Out actor Javicia Leslie donned the Batsuit when she replaced actor Ruby Rose as the lead in Batwoman, but until now she hasn’t made it her own.
Now, in the third episode, Leslie’s character Ryan Wilder makes the suit her own – and LGBTQ Nation has a first look at the redesigned Batsuit.
The redesigned Batsuit was conceptualized by Batwoman costume designer Maya Mani and created by Ocean Drive Leather. The wig created by Janice Workman.
“I love the fact that Ryan is becoming her own Batwoman,” Leslie said. “It’s her style, her swag, and her moment! It was an honor to be able to collaborate with Caroline and Maya. I felt it was important that viewers could tell by the silhouette that Batwoman was a Black girl. With the form-fitting suit and beautiful Afro, we definitely nailed it!”
Leslie is the first Black actress to portray Batwoman in a live-action television or film production.
“Ryan’s journey starts from a place of ‘What can this Batsuit do for me?’ But it’s not long before she realizes the power of its symbol and what it can do for everyone else in Gotham City,” executive producer Caroline Dries tells LGBTQ Nation. “As Ryan embraces everything that makes her special, she adjusts the suit to fit her physically and figuratively. This meant creating a new body design and new cowl that was undeniably a statement that screamed ‘powerful.'”
“Maya Mani sent me her drawings and I loved it. The wig was something we never perfected in season one, and Janice Workman crushed it with this new take. Javicia and I saw various prototypes of styles and red ombres, and at one point we were trading our own iPad-doodled versions. Janice translated that into what we are looking at now. When I see it, I smile. It makes me feel inspired.”
Wilder has been described as “likable, messy, a little goofy and untamed.” She was previously a drug runner and spent years evading the police, living in her van with her plant.
While Ryan is “nothing like [Rose’s character] Kate Kane,” the new character is also a lesbian.
“I’m inventing a whole new character who in her past was inspired by Batwoman, so she will take on the mantle and is completely maybe not the right person at the time to be doing it, so that’s what makes it fun,” Dries said.
Last year, Rose announced that she was leaving the show after just one season following physical injuries that made it too difficult to perform the elaborate athletic stunts required in the role.