Sex. Death. Black-clad hotness. Swordplay, and magic, and werewolves, and yet more sex. (Some of which: same-sex.) If any of this sounds good to you, and yet you have somehow not already become wise to the wonder that is Lost Girl, then I urge you to immediately set your DVR for Syfy tonight, Monday, January 16, at 10/9c. This original series from Canada’s Showcase channel is currently mid-Season 2 in its native land, but with its premiere stateside, now all can finally experience the pleasure and pain, the triumph and torture that is this exceptional piece of Urban Fantasy writing… dude, it’s proper UF, but it’s on TV!
So, just who is this girl, and how did she get so lost? Well, therein lies a tale. A fairy tale, in many ways, though there is also much of mysticism and mythology among its sources. Our titular, misplaced heroine is Bo (Anna Silk), a woman of great beauty and even greater charm, whose very touch can seduce even the most hardened of hardasses and who lives her life always with one foot out the door. We first encounter her tending bar, and watch as she saves the elfin, gothic, not-as-streetwise-as-she-thinks-she-is Kenzi (Ksenia Solo) from a roofie-dispensing douchebag. One kiss from Bo, and presto, dead roofie-dispensing douchebag; a crime that captures the attention of Toronto detectives Dyson (Kris Holden-Ried) and Hale (K. C. Hollins), who find it to be suspiciously “fae.”
Because they are fae, you see, and part of an elaborate, underground society of magical peoples who all cleave to one side or other of very defined loyalty lines, going back centuries: the Light or the Dark. Bo, of course, is indeed fae – she’s a succubus, of course, which she’d surely have worked out for herself if she’d ever, y’know, read a book – and yet she, unlike all others of her ilk, was raised human. As our story begins, she knows nothing of her history, her parentage or even the true extent of her powers; only that her kiss can kill, that sex gives her strength, and that she need never fear the words “It’s not you, it’s me.”
Naturally enough, she soon: fights a battle for her life; defies all expectations; becomes an unlicensed Private Investigator, as any good UF protagonist must (alongside her new, way-too-cool-with-all-this sidekick, Kenzi); and hooks up with perhaps the hottest specimen of manhood ever to come out of the Great White North. (Sorry, Ryans Gosling and Reynolds, and my beloved Joshua Jackson, but… damn!)
And that’s just the first episode.
What’s to love about Lost Girl? Oh, so very much. There is the crackling dialogue. The intriguing, ever-evolving backstory. There are our leads, and their crazy chemistry, along with their (of course) tumultuous relationship – no precipitous HEA’s to kill things here, I promise you. There’s the enigmatic, diminutive Trick, owner of the local “way station”, a pub at which both Light and Dark can commingle at will (it’s kind of like Caritas, but without the karaoke and Cosmos), and just what he might know about Bo’s mysterious past. There is Bo’s complicated friendship with human doctor-to-the-fae Lauren (Zoie Palmer), who is not above a little sexual healing, and there are a few representatives of the Dark, seductive and sardonic, that appeal even as they repel, in that very best of smooth criminal ways.
My favorite part of the whole show, though, would have to be – without a doubt! – sidekick Kenzi, played with consummate adorability by Ksenia Solo (a name I cannot even begin to pronounce, which just makes it even cooler). I have to tell you, when I first saw that name in the credits, I was somewhat dismayed. I had seen Solo’s earlier work in Life, Unexpected, as flame-haired, belligerent troubled teen Tasha opposite that series’ luminous young star, Britt Robertson (now similarly gone spooky, in The Secret Circle), and I had been less than impressed. I think, now, that it must have been the character and not Solo herself that I found so grating, because as Kenzi, along with some new raven-black bangs and an even more finely-drawn frame, she is a constant delight, her face mobile and expressive, her bright blue eyes mesmerizing, her every witticism delivered with snarky élan—even the ones in Russian.
Of course, no show is perfect, and Lost Girl has, I regret to inform you, experienced one or two issues over its past season and a half. For a start, this show may well have caused an eyeliner shortage in all of Eastern Canada, and quite how our leading ladies manage to awaken with perfectly applied goth-esque makeup, sporting nary a smudge on face nor pillow, is a mystery I hope will soon be solved when we discover the cosmetic company they patronize is run by some obscure variety of image-conscious pixie or something. There have been plot holes, and some dubious developments, and the occasional “huh” episode; also, I don’t really get how Bo became quite suddenly master of all weaponry, I can’t help but question the general laxity of the Toronto Police Department’s employee oversight, and the genre’s tropes do tend to take a beating here now and again.
None of this, however, has managed to dampen my enthusiasm for this fun, funny, frenetic flight of fancy, chock full as it is of involving mysteries, tense interpersonal drama, bunches of angst, and sex—and angst about sex—along with myriad layers of unbelievable hotness, which alone make it worth the price of admission.
For anyone who’s ever wished their favorite Urban Fantasy series would make it to TV – and no, True Blood does not count; Bon Temps is hardly a bustling metropolis – this show is truly a dream come true. I mean, it stars a chick in black leather wielding a sword! If you’re anything like me, you would totally read any book featuring that for a cover. Here, it’s like the cover has come to life. And really, is there a single UF reader in the world that hasn’t wished for that to happen, at least once?
Rachel Hyland is the Editor in Chief of Geek Speak Magazine.