A new masked villain begins attacking Gotham City's social media influencers, cutting up their faces before vanishing into the night. As Kate begins tracking this new menace while trying to figure out where she stands with Sophie, Mary tries to figure out how to tell Kate that she's learned her secret identity and Alice seeks out help in confronting Dr. Cartwright.
The New 52 Catwoman comics (Character of Joker's Daughter) and Batwoman: Elegy
How are The Crows able to track Batwoman so quickly when she went to investigate Veronica May's wrecked truck?
For that matter, how was Sophie able to beat all of them to Batwoman while listening to their radio?
Aren't The Crows going to be somewhat suspicious that Sophie is working with Batwoman when they find Sophie's car (with the lights still on) abandoned next to Veronica May's van?
The opening scene with Duela and the mirror is truly unsettling.
Duela Dent first appeared in Batman Family #6 (August 1976) and was originally a foil for Robin. Having discovered Dick Grayson's secret identity, Duela taunted the Boy Wonder to do the same while posing as a number of supervillains' daughters, including The Joker, The Riddler and The Penguin. Eventually Robin determined she was the estranged daughter of Harvey Dent. It turned out Duela was trying to find a way to make up for the crimes of her infamous father and went after Robin as an audition for the Teen Titans. Robin was impressed and Duela was a part of the team, under the name Harlequin, until the New Teen Titans era.
In the post-Crisis era, Duela was revealed to be the daughter of The Jokester and Three-Face - the heroic counterparts of The Joker and Two-Face on Earth-3, where all the heroes were villains and vice-versa. She was also the stepdaughter of that world's Riddler, which was how she learned how to replicate the gimmicks and weapons of those villains so well. Sadly, Duela was killed by the Monitors for being a reality deviant who traveled between worlds and threatened the continuity of the new multiverse by existing on Earth-1.
Duela Dent was rebooted in the New 52 era as a spoiled rich girl in Gotham City who was born crazy, loving things that were ugly and hating things seen as traditionally beautiful. She ran away from home and lived in the sewers, where she happened to find the severed face of The Joker, who had removed his own face as part of one of his schemes. Wearing the skin as a mask, Duela went on a rampage, taking over the society of sewer dwellers and setting out to prove herself a worthy heir to The Joker.
The Arrowverse version of Duela Dent is closest to the New 52 version, but given a more solid motivation for her psychosis than just being crazy. This version of Duela Dent grew sick of the shallow subculture her perfection-obsessed mother forced her into as a child (her bedroom is full of beauty pageant trophies) and began targeting her classmates who made themselves "hideous" with plastic surgery while encouraging other women to reach for an ideal that was impossible for the non-rich elites of Gotham City.
The Arrowverse version of Duela Dent is said to be the niece of a popular assistant district attorney. This is almost certainly a reference to Harvey Dent and it suggests that, in the Arrowverse, Harvey Dent has yet to become Two-Face.
Dr. Cartwright exposes Mouse to a tank full of what is labeled Fear Gas. This is presumably the same fear gas utilized by the Scarecrow.
Luke upgrades Kate's cowl so that when she presses the red button on the left gauntlet of the batsuit it activates a cowl-cam that allows him to see what she sees. He uses this to scan Duela Dent's defaced yearbook remotely.
(Kate is grilling Mary for details on people in her circle who might be potential victims of The Slasher. Mary is trying (and failing) to subtly let Kate know she knows she is Batwoman.)
Mary: Actually, if you're... looking into this because you own a real estate firm and these women are most likely future property buyers...
Kate: (deadpan) Exactly.
Mary: I'm around if you need a side... person.
(Kate has a lead on the vehicle of Duela Dent's next victim.)
Batwoman: We need to find that cosmetics truck!
Luke: I appreciate that. But a truck in Gotham? Kind of a needle in a haystack.
Batwoman: The needle is hot pink.
(There is a pause as Luke considers this.)
Luke: That narrows it down.
Batwoman: How do you see this playing out? Dinner? Movie? I take you back to my cave?
Sophie: You live in a cave?!
(Batwoman says nothing in response.)
Sophie: I don't know. I guess I haven't really thought about it.
Batwoman: If I were to tell you who I am right now, would you want to know?
Sophie: (confused) What?
