Misfits series one review
Welcome to Broken Britain, shitbirds. Rollerblading girl gangs menace every street corner, hate preachers picket returning squaddies like some twisted bloodsport and crossdressing cage fighters brawl on the streets with barechested estate scum. It’s like the last days of Rome but without the Ostrogoth offensive. So who better to be struck by superpowers than a pick’n’mix assortment of young offenders? Maybe anybody? E4’s Misfits introduces us to a world where the rejected stone is now the cornerstone and nobody is really happy with the situation.
"Before the end of the day they’ll have broken immutable laws of physics, killed their probation worker and buried him beneath a flyover. And they say community service is a waste of time."
It begins on a bleak grey morning. The gang are on their first day of community service, being lectured by their probation worker supervisor Tony (Danny Sapani) . A flash storm breaks sending giant hailstones hurtling down upon them and all is changed, changed utterly. At first everyone seems OK. But before the end of the day they’ll have broken immutable laws of physics, killed their probation worker and buried him beneath a flyover. And they say community service is a waste of time.
The first sign of something being amiss is Tony going all 28 Days Later on his charges – not the most productive superpower to have. Soon after that, uber chav roughneck Kelly (Lauren Socha), starts hearing people’s thoughts and nothing about them is nice. Her fiancé is just after sex and everyone else thinks she’s plankton. Then Ian Curtis aping wastrel Simon (Iwan Rheon), makes himself invisible. It couldn’t be more appropriate – nobody ever notices the chode.
"Goodtime girl Alisha gets men all rapey on her with one superhuman touch (at best a mixed blessing, this one)"
Before you know it fallen sporting idol Curtis (Nathan Stewart Jarrett) discovers he can turn back time. He could win a fortune on the horses but instead reverses Kelly’s murder by the feral Tony. Homeboy should get his priorities sorted. Meanwhile, goodtime girl Alisha (Antonia Thomas) is a superfreak, the girl’s a superfreak, after discovering she has the ability to get men all rapey on her with one superhuman touch (at best a mixed blessing, this one). Still clueless at this point is cocky Irish pain in the balls Nathan (Robert Sheehan) who doesn’t know his power yet or even if he has one but he was in the storm like everyone else so there’s got to be something, right?
Aerial Telly recently grilled writer Howard Overman and found him to be a righteous dude, passionate about his work and excited about this show. He has good reason – Misfits is a blast. Pacy, filthy and funny throughout, the script delivers carefully crafted characters thrown into berserk situations with an abandon that’s a lot of fun to watch. It has some of Skins’ swagger tempered with a healthy Inbetweeners style pathos. It’s the kind of thing E4 wants to be showing.
The best thing about it: Right now, probably Nathan.
The worst thing about it: Was the naked octogenarian really necessary?
The verdict on Misfits: Teenagers: can’t live with them, can’t watch TV shows about them without wanting to kill them.
Marks out of 10: 8