What an asset Iwan Rheon is to this show in the role of Simon, who could so easily have been featured as a straightforward geek but has instead turned into a subtle and credible hero for all those young people who are kind-hearted and full of passion but just a bit removed from things, constantly struggling against that spiteful tag ‘weird’.
This episode belonged to Simon, whose view of life is literally wide-eyed. Those large blue-grey pools remain permanently open, surveying, observing, navigating everything around him, searching for threats and for allies in this bizarre world he finds himself in.
Sally, the probation worker, has been seeking to find evidence to prove that Simon and co did kill Tony, and her ploy was to seduce Simon until he cracked or, as it turned out, gave her access to video footage of the kids talking about the murder. Simon is, of course, a budding filmmaker so has been capturing all of the misfits’ movements on video ever since the storm.
Simon’s gradual fall under Sally’s tricksy seductive spell was rather tragic to watch, his little face lighting up into a shy smile as Sally paid him so much attention and gave him clear signals that they were becoming an item.
At the moment it all dawned on him – Sally had sent him leaping off to fetch more wine for their romantic evening at the community centre, and run off with his phone which contained the incriminating video – his whole body and face radiated panic and hurt. Not only had he essentially turned himself and all the others in for Tony’s murder, but he’d also been denied a chance at his liaison with Sally.
In all this, Simon’s character had a chance to breathe and develop. He had longer pieces of dialogue, more sustained interaction and more camera focus, so he’s now, five episodes in, a fully formed character. Better late than never!
The structure that’s been put in place – allowing each episode to focus mainly on one of the characters – inevitably favours the characters featured earlier on, but it was worth waiting for this hour spent looking at life in Simon’s world, one of the more unusual of all the gang.
Of course, we can now add another murder to his curriculum vitae. In a struggle to take back his phone and stop Sally shopping the lot of them, Sally’s head got smashed against the door and she slowly slid to her death, almost cradled by a painfully guilt-ridden Simon.
So with Sally dead, our misfits remain free – well, as free as you can be with an Asbo – and gallavanting around the community centre.
Poor old Curtis, who, due to the time-travelling shenanigans of last week, made himself into a two-timer by mistake, and spent this episode trying to dump Sam. I like the fact that Curtis can’t properly control the time-travelling and his body makes it happen naturally as a response to guilt; that’s a clever twist. His going back again and again to try to dump Sam without making her cry was really very funny.
Somewhat pointless, I thought, but fun nonetheless, was the additional story about a baby, at the community centre with its single mother, who had been charged with the ability to make any man crave to be its father. It was surreal to see Nathan suddenly gripped by paternal drive towards a baby he didn’t know, and I suppose it was possibly put in the episode to add a layer of fog to the already hazy issue of what Nathan’s superpower might end up being. It also served to remind us that this superpower thing is absolutely not contained to our five guys, something that will definitely push this show into further series, to which I have only to say: hurrah!
Read our review of episode 4 here.
Misfits airs in the UK on Thursdays at 10pm on E4 and 11pm on E4+1, with repeat showings the following Wednesday at 11 and 12pm.