Wynonna Earp is a contemporary horror-Western show based on a comic book of the same name. It’s about the surviving descendants of Wyatt Earp and the family curse that compels them to face down the demonic reincarnations of all the people they’ve killed. I’ve gotten about a third through season one but I was on Twitter the whole time, which makes this a “fluff” show for me rather than something I gave my full attention to.
1—Trapped in Purgatory
The world of Wynonna Earp is full of bloody magic. The demons are trapped in a triangle of territory that encompasses the town of Purgatory, and can only be sent back to Hell/Hades (the term used varies) by Wyatt Earp’s gun, Peacemaker. Peacemaker doesn’t need bullets and will only work for The Heir, the oldest Earp descendant. And speaking of Hades, it seems there’ll be a Greek mythology connection eventually.
Then there’s Doc Holiday, who made a deal with a witch to become immortal—and whom he’s now hunting down for revenge. There’s Bobo, the demons’s leader, who can actually plan beyond his next cannibalistic meal. And there’s Agent Xavier Dolls of the Black Badge Division, a secret government sect that deals with supernatural threats and isn’t afraid to nuke a town out of existence.
This is all right up my alley and should be interesting—and it is, in an almost academic way, as a good premise and character set—but I’m just not drawn in on the visceral level.
2—Wynonna and Waverly
Wynonna is a hard-drinking, self-loathing antihero. Not that she hasn’t reason to be—the demons attacked the Earp family home when she was a child and dragged off her older sister and father. Wynonna then shot her father when aiming for the demons. So yeah, she’s got reason for the brokenness.
Then there’s Waverly (W names are a thing in this family), who’s spent the time since the family massacre devoted to learning as much about the family curse as she can, hoping to break it. Waverly is just as hard-headed as her sister but maintains an optimism Wynonna finds difficult to share.
I enjoy it when the emotional focus of a show isn’t romance, moreso when it’s on sisters and Wynonna and Waverly feel the most genuine of the relationships on the show. Not that there are all that many relationships. The lack of larger relationship network makes the world seem smaller. Yes, Purgatory is a small town but if anything that should make a relationship network more obvious.
3—Plot Two Ways
The plots sometimes feel a little monster-of-the-week, which I’m not sure if I like or dislike in this show. Monster-of-the-week can be fun, but the show also has an ongoing story that I’m more interested in, so while the unique demons are cool—the “normal” demons just come off as mooks—I can’t help feel like they’re slowing down the real story. I wish the show would commit one way or the other, weekly serial or involved mystery.
Wynonna Earp has lots that should interest me but I’m just not that into it, and I can’t entirely say why. The world and magic are intriguing, I love Waverly and am growing to like Wynonna, but something just isn’t clicking for me. That said, if you like anything I’ve mentioned above, give the show a try.