“Batwoman” Episode 309 Recap: Shut Up and Kiss Me

Renee insists that Ryan isn’t like Batman, and she believes she can convince Ryan that Pam can change. And the look on Pam’s face when she realizes she will never be the woman Renee wants her to be?! Whew. I love this show for a lot of reasons, but the complexity and grayness of the Renivy relationship is very near the top of that list. They love each other so much, but they’re both so focused on what they each think is right that they can’t even entertain the idea of compromise. Renee wants to be worth enough to Pam that she abandons her cause and leaves town with her. And Pam wants Renee to take her, all of her, as she is, without forcing her to change. Not to be cliche on main, but whew chile, sometimes love just isn’t enough.

Pam and Renee kissing in a tent

Let’s remember the happy (?) times.

Pam does agree that getting out of Gotham seems nice, but she needs to get rid of Batwoman first. She mind controls Renee to stay put and goes off to find Ryan.

Back in town, Diggle and Jada flirt and break into Montoya’s office. They find the murder board of villain devices and question what Batwoman and Renee have been up to.

Meanwhile, Alice and Mary are attempting to begin their Santorini trip, but every time Alice drives away from the woods, Mary’s headaches get worse. Alice explains why this is probably happening, but instead of dissuading Mary, it only makes her want to get closer to Pam.

Alice looking surprised

“I’m sorry, you’d rather hang out with Poison Pam? But look at me!”

In the cabin, Sophie’s ready for Ryan to swerve her again, but Ryan actually genuinely wants to thank Sophie for thinking to grab the Batsuit as her car was being dragged away. Sophie accepts the compliment and thinks for a second before asking Ryan so sweetly why she has a problem with her. And Ryan, still in Deflect Mode, nearly breaks her arm patting herself on the back for not mentioning Renee one time since they got to the woods. But Sophie is serious; she calls Ryan out for pretending that Renee is the root of their issues when it’s been like this from the jump.

Sophie pleading with Ryan to open up to her

“Please don’t shut me out again. Please don’t slam the door.”

It turns out, Ryan is still holding onto the feeling that when the two of them met, Sophie just saw her as a criminal. But the artist formerly known as Crowphie reminds Ryan that she literally quit her job because of THEIR RELATIONSHIP. Ryan is the one who helped her realize that reforming the Crows wasn’t going to fix anything. That conversation they had in the jail cell back in season 2 really stuck with her.

As this is happening, a vine snakes into frame, trying to twat swat this exchange and when I tell you I yelled at that vine not to take this away from us.

Sophie feels like she’s trying so hard with Ryan but getting nothing in return. They both yell-ask each other what they want (another fave trope), and Ryan admits that she has no idea (relatable, tbh). Sophie doesn’t completely buy that and accuses Ryan of being too afraid to feel something and end up blowing it, so she asks her one more time. And this is a testament to Javicia here, because this time, you can see the walls around Ryan start to crumble as Sophie all but begs her to let her in.

Ryan being SOFT looking at Sophie

“I’m scared to death that she might be it, that the love is real, that the shoe might fit. She might just be my everything and beyond.”

Before Ryan can answer, that pesky vine grabs Sophie and pins her against the fireplace in a way that would be kinky if it wasn’t so damn terrifying.

Luke comes to the rescue and sprays the vines with a combination of salt and vinegar. He’s whispering though, because he figured out that Pam can sense sound vibrations; so with all the noise they’ve been making, she knows exactly where they are. Luke used the last of the salt, so they’re going to need to venture to the outside to get the ice melt from the truck. Ryan takes this one, because in case you forgot, she’s Batwoman.

Ryan side eyes Luke

“Game on, bitch” is the new “Act normal, bitch.”

Alice and Mary arrive at the edge of the woods as Mary feels Pam’s “warm pull.” Alice readies herself for a fight, but Mary won’t let that happen. She accuses Alice of being jealous, but Alice accidentally blurts out that she’s afraid that Mary will die. She tries to play it off, but Mary articulates what’s been building between these two all season. On paper, nothing about this partnership should work, but it does because despite everything, they both became exactly who the other needed.

Mary and Alice in a car

When you get caught caring.

Unfortunately, what Mary needs in this moment is to meet her maker alone, so she pulls a Pam and mind controls Alice not to follow her.

