*** Editor’s Note: This article originally appeared on The TV Junkies and has been republished here with the consent of its author. ***
I’ll be the first to admit, when you hear about a show called Wynonna Earp and that it follows the great great granddaughter of Wyatt Earp as she battles demons, that can be a bit of a hard pill to swallow. The somewhat silly name and mystical premise could easily turn people off, and prevent them from giving the show a try in the first place. But crazy premise be damned! This is a show that deserves a chance because if you let it, it’ll weasel its way right into your heart.
For those of you unfamiliar with the premise I’m referring to, the series is based upon the IDW comic book of the same name, created by Beau Smith. It sees the great great granddaughter of the legendary gunslinger reluctantly returning to the town of Purgatory after a three year absence. From showrunner Emily Andras (Lost Girl), Wynonna (Melanie Scrofano) and her younger sister Waverly (Dominique Provost-Chalkley) join forces with Doc Holliday (Tim Rozon)–yes THAT Doc Holliday–and Agent Dolls (Shamier Anderson) of the mysterious Black Badge Division to take down demon revenants.
The show’s entire first season is available for streaming on Netflix starting April 1, and is coming to Space Channel in Canada on April 15, so there’s no better time to give the show a try. In fact, we’ve got a few reasons why we think you’ll want to be sure and move this series to the very top of that Netflix queue. It’s also the perfect way to get in on the series before it returns for Season 2 on Friday, June 9th at 10 p.m. on Syfy and Space. So hurry up and get your Wynonna Earp binge on! Deal?
A flawed but realistic lead
Make no mistake about it, Wynonna Earp isn’t your typical title TV character. She’s a strong, complicated, funny, tough and intelligent woman who is trying really hard to not let her tragic past define who she is, and who she can be in the future. Wynonna is no superhero. She’s got flaws and gets hurts just like the rest of us, but she always gets back up. The real joy of the show can come from watching Wynonna get knocked down and realize that she wants to still keep on fighting.
Women who don’t need rescuing
Wynonna isn’t the only lady in Purgatory capable of kicking butt. The great thing about a show like Wynonna is that it also shows us there’s more than one way for a woman to be strong. Being book smart is just as important as being able to punch someone in the face. The women in Purgatory are no pretty, pretty princesses tucked away in a tower waiting for their princes to come and rescue them. The show routinely shows its female characters saying ‘No thanks. I’m perfectly capable of rescuing myself.’
The men are pretty great too
Yes, the first thing every Wynonna fan will tell you about is the great female characters, but let’s not forget about the boys. Both Doc and Dolls have their own battles to fight during the first season, and there’s a mystery that hangs around each of their characters that will leave you wanting to know more. These guys also recognize right from the start how special the women on this show are and are perfectly fine stepping back and letting them take the lead. Also, viewers will have fun watching the evolution of what starts off as a pretty hostile relationship turn into the beginning of a beautiful bromance.
You don’t have to be a genre fan
After hearing the premise and that Wynonna is fighting demons you may find yourself thinking, ‘that’s great but I don’t usually dig genre shows.’ That’s a valid point and one you don’t have to worry about with Wynonna Earp. Yes, Wynonna and the gang are fighting demons–or revenants as they are called here–every week, but they merely serve as a vehicle for Wynonna to confront problems within herself. The characters on the show are so richly drawn and have such great depth that the best moments don’t lie in big battles with demons or monsters. No, the magic on this show lies in the quieter moments where it’s just two characters talking out their latest problems. Genre fan or not, we’re betting you will find plenty to love.
If you think a Big Bad named Bobo Del Rey sounds downright silly, then you’re in for a surprise once you meet Michael Eklund’s villainous revenant with ties to the Earp family. Not only is Bobo a man of style that can rock a fur coat and mohawk with the best of them, but he’s got some secrets that he’s sitting on that cause all kinds of trouble for those Earp sisters. Eklund is simply delicious as Bobo and an absolute force to be reckoned with. Wynonna takes things a step further because in addition to Bobo, there’s also the Stone Witch (Rayisa Kondracki) who brings along her own brand of psychotic fun to the party. Mix all this together and you can’t help but love to hate these Wynonna villains.
