It’s not long until Wynonna Earp returns to SyFy Channel—season 2 begins June 9th. The modern western-horror genre mash-up series, featuring a female gunslinger, the great granddaughter of Wyatt Earp, offers a supernatural twist on a historical figure: the famous Earp gun has a magical power to kill demons.
Read on to see the season 2 poster and promo and why you should check out this series. Season 1 is currently available on Netflix.
Wynonna Earp is one of those rare genre shows where the titular lead “chosen one” hero (dubbed “The Heir”) is a woman. It’s also notable for being primarily female-driven across the board, although its lead male characters are compelling as well. Wynonna’s (Melanie Scrofano) relationship with her sister Waverly (Dominique Provost-Chalkley) is a major anchor point. There has been a rise lately in ensemble action or genre shows that go out of their way to feature female relationships—something that often gets overlooked even when there are strong female characters on a team, and Wynonna Earp is one of the best in treating it as a norm.
While Wynonna was a troubled teen, fled from home, and turns out to be a destined hero, Waverly has been a more fixed, stable point. She’s lived in the Earp sisters’ home town–the aptly-named Purgatory–and is good-natured and doesn’t seem to be emotionally eaten by past trauma. However that’s just the surface of Waverly, and there’s an interesting thread about Waverly’s drive to make a meaningful contribution in the fight against demons, along with plenty of family secrets to shift the ground beneath her feet. Her knowledge of history and abilities as an archivist becomes an asset, and she proves to be just as tough-as-nails as her big sister, underneath the amicability.
There’s a lot about sisters on Wynonna Earp, but its main drive is the different ways family forms outside of blood ties. Wynonna is an isolated character when the series begins, having fled Purgatory, where she has a reputation for being a bad girl with mental health issues. A traumatic childhood supernatural event left the Earp family shattered by loss. She reunites with Waverly and others who care about her in Purgatory, and starts forming new relationships, slowly building a circle of support around her in her fight against the demons.
Wynonna’s PTSD is also addressed, along with a pointed arc about women not being believed or treated as hysterical when they’re right about the danger, which is a common horror trope. Demons and monsters are real. So are Wynonna’s PTSD and mental health issues even if she isn’t hallucinating. A recurrent theme as well is Wynonna’s so-very-done lack of patience with men who try to control or demean women.
The series strongly features a delightful same-sex romance between Waverly and a police officer, Nicole Haught (Katherine Barrell). Nicole is accustomed to the routine of being a small-town law enforcement officer. She’s smart and good at her job. It’s Waverly (who presents as straight when the series beings) who is thrown by her relationship with Nicole, while Nicole is put off-balance by Waverly’s personal defenses and then by the supernatural world she gets pulled into.
Waverly and Nicole spend a number of episodes on sexual tension, pining, avoidance, and slow burn awkward conversations, before getting together. This is refreshing in a TV era where, while there’s been some progress on including more LGBT characters and romances than before, it is still scarce. Even Wynonna’s relationships with men up-end some tropes on how het romances tend to develop and expectations on how a heroine should behave. It also overturns some societal expectations on how the heart works. Unsurprising, considering Wynonna Earp is from Emily Andras, one of the writers and producers of Lost Girl.
The series adds another facet with Deputy Marshall Xavier Dolls (Shamier Anderson), who is part of the “Black Badge Division,” which secretly investigates the paranormal, and his tense but growing relationship with Wynonna. She has problems with authority; he’s stern and hides in being professional. The two bicker, but they do trust each other. Their back-and-forth and mutual defenses and vulnerabilities are fun to watch. Like Officer Haught, Dolls is a dedicated law enforcement person put off-balance by an Earp sister, in his case, Wynonna. He’s self-disciplined and honorable, yet keeps secrets and has a ruthless side.
There’s also the charm of Doc Holliday (Tim Rozon)—yes the Doc Holliday, who was Wyatt Earp’s best friend—who has a supernatural background and mission of his own. Despite his overtly snake-oil salesman demeanor, Doc is actually a surprisingly decent guy. The series not only explores his romantic tension with Wynonna, but his friendship with Waverly as well. Doc has a vengeance mission but keeps getting pulled to a personal one. The Earps—descendants of his best friend—are all the family he has left. Both Dolls and Doc try not to get too emotionally involved, in different ways, for different reasons, and of course, they fail.
Gus (Natascha Girgis), is an adoptive mother figure for Wynonna and Waverly, who owns the pub where Waverly works. Adding to the spheres of Purgatory is a network of revenants (demons) led by Bobo (played by the weirdly wonderful Michael Eklund), who are kind of like a supernatural biker gang with fingers in every corruption pie. Bobo also has ties to Wynonna and Waverly’s past. The witch Constance Clootie (Rayisa Kondracki) adds another notable villain presence.
The dialogue is rapid-fire and funny, the horror ranging on everything from cults, nightmares, blood-and-guts, and body horror, to old bones and curses. The show turns on a dime from smart-mouthed and warm to heart-wrenching and coldly or wildly horrific, helped along by the versatility and rapport of the entire cast, who all seem to have great chemistry and get to interact. Melanie Scrofano as Wynonna especially stands out. Scrofano’s fluidity between Wynonna’s brittleness, sass, annoyance, self-doubt, love, vulnerability, and emotional wounds all within minutes is great to watch. Wynonna isn’t a skilled chosen one; she has to fight for every step. Her fearlessness and moments of brash confidence are acts of survival. She’s insecure but has no choice but be bold to protect herself and her loved ones.
SyFy Channel just released a poster for season 2:
Here’s the season 2 promo from SyFy Channel:
Already a fan? You might want to read up about the Indiegogo campaign for season 1 on Blu-ray, launched by the company that owns the property, IDW.
The theme song is pretty darn cool as well:
Wynonna Earp returns June 9 and airs at 10/9c on the SyFy Channel.
Author: Dot R
Dot has been bouncing around various fandoms for many years now writing essays, episode reviews, commentary, and reporting news and conducting interviews, among other things. Along with being a Marvel, DC, Star Wars, and Supernatural fangirl, she’s also a fan of fantasy and science fiction television shows, everything from Farscape to Killjoys to 12 Monkeys to X-Files to Wynonna Earp. Currently Fangirl at Large covering numerous geek culture related topics, convention news, casting spoilers, show news, and interviews.
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