Down in the office, the straights drink Montoya’s booze and talk about how worried Jada is that Ryan will become one of Marquis’ victims if she gets too close to her daughter. Diggle suggests that maybe if Jada opens her heart to the possibility of a relationship with Ryan, it’ll be the best thing that happens to her. Jada considers this as she continues searching for the joy buzzer, which she finds deep in one of Montoya’s drawers. Funnily enough, that’s also where I keep my joy buzzer.

Meanwhile, Mary’s feeling around the woods for Pam, but Renee finds her first and shoots her with one of Luke’s science darts.

Renee standing in the woods

“What does girl gotta do to get one (1) Ivy on her side?!”

Back at the cabin, Ryan is suited up and ready to Quiet Place this shit. We cut to a man and his kid just casually (?!) exploring the woods at night, making “mem-oh-wees”, when they come upon a passed out Mary. The dad tries to wake her up, she startles, as vines pull him away and his kid runs.

Ryan’s made it to the truck, but can’t quite reach the salt so Sophie provides some salt of her own with “her damn arms aren’t long enough” over the comms. Which Ryan can hear. Once Ryan finally grabs the bag, Luke has the audacity to ask her to get both so Ryan quips right back at him. The banter with these three is UNMATCHED!

Before Ryan can make it back to the cabin though, the little kid sees her and yells for Batwoman to help him. That’s enough to awaken the vines, so Ryan jumps into the truck and yells out that she needs Sophie (!!). She asks her to blow up the truck since the Batsuit will save her. Sophie is confused about how she’s supposed to do that, so in a masterful callback to the Cluemaster episode, Ryan says, “shoot it, hotshot.”

Ryan dressed as Batwoman doing the "shh" motion with her finger to her mouth

A “shhh” Emily Fields would be proud of.

Luke manages to save the kid and in that moment, realizes maybe he is actually a hero. He brings the child back to the cabin and comforts him while Sophie looks for Ryan.

She finds her behind the wrecked truck, and Ryan is still in hero mode, insisting that she’s fine and running through each step they need to take next. Meanwhile, Sophie is standing in front of Ryan, visibly upset that she almost died. Ryan’s on a roll though; she hits Sophie with an “oh, well” when Sophie insists that moves like that very well could have killed her.

Ryan is exasperated talking to Sophie

“Woman, you are hard to please!”

But honestly, Ryan is exhausted, and all she wants to do is sleep. So if she goes out in an explosion, it’ll be a nice break from the chaos of her mind. She lists off every single thing that she’s carrying; every single item the world has placed on her already weighed down shoulders. She is a Black woman and she is TIREDT. But she’s not just any Black woman. She’s a Black superhero with all of Gotham counting on her to keep them safe. She’s feeling the pressure like a drip, drip, drip and it hasn’t stopped since she picked up the cowl.

Sophie staring at Ryan

“Give it 10 seconds, I promise you I’m not…”

Everyone loves to talk about how strong Black women are, and how we’re going to “save the world”, and yeah, all of that is true, but why should we have to? Will y’all love us the same when we rest? When we take time for joy? To steal another lyric from Encanto, they “never wonder if the same pressure would’ve pulled [them] under.”

As Ryan frantically relays all of this, Sophie just looks at her. Actually no; she doesn’t just look at her. She stands in front of Ryan Wilder and she sees her. And right in the middle of Ryan’s monologue, Sophie kisses her right on the mouth. That’s right. Not a dream, not an alternate timeline. AN ACTUAL CANON KISS.

Ryan and Sophie kiss

“KISS KISS KISS” worked!!!

The “just shut up” kiss is one of my favorite TV tropes, but Sophie doesn’t want to shut Ryan up because she’s tired of her talking. She wants her to realize that yeah, Ryan has a lot on her shoulders right now, but Sophie has two hands and is ready to help carry some of it. As soon as Ryan’s shock wears off and she realizes what’s happening, her face immediately relaxes and eventually forms a smile when Sophie walks away leaving her speechless.

I know I’ve talked about this before, but it’s difficult for me to articulate what it means to see two Black queer characters kissing on network television. Two Black queer characters who weren’t just thrown together because they were the only gays in all of the town. Two Black queer characters who have had a season and a half of interactions leading up to this moment. Two Black queer characters we’ve watched grow and have fallen in love with; and who just might fall in love with each other. I’ll say it again: I’ve been watching TV my whole entire life, and I didn’t know I could want this.