A real romance
Forget all about whether you’ll end up on Team Dolls or Team Doc because the real romance on the show is the relationship between sisters Wynonna and Waverly. Yes, it can be complicated at times, but name us one real relationship that isn’t. The Earp girls have a bond that is unbreakable and realize time and again that they are far stronger together than they ever could be apart. Scrofano and Provost-Chalkley have some of the best chemistry you’ll find on screen today, and the show is always at its best when the sisterly relationship is at the forefront. Wynonna Earp may be a story about a girl with a big gun who fights demons, but it’s also a love story between two sisters being the beating heart of the show.
It’s no secret that 2016 was an absolutely horrible year for queer representation–especially female queer representation–on television. Thankfully Wynonna Earp was the breath of fresh air right when we all needed it most. The evolving relationship between Waverly and Purgatory sheriff deputy Nicole Haught (Katherine Barrell), aka WayHaught, gave fans a reason to hope as Wynonna Earp routinely busted through tired old tropes, and it’s a responsibility both actresses don’t take lightly. Showrunner Andras has always worked on shows with LGBT representation and after seeing what she did with Wynonna Earp’s first season, we think it’s safe to say she’s just getting things started here.
If there’s anything that Wynonna Earp completely nailed out of the gate it was casting Melanie Scrofano as the Earp heir. She embodies every facet of Wynonna perfectly, but perhaps her best ability is that she can express everything Wynonna is thinking and feeling with a single facial expression. Scrofano has one of the most emotive faces out there, and with just one look she’ll have you jumping for joy or completely break your heart. She’s an actress that is able to speak volumes to the audience without ever uttering a single word. I mean seriously, look at this face!
Thanks to its witty one-liners we’re betting that after watching Wynonna Earp you’ll find yourself quoting it quite often. This is a show that bears rewatching over and over again, just to make sure you’re catching all the wonderfully snarky one-liners that Wynonna is a pro at delivering. No matter how serious the situation may be, Wynonna can be counted on to use humor to break the tension and some of the best jokes happen as a result of that.
From the very first moment I heard the show’s theme song “Tell That Devil” by Jill Andrews, I knew the music on Wynonna Earp was going to be special. Music supervisor Andrea Higgins has a knack for always picking the perfect song to match Wynonna’s mood and overall vibe. The killer soundtrack proves just how much a great song can really add and take a show to the next level.
There’s no point in denying that we here at The TV Junkies are huge Emily Andras fans and loyal members of Team #Fandras. If you’re unfamiliar with the Wynonna showrunner from her previous gigs on Lost Girl, Killjoys, Instant Star and Degrassi then get ready for lots of snark, lots of woman power and lots of smarts. Andras penned several key episodes during Wynonna Earp’s first season, including the stellar Season 1 finale that left fans everywhere immediately wanting more. She’s infused her heart and soul into every aspect of this show. From Wynonna’s whip-smart quips to Waverly’s equally big heart with brains to match, Wynonna Earp screams Emily Andras from every angle and believe us, that’s a very, very good thing.
A Fandom with No Chill!
The Wynonna Earp fans, aka Earpers, are a fandom that is known for having “NO CHILL.” They spent several weeks after Wynonna’s first season ended working on a #RenewWynonnaEarp email and Twitter campaign that resulted in the show’s second season renewal by Syfy. “This fandom got this show renewed. 100%. I’m telling you that worked. I love them,” Andras told The TV Junkies after the news was announced. Grounded in positivity, inclusivity and supporting one another, the Earpers bring it strong whether it’s during live tweets or just being active on social media all year long. So hurry up, get your binge on so you too can join in the fun and become an Earper!
Will you be checking out Wynonna Earp? Did we miss any reasons? Sound off in the comments below!
Wynonna Earp Season 1 is now available on Netflix in the US. It will return for Season 2 on Friday, June 9 at 10 p.m. ET on Syfy and Space Channel.