The Next Nikita

Nikita appears to be one of The CW's hopeful centerpieces of the Fall TV season. The sleek Maggie "I'm-too-sexy-for-a-whole-last-name" Q plays the titular character, a fugitive former killer trained as a kid by a shadowy government agency called The Division, who's now on a mission to bring the organization down and set its new generation of young hostage/trainees free.

It's basically a low-rent Bourne Identity, but without the amnesia. And with more thigh-flashing action.

We've been here before, of course. First there was the 1990 French film La Femme Nikita. Then there was Point of No Return, the 1993 American remake with Bridget Fonda. And then there was the more recent Nikita TV series (1997-2001). Is this new Nikita comparable to the others? Couldn't tell you – didn't see any of them.

But one thing is obvious: Hollywood is not going to leave us alone until we freakin' give in and let ourselves get seduced already. They've decided that we can't get enough of this particular trope: the bad-ass, beautiful-but-deadly chick who can't make up her mind whether to get out of the killing game, or get revenge on the men who made her play in the first place.

It's true that we love our heroines to be hot, deadly, and emotionally wrecked. And this new Nikita checks all those boxes. Plus an extra one: it's got some pretty decent writing guiding it along.

Despite too much sluggish exposition through the main character's backstory (bad childhood, false accusation of murder, betrayal, plus a dead ex-boyfriend) a pretty stylish little cat-and-mouse action drama seems to be emerging here. Nikita is working on the outside to dismantle the ominous Division as revenge for the life they stole from her. Meanwhile, a young girl named Alex is The Division's newest unwilling recruit, a soon-to-be Nikita 2.0; unless someone comes to her rescue. The two don't meet in the first episode, but they do make first contact. It's all very tech-savvy and slick. And even though the episode's plot unearths no surprises, it clicks along rapidly once it finds its groove. Maggie Q plays the Double-0-Bad-Ass with a cool deftness, and just a hint of the broken little girl hidden inside the killer. I have no idea if Q can act or not (her last big role was a similar stock character in the most recent Mission: Impossible installment), but luckily, it doesn't seem like acting is going to be a big requirement here. And she may in fact have the chops. Plus, did I mention she's hot?

I won't commit my DVR to recording the season. But I will set it for next week. After that, we'll see.


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