By the time I came out in my twenties, I had a lot of media consumption under my belt, and I remember that feeling I would get as a kid when I saw two women kissing. It felt scary and forbidden, but also familiar, in a way. Those women were almost always white, and maybe part of me initially wrote off queerness as “white people shit” so it definitely couldn’t be the thing I was feeling. Time went by, I became more comfortable with myself and TV started to get more comfortable showing more and more queerness. I filled my life with queer people I could be myself around and honestly, I’ve been really lucky when it comes being accepted by my West Indian family. But while I wouldn’t change anything about my queer journey, I do sometimes wonder if I would have felt sooner that queerness was an identity I could claim if I saw a genuine relationship between two Black women in media. Not to sound like an Old, but it makes me so incredibly happy that there are young Black queer folks who get to see themselves represented in a way that makes it clear we are not a monolith.

It’s funny, they make a point in this episode to say they’re flipping the script on the “Black person always dies first in a horror movie” trope, but they flipped more than that. When I see a Black person in a horror movie (Jordan Peele joints notwithstanding), I don’t expect a whole lot, lest disappointment immediately follows in the form of some kind of murder. I’ve learned to react similarly when there are Black queer characters in shows I love. “It’s cool that they’re here, but it’s not like we’ll get anything substantial, so I won’t get my hopes up.” When you’re used to crumbs, it’s hard not to shout from the rooftops when shows like Batwoman and Twenties give you the whole damn meal. It matters.

Ryan smiling after Sophie kissed her

Imagining eliciting THIS SMILE from Ryan Wilder?

Taking a page out of Ryan’s book, Luke goes to the cemetery to talk to his dad about what’s been going on. He suggests that maybe everything that’s happened to him has been for a reason, and decides he’s done letting Lucius’ memory hold him back. Diggle shows up and we learn the real reason he’s in Gotham; he has a transmatter cube that needs opening, but not even Luke’s tech could get it to budge. Apparently the last time it was open, Diggle didn’t have to do anything it just happened. Surely that’s fine and this little lore drop won’t be significant at all. Before he leaves, Diggle tells Luke that Jada found a fix and is ready to save Marquis.

Back near the woods, Alice wakes up alone in the car, realizes what happened, and goes off to find her sister. Instead, she finds the kid’s dad, impaled on a tree.

Alice staring confusedly out the car window

“Since when is it day?” — Alice. And also me every day in this pandemic.

Pam’s wandering through the woods, barely able to keep herself up and leaning on trees for assistance, when she’s shocked to see Renee walking toward her. You see, Renee loves The Vampire Diaries, and after learning about vervain tolerance, she decided to create a toxin to ingest daily so she would become immune to Pam’s mind control. The two realize that their relationship is toxic (pun intended, I think), but Pam tells Renee that even though she feels judged by Renee, the thought of her is what kept Pam alive all those years. She tells Renee to walk away if that’s what she wants, but it’ll be on her because Pam isn’t letting her go.

Pam stares longingly at Renee

“Pick me, choose me, love me.”

And Renee does start to walk away, but before she does, Pam locks eyes with Mary over Renee’s shoulder. The two Ivys slowly embrace as green energy spores surround them and Pam regains the strength she’s been missing for a decade.

Pam embracing Mary and kissing her on the forehead as green spores surround them

I can’t explain why, but this is gay.

Y’all, I am spent in the best way possible. I am emotional and grateful to this writing team and I’ll be thinking about this episode for a long time. But I also can’t wait to see what comes next! Wildmoore dates?? Ryan inevitably freaking out about catching feelings?? Domestic Wildmoore? The possibilities are endless! I can’t wait to see what you all thought of the episode, so leave a comment below!

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Nic

Nic is a Senior Product Manager at a major Publisher and lives in Astoria, NY. She is way too attached to queer fictional characters and maintains that buying books and reading books are two very different hobbies. When she's not consuming every form of fiction, you can find her dropping it low on the dance floor. You can find Nic on twitter and instagram.

Nic has written 34 articles for us.

