Sunday, June 28, 2015

Killjoys, Season 1, Episode 2: The Sugar Point Run

Another case, this time retrieving some stolen goods with John doing some piloting and Dutch moving in and laying hands (and laying out unconscious). At least the thief also had nice toys to mollify John with after nearly getting the ship severely damaged. During this time D’avin has been asleep and having PTSD nightmares

Dutch would also like him gone since he’s been there a week longer than he said and John is being all nicey nicely about kicking his brother out. Dutch doesn’t play nicey nicey and is nicely to the point.

D’avin appeals to John – he has no money, ship or papers, how can he leave. John offers to help and D’avin gets exasperated… what? D’avin refuses John’s help to find a job, he hates the idea of being stuck in a mining job (yeah, probably so do most of the miners, suck it up precious, you’ve got bills).

D’avin storms off in a tantrum (Dutch seems to think John could have handled this better but I think he was really quite nice about it) and Dutch runs to stop him because he has no papers to be legally be on the planet. He has a petulant pout until the authorities arrive and order him back on the ship.

And Dutch has a new warrant – a compulsory one. Apparently a woman called R’yo has kidnapped the mayor’s daughter Vena in order to have her brother, Simon released who was in prison for stealing company gear (or trying to). Dutch’s job is a hostage exchange. Agreeing to this makes the Company a big friend – but of course the Company can’t be seen to be releasing a prisoner so they’re using a Killjoy.

Dutch does point out the Company doesn’t get to force Warrants on her – but he threatens to charge her for letting D’avin off the ship.

So they load up Simon and Dutch is clear he gets chained up all the way to Sugarpoint (She doesn’t know him, doesn’t trust him – just like D’avin). D’avin presumes to give John grief for Dutch being in charge (D’avin can’t seem to grasp the concept of a senior partner). After being such an arse, D’avin finally agrees to his suggestion.

Back in her cabin Dutch sees the red box again and has a memory – she gets a box, inside is a weapon and a name and a week time limit.

Sugarpoint – a walled city with no-one in or out that was badly bombed and is generally a hellhole because people their tried to rebel against the company who reacted Excessively. R’yo is one of the gang lords of this so-nice place. While talking about this someone shoots at them – D’avin and Dutch argue about what to do – while John, the actual pilot, handles it (notably, though, Dutch was happy to put her faith in John’s skills while D’avin was handing out orders).

They crash land and Simon escapes. Because D’avin and John didn’t chain him despite Dutch’s instructions (silly soft hearts and squeamish stomachs). To make matters worse, they’ve landed in evil scavenger territory.  Despite Dutch and D’avin’s objections, John insists Dutch go and find Simon with D’avin because he has to fix the ship for them to be able to leave

Of course when they leave it’s clear that John is pretty much defenceless until they come back. And Scavengers show up in large numbers. While Lucy has shields, they drain power. He needs 2 hours to fix it. Unfortunately, Dutch order enhanced security for John which has drained the batteries. So John thinks outside the box, lays a nasty trap and steals the parts he needs.

It’s crafty but while he let people on the ship to die, Lucy also had 10 minutes of memory bizarrely erased (I suspect Khlyen). There’s also a goon he has to kill

Off on their own D’avin takes the chance to tell Dutch his plan – not to get a job, just wander around the Badlands of Westerley as an Outlaw. This plan needs work. Dutch is duly suspicious of this awful plan she also refuses to let D’avin just disappear from John’s life without talking to him first. Again. R’yo calls to remind them of their actual mission. At some point D’avin takes point because of military training (he was a soldier) but leads them into an ambush anyway. She could have done that and D’avin’s over aggressive nature with frightened people means she has to put him on the floor to de-escalate the situation and talk everyone down. So, yeah he has soldier training, it just really isn’t relevant. Dutch is compassionate and generous with the desperate people in the slum which gets more co-operation.

Afterwards Dutch schools D’avin on how little he knows about RAC and the Killjoys, their neutrality ad the complicated politics of the Quad. She also nicely puts him in his place because I love her.

