Warning: This article contains spoilers for the fifth episode of Batwoman, titled “Mine Is a Long And a Sad Tale.”
Alice’s backstory is definitely creepier than expected.
In Batwoman‘s latest episode, Alice (Rachel Skarsten) revealed to Kate (Ruby Rose) that she was held captive in a cabin after the fatal car crash that killed their mother when they were 13. A creepy man found her on the side of the water and brought her home so that his son Johnny, whose face was severely disfigured, would have a friend. Even though she was scared for her life, Beth ended up befriending Johnny and nicknamed him Mouse. Flash-forward many years later, Alice has finally reunited with Mouse, who was locked up in Arkham Asylum for stealing faces off of corpses until the “Elseworlds” prison break. With Mouse’s help, Alice will get her revenge on her family and Gotham City. (Read EW’s full recap here)
Below, EW chats with Skarsten about how Alice’s backstory impacts her vengeful plan as the season progresses and more.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How heavily does Mouse figure into Alice’s plan for Gotham and the Kane family?
RACHEL SKARSTEN: He’s a very important part of her plan. There’ll even be a scene where she will say to him, “I can’t do this without you.” All of the years that Alice [was in] captivity, most of them were spent (after her sort of break with reality) planning this great, grand plan and scheme that she has to enact revenge and to bring Kate over to her side, and Mouse was definitely a very important part of all of those things. So it’s interesting because then you see this other relationship. You find Kate, who’s kind of caught between her father and her sister, and now we’ll start to see Alice be caught between her two sort of siblings in Mouse and Kate.
In episode 2, Alice went after Kate’s stepsister Mary at least partially out of jealousy, and it’s clear she isn’t happy that Jacob and Kate found this new family after her disappearance. Now, we find out that Alice also formed her own new family while she was away, too.
Absolutely. I really like the character of Mouse because I think after any trauma, there’s a part of you that stays the age that it happened. I just amplified that with the actor who plays Mouse, Sam Littlefield. So you see this very childlike quality to their relationship and this kind of innocence, even though the words coming out of their mouth are so maniacal. To them it’s like they’re just playing in the basement still. That’s been really interesting for me to have that element to Alice as well.
Alice promises Mouse that she can help become whoever he wants to be. Can we expect Mouse to jump through different identities with Alice’s help?
Yes, we can expect that Mouse’s history and past, obviously with the different faces, will be utilized both by Mouse and Alice and in their plans going forward, 100 percent.
When Alice first sees Jacob in the episode, she seems genuinely moved that he calls her Beth right before she stabs him. Do you think there’s part of Alice that is conflicted about what she has in store for her family?
In my version of Alice as I create her, 100 percent. The craziest part about Alice is that there are very much two people who exist within the same mind and body and spirit, and that is why in my mythos of Alice, she is redeemable but also why she is so scary and insane. Within the flip of a coin, one moment she will genuinely be in that moment with her father and loving him and sort of getting what she had needed for years and years and years, and the next moment she’s stabbing him. It’s my favorite part of Alice because you never really know which Alice you’re standing with. To me, that moment, yes, it was 100 percent genuine. That’s what she’d been waiting for so many years.
There’s still a huge gap in Alice’s backstory. Do you know if we’ll learn more about what happened after Alice and Jacob left the house without finding her?
We will delve in as the season progresses even more into the sort of blank space in Alice’s life and see a little bit more of what happened, and some of the characters will come back from that time and they are in present-day very much involved in Alice’s plan for Gotham and for the Kane family going forward.
Batwoman airs Sundays at 8 p.m. on The CW.
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