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Series / Painkiller Jane

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A 2007 TV series based on the comic book ''Painkiller Jane'', it revolves around Jane Vasco, a former DEA agent with the ability to heal any injury recruited by a secret government agency to hunt down people they term "neuros" (short for "neurological aberrants"), those who possess mutations which give them extraordinary abilities. It was canceled after one season.


  • Anti-Villain: A couple of instances of this, but a notable one was a Master of Illusion who found people in Witness Protection and used his powers to lure them to their deaths. He'd lost a loved one to such an individual and now devoted his life to killing anyone who escaped justice for their crimes by entering Witness Protection. Unfortunately, one would-be victim was actually innocent: he was a defense attorney who was placed in Witness Protection to keep him safe from a vindictive client whose case he had lost.
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  • Black Dude Dies First: Steve Ford is the first character (and member of the team) to die.
  • Brainwashing for the Greater Good: Arguably what the neuro in "Something Nasty in the Neighborhood" is doing—removing people's free will to create a "perfect" community straight out of the 1950's.
  • Brought Down to Normal: The agency's goal is to do this to all neuros.
  • Cassandra Truth: The neuro in Episode 4 ("Catch Me If You Can") sees the future, but like Cassandra no one ever believed him when he tried to warn people about coming disasters.
  • De-Power: The "chip" the agency tags neuros with prevents them from using their ability, letting them be taken in safely.
  • Differently Powered Individual: "Neuros."
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: In "Something Nasty in the Neighborhood," once the team learns that someone in a gated community is brainwashing its residents to become Stepford-esque "good citizens," they immediately suspect the head of the group, who broadcasts a television program to their sets every night. But the real culprit is the woman who comes on after him—the host of a homemaking show.
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  • Fanservice: Kristanna Loken herself (a former model) counts, especially while she's dancing around in her underwear to music and brushing her teeth at the same time.
  • Five-Man Band: The agency.
  • Getting Smilies Painted on Your Soul: In "Something Nasty in the Neighborhood," the neuro is a Martha Stewart-esque public access TV host with Mind Control powers. Anyone who watches her show becomes a bland, vapid, perpetually pleasant person obsessed with things like gardening and picnic committees. The neuro can outright command people to do more violent things, but prefers the "perfect" community she is creating.
  • Good Thing You Can Heal: Jane's healing ability saves her life at least once per episode.
  • Healing Factor: Jane's signature ability.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: Episode 3, "Piece of Mind", focuses on a neuro who can remove specific memories from people, simply by touching them. Other people can gain the memories the same way-a homeless man gets a surgeon's memories simply by brushing against the neuro's arm.
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  • Monster of the Week: The show followed this formula, with the agency facing a different neuro every week.
  • Non-Indicative Name: Despite the title being "Painkiller" Jane, she feels pain from every wound, even after healing.
  • Once per Episode: Jane takes damage which would be fatal to normal people on this frequency.
  • Psychic-Assisted Suicide: In the pilot, the neuro antagonist's power is mind-controlling people so they'll kill themselves or others.
  • Screw Destiny: Discussed when a neuro with the ability to see the future predicts he will kill all of the team except Jane (of course), as she argues they should invoke this. They wind up going to face him anyway. They manage to change the outcome.
  • Superpowerful Genetics: This is apparently the reason for the neuros' abilities, though the agency frankly admits they're not sure of the real cause. Jane is specifically stated not to be a neuro as well, so it's anyone's guess where she got her ability.


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