Review of Misfits – Series 4, Episode 8
SPOILERS: Do not read this if you have not seen episode 8, series 4 of ‘Misfits’
Religion and the Misfits never mix, remember what happened to the guy who could walk on water and claimed he was Jesus? This week the gang took on a holy sorority with mildly interesting consequences.
Rudy and the nun were never going to work but that did not stop them from trying. Joe Gilgun gave another sterling turn this week, as the audience saw Rudy becoming pious in an attempt to get his nun back.
Gilgun has been brilliant throughout this series, carrying the show on his own for the most part. In relation to the newbies, Karla Crome fills the role of the deadpan Asbo teen well enough and her straight-faced delivery is good but Jess is no Alisha.
Meanwhile Finn’s cringeworthy, bumbling personality has been far from endearing and has proven to be downright annoying, if anything he deserves to be smacked around the face each week. This is not a reflection on Nathan McMullen who shows that he does have promise, particularly from his moving performance in the episode involving Finn’s dad.
Then there is Matt Stokoe as Alex ‘from the bar’ who has been so-so – there is room to develop his character further. The only real shining light of promise has been Natasha O’Keeffe as Abbey, who is as equally as deadpan as Jess but in a more nonchalant manner. Understandably, the new members of the cast all had big shoes to fill and they do all give it their best shot, unfortunately it can’t match their predecessors.
In a Misfits’ first even the probation officer made it through the series without meeting a sticky end. As suggested by his rendition of The Power of Love last week, Greg too has suffered from heartbreak and would metaphorically – one hopes – crawl naked through broken glass and canine defecation to tell the person he loves how he feels or something along those lines. Greg’s vulnerability is what makes him interesting as a character and more watchable. Sean Dooley has done well throughout and it feels as if the audience is just starting to get to know him and in a weird way even like him.
As finales go this week was uninspiring to say the least, with more hackneyed, self-referential dialogue. The vain attempts to elicit laughter through gratuitous, meaningless sex and violence fell flat. Yes, there is still the clever mix of irony and drama but it’s just not the same anymore. It feels like a diet version of the programme – a sort of Misfits lite with none of the rich flavour of the original, instead viewers are treated to something full of cheap substitutes and additives that fail to hit the spot in quite the same way as before.
The fourth series could never live up to the brilliance of the first two series. Series three was good and had some undeniably fantastic moments but with the loss of most of the original cast in series four it was nigh impossible to carry on. The problem was that the show had a winning formula but with each departure the series was weakened.
Whether the series can continue and improve is dubious which is a shame because the programme started out so strongly but has dwindled. The episodes feel more throwaway than ever before and it is difficult to pick out any particular standout moments apart from Curtis and the guinea pig, the giant white rabbit, and Rudy three.
A lesson that the British television industry can learn from the American industry is to create longer contracts for actors that last at least three years, so that a winning cast can be retained and continue to produce compelling television. There is the impression that if Misfits could have held on to the original cast for longer, then it could have gone on to create one of the best British television shows on the box right now.Tagged in: Howard Overman, joe gilgun, Karla Crome, Matt Stokoe, Misfits
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