Syfy’s Killjoys started strong and got stronger with every episode.
The show is a masterful blend of character development, action and world-building. The three musketeers who form the main team, Dutch, John and D’Avin, were easy to like from the beginning.
Dutch checked in as your standard, drop-dead gorgeous, kick-ass, La Femme Nikita-style assassin. That image immediately began to soften as we got glimpses of her mysterious background, vulnerability and heart of gold.
John is the glue of the trio. He is what you might call a stealth geek, a guy who has all the technological smarts but is unmarked by taped glasses, pocket protector and any of the other outward signs that might signal his abilities. Lucy, the AI in charge of their ship, is clearly in love with him. John has an endearing brotherly affection for Dutch that is as heartwarming as it is unbelievable. I did note that Dutch is drop-dead gorgeous, did I not?
D’Avin, John’s estranged brother, is the latecomer to the team, and by that I mean he did not show up until partway into the first episode. Brotherly affection is a strained commodity in his case, but we eventually learned that his actions are not entirely under his control. Although a heroic figure, D’Avin, despite being warned by John, does not share John’s brotherly attitude toward Dutch.
As duly sworn agents of the Reclamation Apprehension Coalition (RAC), better known as “The Rack,” the threesome get into plenty of tense situations in the course of executing their bounty hunting warrants. Firefights and more advanced methods of dealing out death abound, but the show avoids becoming mired in gore. A rich mixture of plot elements includes social injustice, economics, politics, rebellion, drug addiction, mind control and genocide. Throughout the episodes, we saw Dutch’s past chasing her. The series has presented few, if any, dull moments.
The setting for the series, “The Quad,” consisting of a home planet and three moons, is so complex that Syfy has generously included a web page guide to the world of Killjoys. Homeworld Qresh is at the top of the social structure, which is ruled by the Nine Families. The families created the Company to keep their world in order, and the Company uses the RAC to do its dirty work.
In descending order of status come the moons Leith, home to unlanded members of the Nine Families; Westerley, the Quad’s version of the American Wild West and base of operations for Dutch, John and D’Avin; and Arkyn, a colonial failure now being used for mysterious and sinister purposes.
Nobody is overly happy with their status, other than the inhabitants of Qresh, particularly the Nine Families. The Syfy page summarized the differences among the planetary residents with “If those on Westerley dream of life on Leith, those on Leith dream of life on Qresh.” The potential for conflict is infinite.
The first season of this superlative series barely scratched the surface of the possibilities created by its incredibly imaginative and talented writers. If ever a new series deserved another dozen seasons, it’s Killjoys.