When we last left Dutch (Hannah John-Kamen) and Johnny (Aaron Ashmore), they’d vowed to find D’Avin (Luke Macfarlane) and spring him from Khlyen’s (Rob Stewart) clutches. Season 2 of Killjoys doesn’t waste any time in getting to that plot point, as the duo—aided by Pree (Thom Allison)—get busy finding their imprisoned brother and friend.
With the return of Space’s Killjoys just days away, we spoke to creator/showrunner Michelle Lovretta about what fans can expect from the rollicking space adventure, as well as what she’s looking for in potential writers.
Who have you got in the writers’ room this season?
Michelle Lovretta: We have Adam Barken, Jeremy Boxen, Jon Cooksey, Julian Doucet, Sean Reycraft and Priscilla White.
Talk about the importance of bringing new voices into the writers’ room. Some of the Season 1 folks, like Aaron Martin and Emily Andras, are writing other projects now, but do you see yourself as a mentor to newer writers?
I’m too tired and self-aware to be a mentor… [Laughs.] I’m teasing. I really do like working with new writers. What’s been bizarre to me to see second-hand is when you’re on a show and the head writer is being a dick and doesn’t have the backs of their writers. Anyone that I work with now, they look forward to showing new writers the humane way to do it; the way to be supportive. I’d work with all of these people all over again.
How do new writers get on a show run by you? Do you apply?
You do. I receive a pile of scripts through my agent and I’m somewhat infamous for reading everything that is appropriately submitted. I don’t read anything that hasn’t been vetted. It’s a long process and every year you need to construct a room from the top down. I know my strengths and limits; the next two people down from me in the senior positions need to be able to do the things that I’m not so good at, better. And then, when you go further down, I look at what my balance is with regard to pacing, structure and comedy. Sometimes you have to, from season to season, say goodbye to someone you love, because you’re looking for someone who’s funny because your funny person has left. It’s a cake I’m making with a new recipe every year and is contingent on the best ingredients I can get.
OK, let’s get into Season 2 of Killjoys. Where do we pick up when the show returns?
We pick up not too long after we left our people, as they try to find D’Avin.
What’s D’Avin’s mental state?
I think if I answer that too directly, it will take some of the fun away for the audience. One of the things that I love about Luke is that he’s very professional, lovely and game. There are cases when I’ve told him we’re going to put him in some very uncomfortable situations and he completely action-hero’s it up. D’Avin has not had an easy time of it in the first 10 episodes. He’s had some emotional turmoil and traumas, and there are a few more of them that he weathers this year. That puts him on his own path this season.
What’s so much fun about a second season is that in the first you’re writing in a bit of a bubble. You’ve already broken so many episodes ahead of time before you’ve ever seen anyone on the set interact with one another. By the second season you absolutely know, and the fun of it is not only you know what they can do, but you know them as people. I’d like to put Hannah’s real-life levity on-camera.
I like to make sure that we have fun and tell a larger story and that we find places within that story for our characters to have some challenges and growth. We have quite a few fun little moments that I think fans in particular will enjoy.
Can you talk about Pree’s journey this season? Thom Allison hinted there might be a dark side to Pree that we might see.
Yeah. One of the things I love about both Pree and Thom is that they both bring a joy when they are present. What’s interesting to me is to round that and give that character a little bit more heft and a bit more backstory that is kind of interesting and worthy. We’ve had a little bit more fun with that this season and Pree does get out from behind the bar and out into the broader world.
Khlyen was the big bad in Season 1. How much does he overshadow things in Season 2?
There is a twist with Khlyen and his relationship with Dutch. There is a continual unfurling of who the actual big bads are in our greater world, what their goals are and who is part of that plan. Khlyen goes on a bit of his own journey to explore that for the audience.
From what I’ve seen during filming, it appears things move very quickly in Season 2.
There’s certainly a lot that happens and every season is, potentially, your last season. I like to make sure that we have fun and tell a larger story and that we find places within that story for our characters to have some challenges and growth. We have quite a few fun little moments that I think fans in particular will enjoy. I don’t believe in writing specifically to what fans would want, but by Season 2 we’re also fans of the show, so it’s very fun to say, ‘Oh my God, can we do that with such-and-such a character?!’ If we are finding joy in that and think it’s a hilarious beat, certainly we hope the fans will as well.
My favourite thing to do as a writer is develop and create worlds. I love showrunning. It’s an important way for you to realize that vision and to work with all of these wonderful teammates and partners to bring it to life. It’s also your entire life and my brain, once I think a show is kind of settling in, I just start hearing the voices again. I don’t know where the next one will take me. I don’t know if I’ll even be interested in trying to sell it, or stay with Killjoys or be exhausted or what. I do know that it has started and I suspect it’s still going to be genre. I’m wondering if it might actually be more horror because those are the visions that are popping into my head.
Killjoys airs Fridays at 9 p.m. ET on Space.