Friday, 25 October 2013

REVIEW: Misfits 5.1

I actually gave up on Misfits during series four. Astonishingly, for a series once so brave, uncompromising and unpredictable, Misfits had become terribly boring. The wit it once displayed had faded, and its creators were content to rely purely on the shock factor to keep people watching. So I came into this fifth and final series a little lost, having missed several important developments, but hoping to be proved wrong in my judgment of the series.

Oh, well.

Misfits' fifth series has proved no better than its fourth. It attempts to be shocking, but it's all so crushingly predictable. Alex, the handsome barman, has, through a lung transplant, received a new power. They've already done that, with a superpowered heart transplant back in series two. And what's his power? He can fuck the powers out of people. This so perfectly Misfits that it's slightly unbelievable that they haven't done it before. It leads to scenes of some poor woman whose power seems to be super-clumsiness begging Alex to fuck her. The scene in which she shows Alex her scars and bruises is one of the few effective parts of this, and engenders some real sympathy. However, it's all there merely to provide some more sex scenes and create more tension between Alex and Jess, already rocked by his cheating on her.

As Jess, Karla Crome is still one of the best things about the new Misfits, managing to be sexy, spiky and vulnerable all at once. Natasha O'Keefe might be just as good, but there's no way to tell on the strength of this; her character, Abbey, barely registers. Joseph Gielgun remains great as split-personality twat Rudy. I hadn't previously rated Nathan McMullen, but his performance here showed that he is far better than his annoying character Finn lets him be. The Satanic Scout Group provides some arresting imagery, and Finn's demonic possession allows McMullen to show his strengths as a tougher, more confident Finn.

This all has promise, but it's squandered on a boring, predictable runaround. There are some great moments, such as when a psychic pensioner who knits the future shows Rudy's better half his destiny in a jumper at a powers support group. But it all feels pointless, desperate to shock and failing to do so, because blood and death and sex is just what Misfits does and we've come to expect it.

The episode finally manages to shock with the, pardon the term, climactic scene, in which Alex saves the day by braining the demonic Finn, pinning him to a bed and fucking him in the arse to rid him of his possession. It is, of course, played for laughs. Once, Misfits managed a powerful episode dealing with date rape. Now, it's going for cheap laughs about forced sodomy. Of course, it's funny when it's male rape, isn't it? Try rewriting the story to substitute Jess for Finn and see how different the reaction would be.

I was willing to give the series another chance, but this really is it for me and Misfits. Fuck the lot of them.

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