TV Shows

BATWOMAN Star Rachel Skarsten Shares Her Favorite Part of Playing A Villain During NYCC Roundtable

Batwoman made its first New York Comic Con appearance this year. And while Batwoman herself (Ruby Rose) was unable to attend due to an injury acquired while on set, Rachel Skarsten and Meagan Tandy took up the torch to attend and dish on their new and upcoming show.

For Skarsten, this return to Gotham felt almost like a homecoming, as she previously starred in the 2002 version of Birds of Prey as Dinah Lance. Only this time, she’s back in the city to play the show’s main villain.

When we sat down with Skarsten to go over what exactly makes her character tick in Batwoman, we learned that when she first got the part, Skarsten excitedly told all of her friends and family, who then in turn told her that she was perfect for this role.

Then after a while, I was like “hmmm but she’s [Alice] insane so what does that say about me?” but I get all of my insanity out at work so it’s been a pleasure to play her.

All in good fun, of course!

We also had fun hearing about Skarsten’s favorite thing about her slightly insane character. We learned that butterfly knives are now her go-to party trick and that some of her favorite scenes are with Ruby and Dougray Scott.

But in all seriousness, when we asked her to tease a bit on what we might expect to see on this new CW show, Skarsten had this to say:

There’ll be a lot of flashbacks. We’re going to go back and forth and explain what happened to Alice in between and build that relationship for the audience on screen […] Alice is such a juicy character because she’s not just being bad for the sake of being bad. There’s a reason motivating her and it’s been really fun to unpack the relationship dynamic between Alice and her sister and find out those reasons.

Skarsten also had high praise for her younger counterpart, Ava Sleeth, who appears in the show’s flashback scenes. Since these flashbacks will inevitably show us how Beth became Alice, Skarsten told us that she would sometimes tell Sleeth that she was the one creating who Beth was, not Skarsten.

I tell her that ‘you’re creating who Beth is and was. I’m just mimicking you.’ And so I watch her and try to bring what she’s doing with the character and bring it into my performance.

And of course with any villain, we just had to know… could Alice be redeemed? According to Skarsten, that decision is up to the audience.

I have played her as though she can be redeemed because I think it makes her more interesting, whether or not she can be.

Watch the full interview at the top of the post!

Batwoman is now airing on CW and the CW App every Sunday 8/7c

By Shannon

A storyteller at her core, Shannon loves writing about the stories that inspire her everyday. When she’s not busy writing and binge watching TV, you can catch her out exploring the world and trying new foods and activities. “At least try it once. Even if it doesn’t work out, at least you’ll have a good story to tell.”