This review contains spoilers. Read our spoiler-free review, here.
The start of Misfits’ final season is a hard thing for long-time fans of E4’s seminal ASBO superhero dramedy to consider – it’s still Misfits, and we’ll miss it terribly but, in saying goodbye to every member of our original cast previously, haven’t we already kind of gone over this? What is there left to do? These admittedly personal feelings on the matter can lead to two things – an indifference to these last episodes and everything they contain, or the ability to let go of expectations and just have fun. I’m going to choose the latter, because it sounds more enjoyable.
The premiere fits in with this plan very nicely, with a nice mixture of late-Misfits madness and early-Misfits intrigue making for a pretty solid episode. There are undoubtedly plenty of fans who hate what the new cast have brought to the show – much lighter storylines and fewer genre elements – and a number who actually preferred the silliness of series four to series two and three’s serious comic-book drama. I fall somewhere in the middle, and have a short list of requests for Howard Overman in this final run – more powers, fewer love triangles, and an epic finale fitting for such beloved show.
Last year’s premiere chose to get very dark and alienating but, owing to the fact we’ve now gotten to know the newbies, the start of the fifth series opts for something altogether lighter. We begin with Alex in the hospital after his lung transplant and quickly get a clue about what his new power might entail. A girl is there to greet him when he comes to, and her one request is for him to sleep with her. Could Alex’s power have gotten any cruder than his genital swap problem of last year? Apparently so, as his new ability involves – not eloquently put – shagging the powers out of people.
The girl is just a way for us to find out more, and to permanently end the dysfunctional Jess/Alex partnership, but the A-plot is much juicier. Scouts who are agents of Satan, anyone? It’s classic Misfits, and bodes well for the kind of bad guys we’ll be seeing across series five. The threat is aimed primarily at Finn, who actually manages to use his telekinesis quite well before being converted, and the possession gradually spreads through the community centre. How Alex chooses to resolve the problem will probably spark some debate over taste, but I can’t say I haven’t seen worse on this show before.
The most intriguing part of the episode, and the part that will carry through to the end, is the power support group that Rudy Too stumbles upon. We see some old faces, hopefully the first of many more, and this is almost definitely our ticket to that epic finale I was talking about. We asked for more superhero antics – and the writers seem to have delivered. I got chills when Rudy was handed that jumper, and even more so when he actually put it on, and I’m very excited about where his line – “are we going to become proper superheroes?” – might takes us over the next eight weeks.
No matter the mistakes that Misfits has made over the last couple of years, or how much we miss certain characters, I feel confident that the fifth series will ensure we remember the series with the fondness it deserves. This might not be the Misfits we were first introduced to, but that shouldn’t matter if the ending is as strong as I’m hoping. This first episode left me optimistic, at least, and even if we never get to see Nathan, Simon, Kelly and co. again, you can still trust Misfits to provide top notch entertainment almost every week. Plus, next week is a Rudy-centric hour, which are always great. See you there!
Read Caroline’s review of the series four finale, here.
Follow our Twitter feed for faster news and bad jokes right here. And be our Facebook chum here.