to working the technology required to do so. Kate’s equally as stumped, so it’s a blessing in disguise when she receives a call that Hush has taken Parker Torres. (For those who need a refresher, Parker is the young girl Kate saved and came out to during “How Queer Everything Is Today!”)

Kate saves Parker with relative ease because, as we already mentioned, Hush was not ready to face Batwoman on his own, despite how cool he’s been otherwise. And given Parker’s skills with hacking and technology, Kate brings her up to the Bat Cave to track the pacemaker’s last activity.

Including Parker in this episode was a stroke of genius, if only for the comic relief it allowed for. Not only was it fun watching her go back and forth with Mary — who is quite offended that this “rando teen” knew about Kate’s secrety identity before she did — but it added some humor to Kate’s increasing awkwardness with Sophie and Julia.

Of course, when Parker manages to track the pacemaker, it leads Kate straight to Arkham Asylum — and Alice. And it’s a good thing, too, because Mouse has used his imitation skills to find Luke and Julia and take them both in. And if Luke doesn’t hurry up and crack the code, it will cost Julia’s life.

Luke does manage to crack his father’s code in time to save Julia, proving himself equal in skill to his old man. Unfortunately, when he realizes the book contains the key to destroying Batwoman, he refuses to give Alice and Mouse the answers they’re seeking — a plan Julia is onboard with. Both have willingly accepted they’ll die for Kate when she shows up with code-cracking glasses Mary found at Wayne Tower.

Even if her friends are willing to make the sacrifice, Kate isn’t willing to let them, so she offers to let Alice keep the glasses and the book in exchange for Luke and Julia. This scene is an emotional one, not just because Kate’s afraid of losing the people she cares about, but because she finally realizes what Alice is up to — and that’s a revelation that hits home, even if it’s only noticeable in her brief expression after realizing Alice wants to kill her.

After they all escape, Luke is distraught that Kate would hand over information like that. It’s a touching moment when she tells him, “There’s no Batwoman without Luke Fox,” and it sets them up to fight Alice and Mouse together — even if they’re now at a disadvantage.

Trouble in Paradise

Following reports of Batwoman’s break-in at Arkham, the Crows make their way to the prison, meaning it’s time for Alice and Mouse to leave. Alice releases all of the prisoners in order to cover their escape, but what’s interesting is that Mouse doesn’t seem eager to go.

For the first time in his life, Mouse has a warm bed, Alice’s company, and is calling the shots. He’s, as Hush puts it, “playing house,” but Alice is fixated on one thing: revenge against her sister.

This has already begun to create a rift between the two characters, and that’s likely to grow as the series continues. It’ll be interesting to see how the dynamic between Alice and Mouse shifts as she grows increasingly unstable and focuses on Batwoman alone. This could become Alice’s undoing.

It’s War

Unfortunately, Alice’s desire to kill her isn’t the only declaration of war from a family member that Kate’s forced to contend with during this week’s episode. “A Secret Kept From All the Rest” ends with Jacob sending up the Bat Signal, only to tell Batwoman that she’s done. Blaming her for the inmates who have now escaped Arkham Asylum, he tells her that if he runs into her again, “it’s war.” (And it looks like that’s just what happens next week!)

With the inmates on the loose and Kate an official enemy of the Crows, Batwoman is setting up nicely for a second season that sees Kate fighting on multiple fronts — and honestly, we can’t wait to see where it goes from there.

New Developments

There are two other developments during this week’s episode that also set fans’ up for Batwoman‘s next season. One involves a new villain, the very person Julia promised the journal to. Julia claims that she convinced whoever she’s working for not to go after Batwoman in exchange for the journal. She also claims to not have known the journal held the secret to killing her friend — and now that she does, she won’t be working with this new villain anymore.

It seems likely that Julia’s telling the truth here, but her story does suggest we’ll be seeing a major villain other than Alice somewhere down the line. At the very least, we’ve got an explanation for Julia’s odd behavior for now. Let’s just hope she doesn’t double-cross Kate.

There’s also a big twist at the end of the episode, one that suggests we may see Batwoman involved in more Arrowverse crossovers in the future. After Alice looks through the journal, she announces that they’ll need to find Kyptonite. Wait, what?

Yes, it seems Batwoman shares the same weakness as Supergirl — which means we’ll probably see the two pairing up again. How Alice of all people is going to get her hands on such a substance remains to be seen. But if anyone is crazy enough to do it, it’s her.

Next. Batwoman season 1 episode 18 review: Save the journal. dark

What did you think of this week’s episode of Batwoman? Did you like Hush’s debut? Sound off in the comments below.