Batwoman: Because once that happens I'm no longer a secret. I'm a face. A person. A woman. And I... I bring all the complications that come with that. So do you want to be in a real relationship? Or do you want to be with someone you can keep secret? Because we can never be more than this. And that shouldn't be enough.
(There is a long pause as Sophie considers this. She sighs sadly.)
Sophie: You're right. As long as I'm with a woman who wears a mask, I'll always be wearing one myself.
(Duela Dent has snuck into Dr. Campbell's office after hours. They are really Dr. Cartwright and Alice wearing flesh masks.)
Dr. Cartwright: You shouldn't be here, Duela.
"Duela": Sorry. You got the wrong girl.
("Duela" pulls off her face and wig to reveal she's Alice. Cartwright is horrified.)
Dr. Cartwright: No! You're dead! I- I shot you!
Alice: Again! You got the wrong girl. (grinning wickedly) You like taking things from children, don't you? Well... (Alice holds up her flesh mask of Duela and moves the lips like a puppet.) We're all grown up now. And here for a little payback.
Mary runs into Sophie while getting coffee.
Mary knows Sophie was suspended by the Crows.
Sophie tells Mary that she made out with Batwoman.
Mary figures out that Sophie doesn't know Kate is Batwoman.
Luke tells Kate he's upgrading her cowl. He says he's not giving her X-Ray vision or echolocation abilities, though he admits that last one would be a good idea.
Kate tells Luke about her kissing Sophie as Batwoman. Luke says trying to forge a romance as Batwoman is a bad idea, as it will make Sophie a target and that Bruce didn't seek romance for that reason.
Alice was held captive by Dr. Cartwright for 11 years.
One of the Wonderland gang members gets Alice a photo of Dr. Campbell. He doesn't look like Dr. Cartwright, but Alice recognizes him because he still smokes the same pipe.
Jacob meets with Bobby Reeves: the lawyer representing Reggie Harris. He says Harris has won a retrial thanks to the allegations that came forth thanks to The Executioner in 106.
The new judge overseeing Harris' case is David Wellington.
Reeves asks Jacob to use his pull to get Harris' case moved up, as a payback for Harris saving him from Dodgson while in prison in 112.
Reeves tells Jacob that Harris has information from his time in prison about there being things The Crows would like kept secret. He implies that information will come out if Jacob doesn't play ball with them.
Kate meets Sophie at her apartment as Batwoman and tries to let her down easily. They wind up kissing again instead, but are interrupted by someone entering Sophie's apartment. It turns out to be Sophie's mom, who was surprising her with a visit.
A model named Kimberly Wright is attacked by a masked woman who slashes her face with a knife. She is apparently the second social media influencer to be attacked in this manner.
The slasher is described as a woman in her 20s, but all the other details were hidden because she wore a hoodie and a surgical mask.
Luke notes that the slasher is specifically attacking the women's faces, not hurting their bodies at all.
Mary knew Kimberly, but not well.
Mary notes that most of her social media followers left her thanks to the debacle with Jacob allegedly killing Catherine.
Mary suspects that most of the potential victims are all patients of Dr. Ethan Campbell, as they all had plastic surgery to copy one another's best features or those of other famous people.
Mary offers to warn Dr. Campbell, as he lectures at her medical school. Kate tells her not to bother.
Sophie's mother was called by Jacob, who suggested she might need her to come visit.
Sophie was the one who left her husband. She says she fell out of love with her husband.
Sophie's mom reads her the riot act over her not doing everything she can to rejoin The Crows. She openly disrespects Batwoman, saying she doesn't represent her values like Batman did. Sophie confirms this means being openly gay.
Sophie is 28 years old and has two degrees and owns her own condo.
Kate asks Sophie, as Batwoman, to interview Dr. Campbell.
The first victim of the slasher was a model named Mia Cortez.
Sophie suggests that maybe the Slasher isn't targeting people who got copycat surgeries but inflicting the injuries she suffered on other people.
Dr. Campbell recalls a patient from eight years earlier - a teenage girl who carved a smile onto her fact. She had a long psychiatric rap-sheet and cut her own face repeatedly. The girls's name was Duela Dent.
Duela's mother is Evelyn Dent. She was a typical stage mother who forced Duela to compete in beauty pageants as a child and teenager.
Duela was recently released from a mental institution.
