Misfits (TV series)
|Created by||Howard Overman|
|Written by||Howard Overman
|Directed by||Jonathan van Tulleken
|Opening theme||"Echoes" by The Rapture|
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of series||4|
|No. of episodes||29 (List of episodes)|
|Executive producer(s)||Petra Fried
|Running time||45 minutes|
|Production company(s)||Clerkenwell Films|
|Picture format||HDTV (1080i)
|Original run||12 November 2009– present|
Misfits is a British science fiction comedy-drama television show about a group of young offenders sentenced to work in a community service programme, where they obtain supernatural powers after a strange electrical storm. The series opened in 2009 and is currently ongoing.
Antonia Thomas, Iwan Rheon, Lauren Socha, Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, and Robert Sheehan are introduced as Alisha Daniels, Simon Bellamy, Kelly Bailey, Curtis Donovan, and Nathan Young respectively. Sheehan left after the second series, replaced in the third by Joseph Gilgun as Rudy Wade. After the third series was announced Rheon, Thomas and Socha had left their roles and would be replaced by new characters Karla Crome, Nathan McMullen and Matt Stokoe, as Jess, Finn and Alex respectively. Midway through the fourth series, Stewart-Jarrett left while Natasha O'Keeffe joined the cast as Abbey Smith.
The first series started broadcasting in the U.K. on 12 November 2009 on E4., and was produced by Clerkenwell Films. The show aired in Australia in 2010 on ABC2, and in New Zealand, it screens on FOUR, where its fourth series is currently running. In June 2011, it was made available online in the United States via Hulu, where it became one of the service's most-watched series. Misfits can currently be viewed in the United States on the Logo channel.
Recording for the second series began on 24 May 2010, next to Southmere Lake, Thamesmead, Bexley, Southeast London. The second series aired from 11 November 2010 to 16 December 2010 on E4. A Christmas special, written by Howard Overman, featuring the whole main cast of the first series was broadcast on E4 in December 2010. The first series won the 2010 BAFTA Television Award for Best Drama Series. The third series began airing on 30 October 2011, and ended on 18 December 2011. The fourth series premiered in October 2012.
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The show is filmed in South East London, mostly on location around the Southmere Lake in Thamesmead, including the signature shot of the four multi-storey buildings from the roof of the Lakeside Centre. Many interiors were filmed in sets built in the old Runnymede campus of Brunel University. The scenes under the flyover are in Boston Manor Park in Brentford, London. The bar featured from the second series on is not located in South Street, Brunel; it was a set built specifically for the show.
The first series was accompanied by an online viral marketing, on social networking websites such as Facebook and Twitter. For example, in a British first, the characters Simon and Kelly tweeted during the initial transmission of each episode, with the content of the tweets provided by writers Sam Liefer and Ben Edwards, under the direction of lead writer Howard Overman and executive producer Petra Fried. These tweets and other website postings provided additional narrative material, and amongst other things did not ultimately reveal the identity of a key character who appeared only in episode six. Since then other characters have appeared, such as Rudy Wade and Alisha Daniels, as well as a fan-based "observer" character named "That Guy". Additional strategic components included direct-to-YouTube video clips and an online game based on the show.
The first series comprised six episodes, airing from 12 November to 17 December 2009 on E4. The second series started filming in May 2010 and aired on E4 from 11 November to 16 December 2010. This series had seven episodes, including a Christmas episode.
An exclusive short film, "Vegas Baby!"', premiered on E4's official website on 15 September 2011, focusing on Nathan's departure. The third series began airing on 30 October 2011 on E4. It introduced new character Rudy (Joe Gilgun) and was eight episodes long. Unlike the first two series, Howard Overman did not write all the episodes, instead writing six of the eight with Jon Brown writing the other two. Series 4 began on 28 October 2012, introducing new characters Finn, Jess, Greg, Alex and Abbey. This series also saw the departures of Seth and Curtis. Like series 3, Howard Overman penned six episodes and Jon Brown wrote the remaining two. Series 4 came to a close on 16 December 2012.
