Matt Stokoe interview: Misfits, Alex, series 5 & more…

Caroline chats to Misfits' Matt Stokoe about his character Alex, the new cast, and plans for series five...

Contains spoilers for anyone who isn’t up-to-date with Misfits series four.

After the series four finale, we caught up with Misfits newcomer Matt Stokoe to chat about the E4 show, the fan reaction to the new cast, and his character Alex’s downstairs mix-up…

How has it been joining the show this year?

It’s a real privilege to be honest, as it’s got to a point now where, we were all really nervous, but it’s like going to work with your best mates and just messing around. It’s brilliant – nerve-wracking – but we’ve kind of come together as a gang and turned a corner. It’s been the best job in the world.

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How do you think the fan reaction has been to your character?

I think it’s been good. People have been a bit unsure about it, as Alex has been a nice bloke until he got his penis back, and then he suddenly turned into a bit of a womaniser. I think that’s left people with some mixed emotions about him, so it’ll be interesting to see whether they start on his side or think of him as a bad guy if we go again for another series. 

How did you feel about your storyline when you first read the script?

A good way to sum it up is just awkwardness, as I wasn’t really bragging to people about what my power would be on Misfits. As with anything, the more we kind of discussed it and the more time that was given to it, it became a bit more normalised. We could all talk about Alex having a man-gina without really cracking up. Then it went full circle as, the closer we came to the air date, I was getting texts from Nathan McMullan (Finn) like, “Dude, you’re gonna be getting your vagina out soon”. It seemed like, it had become normal for me but a million people were going to be seeing me with a vagina soon. So that was very strange but it’s starting to wear off now that it’s been out there. 

Were you already a fan of the show?

I used to be in the National Youth Theatre with Antonia Thomas (Alisha) so I was aware of the show when she was first cast on it. I didn’t watch it religiously but I was definitely a fan and knew all about it when I went to the audition. I knew about the high standards of it.

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Did you worry that viewers might not accept you guys as new characters?

Yeah I think that was a worry just because the other characters had done such a good job of creating this fanbase and setting up these really amazing characters. We didn’t want to feel like we were stepping on anyone’s toes but I think that our characters have been written in such a way that we’re not replacing anyone, but bulking out the Misfits universe with brand new characters that aren’t direct swaps for old fan favourites. We’re just really thankful that people have tuned in and given it a new lease of life. I think most of the fans enjoy the world of Misfits, and who’s involved in it is secondary to that. I think it’s about the world that everyone’s creating – that’s the attraction to it. 

If you could have worked with any of the original cast members, who would it have been?

Everybody’s favourite is Robert Sheehan (Nathan), but I would have loved to have worked with Iwan (Rheon, who played Simon) because I know he’s got a reputation for being a lovely guy and he created such an iconic character on so many levels; it would have been amazing to see him in action. I think he was really understated and did a lovely job on Misfits

Do you think Alex will ever end up in the orange jumpsuit?

Initially, I really wanted him to, but now I’m quite glad he’s not in the orange jumpsuit. I could speculate but we’ll never know, as I think it’s locked in the labyrinth of Howard Overman’s brain. It would be nice because I would feel less out of the gang but at the same time it’s quite nice to have something that sets you apart from everybody – the leather jacket and Hawaiian shirt.

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Having finished the year as a bad guy, how do you think Alex can redeem himself?

He built up a proper emotional connection with Jess because she was so understanding when he confided in her about his problem, so I think a way to redeem himself is to regain Jess’s trust. He was obviously thinking with his genitals as opposed to his head, so I think by recovering that kind of trust and proving to both her and Finn that he’s a nice guy. 

Where do you see your character going in the future?

I’d like to be a super-villain, but I really don’t know where he’s going. In this series it was mainly to do with Alex’s immediate problem, we didn’t really learn that much about him, so there’s still a lot to be discovered. I’ve always wanted to play a super-villain so hopefully I’ll come back with a cape and a big twirly moustache.

I think a super-villain is something that Misfits hasn’t really seen yet. They have these guest villains but if there was some over-riding, evil, character that they were all trying to kill throughout the season – or he was trying to kill them throughout the season – that could be brilliant. The good thing about Misfits is that you get to dabble in everything. No one is a really good person and no one is a really bad person – they’ve got these real human flaws. It’s essentially a really, really, really dark comedy so you get to flex those muscles as well. But everyone remembers the villain, so that’s always been a dream of mine.

To be honest, any power that isn’t a vagina, however menial and pointless, then I would be happy. Rather than be a victim of someone else’s power, I’d like him to have his own. Obviously, it’d be great if I could fly or shoot lasers out of my eyes but, even if it’s something like never having to tie my shoes, that would be great.

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