22 Comments

  1. ahhhhhh!!! this episode was so goood. this recap was so good. thanks for writing these!
    so, i literally screamed & threw my hands in the air when they kissed. when Meagan Tandy posted that photo of her & Javicia Leslie in the car, making kissy faces, i thought, “i hope this means they will KISS tonight” and boy did i think correct. the enemies to lovers build up was so good and so worth the wait. i am so grateful for this show.
    second, they really took time to give Luke moments this episode. dude’s PTSD has been a good arc since his almost death and I feel like so many shows would have moved past that quickly. honestly, overall this was just a really good character episode. everyone has been going through a journey the last season and a half, and this felt like a check-in. a time for everyone to really communicate & process things.
    third, all of the RenIvy stuff was phenomenal. i really feel for renee, ugh! and i so sincerely want Poison Ivy to change & become better, but idk if we’re gonna get that for her arc this season. lbr tho, i just want an opportunity for Bridget Regan to come back in the future.
    lastly, i do love that Alice confessed how much she cares for Mary. i see some people hating on their relationship, but i really see the care between the two of them and i’m glad they talked about it some more!

    once again, thanks for a great recap. so excited for next week. if this was Poison Ivy at half-strength, next week is gonna be brutal!

  2. As always a great recap. I really can’t formulate any words from last night’s episode it definitely belongs up there with the Quizbowl one. Wildmoore kissed!!! Like you I am excited to see what the possibilities can be for them and I hope to find out in the next couple of episodes.

    Sidebar: I am happy for you to see someone like you on screen. I love Batwoman too because of the representation but also because of what the cast and writers bring everyday.

  3. *The Kiss* was truly perfection. I jumped out of my chair and screamed and gay-flailed. Ryan’s sweet little smile/smirk after killed me. Also completely agree with other commenters on the Renivy scenes – those 2 have insane chemistry and I would do almost anything for Pam to get some sort of Alice-esq redemption arc so we can see more of her/them (Alas – that definitely doesn’t seem the way it’s heading. But I will be disappointed if they kill her off – maybe we could get a Renivy semi-happy ending??
    They ride out of Gotham together into the sunset?? A gay can dream). Bridget Regan just fully understands the assignment in every role she takes on and this is no exception. (And as you noted, the height difference in this episode was on full display and *chef’s kiss*)

  4. This recap was phenomenal. Thank you!

    This might be a controversial opinion (no shade intended) but S1 has nuh-thing on mid-S2 to present. The chemistry of the overall cast (the couples get extra bonus points) and the writing are just…well *2 chef’s kisses*

    Ryan was Petty LaBelle – Lady Marmalade (Fanned Hair Ed.). It was so wrong but so damn funny.

    My only (completely unnecessary) gripe is Sophie yelling for everyone to run when we all know IRL black people run when things are scary, no direction needed.

    Nic, I too have longed for more POC queer couples on my tv screen. Now that I’m getting it, how will I continue to live my best fully oxygenated and moisturized gay black life if this show and Twenties aren’t renewed?

    Final thoughts:
    – Height differential is so damn sexy, and we get a double dose with this show.
    – Ryan can be smooth, we’ve seen it, but this thing with Sophie is different so I’m curious to see her approach.
    – More Alice please.
    – Even though Pam is a tall gorgeous absolute bad ass, smol Montoya feels like she tops that tree. Okay…yeah I’ll see my way out.

  5. BEST. TV. HOUR. EVER. Only thing that beat Yellowjackets this week. I wish they explored Mary being pansexual a lot more too, cmon. Gay it all up, it’s not like you’ll explode over quota ya know!

  6. I really thought Pam was going end up killing or hurting Mary, but that ending with Mary providing life back into Pam just like Pam put life into Mary. Truly a cycle of life moment.

    That Pam and Renee heart-to-heart towards the end was everything. I was like this is a toxic relationship but I am here for it.

    Alice and Mary also having a heart-to-heart about why they just work melted my heart. I love their relationship and how its grown. They are truly sisters.

    I was so mad at that little white boy for yelling when Ryan clearly motioned him to keep quiet, but it was the event that lead to that Wildmoore kiss. So thank you little white boy for your service

    But that kiss was perfection. It was almost like Sophie was telling Ryan that she had one less thing to worry about. It was sweet. And Ryan’s face of shock than just relaxed after the kiss. I can’t wait to see how their relationship continues to grow

  7. You are absolutely hilarious!! this entire recap had me dying and I loved all your references! i also loved how, as a black woman, i wasn’t alone in thinking that seeing people like wildmoore kiss on screen was just a fantasy. but no! they did it! mark the history books folks

  8. This episode was incredible. I was a little punched in the gut by Ryan’s monologue — damn our baby is hurting — but that didn’t stop me from squealing when they kissed! I hope this relationship inspires Sophie to get a cool new character arc.

    also — this recap was incredible. I audibly laughed out loud multiple times. Great work

  9. So not only was this episode one of the best things I’ve ever watched, this was basically the best summary I read for it (It’a the only one I’ve read so far but tbh I don’t think I need to read another).

