Well, I am once again writing about a show that is working its way into my heart and becoming near and dear. Also, it is damn good to be back! Let's dig in shall we?
Pop culture sure does seem to love its bounty hunters. Their beat is a shady, hazardous and enthralling one, which treats low-life wrongdoers to adrenaline rushes of thrills. It must be the fantasy of hauling in your mark or in the case of this show, Warrants to collect on outstanding bounties in return for some serious cash. This tradition endures on the SYFY channel’s newest drama, Killjoys. Killjoys are reclamation agents which is another term for bounty hunters, which is another name for Killjoys.
For fans of Lost Girl, you are in luck, Michelle Loveretta, she was the aforementioned show’s creator, and she penned this epic drama. Killjoys hangs the mantle of responsibly on Dutch (Hannah John-Kamen, who is a top-level Reclamation agent who is equal parts mysterious, sassy, sexy and dangerous. She has zero qualms over shooting first, and calling it a day. However, this doesn’t mean that Dutch’s compass isn’t reasonably calibrated. As we get to see fleeting flashbacks from her childhood, where she was trained to be one thing and that was an emotionless killing machine.
Her partner in crime-busting is John Jaqobis (Aaron Ashmore), who is the polar opposite of Dutch. John Jaqobis is the side-kick who is both sarcastic and tech-savvy. The pair of them has a finely tuned platonic relationship wrought by a long history together. For Dutch’s sexual-tension we have D’avin Jaqobis, John’s older brother and former solider. Dutch, John and D’avin can sure hold their own in a fight and take a punch without giving two shits about it. And they aren’t above swearing should the situation merit it. However, there may be some disconnect here for some viewers used to an older cast. These three are younger, attractive and trendier than the ones that had come before.
Killjoys takes cues from some of the new millennium’s most prominent Sci Fi shows, taking elements from the likes of Battlestar Galactica, and Orphan Black into its reverent tractor beam (Killjoys comes from Orphan Black’s Toronto Production Company). While it functions as a bounty of the week procedural, the series does seem to be hinting at an overreaching mythology that will play a role in the grand scheme of things. The showrunners keep it light on the planetary nerdiness, again taking cues from the likes of Firefly, and the like. The Quad is a complex place, a sociopolitical tinderbox whose murky past is primed and ready to catch up with it. Dutch’s personal narrative runs in tandem with the Quad: The cryptic mentor who schooled her as a child has suddenly reappeared; assigning a deadly task (and possibly more down the line) she’s unable to refuse. After years of sculpting her into a cold-blooded assassin, he’s looking for a return on his investment.
Although Killjoys has ambition and creativity to spare, it often lags in execution. Compelling storylines find themselves saddled with heavy-handed exposition and clunky, B-grade dialogue. When serving up our Killjoys’ characteristics and values, attributes like “tough,” “sarcastic,” and “mysterious” should be treated as condiments, not the main course. Despite solid acting, our leads are handcuffed to what’s on the page, with no opportunity to transcend stock character templates. Dutch, John, and D’avin would seem fleshed-out by the standards of video game cut scenes, but their pixilated qualities swiftly reveal themselves when patched into a steely television drama. Ancillary characters—like Dutch’s hoity-toity frenemy Delle Seyah Kendry or sassy gay bartender Pree—are painted with even broader strokes.
Where it stands it may seem that the current state of Killjoys leaves it dead in space lost in a tone-divested neutral zone, perilously low on fuel necessary to keep up with its influences, but I am nothing if not an optimist and I still like the show. I just hope that it can stand the test of time and may the fans be loyal. This show does have a lot of potential. You can view the trailer below. Yeah I know what a weird place to place it?!