A Take on the Superpowers Genre that only the BBC Could Produce
After a group of juvenile deliquints are struck by lightning during a strange storm in England, they're given abilities which seem to cause nothing but trouble when they accidentally kill their crazed probation worker, also affected by the storm.
There's Simon, the outcast of outcasts who can turn invisible, Curtis, the former star track runner who can turn back time, Kelly, the attitude-ridden teen who can hear people's thoughts, Alisha, the vixen who can make anyone want to have passionate sex with her in a single touch, and finally Nathan, who apparently doesn't have a power but insists that he does. Together these young people are linked together by the horrible though accidental crime of killing their probation officer Tony, while trying to deal with someone leaving them threatening notes about his murder.
I was introduced to this show by a friend and had never heard of it before. I knew that I was on the right track when the stylish opening credits started, accompanied by the song "Echoes" by The Rapture. Sometimes you just know you're in for something good by the way the show opens.
Much like Heroes, Misfits explores the consequences of having superpowers in the real world. Unlike Heroes, this show takes a much more dark and comedic look at the possibilities. The use of sexual and crude humor happens frequently, but the characters are so well scripted that it just sounds like the dialogue of actual young people, horny and confused about life. Where Heroes relied on people trying to become something more, often with dialogue repeating itself, Misfits has the characters existing as you probably would if you got powers. The characters simply try to avoid being caught, but also get caught up in adventures with or against other people affected by the storm.
The real gem of the show is Robert Sheehan, who plays Nathan. His constant wise-ass comments and ability to piss anyone off balances the darker tones that the show often takes.
The show isn't afraid to get its hands dirty when it comes to problems about sex, drugs, and death, and it's apparent in every single episode. There's a very powerful time travel episode with Curtis that really details the dangers of having these powers, and how sex, drugs, and of course death can be major factors and consequences of any choice that you make.
If anyone reaches a "superhero" status in the show, it'd have to be Nathan, who ultimately faces the first seasons's only supervillain, a young woman who can create hive-mind boring people.
Misfits is a show that's all about the counter-culture taking up arms with superpowers, and considering that the season is only 6 episodes long, it's not a hard thing to dedicate yourself to watching. I'm eager to start watching the second season, and I look forward to reviewing it.