RogerBW's Blog

Killjoys season 3 17 January 2020

2017 science fiction, 10 episodes. The space bounty hunters rapidly shift into preparations for all-out war.

The key difference between something like this and something like Dark Matter, I think, is that while Dark Matter is spackle that will conform round anything it's given, while this show started that way it's found a voice and an idiom of its own. Even if it's one that changes a lot: the Nine Families who were so important in the first two seasons are largely missing here, because the role of the opposition has shifted to the aliens who've previously been infiltrating by taking over humans, and apparently they have a fleet.

But the great big battle only happens in the last episode; the rest is setting things up for that battle, which means recruiting allies who don't necessarily believe how high the stakes are. So while there's plenty of people arguing on a spaceship there are also important recurring characters, some of them returning from earlier seasons, some introduced here, and the stories are very much more about the people than they are about the zoomy spaceships.

I was particularly impressed by Kelly McCormack, as a technician who's allowed to be not only clever but clever in a different way from the character of Johnny who's usually the scripts' mouthpiece for sciencey stuff. Too many writers have only one mode of "smart person" available to them (just as too many regard "the girl" as a character definition), and it's pleasing to see that some people here realise that there's more than one way of doing that.

Yes, most things will get resolved by the end of the episode and every planet looks like the Canadian forest, but this show has shed much of its generic skin and moved into something distinctly more interesting.

The series returned for two more seasons.

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  1. Posted by Ashley R Pollard at 09:48pm on 17 January 2020

    With season four due now on disc, we've started rewatching from season one, and it is remarkably good.

    Dark MAtter season one was better, but it didn't manage to keep the story going, while Killjoys is a delight.

    Definitely recommended.

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