They catch up with Simon who is enjoying some good memories before being handed over to his sister who is, apparently, not going to welcome him home with open arms. He’d rather not be handed over but Dutch is clear they must. – When an army appears with stun weapons and takes the all prisoner.

While they’re down, time for another flashback –baby Dutch failed to kill her target so Khlyen puts her in a situation where she has to kill her target or he kill her. During which Khlyen also teachers her to escape bonds by dislocating limbs

They wake up and find they’re imprisoned by organ harvesters and Simon is already on the operating table. Dutch does her impressive Houdini skills and frees them both. D’avin declares the mission over and to retreat, Dutch points out that’s her decision not his. Simon is dead – though she does offer some comfort before he goes

And they find the real reason why R’yo wants her brother – he has stolen items smuggled inside him (Dutch dives in, D’avin is squeamish). So Dutch has something to offer R’yo and complete her contract. Except D’avin isn’t happy handing it over – since the tech contains launch codes to a missile. D’avin has a plan to get everyone out without handing over the codes – but he needs to act as a soldier not a Killjoy and asks Dutch to trust him. Dutch agrees – if he can say why he’s really in the Quad: to find a doctor apparently.

They head to the exchange – but only after D’avin provokes the scavengers into threatening Ryo and attacking.  With the cover of a gang war (and some nice blinding grenades – it blinds Dutch as well but it doesn’t matter because she’s Dutch and terrifyingly skilled) Dutch grabs Veena while D’avin provides ranged cover.

They escape to high ground and find the super-scary missile that Ryo has that D’avin wants to disarm (he messes with it). Ryo arrives to exposition her vengeance plan against the company (which, to be fair, did epicly screw her and her people). John drops in with a ship and ship weapons which settles the argument. The missile explodes behind them

Another flashback – baby Dutch killed the man and Khlyen refuses to tell her who he was or why he had to die.

In the aftermath John asks Dutch about who she was protecting the ship from. She lies and evades but is clearly worried about the red box.

They reach the Westerly bar to drink with Pree and getting rid of the missile has granted D’avin a temporary pass until he finds a job. Pree offers work as a prostitute but it’s all he has. Except D’avin wants to become a Killjoy – Dutch offers to sponsor him. John doesn’t look that thrilled about this

Dutch opens her red box and hunts down the name – but doesn’t kill him. She wants to know why Khylen wants him dead.

D’avin is… not endearing himself to me. He’s not in a great situation but, from what we’ve seen so far, nor is most of the people in the system. He appeals to John about not having any of the necessary means to exist but then has a temper tantrum when John offers to help him. He has no counter offer or suggestion about how else he would progress and expects Dutch, a woman he barely knows (and actively distrusts) to support him? Someone help D’avin find some big-boy pants and remind him that he’s an adult. We haven’t had nearly enough character development for me to accept this level of petulance – or accept that Dutch (or John for that matter) owe him a free ride.

I kind of wish D’avin wasn’t here – not for the above or because he doesn’t have the potential to be a decent character – but because I want to see John and Dutch more. They have a great dynamic, I like how they work together, I like how she takes the lead but he can still draw lines when he knows he’s right and she will listen. I like how they clearly care for each other without it being romantic. I like how they bounce off each other, respect each other and are fun together. I would have liked to have seen this for, say, 2-3 episodes and THEN introduce D’avin and the Red Box to this dynamic

Not to say D’avin doesn’t have an interesting dynamic – his constant attempts to take command and assert authority and expertise would be a lot more annoying if, at each turn, Dutch didn’t turn around and prove him wrong and how out of place his training is. Even when she passes over control to use his soldier skills, she expressly gives him permission to do so (and it’s nice to show he isn’t completely without skills, they’re just not always relevant). It’s nice to see how their tactics differ – Dutch is neutral and job orientated (and does not withdraw) but also very much against collateral damage – while D’avin is more wide in his focus, more willing to leave a mission or deviate off mission and leave bodies in his wake.

Also Lucy and John are fun