Sunday, May 26, 2024

Zombies in a Western Wynonna Earp Must be Back

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‘Good things come to those who wait,’ is what could be said about Wynonna Earp’s fourth season. What should be said is good things come to those who persist despite the odds. Against all the odds this fandom persisted, shouted and fought to get our favourite whiskey-loving gunslinger back on our screens. And here she is, two years later, a little worse for wear, but ready to snark her way into our hearts all over again.

It’s been a while, so no shame if the events from last season are a bit fuzzy. When we last left Purgatory, Wynonna drugged her friends so she and Waverly could face Bulshar alone. Bulshar, aka the big bad demon at the root of the Earp curse. Defeat him they did, at the cost of Peacemaker and Waverly, the half-angel, getting pulled into the Garden of Eden. Wynonna couldn’t climb the stairs, but Doc could so he went after Waverly. Returning to the Homestead, all their friends were missing and the name Valdez was scrawled into the wall.

Kicking off the episode right, Wynonna picks out her new arsenal to replace Peacemaker, because of course Wynonna Earp grabs guns and whiskey when she’s planning to raid the Garden of Eden. She and Nedley return to the steps, but they’re just steps to nowhere this time. They blip back out of existence moments after Wynonna face plants off the top of them.

Wynonna Earp defeated by stairs
Wynonna Earp, destroyer of demons, defeated by architecture.

Even with the curse broken, the Ghost River Triangle is still a hot spot for the supernatural with demon crabs (maybe?) popping out of the snow to attack Nedley. They return to the Homestead for first aid, or what passed for it in the Earp house. Its maxi pads, by the way.

We flashback to see Jeremy carve Valdez into the wall. This was moments before he and the others, still knocked out from Wynonna’s drugging, were taken. The government or someone pretending to be the government movement forcibly evacuated Purgatory.

In the present, Wynonna finds Julian’s ring remembering it was last on Nicole. She and Nedley suspect Waverly gave her the ring, probably with a question involved. Purgatory isn’t as abandoned as they first thought when they find Mercedes in Wynonna’s kitchen.

Meanwhile, Nicole wakes in a train car with Kate (Doc’s vampire ex-wife). She gives a tarot reading for Waverly, foretelling a journey of two women through the doors of death. The reading is enough to inspire Kate to help. She opens the electrified door allowing Nicole to jump out.

Back in Purgatory, Nedley reveals he hid BBD files, which is the next place they look for their Valdez. Turns out she was a former BBD scientist and her file includes the location of a BBD site and a lead on another entrance to the garden. Nedley isn’t recovered after their last fight so Wynonna sets out on her own. One flat tire later, she and Nicole are reunited, where Nicole lovingly clocks her in the face on account of the drugging.

Wynonna, Nedley and a shotgun
A big hecking fork yeah.

Nicole wants to know why they’re heading away from the last place they saw Waverly, but when Wynonna explains there might be another door into Eden, she realizes this must be what the tarot cards were about. She agrees on the condition that Wynonna stops being, well, so Wynonna.

The Garden of Eden is a little less garden and a lot more empty wasteland than one would expect. Doc finds Wayerly in chains, pulling up a fleshy mass attached to the chains to free her. The door back to Purgatory isn’t opening, nor are any of the other doors dotting the landscape. Coming across an underground bunker, they find a BBD scientist who’s a few screws short. He explains that a podium in the room needs to be fed with blood continuously and then decapitates himself. Decapitation is a little more than Waverly ’s angel healing can handle. Not sure if this podium will accept angel or vampire blood, Waverly and Doc are left to drain the scientist’s body.

Back with Wynonna and Nicole, they discuss the ring and questions that may or may not have been asked. Naturally, Wynonna interrupted Waverly and Nicole before an answer could be given and Nicole isn’t about to tell Wynonna before she can tell Waverly.

A sniper interrupts their conversation, which is also when Nicole learns Wynonna didn’t tell her about Peacemaker. Between the drugging and the not-sharing they’re down a magical gun and Nicole’s pissed at Wynonna sending her to be sniper bait while she sneaks behind the shooter. Their sniper is a young girl, who has Valdez’s BBD ID card on her. They convince the kid, Rachel, to help them find Dr. Valdez’s lab. Valdez is Rachel’s mom. She came looking for her mother after BBD closed down the site and gassed the building.

Nicole Haught
Haught Damn

Meanwhile, things are starting to look dire for Doc and Waverly. Directions and time don’t make sense in the Garden and their memories are fading.  Doc falls asleep, but Waverly hears voices calling to her. She finds the bunker low on blood, using her own to replenish it. Water lilies appear in the water nearby and Waverly is drawn further into the complex. She finds four books, labelled for Wynonna, Doc, Nicole, and herself with a message to ‘Choose one, choose wisely.’ She picks one, although which one is kept hidden from us.

At the BBD facility, the gas didn’t kill everyone as they expected. It turned them into zombies, a fact Wynonna finds out when she alerts every one in the building with an explosive. They fight their way through the horde until Wynonna steps on to grate. Nicole pushes her out of the way before it opens under her, dropping her into darkness.

In Eden, Doc wakes to a tree in full bloom. Heading to the bunker, instead of Waverly he finds Nicole, naked.


It may have taken two years to get here, but does it ever feel good to be back. Time has not dulled Wynonna Earp’s classic sardonic humour style. Nedley’s lampshading joke about Wynonna making him wait two years was the perfect beat to kick this season off with. Even in her lowest moment, Wynonna’s wit and heart shines through, a testament to the tour de force that is Melanie Scrofano.

Nor was this episode afraid to jump right back into things, trusting the audience to be there, what with a few expository lines in-between the usual zingers of dialogue. Really, the exact circumstances don’t matter, the driving force of the episode is the same thing it’s always been: Wynonna loves her sister enough to tear open heaven or hell for her and their weird dysfunctional family will always be ride or die.

Humour and heart are only part of the Wynonna formula, but worry not, its gunslinging action with that touch of horror is in top shape too. One episode back and we already have zombie scientist and a Garden of Eden with torture devices and memory wipes.

This is the perfect bit of escapist media. Just like its namesake character, Wynonna Earp may be a little late after fighting harder than it should have had too, but just when we needed it most, it’s back.

Images courtesy of Syfy

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