Misfits: Series 4 Episode 2 Review
Reviewed by James Wynne.
Following on from the final moments of last week’s episode, this one chooses to delve deep in to Finn’s character and his motivations for imprisoning that girl in his bed. It turns out that his reasons for doing so are nothing more than a little foolish, as opposed to a display of some extremely disturbing traits on his behalf. It’s a good thing, if a little anti-climactic, as anything too dark and unlikeable could have completely alienated him from some of the viewers still adjusting to his presence.
It transpires that the captive is actually Finn’s girlfriend, Sadie, and yet another victim of that mysterious storm. Her unique gift is something we’ve seen in varying forms many times in the series already – the ability to control others actions. Tired of being manipulated in to something he isn’t (the doting boyfriend), Finn takes action and restrains his beloved, gagging her mouth – the source of her hold over him – and keeping her in this position until he can source a way to remover her ‘illness’.
While this episode does wonders for developing Finn’s previously vague persona, it’s not a particularly strong storyline in itself. The emotional impact of the pair’s love for each other, and their struggle to maintain what they had, never really hits home quite as it should. In part, this is because the characters don’t really interact as would be expected given all that’s happened between them. Sadie’s behaviour following her release from Finn’s bed is utter nonchalance. What Misfits has often done so well in the past is its interpretation of how real people would behave in the extraordinary situations the characters of the show find themselves in all the time, but that’s not the case here. Finn’s alarming decision to tie Sadie up and make her s**t in a bucket for months on end is brushed aside as just ‘one of those things’. Instead, we witness the unusual couple go through the same cycle that led them to their troubles in the first place, with that particular event having almost no impact on their relationship. It’s hard to connect with Finn in any way here, let alone feel sorry for him, as it’s not like she takes the decision as soon as she’s able. No, it’s because Finn displays such a lack of consideration for her (wiping his dirty penis on her top right after they finish ‘making love’), which is especially stupid considering all that she has forgiven him for, mere moments ago. It’s even more grating to see him aware of her control and argue that it’s not that bad after all, and the only way they can be together. If he’s so quick to accept it as a necessity here, then why did he feel the need to go to such extraordinary lengths in an effort to prevent it the first time? His extreme idiocy, while granting him the distinct credentials only a Misfits character could possess, means that any attempt to strike an emotional resonance with the audience through his romantic plight just fails. He deserved everything he got, and Sadie is well shot of him.
As is often the case in Misfits, the central storyline is not the only point of interest. In this instance, we’re treated to a racist blind and her equally racist, telepathic guide dog. It was quite shocking to see something so controversial dealt with in such a blunt manner – even for a show like Misfits. It was pleasant, and more than a little surprising, to see Rudy take such an honourable stance against her racism, though – “I will not leave my c**k in a racist vagina” – as his redeeming qualities are often shunned in favour of his more comedic traits. I still feel more work needs to be done with him. We haven’t seen his character’s true depths explored to the necessary lengths since his first episode – he’s just sort of stood still, with little to no development taking place as it has with others. If the teaser for next week’s episode is anything to go by, though, this might not be the case for much longer – Psycho Rudy?
Shaun Dooley’s probation worker was introduced last week, and made a distinct impression straight from the off. His sociopathic character offers a brand new dynamic within the community centre, but he often came across as irritating rather than intimidating this week. It seems every scene he features in has him grinding his teeth with unfounded rage. It’s not clear if this will be the permanent pattern through the series, but it’s not good so far. His one-dimensional approach quickly grates and his little tirades are exhausting to endure.
Best Scene: “Invite me in you little prick!”
Rudy’s homelessness forces him to turn to his ‘friend’, Finn, with an ‘I won’t take no for an answer approach’. It’s typical Rudy and his physical efforts to get across the threshold, whilst both bicker about him being uninvited and re-invited, is pure comedy. Rudy’s audacious success is followed by an equally audacious request of Finn to ‘pop the kettle on’. Brilliant. Hilarious.
It’s another solid outing for Misfits here; if not spectacular. It successfully develops Finn in to an overall more rounded and distinct character – it will be interesting to see where he goes from here. Jess still appears a little bland in comparison, albeit very likeable, so it’s about time she steps in to the spotlight as well.