Not all of Hopkins’ characters this year were villains. She was reporter Monica Stuart in five episodes of THE EXPANSE (above). And she was one of the most memorable characters of KILLJOYS‘ fourth season, the Scarback-turned-dominatrix Fairuza.
“I’ve never really played a villain before, so I kind of got to channel everything I’ve ever wanted to do and haven’t been able to do. Yeah, I think when you’re playing something that’s so different from you, you have a lot more room to play. In fact, I find it’s kind of easier to do than just playing a regular gal.”
—- Anna Hopkins (to Hidden Remote — May 2018)
2018 was a big year for Anna Hopkins. She appeared in ten episodes of SHADOWHUNTERS as Lilith, Adam’s first wife. Lilith is complex and fascinating, and the best dressed demon on television. The role got Hopkins a Teen Choice Awards nomination in the category of Choice TV Villain.
In Season Two of the CITY-TV drama BAD BLOOD, Hopkins is Teresa Langana, an entirely different sort of villain whose father is head of the ‘Ndrangheta in Calabria. She is sent, along with her twin brother Christian, to Hamilton. Ontario to make the drug trade there more profitable. Teresa is an utterly ruthless corporate mobster whose only loyalties are to her brother and the bottom line. Hopkins described Teresa to A.R. Wilson of TV-eh as “…one of those characters who is really powerful but doesn’t really need to exert or show that power very often…but when things don’t go her way, I think the extremes she can go to are a little further than most of us.” The first season of BAD BLOOD is on Netflix worldwide. Season Two can be streamed on the CITY-TV website. Continue reading →
FOUR IN THE MORNING – Season 1 Episode 1 – SPOILERS
Jamie (Michelle Mylett) has a Meg Ryan moment when she describes hypothetical sex with Bondurant out loud over coffee
The characters are instantly likeable, and one forms attachments to them immediately, especially the passionate musician Bondurant, who was rejected by Julliard because his playing lacked passion. Even if some of the jokes are old, the show’s concept is completely new. There is humour that relies on the implausible. There is social commentary. All before breakfast.
Mitzi tells Jamie the story of the talking pig
At the Patrician Grill on King Street East in Toronto, and on their way home from there, two couples speak to each other in metaphors involving (among other things) a terminally ill pet pig, crooked bankers, male strippers, and Massey Hall. The dialogue is sharp and fast, and there is a point when one comes to wish that the lot of them would smoke some weed and calm down. As though anticipating this reaction, two of them (the women) promptly do just that.
The phantom pig, crossing King Street East during the opening credits
Bondurant (Daniel Maslany) is crashing on the couch of William (who is a writer, and wants to be a novelist), so the two men take the streetcar home together. Bondurant has a wonderful monologue in front of Massey Hall before he and William (Mazin Elsadig) break in. The two women walk home together because someone stole their cab.
Mitzi the Banker is played by Lola Tash. Much about Mitzi’s potentially catastrophic misunderstanding of the universe is revealed to us from this exchange, which happens after the taxi incident, when she uses a loose brick she finds lying about to break a window:
Bondurant and William, locked in an intense conversation on the streetcar
MITZI:“Little sluts stole our cab.” JAMIE:“I don’t think they’re going to get the message.” MITZI:“The affected party’s immaterial. There was an injustice perpetrated. I, in turn, perpetrated one injustice.” JAMIE:“Is that the cynic’s version of paying it forward?” MITZI:“There’s a fixed amount of happiness in the universe. If something really good happens to someone, something really shitty has to happen to someone else.”
Series creator Ira Parker
To give things that 4am feel, director Pavan Moondi shot each episode entirely between 6pm and 6am. Daniel Maslany told Victoria Ahearn of The Canadian Press: “There was a certain amount of freedom about being up that late and where your brain goes when you’re on that nocturnal schedule. I think we were able to tap into a surrealist mindset for this very surreal show.”
Michelle Mylett as Sam in the 2013 horror film ANTISOCIAL (bottom) and as Madison in THE DROWNSMAN (2014)
Mylett’s other series, LETTERKENNY, was renewed for a third, six episode season (Season 2 has yet to air). That show can be seen in Canada on Crave TV and The Comedy Network. LETTERKENNY centres around the dustups four buddies get into with their small-town Ontario rivals.
Because filming FOUR IN THE MORNING required such a drastic change in his sleeping schedule, Daniel Maslany took a combination of vitamins B12, D, and C, along with regular doses of cod liver oil to stay healthy.
While under the influence of the Green Goo, D’Avin fantasizes about Dutch
Pree (Thom Allison) joins Lucy’s crew, Dutch conceals herself inside a large false-bottomed suitcase, John meets a cyborg, and D’Avin sees things he’s not supposed to (yet).