  10. These recaps give me LIFE!

    I’ve been cheesing about the episode since I saw it last night. I was just telling my partner how much I love autostraddle and how I feel like y’all give me a community to cheese about #gaystuff on tv. I HAVE LITERALLY BEEN WAITING MY WHOLE LIFE FOR WILDMOORE. Seeing them kiss was literally the highlight of 2022 so far and I am beyond jazzed to see what happens between them the rest of the season. We love to see it #BlackQueerLove

  11. Didn’t get to watch the episode live, so I internally shrieked with delight when I saw the feature image on this recap!!!!!!!!!!!!! (It would have been an external shriek if I had not been in bed next to my sleeping partner)

    And this ep lived up to that shriek! Holy moly! I am without words.

  12. This episode!! I always watch Batwoman online on Thursday, but I’m a teacher and it’s the last week of the semester so I was slammed and am catching up a day late.

    Loved homosexual Sophie not batting an eye at Luke’s workout.

    The way Pam looked at Renee when she was talking about plant communication?! My GOD!! I can’t believe I have been settling for straight actresses touching each other’s hair with zero sexual chemistry for so long, when Bridget Regan can devour her ex girlfriend with just her eyes.

    Sophie Moore continues to be devastatingly hot, this time by managing to grab the duffle bag before evacuating the car. And apologizing honestly! And starting a hard conversation with Ryan about feelings. I am going to PASS OUT she is everything.

    I had to pause and rewind because I was cackling too loudly during Ryan’s “All heroes fail. For example, Sophie…” moment.

    I had not even anticipated a kiss this episode!!!!! It was already giving so much!!

    Luke’s monologue to his father about knowing he’s ready was also really moving. What a great episode! I just want them to be renewed already (and get a bigger budget for fancier CGI)!

    We say it all the time, but I love how unapologetically lesbian this show is! We can be eco-terrorists, and super hot ex cops who left our job because we realized ACAB, and batwoman, and in love with our toxic exes and so many different things instead of just the gay sidekick on a show about a straight girl.

    Thanks for a great recap as always, Nic! “Funnily enough, that’s also where I keep my joy buzzer” made me giggle.

  13. Renee and Pam on the beach with the plant magic is the gayest thing I have ever seen on my television.

    Also love the head-canon that Renee is a TVD fan. First the vervain and then the “this is a toxic relationship” convo.

  14. Awesome recap! I really loved the parallels b/w Wildmoore & Renivy. Both have a rocky history, but something very different happening. Sophie’s statement about how much she’s changed in part to her relationship with Ryan is in stark contrast to what Pam is willing to do for Renee. Loved that.

    I also didn’t know I needed so much Mary & Alice. Love the parallel with Ryan & Marquis. Both chaotic siblings, but again very different outcomes. Mary and Alice have grown a reluctant respect and trust with each other that filled a void they noticably had. Ryan had a similar void that she wistfully thought her Bio family could fill, but I fear she’s gonna learn the hard way that often the best family you can have is the one you choose.

    Gosh this episode was so good, and inline with the already amazing season. With 4 episodes left I’m uneasy on where we’re headed to next!

    Thanks for the amazing recaps as always, Nic!

  15. i was going through the batwoman tag like ten seconds after the kiss and someone was like “autostraddle is gonna have a field day with this” and they were not wrong this has to be one of my favorite pieces ever written tbh, every time i went to copy/paste a favorite from this to put in the comment, i ended up just highlighting the whole thing

    “a beanie-clad Ryan is having some trouble getting out of her head lately, so she decides to visit Mama Cora’s grave in hopes that she’ll get some clarity. She wonders aloud how her mom was able to make “being everything to everyone” look easy. The short answer? Cora was a Black woman who was probably taught by another Black woman that in order to raise a strong Black woman, she needed to take on everyone’s burdens without letting them see you sweat” (YES)
    the lyrics from encanto / the i thought this was “white people shit” / not even knowing you could hope for or want this / i do apologize but “strumming my pain w [her] fingers, singing my life with [her] words killing me softly with [her]” song is definitely what came on in my head while reading this. theres so much i love (the shout outs to yellowjackets, the mean girls reference! twat swat! i could go on!) and i just really appreciate the love and care you put in this and also for turning on the damn light on the kiss so i can see them!

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