I feel like I read this article every few months, reminding American audiences that there’s an epically entertaining British series featuring attractive twenty-somethings drinking, cavorting, and saving the world, all the while fulfilling their community service. Yet the question remains: Why isn’t everyone watching Misfits?!
Now in its fifth season, the series features an all-new cast with none of the original characters. Why bother, you might ask? Bother, I retort! Misfits may not have the most cohesive narrative structure, but it doesn’t matter. Series creator Howard Overman has maintained a roster of fascinating, bizarro characters from Alex the handsome barman to the brilliantly crass yet ultimately sweet Rudy.
That’s not to say the show is perfect. The depiction of certain sexual situations, especially those related to Alisha and Alex’s powers, is problematic. Plus, questions like why do they still show up to community service, why doesn’t the world know about superpowers, and is there anything beyond their South East London neighborhood will pop up in your mind while watching. But the cast is so strong — they feel like real people — and the production is so sophisticated (it almost makes South East London look stylish) that the show’s appeal outweighs its flaws.
I admit I was among the vocal naysayers, condemning the addition of Joseph Gilgun as Rudy, replacing Robert Sheehan’s perfectly shameless Nathan. However, I was wrong, very wrong, to do so. Gilgun has established himself as the vulgar heart and soul of the series, showcasing his broad range from outlandish and silly to solemn and vulnerable.
The series also includes a variety of familiar faces. Iwan Rheon, whose character Simon grows in leaps and bounds, currently stars as the demented Ramsay Snow on Game of Thrones. Michelle Fairley, Game of Thrones‘ Lady Catelyn Stark, pops up as Nathan’s mom. (That makes Fairley mother to the King in the North, Hermione Granger, and the superpowered Nathan!) Jessica Brown Findlay, the spunky Lady Sybil Crawley of Downton Abbey, guest stars on two episodes. And if Lauren Socha looks and sounds familiar, that’s because her brother, Michael Socha, plays the Knave of Hearts on Once Upon a Time in Wonderland.
Here’s a red-band series trailer that highlights some of the best moments throughout the seasons:
Misfits airs Wednesdays on Hulu, the same day it airs on Channel 4 in the U.K. (a rarity for British shows that also air in the U.S.). Every episode is available for free (with commercials) on the site. The series finale of Misfits is Dec. 11, so catch it before Hulu gets wise to their oversight and puts all but the most recent episodes behind the impenetrable pay wall that is Hulu Plus.