Reviews of movies and TV focused on women

Warrior Nun, season 2, with a more coherent plot

Alba Baptista in Warrior Nun

Warrior Nun returned to Netflix with a second season that held together much better than season 1. The heroine of the tale, Ava (Alba Baptista) led her kickass nun pals in a chase to rid the world of an evil character who escaped from another world.

If you recall, Ava became of bearer of “the halo” by accident in the earlier season of Warrior Nun. That gave her the superpowers to fight the evil the nuns were out to erase.

Alba Baptista in Warrior Nun and Kristina Tonteri-Young Warrior Nun. There's a big evil demon behind them.
Um, hey, there’s a demon behind you.

The season begins with Ava and her trainer, Sister Beatrice (Kristina Tonteri-Young), hiding in Switzerland and doing rigorous training work with Ava. These two are obviously falling in love, and do manage to share the only kiss in the entire season. There’s plenty of action, blood, gore, and great stunts, but only one kiss in the whole season. Who has time for romance when fighting an evil that could end the world?

William Miller in Warrior Nun
Adriel looks holy in this outfit, right?

All around them, the population is enthralled by the idea that an angel named Adriel (William Miller) has come to give them salvation. The quest to find and disable Adriel is the throughline for the entire season and gives the story its momentum.

While in Switzerland, Ava and Bea meet a mysterious man named Miguel (Jack Mullarkey). He tries to enlist them in a group fighting against Adriel. That drags them back into the battle even though Bea doesn’t think Ava is ready.

Through some high tech wizardry, Adriel can convert people to believing in him. He then powers himself using their belief and prayers.

Sylvia De Fanti and Alba Baptista in Warrior Nun
Ava and Mother Superior steal a pastry truck to escape. Wait until you see the pastries!

Adriel wipes out whole groups of nuns. There are few left in the fight. Mother Superior (Sylvia De Fanti) is in charge, and murderous with her cane/sword. Sister Camila (Olivia Delcán), the nun’s tech guru, is handy.

A new character, Yasmine (Meena Rayann), arrives from an order the nuns didn’t know about. She has an ancient book and the information needed to bring down Adriel.

Alba Baptista in Warrior Nun steals the crown of thorns.
I’ll just take this crown of thorns, thanks.

According to Yasmin, the original crown of thorns worn by Jesus is the key to stopping Adriel. They think it’s in the Prado museum and proceed to steal it. They just have to put it on Adriel and everything will be grand. Right? Like many things in this series, the first thing they try doesn’t work, but they eventually get it.

The church under the leadership of Pope Duretti (Joaquim de Almeida) wants to get rid of Adriel, too. Unfortunately, Adriel manages to convert some of the essential cardinals. Conversion problems plague Father Vincent (Tristán Ulloa) and Sister Lilith (Lorena Andrea), too.

Lilith is awesome this season. She’s an antagonist for Ava, but totally awesome. She’s a bit of dark Willow from Buffy with a bit of dark Waverly from Wynonna Earp. You’ll love her.

The scientist, Jillian (Thekla Reuten), who created the arc that allows entrance to the other realm is still trying to find her son and understand the other realm.

Thematic elements in Warrior Nun

The series is very Catholic and Bible oriented. The message that believing the Catholic religion vs. whatever Adriel is preaching is the proper choice is very strong. Ava was the only skeptic in the story and often gave the raspberry to both sides.

The title of every episode is a reference to a specific Bible verse. It’s a running joke in the series when the nuns make some profound statement that sounds like a Bible verse it turns out to be a quote from a rock song.

The idea of faith and belief as somehow the same as truth is still a relevant theme in today’s world. I thought the more relevant aspect of the story was the sort of mind control Adriel had over his followers. Reality, truth, nothing mattered but the worship of Adriel. He intended to rule the world and his converts were going to help him no matter the consequences to themselves.

There were many great women characters. Every episode had a big fight scene where Ava and the nuns beat up hordes of men.

The special effects looked great. One fight scene between Ava and Lilith with them constantly dematerializing into flashes of energy was especially interesting and well done.

This isn’t a great series, but it’s fun to watch. Several episodes were directed by women including Kasia Adamik and Sarah Walker. It has a few good gags. I thought season 2 was an improvement over season 1, although the ending wasn’t completely happy.

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