Series 1 (2009)
Misfits follows five brave delinquents on community service who are caught outside during a supernatural thunder storm and who acquire special abilities. Initially, the show focused on five young adults. Kelly Bailey (Lauren Socha) gains the ability of telepathy, Curtis Donovan (Nathan Stewart-Jarrett) can rewind time after experiencing an immense sense of regret, Alisha Daniels (Antonia Thomas) sends people into a sexual frenzy when they touch her skin and Simon Bellamy (Iwan Rheon) can become invisible. Nathan Young (Robert Sheehan) appears unchanged.
The group are attacked by their probation officer, Tony, who acquired strange powers in the electrical storm, and is accidentally killed by Kelly in self-defence. The main plot of the first series is the five trying to stop anyone else finding out about the murder. Tony's replacement Sally is revealed to be Tony's fiancée, and she suspects that the gang know more than they claim to. Sally's suspicion grows and she forms a relationship with Simon, secretly pretending to like him in order to get information from him about Tony's disappearance. She steals his mobile phone, which has the video of Nathan saying they killed Tony, sees it, and tries to convince Simon to go to the police. When she tries to get away, Simon turns invisible, intentionally unnerves her while doing so, and then accidentally kills her in the struggle for his mobile. Other subplots of the series involve Nathan living in the community centre after his mother kicks him out of her house, Alisha and Curtis becoming involved in a relationship, Curtis accidentally changing time so he never split up from his ex-girlfriend Sam, Nathan trying to figure out what his power could possibly be, and Simon's sense of loneliness and isolation from the rest of the group. Each episode also follows its own self-contained plot, including the first series' finale in which a cult-like group begins to brainwash youths into adopting ultra-conservative behaviour. The episode ends with Nathan's death after a struggle with Rachel, the cult's leader. As his friends mourn, Nathan's power is finally revealed to be immortal as he awakens unharmed in his coffin.
Series 2 (2010)
In the second series, as the gang are approaching the end of their community service, they are stalked by a mysterious masked man who had previously saved Nathan from the Virtue cult. He assists them through dangerous situations and is seemingly aware of events that take place before they happen; he saves members of the group on multiple occasions such as saving Curtis from being strangled to death by a shapeshifter, saving Nathan from a car explosion when taking drugs makes him temporarily mortal, and saving Alisha from a mugger. When Alisha is attacked a second time, she falls down a flight of stairs and is taken back to the masked man's safe house. It is revealed that he is a time-travelling, future Simon, with whom Alisha falls in love and learns she is to fall in love with the 'present' Simon. Future Simon warns of an unspecified, upcoming crisis and shows that the superpowers will soon become public knowledge – which eventually occurs, only for that timeline to be erased. Future Simon sacrifices himself to save Alisha, prompting Alisha to reveal the truth to present Simon. Throughout the series, sub-plots include Nathan discovering his immortality extends to mediumship, Nathan and Kelly's abortive attempt at a relationship, Curtis and Alisha breaking up, Simon slowly becoming more assertive and comfortable with himself, and Curtis starting a relationship with a girl named Nikki, who obtained her teleportation power from a heart transplant, taking the heart of a man named Ollie who originally had the power.
Three months later, the Misfits give up their powers by selling them to Seth, a former drug dealer with the ability to transfer powers from one person to another. Elliot, a disillusioned priest, purchases several powers from the same dealer including Alisha's and Nikki's, and uses them to pose as a reborn Jesus Christ. While the Misfits are celebrating the fact that they are free from their powers, a follower of "Jesus" holds up the bar where Curtis and Alisha are now working, robs them, and kills Nikki. The Misfits steal the money that Elliot has gathered from his followers so they can purchase their powers back, accidentally killing him while doing so. The Misfits use the money to buy new powers from Seth, with Kelly being the first to volunteer.
Series 3 (2011)
Simon, Kelly, Alisha and Curtis acquired new powers following their encounter with Seth; Simon can glimpse into the future, Kelly has complete knowledge of rocket science and mechanical systems, Alisha has a form of clairvoyance which allows her to see through the eyes of others and Curtis can change into a woman at will. Nathan is absent, having gone to Las Vegas in the hope that his new ability of magic will make him a millionaire. A young man on community service named Rudy, with the ability to create a duplicate of himself, meets the gang when he upsets a woman, causing her to use her power to freeze time in order to wreak havoc on Rudy. Rudy's actions accidentally put Simon, Kelly, Alisha and Curtis back into community service. Major subplots include Simon and Alisha's relationship, Simon's progressive transformation into his 'future self', Rudy's womanising and philandering, Curtis's experimentation as a female, Kelly's infatuation and eventual relationship with Seth, and Seth's obsessive search for a mysterious power.
