Misfits series 2 episode 2 review

It's X-Men with acne and angst — it's Misfits season 2. And episode 2 packs in a huge amount of drama and characterisation, says Jake...

Our Irish scoundrel Nathan has led a pretty egotistical existence. Other people are just toys for him to wind up. But there’s always been one aspect in his life where he’s suddenly not so jovial, his rocky relationship with his dad. Now he has someone to share the misery with when he meets the brother he never knew he had, Jamie.

Jamie’s in town to find out more about his roots and bond with their father – albeit in a rather forceful manner, as he reveals that daddy’s in the boot of his car. But not before both Nathan and Jamie fall head over heels in lust with Lily, part time barmaid and full time ice queen.

Despite being able to flash freeze water, she warms more than the cockles of the brothers’ hearts. And there’s a bit of friendly competition between Nathan and Jamie when they invite her out, which leaves Kelly unimpressed.

But a night out clubbing serves to remind our young misfits that sometimes their abilities are as much a curse as they are a gift. Dropping pills when you’re a superpowered teen redefines the term bad trip. and the gang have their powers temporarily reversed. It seems that Curtis has something to look forward to when he leaps into the future at a rather awkward moment. Simon gets his wish to be noticed more, and suddenly becomes the hottest thing at the club. But it’s bad news for Lily and her ice powers…

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With its scenes of youthful excess and hedonism, Misfits could be mistaken for a certain other teen drama. And it’s that total belief in these characters and their drama that make this show the success it is. The impact that such powers could have on otherwise normal teenagers has never been more fully realised.

Rather than saving the world from a hackneyed super-villain, this lot have issues such as estranged family members and strained relationships to contend with.

This episode fleshes out Nathan’s uneasy relationship with his dad, a cockney Dexter Fletcher who can magically spawn Irish accented progeny. Finding out that he has a half-brother he never knew about really seems to excite Nathan, making the Sixth Sense-style revelation an emotional gut punch.

And it’s here we see Nathan at his most vulnerable, when he has to say goodbye to Jamie so soon after finding out about him. As Jamie and Lily walk off into the ether, there’s a bittersweet farewell.

Dexter Fletcher seems to be making up for his stint presenting GamesMaster by delivering a great performance that is both unapologetic and sympathetic. A deadbeat dad finally coming face to face with both of his sons, unable look them in the eye at first, but showing grief when he has to break the news to Nathan.

So summing up this episode, we have a convincing piece of familial drama, further characterisation and a hint of troubles to come. That Misfits can combine so much into its short running time of approximately 45 minutes is astounding. Pacy, funny and moving, US genre shows could learn a lot from this.

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You can read our review of Misfits series two, episode one here.

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