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Lost Girl: Season 1(TV) (2010)
No synopsis for Lost Girl: Season 1.
For more about Lost Girl: Season 1 and the Lost Girl: Season 1 Blu-ray release, see Lost Girl: Season 1 Blu-ray Review published by Jeffrey Kauffman on October 18, 2012 where this Blu-ray release scored 3.5 out of 5.
Starring: Anna Silk, Ksenia Solo, Kris Holden-Ried
» See full cast & crew
Lost Girl: Season 1 Blu-ray Review
Re: Fae Tale Theater
Reviewed by Jeffrey Kauffman, October 18, 2012
Television is currently enjoying a renaissance of one of the oldest genres in the storytelling canon, the fairy tale. Network television has seen sizable audiences for both ABC's Once Upon a Time and NBC's Grimm (filmed in my hometown of Portland). But before either of those shows debuted, a Canadian production called Lost Girl was exploring the same sort of territory, especially with regard to the dark world espoused by Grimm. Lost Girl deals with a race of so-called Fae (obviously etymologically related to "faerie"), specially powered folk who move among us regular mortals. Lost Girl is just beginning to gain some traction in the United States via its airing on Syfy, and viewers who like Once Upon a Time or Grimm may in fact warm to this often quite entertaining series that combines a kind of police procedural (shades of Grimm again) with a developing mythology where a Fae, in this case female Bo (Anna Silk), attempts to ferret out the secrets of her past (again, highly reminiscent of Grimm). The series has a kind of daffy sense of humor at times, and is considerably edgier at times than either of those perhaps more mainstream efforts. The show has some occasional lapses in logic and doesn't always strictly hew to the traditional fairy (or fairie) world (Bo is a succubus, hardly a spritely little winged creature), but over the course of its first season it manages to create a nicely crafted alternate world where creatures (whether true "fairies" or not) have managed to coexist with their human counterparts since time immemorial.
We first meet Bo working as a bartender, doing her best to avoid a pretty obvious pass by a lecherous male customer. When Bo refuses his advances, he quickly turns to a kind of punk looking young woman named Kenzi (Ksenia Solo), not realizing the girl is actually a pretty skilled pickpocket. The tables are turned, however, when the guy slips Kenzi a date rape drug and then accosts her in the building's elevator. He seems about to force his affections on her until the elevator doors open and Bo steps in, pretending to be amorously interested in the pretty disgusting man. As they kiss, Kenzi falls to the floor but is just barely conscious enough to see what she thinks is Bo literally sucking the life force right out of the would be rapist.
Bo manages to rescue Kenzi, but she leaves a rather dessicated corpse in the elevator, which draws the interest of two guys we initially think are cops, Hale (K.C. Collins) and Dyson (Kris Holden-Ried), but who it turns out are Fae themselves. The two cohorts seem to be quite concerned that there's an unknown Fae out there leaving dead people lying around, and it soon becomes apparent that Bo is a kind of mysterious figure, one who has never been part of the established Fae subculture, a group which has splintered into two competing factions known as Light and Dark. Bo is taken prisoner by Dyson and Hale, who deliver her to an Inquisition of sorts where she's poked and prodded by a human doctor and then is thrust into a "test" where she must defeat two under-evolved Fae warriors, one with a huge set of Thor like hammers and the other who is able to enter her mind and hypnotize her into ending her own life.
Since Bo is the focus of this series, it's probably no great surprise or spoiler to state that she makes it through the gauntlet relatively unscathed, but she refuses to throw her lot in with either the Light or Dark camps, and instead tells her Fae kin that she's joining with the humans, specifically Kenzi. Bo and Kenzi ultimately set up a sort of Fae-Human Detective Agency, and the show settles into a groove that is reminiscent at times of several other series, including Syfy staples Haven and Sanctuary. The banter between Bo and Kenzi is in fact rather reminiscent of some of the back and forth between Audrey and Nathan in Haven, while the glut of weird characters with mythological origins could have come out of any given Sanctuary episode. There's also a lesbian subtext (actually a bisexual subtext) that may remind some viewers of a distaff version of a certain spinoff of Doctor Who and one Captain Jack Harkness.
Without comparing Lost Girl to too many other properties, one of the recurring elements of this first season is Bo's attempt to track down her past, as she was raised by humans and until the series' first episode had been unaware of her status as a Fae. This is a regular gambit of many series, going back to the dawn of television, and it tends to color the first season with a too predictable arc where Bo (along with Kenzi, who rather frequently becomes the "damsel in distress") must complete some task in exchange for which she is given some little tidbit about her history. One would think with her powers she could simply threaten to suck the living daylights out of people if they weren't more forthcoming with her, but one of the series' conceits is that other Fae are immune (or at least mostly immune) to her spiritual vacuuming tendencies.
Lost Girl is both oddly entertaining and absolutely maddening, sometimes within mere moments of each other. The show settles into a fairly predictable rut within just a few episodes, but even as it journeys through territory it's already visited (regularly), it can suddenly energize the trip with some fun humor. There are frequent asides and little one liners (some of them fairly profane—this show would never have made it to the major broadcast networks in its current form) that are very effective and give the show a little jolt of added energy. In one late first season episode, when Bo is battling with her long lost succubus mother, she takes off through Mom's vast mansion, at which point she's chided by her parent, "No running in the house!" It's little moments like these that help Lost Girl find something distinctive in a premise that is about as hoary as, well, a fairy tale.
Lost Girl: Season 1 Blu-ray, Video Quality
Lost Girl: Season 1 is presented on Blu-ray courtesy of FUNimation Entertainment with an AVC encoded 1080p transfer in 1.78:1. This digitally shot series has the shiny patina that may bother some viewers who like a more traditionally filmic appearance, but it's an often crystal clear presentation that features good, accurate color, solid contrast and deep and convincing black levels. The show has quite a few CGI elements which vary greatly in quality, and some of the composited scenes can have an overall softer appearance than the bulk of the series. Close-ups reveal very good fine object detail (and this series doesn't shy away from showing a lot of skin).
Lost Girl: Season 1 Blu-ray, Audio Quality
Lost Girl: Season 1 features a Dolby TrueHD 5.1 audio option that isn't overwhelmingly boisterous but which manages to invest each episode with several moments of immersion that help to subtly envelop the listener. These tend to happen in sequences featuring that week's Fae creature, many of which scurry about or have weird sound effects accompanying their presence. Dialogue, score and effects are all presented very cleanly and clearly and the series does feature some occasional very effective LFE. Fidelity is excellent and there's above average dynamic range for a weekly series.
Lost Girl: Season 1 Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
Lost Girl: Season 1 Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
Lost Girl might seem like an odd choice for FUNimation Entertainment to release, a label that hasn't really released much live action fare and is more focused on anime. This seems like it really should have been an Entertainment One release. That said, this is a fitfully entertaining series that has a lot of fun elements, some blatant sexuality and a developing mythology that helps the show deliver something other than just another rehashed Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Things get markedly better as this rather short first season winds on, but the show still has the tendency to stick pretty closely to a "freak of the week" format, something that has become a bit of a drag on the somewhat similar Haven. There's still enough here to slightly tilt the scales toward the favorable side of things, and Lost Girl comes Recommended.
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