Killjoys S02E02 “Wild, Wild Westerley” REVIEW
Essential Plot Points
- Dutch is aboard Lucy, looking at herself in the mirror, but the Dutch in the mirror isn’t doing the same things.
- Dutch, Johnny and D’avin head back to the RAC, to officially re-instate D’avin on the team.
- Turin is still at the RAC – he isn’t dead (Khlyen stabbed him at the end of season one) and, as the Killjoys find out, he isn’t a Level Six.
- The freshly reformed threesome are looking for a warrant inside Old Town, to get Pree home.
- Old Town is surrounded by a wall, to keep the rebellious Westies inside, except this isn’t any ordinary wall: it’s a very fancy wall.
- The wall scans the Killjoys and Pree, but gets mad because apparently Pree used to be a warlord of some kind. It zaps them, knocking them all unconscious.
- The four awake chained up in Spring Hill, a Company bunker next to Old Town.
- The officer in charge is Liam Jelco. It’s his warrant they’ve taken. He wants them to recover eight prisoners who escaped from Westhole when a company bomber crashed into it.
- Back in Old Town proper, The Royal is still standing. But someone called Garret has claimed it for himself. Dutch offers to fight him for ownership of the bar, he agrees, and gets his ass kicked.
- One of the escaped prisoners is in the bar; he tells them the rest of the escapees are waiting in ambush at Westhole. Then proceeds to shoot himself in the head rather than be taken back to prison.
- Instead of finding a trap in Westhole, the trio find six mummified corpses. And Carl.
- Carl works at the prison. When the prisoners started escaping he pressed the big red button, just like it says to do in the Company handbook. This released a particularly nasty gas which completely desiccated everyone who breathed it in.
- The team find Dr Pawter helping the injured of Old Town, and show her the dried-up corpse.
- She also happens to be hiding Hills, who has seen the gas before. It’s called the Aridity Solution: “You dry up and then you die.”.
- The final escaped prisoner, is called Tighman. It turns out he was a good friend of Alvis’s back in the day.
- Alvis is still wanted by the company (he escaped from Westhole himself at the end of season one). They can’t find him so they’re spreading malicious rumours about him and the other Scarback monks.
- Tighman has taken up his former position as leader of the miners’ union. He’s demanding that all the miners and their families be allowed to leave Old Town. In return he’ll hand himself, and the Aridity Solution gas canister he stole, over to the company.
- A Company drone appears and guns him down. It appears that while our Killjoys were out cold, Jelco had trackers hidden on them.
- The Killjoys and Alvis (who now has the gas canister) escape the carnage, but Jelco appears on screens around old town, offering a trip to Leith for anyone who brings him the missing gas canister, and Dutch, dead or alive.
- Hills takes Pawter to the Company bunker at Spring Hill. Pawter wants to try and get in touch with her mother (one of the Nine) to see if she will help Old Town.
- Jelco accuses Hills of disobeying the Company and abandoning his post, and shoots him in the head.
- Alvis tries to release the Aridity gas into Spring Hill, but aborts when he learns that Pawter is inside and trying to help. He ends up inhaling some of the gas, but is rescued by D’avin and Dutch.
- Inside Spring Hill, Pawter and Johnny kiss (so he can surreptitiously give her a communication device).
- Pree is back in charge at The Royal, and not going anywhere again soon.
- The three Killjoys leave with Alvis, to investigate Arkyn. Alvis tells Dutch there haven’t been Scarback monks on Arkyn for over 200 years.
- En route to Arkyn, Lucy is remotely hijacked and sent back to Westerley; by Turin. He doesn’t trust the RAC after the Level Six infiltration and wants the Killjoys help to find out what’s really going on.
This second episode of this new season of Killjoys opens with Dutch looking in the mirror, but mirror Dutch isn’t doing the same things as real Dutch. It hints at Dutch’s duality, something which was teased in season one, but never fully explored: her life as Yalena and her life as Dutch. D’avin’s recent vision of Dutch on Arkyn (which she doesn’t remember), ties into this as well. “How do you know it was me?” Dutch asks D’avin. “Well, I know your face,” he replies, smoothly adding, “It’s a good face.” To further add to the mystery, we also find out this episode that there haven’t been Scarbacks on Arkyn for over 200 years.
After the mysterious opener, we don’t get much more intrigue this time around, apart from at the very end. Nonetheless the episode is great fun, bringing the usual Killjoys mix of action, humour and tech. However…some of the plotting is just a little too convenient.
The warrant the Killjoys take to get them into Old Town is for the capture of eight escaped prisoners from Westhole prison. The Killjoys’ first port of call, The Royal, also handily happens to house one of the escaped prisoners. He leads them to their next destination, Westhole, before blowing his own head off, saving them the trouble of having to capture him. Upon arrival at Westhole our intrepid trio find six desiccated bodies, and Carl who tells them where to find prisoner number eight. Now, these prisoners have allegedly just escaped from Westhole, so what are they still doing there? And if the gas was released so quickly they couldn’t make their escape, how did the other two get out? Next, once they catch up with the final prisoner, a Company drone shoots him, again saving them the trouble of having to capture him. In one sense (ignoring all that getting captured stuff) this really is the Killjoys’ lucky day.
Still, Pascal Langdale does a great job at portraying a particularly unlikeable Jelco, playing it with a mixture of smug condescension and downright nastiness. Putting paid to Hills is an especially despicable act; he’s been around for most of season one, and even though he was a grumpy old git and a Company man, he helped our Killjoys out more than once, and warned the people of Old Town of the impending bombing raid, giving them time to get to shelter.
Jelco only just edges it out for the nastiest character this episode, as Alvis is also vying for the title. At the start of the episode we see him mugging people for their medication, apparently so he can give it to Pawter, although it looked to us like he was enjoying it a little too much. Then, later on, he attempts to release the mummification gas into the Company bunker. Now, we’re not saying that Jelco doesn’t deserve to die an unpleasant death, but these actions aren’t really in keeping with that of a monk. Alvis is certainly in a dark place, and we don’t really know enough about his history to know how out-of-character this behaviour is.
As we’ve come to expect from Killjoys, it’s still a fun ride; Pawter, Alvis and Turin are back, and Pree reclaims his bar. Patrick Garrow is especially good value as Turin, his mixture of ambivalence and wry humour comes across really well. We warrant we’ll be seeing more of him as he works together with “Team Awesome Force” to get to the bottom of Level Six.
- Johnny’s continuing technology fetish is amusing; he becomes aroused by the all-seeing Old Town wall.
- Garret is a fun incidental character: he starts out owning a bar and ends up with a busted leg and a knife through his hand.
- Jelco is suitably evil.
- Pree gets his bar back.
- Pawter and Alvis are back.
- The plot hinges on just a few too many handy coincidences.
- Hills gets killed!
And The Random:
- Patrick Garrow (Turin) and Pascal Langdale (Jelco) both had recurring roles in Bitten.
- The fancy Old Town wall identifies Pree as “Prima Dezz”, a warlord! We can also clearly see Dutch and Johnny’s levels, but D’avin’s is very hard to read; it might be four… but it might not…