Screen: Channel 4

Quit Playing (Time-Traveling) Games With My Heart

Misfits built Leigh-Ann up, only to knock her back down.

And, just like that, Misfits has broken my heart. I mean, I knew Simon was going to go back in time as "Super Hoodie" at some point in the series, but I didn't think it'd be so soon! His and Alisha's romance has withstood a case of superhero identity theft, a ghostly fatal attraction, and a zombie invasion. To see it snuffed out by a vindictive spirit wielding a box-cutter in the final episode of the season is just the most callous abuse of my emotions. Everything is the worst!

Actually, Season 3 both begins and ends with a sucker punch. It took me ages to finally come around to Nathan, and then he's whisked away, without explanation, and replaced in the season opener with the similarly mouthy, boorish Rudy. I say similar, but I suspect the new guy will never fill Nathan's shoes...mainly because I can't understand half of the things he's saying. I had gotten more or less acclimated to Kelly's accent to the point that I no longer needed subtitles, but here I find the need to read my TV all over again. And Rudy's ability to clone himself means that there are two new characters I have to struggle to understand.

At least I still have Kelly. Good old chain-smoking, side pony-rocking, down for whatever Kelly. True, she is squandered for an entire episode when she gets stuck in the body of a coma victim. But she returns to peak form when she gets to go back in time and stomp out Hitler. She can no longer hear what everyone else is thinking about her and is now a super-genius...who can't get a rocket scientist gig because of what everyone else is thinking about her. It's a cute new development for Kelly, and one that I wish were featured more prominently than her growing crush on Seth.

I mentioned before that the gang's flippancy has been a constant irritant. Then, along comes brooding-ass Seth. When the power-swapper is first introduced, he comes across like a gold-toothed thug from a Guy Ritchie shoot-'em-up. But the more he keeps popping up, the softer he seems to grow. Soon, he's revealed as the only person on this show who actually knows how to mourn the death of a loved one. He pines over his lost girlfriend, staring longingly at her photo, laying flowers on her grave, letting her memory keep him from fully starting a relationship with the very interested Kelly. Oh yeah: his grief also drives him to transfer the power of resurrection into Curtis so that he can raise her from the grave, thus tipping off the aforementioned zombie invasion. So, maybe I should just ease up on the others about taking things seriously, 'cause that is a prime case of "when keepin' it real goes wrong."

Meanwhile, Curtis is having lady troubles of his own -- namely that he keeps turning into one. Having ditched his whole Be Kind/Rewind routine, he's now saddled with the ability to switch genders. I feel his reasons for changing are actually pretty noble: dude just wanted to run so he could get a taste of his old life, and running ladies' track is the only way to do that. He and his very beautiful other half even cook up a little manage action with a surprisingly understanding fellow runner. But his "Ranma 1/2" act goes awry when he knocks himself up (Huh? What?), leading him to trade for yet another power. Once again, the potential for a good story arc gets shot down before its prime. What is with the writers' aversion to seeing their better ideas through? Their Whac-A-Mole approach to new developments is giving me viewing fatigue.

Instead, they give us throw-away episodes like that Nazi invasion nonsense. I'm fine with the notion of addressing the whole "I'd go back in time and stop Hitler" cliché, as long as it's well done. This treatment is not. The idea that WWII would've ended differently had a time traveler's cell phone fallen into the enemy's hands is preposterous enough. But then to fast-forward to the present day and find the ASBO gang (minorities included) still knocking around a London that's virtually the same, save for some swastika flags and an inept Nazi death squad? Now I'm offended! That said, I'm glad I didn't give in to my urge to turn the TV off. If I had, I would've missed Kelly hilariously head-butting Hitler and spitting, "Oi, Hitla -- why've you gotta be such a dick?!" Brilliant.

I've suffered through other indignities without nearly as good a payoff as that one. There's the comic book nerd who can bring his drawings to life. The whole time he's sweatin' Super Hoodie and endangering Alisha's life, I'm wondering, "Why doesn't he just draw himself into a superhero and be on his own day-saving way?" Then, there's this whole business with the zombie cat. I pulled an industrial-strength sigh out of the vault when they floated that one. At this point, it's clear to me that the showrunners are just basically throwing crap at the wall and waiting to see what sticks.

Then, there's the biggest flaw of all. When the gang figures out that Simon and Alisha will be stuck on a loop, repeating their same bizarre love triangle ad infinitum, Kelly burps out, "I think it's dead romantic." While I agree with the gum-popping rocket scientist, I'm now forced to come to terms with a feeling I'd been squashing since the previous season. I start to parse out the nature of the lovers' loop. (And as soon as you try to inject logic into a show like this, the jig is up.) I might need a whiteboard and a dry-erase marker to flesh it all out properly, but it seems that the whole timeline doesn't flow right. The very first version of Simon would've never become Super Hoodie if Alisha hadn't coaxed him out of his shell and into awesomeness. But Alisha would've been shot dead by the videogame maniac if Super Hoodie hadn't saved her. Simon didn't fully embrace his superhero status until Alisha's second brush with death. All this looping biz wouldn't/couldn't have occurred because there was no Super Hoodie to save her the first time around. My brain hurts just typing this and the fact that I've never, ever given this much thought to sorting out my taxes saddens me.

So now, I'm left with only Curtis and his horrific power, Kelly and her relatively useless one, and the marble-mouthed new guy(s). I've purposefully shielded myself from spoilers that could easily answer my one burning question: will Simon and Alisha return somehow? I'm going into Season 4 with crossed fingers and a wincing expression.

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Also in Leigh-Ann's Misfits Marathon Diary

Leigh-Ann wanted to see what all the fuss about this British import was. But will she get on board?

  1. The Mutants Of Misfits Walk Among Us
  2. Crushing On A Creeper
  3. Quit Playing (Time-Traveling) Games With My Heart
  4. Out With The Old, In With The…Oh, Who Cares?
  5. Misfits’s Sigh-Worthy Final Season

View the entire series