Seth eventually finds what he was looking for, the power of resurrection, giving it to Curtis in exchange for his sex-change power after Curtis accidentally impregnates himself. Curtis uses his power to resurrect Seth's ex-girlfriend, Shannon, who died of a drug overdose that Seth takes responsibility for. Seth breaks up with Kelly and returns to Shannon but quickly realises that anyone resurrected has an all-encompassing desire for blood, essentially rendering them a zombie. Seth and the gang manage to defeat Shannon and the others infected by the power, resulting in Seth and Kelly restarting their relationship, eventually deciding to travel in order to escape the mayhem of the community centre.
A medium uses his power to inadvertently bring the spirits of Tony, Sally and Rachel back to haunt the gang, with the spirits unable to move on due to having unfinished business. Sally and Tony move on to the afterlife after they reconcile, and Rachel tries to fit in with the culture that she despised by swearing, drinking, trying drugs and having sex, but is unsuccessful. She comes to the realisation that she is back for revenge, slicing Alisha's throat with a Stanley knife and moving on. After Alisha's death, Seth helps Simon go back in time, allowing Simon to help the gang in the past and resulting in Simon's eventual death in Alisha's arms.
Series 4 (2012)
After Alisha's death and Simon's departure to the past, Kelly and Seth travel to Africa, where Kelly uses her knowledge of mechanical systems to defuse landmines, and ends up staying. Curtis and Rudy continue with community service, joined by Finn, an anxious telekinetic, and Jess, a snarky, reserved girl with x-ray vision. Major subplots include Rudy and Finn moving into the community centre together, Finn's one-sided infatuation with Jess, Curtis's encounters with Lola, a mysterious woman who claims to be a trainee probation worker, Finn's search for his father, and Jess's relationship with Alex, a mysterious bartender who spends most of his time looking for his penis, lost as a result of a mysterious power. As a result of his encounters with Lola, Curtis ends up using his resurrection power again, leading to his own infection. In order to stop his increasing thirst for blood, Curtis commits suicide, emotionally affecting Rudy as a result.
After Curtis's death, the gang encounters Abbey, a girl who suffers from amnesia as a result of the storm, and Nadine, a nun with a mysterious secret whom Rudy falls in love with. Alex finds and retrieves his penis, but his regained sense of masculinity causes him to cheat on Jess, angering Finn. Nadine's power is eventually revealed to be the ability to inadvertently summon the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse when surrounded by anger or violence, which she does after witnessing Alex and Finn arguing over Jess. The Horsemen attack the gang and stabs Alex when he steps in to protect Jess. Nadine sacrifices herself in order to stop the Horsemen from wreaking more havoc, leaving Rudy heartbroken once more. As a result of the Horsemen's attack, Alex is rushed to the hospital to receive an emergency lung transplant.
Series 5 (2013)
The fifth and final series of Misfits will air during late 2013 and will comprise eight episodes. The new series will mark the first anniversary of the storm and will feature a support group for those with less-than-ideal powers, such as the ability to knit visions of the future, remove others' powers through sexual intercourse, or transform into a turtle.
British reviews have been extremely positive. The Times gave it four out of five stars, calling it "a new union – salty British street humour with whizz-bang special effects" which should "keep E4's core audience happy". An online review by The Guardian said that it was "confident enough to operate in its own universe and set up something new" and that it was aimed at showing us "real people" rather than the stereotype of the "ASBO teenager". The Guardian's print reviewer was also enthusiastic, saying: "Misfits is indeed silly – sillier, even, than it sounds – but it's also brilliant: sharp, funny, dark and, in places, quite chilling. Both the writing and the performances ensure that everything but the preposterous central premise remains entirely believable." The Daily Telegraph drew special attention to Howard Overman's script which, it said, "sparkled from the off, introducing his posse of social outcasts as a bunch of total losers, but each one distinctively and memorably so."
