A new series, Wynonna Earp, premieres tonight on Syfy. Based on the comic book series by the same name, Wynonna Earp is a supernatural western that follows the fictional great granddaughter of famed (and non-fictional) U.S. Marshal Wyatt Earp, as she faces off with all manner of evildoers. But who is Wynonna, and why should we care?
In the comics, Wynonna Earp is an irreverent gun-toting badass. She’s quick-witted, clever and has a knack for taking out zombies, demons, Chupacannibals and anything else that the U.S. Marshal Black Badge division needs “handled”. The show, like the comics, will see Agent Dolls (Shamier Anderson) and Wynonna (Melanie Scrofano) team up to take down paranormal baddies, and we’ll also being seeing Wynona’s sister, Waverly (Dominique Provost-Chalkley) and the immortal Doc Holliday (Tim Rozon).
When we catch up with Wynonna, she’s returning to her hometown, Purgatory, after years away. She’s got a “demon-killing gun” called Peacemaker (inherited from Wyatt himself) and a destiny to take down some seriously sinister supernatural shit, but per usual, she’s got demons of her own to contend with. Turns out that the Earp family’s troubled, thanks to a 130 year-old curse and some bad guys that Wyatt took down long, long ago. They’re back from hell and they’re flaming pissed, which means that Wynonna’s going to have a lot of “Peacemaking” to do.
The show comes from the executive producer and showrunner of Lost Girl, Emily Andras. Those acquainted with her last project might have a pretty good handle on what Wynonna Earp could look like.
Lost Girl, which followed a bisexual succubus in her Adventures in Fae-bysitting, was weird, campy, deeply goofy and had a handle on what it meant to have fun on television. It wasn’t always a “good” show, but it was almost always damn good time. Early glimpses of Wynonna Earp hint at some of the same: We’re going to see a kickass (if unlikely) gunslinging heroine with a penchant for snark and some over-the-top supernatural campy deliciousness.
Adapting something like Wynonna Earp for television requires the right tone. It begs not to be taken too seriously, to be sort of unbridled and allowed to explore and bask in its own delightful weirdness. A supernatural western doesn’t exactly scream “prestige television,” and that has the power to be a very good thing. We’ve got plenty of shows that are dark and steeped in their own angst. Maybe we could use some supernatural levity.
Catch the season premiere of Wynonna Earp tonight on Syfy.