Claire (Stephanie Leonidas), The Quad’s version of The Bionic Woman
The cyborg is Claire (Stephanie Leonidas), and a device that Lucy needs to get through the Arkyn defense barrier is implanted in her chest. (A gang of pirates put the device in her to make it both portable and secure. Arkyn was a good place to hide out after a heist.) Claire has many mechanical modifications, too many to be a legal person in The Quad, but although she does think of herself as separate and distinct from unmodified humans (she calls them ‘basics’), she has no Borg-like superiority complex. Claire is a fairly well-adjusted, working-class cyborg with anger issues. She has a bit of a crush on Johnny, and has managed to get Lucy to like her. Claire’s brain remains unmodified. She’s a ‘real girl’ even if the company doesn’t think so. It seems likely that she will make another appearance later in the season.
Outstanding warrant for Abel Connaver, leader of the pirate gang who modified Claire against her will.
Level 6 Killjoys are another sort of modified human. The possibly intelligent green liquid that altered Fancy Lee (Sean Baek) appears to be either artificial or alien. When injected into a living thing, it seems to rewrite the existing DNA. The subject retains its basic form, but acquires new characteristics. Green goo has memories from long ago and elsewhere, and these are passed on to the subject as well. D’Avin sees visions of, among other things, attacks on Scarbacks, and Dutch wearing furs and slitting a bald guy’s throat. He also sees Khlyen, who tells him he isn’t supposed to be seeing this stuff yet.
One of the two tracking dogs that appeared in D’Avin’s visions, the first animals to appear in any episode of KILLJOYS
Much to Khlyen’s surprise, D’Avin is immune to the Level 6 conversion process. D’Avin’s brain is unique because of what Dr. Jaeger (Amanda Tapping) did to it with her experiments (see episode 1.7, Kiss Kiss Bye Bye), and that could explain his immunity. Was Jaeger’s work intended to counter the effects of the green goo? Or was D’Avin’s immunity an accidental side effect?
It is worth reviewing what Jaeger told Dutch about her research in episode 7. “Our mandate was to turn soldiers against their own forces,” she said. “And i assure you we succeeded. If it makes you feel any better, it was only supposed to be a proof of concept demonstration. No casualties.” And Jaeger also cautioned: “My work is important. You have no idea what’s coming to The Quad. What it could mean for all of us.”
Fancy Lee is back, and is now Level 6, and loyal to Khlyen
Much to D’Avin’s surprise, Khlyen kills everyone who had direct contact with him in Red 17 (except for Fancy Lee) and erases all memory of D’Avin from the system. (It is possible that the green goo can also invade and modify non-living systems. That capability would explain the bowl of liquid computer Khlyen is always sticking his hands into.) As alarms sound, and Khlyen literally kicks D’Avin out the door, there is this exchange:
KHLYEN:“Would you die for her?” D’AVIN:“For Dutch and Johnny, if that’s what it takes.” KHLYEN:“Good. Do it another day. Yala is on her way to you. Find her and get her away from Arkin. I’ll deal with the Black Root.” D’AVIN:“If she thinks you’re here, she won’t leave until she finds you.” KHLYEN:“Then do what I’ve always done. Lie to her.”
Savannah Burton as a Eulogy guard
Four guys from Black Root subdue Khlyen. (Level 6 folk, it seems, can be immobilized by prolonged electric shock.) He is put in a container to be shipped to The Lady, a being who, we are given to understand, is very far away. We are left to wonder if The Lady is using the RAC as an agency of revolution in the sector, and whether Khlyen might be a counter agent working against her from within.
Khlyen (Rob Stewart) is subdued by the Black Root
Pree, we find out, has a last name (Medez) and at least two aliases in his past (Big Daddy Scrimshaw and Paris O’Malley). He did time for some crime or other, and won’t tell anybody about it, but Bellus knows.
Stephanie Leonidas (Claire) will be Katie in TOMORROW, a film about the difficulties faced by a soldier returning to the UK after serving in Afganistan. It will be the first feature film for director Martha Pinson, who was Martin Scorsese’s long time script supervisor. The film stars Stuart Brennan and Sebastian Street, and the two of them also wrote the screenplay. No release date has been set.
Rob Stewart (Khlyen) is Winston Berlin in the made-for-TV movie KILLING MOMMY, which first aired on the Lifetime Movie Network in the US last June. The film is about the different reactions of twin sisters (both played by Yvonne Zima) to their mother’s decision to remarry. There is unconfirmed suspicion that Trent Haaga’s screenplay is based on a true story. Filmed in Ottawa, KILLING MOMMY will air in Canada for the first time on 10 October.
Robert Clarke (Senior Techie) will next appear on television in episode six of FOUR IN THE MORNING, a half-hour dramedy about four twenty-something friends navigating life at the boundary between last night and tomorrow. (There is also a talking pig.) The eight episode series stars Daniel Maslany (brother of Tatiana), Michelle Mylett (Maggie in LOST GIRL episode 5.4), Lola Tash, and Mazin Elsadig. Set in Toronto, FOUR IN THE MORNING will have its debut on CBC on 28 August.
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