The Irish media have also been impressed with the show. The Evening Herald called the debut episode "dark, hilarious, exciting and beautifully produced". It went on to say that "the spark comes from Overman's razor-sharp script, yet a lot of the credit also has to go to the well-chosen young cast, who are uniformly superb."
The first series averaged 707,500 viewers per episode.
Episode Airdate Viewers Rank E4 E4+1 Total E4 E4+1 1 12 November 2009 574,000 213,000 787,000 No. 4 No. 9 2 19 November 2009 569,000 169,000 738,000 No. 2 No. 11 3 26 November 2009 592,000 88,000 680,000 No. 1 No. 11 4 3 December 2009 632,000 78,000 710,000 No. 5 No. 11 5 10 December 2009 598,000 72,000 670,000 No. 8 No. 21 6 17 December 2009 592,000 68,000 660,000 No. 6 No. 21
The second series averaged 1,462,000 viewers per episode.
Episode Airdate Viewers Rank E4 E4+1 Total E4 E4+1 1 11 November 2010 1,185,000 238,000 1,423,000 No. 1 No. 5 2 18 November 2010 1,055,000 250,000 1,305,000 No. 1 No. 2 3 25 November 2010 1,119,000 251,000 1,370,000 No. 1 No. 4 4 2 December 2010 1,075,000 341,000 1,416,000 No. 1 No. 2 5 9 December 2010 1,074,000 355,000 1,429,000 No. 1 No. 1 6 16 December 2010 1,201,000 392,000 1,593,000 No. 2 No. 1 Christmas Special 19 December 2010 1,420,000 278,000 1,698,000 No. 1 No. 3
The Third series averaged 1,515,125 viewers per episode.
Episode Airdate Viewers Rank E4 E4+1 Total E4 E4+1 1 30 October 2011 1,471,000 323,000 1,794,000 No. 1 No. 2 2 6 November 2011 1,329,000 296,000 1,625,000 No. 4 No. 4 3 13 November 2011 1,176,000 322,000 1,498,000 No. 1 No. 3 4 20 November 2011 1,142,000 300,000 1,442,000 No. 1 No. 3 5 27 November 2011 1,050,000 249,000 1,299,000 No. 2 No. 11 6 4 December 2011 1,246,000 252,000 1,498,000 No. 1 No. 6 7 11 December 2011 1,178,000 284,000 1,462,000 No. 1 No. 6 8 18 December 2011 1,227,000 276,000 1,503,000 No. 1 No. 7
Episode Airdate Viewers Rank E4 E4+1 Total E4 E4+1 1 28 October 2012 777,000 239,000 1,016,000 No. 2 No. 6 2 4 November 2012 619,000 208,000 827,000 No. 5 No. 9 3 11 November 2012 N/A 256,000 256,000 N/A No. 4 4 18 November 2012 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 5 25 November 2012 N/A 251,000 251,000 N/A No. 9 6 2 December 2012 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 7 9 December 2012 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 8 16 December 2012 688,000 N/A 688,000 No. 9 N/A
Both the series and its writer Howard Overman were nominated for RTS Awards in March 2010. The series won the 2010 BAFTA Television Award for Best Drama Series. Lauren Socha has won "Best Supporting Actress" for her part as Kelly. The show was also nominated for "Best Comedy Drama" at the British Comedy Awards in 2011, but lost to Psychoville.
Overman has reportedly written a 'first draft of a script' to a Misfits feature film. Star Iwan Rheon has stated that the movie is 'quite likely' to happen if they can re-unite the cast, and that he would be an 'idiot not to return'.
As of October 29, 2012, Misfits started airing exclusively on Hulu for its American audience, immediately following the UK broadcast.  An Italian remake, "Freaks!" premiered as a web series in 2011, and has since been shown on terrestrial television
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Misfits (TV series)|
- Clerkenwell Films official site
- Official Website
- Misfits at channel4.com
- Misfits at the British Comedy Guide
- Misfits at the Internet Movie Database
- Misfits at TV.com