Killjoys (2015: Season 1)

Killjoys Poster 3From Space.com: Killjoys follows a trio of reclamation agents as they chase deadly warrants throughout the Quad, a distant planetary system on the brink of a bloody, class war.

Leading the Killjoys team is Dutch (Hannah John-Kamen), a gorgeous, former assassin with a complicated past; her loyal partner John (Aaron Ashmore), a witty, technical wizard with a vulnerable heart; and his estranged brother D’avin (Luke Macfarlane), an elite soldier with an expertise in combat tactics. Together, the three Killjoys form a highly accomplished team of bounty hunters, each with distinct and valuable specialties to offer as they navigate the culturally rich, politically complex, and economically polarized worlds of The Quad. Canadian genre icon Amanda Tapping guest stars as a fiercely clever scientist, whose charismatic charm keeps her true intentions concealed from the Killjoys.

Why I Chose It: When I saw this show advertised on the Space website I was attracted by the premise of bounty hunters in space.

The Review:

I actually watched this season at the end of the summer, but it’s been one of those shows that I can’t seem to get out of my mind. I’m very eager for the next season to come out! I grew up with shows like Stargate SG-1 and Star Trek, so I think it was only natural that this show appealed to me.

From the very first episode I swooned over the characters in the show. John and Dutch are best friends, and their characters compliment each other incredibly well. I really enjoy John’s character as the funny tech-smart agent, but I have to admit it was Dutch’s character that made me smile. She’s sassy and clever, and can totally kick everyone’s butt. But she’s also got a huge heart, and you can tell she truly cares about John.  Once D’avin is introduced, the team becomes even stronger and more dynamic, and I absolutely love the trio.

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The first of episodes of the season were fanastic. I was impressed with the world building and the quick establishment of the different political, social, and policing systems. The overarching explanation of the reclamation agents – a.k.a. Killjoys – really intrigued me, and I love the badass attitudes the characters have while they establish their roles in this world. I also loved the gorgeous settings and variety of environments that the characters encounter.  The show really hits the ground running and the first few episodes had me totally hooked.

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While the start of the season wowed me, the middle of the season definitely slowed down. Unfortunately it was less impressive after such a powerful start, and I was largely concerned that each episode would simply become the Killjoys hunting down a new warrant, and result in repetitive story lines. Thankfully, the season opened back up in episodes 5 and 7, as the characters go through some powerfully emotional events. I am so impressed with how much depth each character is given in such a short amount of time, and how complex their backgrounds become. I am also blown away by the display of acting skills from the three main actors, and cannot wait to see more of them.

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In summary, I have totally swooned over this show. I love the setting, the complex political and social systems, and the structure of the reclamation agents’ roles. Add to that the amazing cast and dynamic characters, and I am itching for the start of the next season. Between Killjoys, Black Orphan, Face Off and Dark Matter, I have become a total Space channel junkie, and my favourite Saturdays are spent watching their shows! If you’re into fast-paced science fiction, or stories of agencies that work beyond government control, definitely check this one out!

Rating: 4 / 5

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The Named – Marianne Curley

namedOn The Cover: Ethan lives a secret life as a Guardian of the Named. Under the guidance of Arkarian, his mentor, and with the help of Isabel, his unlikely but highly capable apprentice, Ethan has become a valued member of this other-worldly corps. As the only defense against the evil Order of Chaos, the Named travel through time to prevent the Order from altering history and thereby gaining power in the present and the future.

As the threat from the Order intensifies, secrets of the past are revealed and villains and heroes are exposed. This gripping fantasy is set in modern times, but is infused with intrigue from the past, super-natural characters and surprising plot twists. Curley has written a winner through to the end.

Published: 2002

Why I Chose It: I had read The Named when I was a teenager and I was curious to read it again and see if I still loved the story.

The Review:

I absolutely love the secret society in this story. The way that Isobel becomes an apprentice and begins training definitely appeals to my adventurous side and I get swept up in the excitement. There are so many good details about training that allows the reader to progressively learn about the Guardians along with Isabel, but it never feels like an information dump or a boring history – the story remains upbeat and interesting as Isabel tackles the next task. Plus the idea that they are working for a greater cause remains strong throughout the book and I loved that there was a bigger picture to the story, making me eager to read and learn more.

A huge aspect of this novel is the time travel, and this is one of those stories that hits the nail on the head. The time traveling aspect is believable because Ethan and Isabel don’t quite understand how it works, and so the reader is not required to know either. I really appreciate that there are established rules about time travel that Ethan and Isabel have to follow, and the suggestion that the greater beings have set these rules in place. Finally, the setting and situations they encounter in the past are completely believable and I really enjoyed the trips to different times.

Finally, I have to mention the love story. This is one of those love stories I remember fondly. There is no love triangle, which wins major points from me, but more than that it’s not obvious, and I love that a love story can catch me off guard and delight me so much. The story is really organic and sweet, and my heart always melts when I read it. But as great as the love story is, it is not the main issue nor does it take over the story, which all adds up to a really well-balanced novel.

I enjoyed this story a lot when I was younger, and I’m happy to say I still enjoy it now. This is just one of the really great adventure stories that you can read again and again and still get swept away. There are so many good mysteries and questions, and the story definitely feeds into the reader’s need to know more. The writing may be a little simple for adult readers, but is well-suited for teenaged readers. Definitely check this one out if you’re looking for an adventure, training for secret societies, or time travel!

Rating: 4 / 5

Quotations:

“The most difficult aspect of my own training was getting past my inner disbelief. The amazing things Arkarian told me about, I had to see for myself. And I was only four, an age when imagination and reality run a fine line. So I decide, as long as I’m careful no one’s watching, to show Isabel a little of what I can do.” p 35

“Now I know I really should tell him, but again he hasn’t stopped for ask, assuming, I guess, that as I’m a girl, a small one at that, I wouldn’t have any physical skills. So I let him explain the basic points on stance and breathing and how important it is to control the mind. He paces through a simple self-defensive movement I learned six years ago in my first lesson. Then I throw him.” p 68

“The Citadel? It’s neither here nor there. You can’t see it in the mortal world, that’s all I know. Arkarian says it kind of dwells in a place between worlds. But I’m assured it’s the safest place in the universe. It can’t be got to, even though both sides inhabit its interior in their transit stages. The problem is, we can’t stay long ’cause time is immeasurable here, and it’s easy to linger longer than you think with too much time passing in our mortal world.” p 115