Kate searches Duela's room and finds what seems to be a hit list and a defaced yearbook.
Kate asks Luke to look up the name Myrtis Dinker. Luke finds nothing, but is able to scan the photo Kate sees and start trying to match the picture.
Kate confronts Duela, who takes her mother hostage and slashes her throat to escape.
Alice abducts a psychiatrist, Dr. Monroe, to seek his advice on why she's afraid to confront Dr. Cartwright. He suggests that because of her past trauma, she is regressing into the girl who was terrified of the man who held her captive. He suggests a third person who can act as a buffer between her and him - an emotional shield - might be the answer.
Alice has Dr. Monroe killed, lamenting that he truly was helpful but she can't exactly guarantee his silence.
Alice guesses that Duela Dent is the Slasher, based on the records of Dr. Campbell's patients she stole and the fact that Duela sued Dr. Campbell when she was 16, claiming the surgery he performed to restore her face was done without her permission.
Dr. Cartwright tells Mouse that Alice is dead and shows him the newspaper report of her death. He confesses that he shot her to save their family.
Jacob confronts the Crow who handled Harris' case about Reeves' allegations. He says the only thing he finds unusual about the case is that people are trying to set a killer free, blowing off Jacob's pointing out that, somehow, five hours worth of security footage around the time of the robbery where Lucius Fox was murdered.
Dr. Cartwright hooks Mouse up to an tank full of fear gas, which he took from a former colleague.
Mary identifies Myrtis Dinker as Veronica May - a model who runs her own make-up line. She says the reason the facial recognition software Batwoman uses didn't work is because her nose and chin have been changed since high school.
Veronica May has a custom cosmetics truck to promote her business that is hot pink, which Mary describes as the gaudiest thing on the road.
Sophie shows up to warn Batwoman that the Crows are coming for her after she finds Veronica May's van run off the road.
Luke guesses that Duela has taken Veronica May to a cosmetics factory down the road, which is where Veronica May's make-up line is manufactured.
Alice steals medical supplies from Mary's clinic.
Alice tells Mary about how she saved her life with a blood transfusion in 113.
Alice tells Mary that she knows who Batwoman really is and seems surprised Mary doesn't know.
Duela dangles Veronica over a vat of acidic chemicals.
Sophie fights Duela while Batwoman saves Veronica.
Sophie says she and Batwoman made a good team. Batwoman agrees, but says they can't be together unless Sophie is willing to hide every aspect of their life from the world. Sophie agrees, saying she can't be with a woman wearing a mask unless she wears one herself.
Batwoman says she'll call the GCPD and tell them where Duela is tied up.
Alice finds Duela and offers to give them both what they want.
It is revealed later that she cut Duela's face off, leaving her "perfect" and made her face into a flesh mask so she could ambush Dr. Cartwright while posing as Duela.
Jacob confronts his agent with a bank statement showing that The Crows paid the owner of the Sip N' Dash where Lucius Fox was murdered $50,000 dollars. The money came from a budget used to pay for damages caused during the apprehension of a suspect. He suggests the money was for more than damages but again the agent blows off his concerns.
Jacob calls Sophie and offers to reinstate her, saying he needs her integrity which he has never questioned, even if he questioned her decision making abilities.
Sophie outs herself to her mother, saying she never loved her husband and only married him because it was expected. She says the only time she was ever happy romantically was with Kate.
Sophie is disowned by her mother.
Mary tries to get Kate to open up to her again, but Kate doesn't take the hint.
Mary refers to the events of 101 and says she was never afraid of Kate revealing her secret clinic to anyone because she trusts her. She says she hopes one day Kate will trust her the same way.
Alice unmasks Dr. Cartwright and demands to know where Mouse is.
The final scene shows Mouse, tied up in the basement where we last saw him, screaming and having a spasm. It is revealed he is connected to a tank labeled Fear Gas.
The Bottom Line
A weak episode, largely due to the absence of Alice and the focus on Sophie. Duela is a forgettable villain-of-the-weak, despite being infinitely more interesting and better developed here than she was as the New 52 Joker's Daughter. Still, at least the Kate/Sophie romance seems to finally be dead and over. At least the bits with Mary trying to hint at Kate's secret are amusing and its good to see Alice get the jump on Dr. Cartwright. Ironically, this plastic surgery themed episode is far less than the sum of its parts.