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SYFY WIRE Batwoman

Batwoman casts Gotham alum to play the same DC character…but it’s (apparently) not a crossover

By Benjamin Bullard
Victoria Cartagena Gotham

Holy twisted identities, Batman! A veteran of Fox’s Gotham has just answered The CW’s Bat-signal to play her old familiar character in the upcoming season of Batwoman. The catch? It’s the same character she played at Fox, all right — except, y’ know, that it’s kinda not.

Former Gotham regular Victoria Cartagena is boarding Season 3 of Batwoman as ex-Gotham City police detective Renee Montoya, via Deadline — a role that she (and perhaps Rosie Perez, who also portrayed the character in Birds of Prey) is probably more qualified than anyone on Earth to play. But as the report points out (and anyone who’s followed both series can guess), Batwoman’s Renee Montoya exists in a separate CW-centric Bat-verse from her former Fox counterpart, because the two series’ versions of Gotham City and its denizens aren’t connected.

That might create a little momentary déjà vu for fans of both series when Cartagena makes her first Batwoman bow this fall. But Cartagena sounds grounded and ready to roll in her new-but-familiar role, tweeting her excitement at getting to continue her DC journey in a whole new way:

First appearing in the comics as a tough LGBTQ character in DC”s Batman #475 (1992) ahead of entering regular rotation in Batman: The Animated Series, Renee Montoya is a former GCPD cop who grows disgruntled and quits the force over its culture of prejudice and corruption. In later comics versions of the character (as well as in the Gotham TV series), Montoya is still on duty, teamed with Crispus Allen and working under commissioner Gordon to uncover elements of Gotham’s steamy criminal underworld — elements that end up having some pretty steamy connections with her own personal life.

Deadline’s report teases that Montoya is heading up Gotham’s “freaks division,” though we’re not sure whether that’s a task that places her on the GCPD or working vigilante-style outside of it. Total wish-making here, but Montoya working off the grid to fight crime (if the series takes her there) would call up at least a thematic affinity with another of her iterations in past DC comics: that of The Question, the secret mantle she inherited from Vic Sage after the events of DC’s mid-2000s comics miniseries event 52.

However Montoya ends up settling into her new Bat-verse digs, the wait won't be too long for our first look. Starring Javicia Leslie in the title role, Batwoman comes bounding back to The CW with its Season 3 premiere on Oct. 13.