Sunday, December 29, 2013

Nikita the TV Show

Sorry for the hiatus. . . again. . . but we were on vacation for a while, and apparently wi-fi is a foreign concept to those foreigners. Or maybe it was just my computer, which has recently decided it hates me. Anyway, due to the lack of books here, we've decided to do a review of the series and series finale of Nikita. For those of you who don't know, the show is about an assassin named Nikita whose death was faked by a secret branch of the government known as Division. She was then offered a choice: join them, or die. Division is headed by a man named Percy with his assistant/torturer Amanda, expert hacker Birkhoff, and recruit training supervisor Michael. They train their recruits as assassins, spies, and diplomats and send them out on missions where they often illegally take care of threats. Nikita becomes their best agent ever and eventually goes rogue and endeavors to take down Division.

A little bit about the characters - Percy is a cunning, selfish man with a lot of power and no conscience whatsoever. He is manipulative (like pretty much every character in this show) and has so many insurance policies that he's pretty much untouchable. Amanda is a cold, hard, emotionless person who has cruel and unusual ways of torture and can literally brainwash someone into doing whatever she wants. Michael is hard to understand at first, but you can immediately tell that he has a complicated history with Nikita. He's determined to the point of being stubborn, loyal, and actually cares about his recruits. Birkhoff is a sarcastic, arrogant hacker who invented the best illegal hacking system in the world: ShadowNet. He's a legend among hackers, known as "Shadow Walker," and there's some debate among these hackers as to whether he actually exists or not, much to his amusement. He is affectionate towards Nikita and calls her "Nikki" (the same way she calls him "Nerd") and you can tell they were friends when she was a Division agent. Alex is a former sex slave and addict who was saved by Nikita. After Nikita gets her clean, Alex is recruited by Division and becomes Nikita's mole on the inside. Some characters join later, like Ryan Fletcher - the CIA analyst who discovered shadows of a Black Ops agency and later uncovered Division, Owen - the Cleaner (someone who kills unwanted agents) and protector of one of Percy's Black Boxes, another insurance policy to make sure he isn't killed, and Sonia - a hacker who was trained by Birkhoff himself and is (I'll try not to spoil too much) constantly trying to outdo him.

The show started good, and got consistently better. Unlike most shows, which have their ups and downs, I've never seen a Nikita episode that bored me. The twists usually start out like most other shows' - predictable - and then turn into something that you'd never see coming. There is a lot of action and danger and excitement, as well as romance and comedy, and these elements are heightened in the last season. The show evolves into something a lot bigger than I ever expected it to be, and the finale was nearly perfect - it includes one last shocking twist, and the ending is satisfying and without being too pretentious. While most shows that have been cancelled and only have a few episodes to finish end up rushed and unsatisfying, the pacing never falters in season four. The last season is six episodes of pure awesomeness. There's a lot of plot packed in, although it never seems rushed or too much, and each episode surpasses the last. The last two episodes have to be the best of the entire show, and the finale is probably the best I've seen of any show. If you've never seen Nikita, you have to, now. You won't be disappointed.

4 stars.