“Wild Wild Westerly” opens with Dutch staring at herself introspectively in the mirror. For this moment it seems that the second episode of season two of KILLJOYS will continue right where the premiere left off: with Dutch questioning her past and her placement on the mysterious Arkyn. Luckily, that introspection only lasts about a minute or two, before she and the rest of the team remember that they basically have a planet to save. Last season, the planet of Westerly was super bombed before the city of Old Town was walled off from the world. The Killjoy crew has got to get back in Old Town though, to give Pree back his bar, and also to rescue their doctor friend Pawter, and religious friend Alvis from season one.
They do this in typical Killjoy fashion: getting a warrant. Even though the big revelation last season was that their boss and the whole RAC is shady and evil, Dutch, Johnny and D’avin go back in to get that sweet sweet warrant. They essentially tell the bossman “hey, we know you are evil, but we gotta get back to Westerly and keep doing our Killjoy thing. It’s the name of the show, you know.” Surprisingly enough, this works out for them. The team gets a warrant from The Company, the super evil governing force of the quad, and goes on their merry way with a brand new mission: bring back eight rebel prisoners to The Company. This episode serves as a reminder of the fact that these Killjoys are supposed to be neutral. The team insists that they are, even though The Company gets increasingly more villainous. It’s crazy that a governing body called The Company of all things would have sinister elements, but here we are. They have literally quarantined and entire town because they are trying to squash a rebellion, but hey, neutrality is key.
After being briefly detained by said Company, the gang goes off to complete their mission and Pree goes to get his bar back. Pree getting his bar back is a highlight of the episode, for it harkens back to what the show does best: being just a good fun time. Some guy named Gared has taken over the bar, so naturally Dutch fights him in a very enjoyable action sequence. It serves both as a way to get the bar back, and a distraction so Johnny and D’avin can find some of these prisoners. This is Killjoys at it’s best: just another routine warrant with lots of fun fights and quips. However it doesn’t last very long. Soon after Dutch finishes beating Gared up, Johnny finds one of the prisoners, who proceeds to kill himself, bringing the audience right down into serious town. Tonally, it follows a very similar pattern as last week: fifteen minutes of fun, and then weighty reminders of how serious and dark this world is. Hopefully it can break this pattern and return to last season’s ratio which was about fifteen minutes of seriousness, and then rest being some good old space fights and missions.
After the suicide of prisoner number one, the team discovers that there is an evil gas on Westerly that can turn anyone into a skeleton in five minutes. They move right on, but it’s more than apparent that this will come on back. They also find Pawter, who is busy trying to heal everyone, and also give the exposition that basically drowning someone is the only way to save them from the gas. After some clear set up that her and Johnny might be love interests soon, the team departs to find the other seven prisoners and the “scarback” (which is just a sci fi monk) Alvis. It turns out Alvis is hated by both The Company and the rebellion, which is pretty impressive. His character mostly exists to do favors for Dutch and Co., and he does not fall short leading them right to the prisoners.
Unfortunately, once they get to the prisoners, it turns out that the Company was tracking the Killjoys this whole time. The Company immediately guns down the prisoners, proving just again how evil they are. This act of violence makes Alvis finally take action. He leads Dutch and D’avin out of there, but then he steals the evil gas (remember that stuff, it’s back, what a whirlwind) and puts it into a device that will destroy the Company base. Right as he is setting this off, Johnny shows up and yells through the door that Pawter is up at the base. Alvis has a quick “oh no, what did I do” moment before grabbing the gas out of the device. This makes the gas attack Alvis. Lucking there is a giant pool of water conveniently located behind him. Remember when water was the weakness of the gas? Johnny finally gets the door open, and D’avin and Dutch proceed to drown Alvis, and then give him CPR to save his life. It’s a little anti-climactic, because we just know that Alvis isn’t going to die, but have the music swell when he coughs up water.
This rescue is enough to get Alvis to join the Killjoys on their spaceship and hopefully expand the team. Sadly, Pree did not become a permanent addition to the team, as he is back at his bar. This did lead to the delightful sequence of him reclaiming his place of business, which added some much needed levity to the end of this episode. However, it would have been great to have him as a permanent member of the team. Pawter, another contender for team addition, is still on the company base. She is spying on the company for the Killjoys, and has a nifty communication device that Johnny planted on her by planting a big old kiss on her, so you know she will be sticking around. Hopefully the core ensemble keeps expanding, because the moments of camaraderie are some of the best the show has to offer.
The episode ends with the team leaving Old Town, about to return to the plot of last week, only to discover that the Khylen’s evil base has moved to a different planet. The ship gets low key captured by their boss, who cuts a deal with Dutch. Essentially, they will do a lot of missions to help discover what Khylen is up to. It’s a preview into the rest of the season. Though they are connected to the overarching plot, there is still hope that these missions will have more than fifteen minutes of fun and bring Killjoys back to the level it should always be on.
Raina Deerwater | Contributor