Thursday, December 15, 2011


I've started watching "Misfits," which seems to be the UK's answer to "Heroes." It's actually more like "The Breakfast Club" meets "Heroes": a group of youth offenders out on community service gets zapped by lightning during a bizarre hailstorm, and each group member ends up with different respective powers that correspond to their personalities. As one blogger describes the characters' characters:

  • Simon (Iwon Rehon), a somewhat creepy guy who clearly wants to be left alone. He's also the smartest of the group, though the others dislike him at first.

  • Nathan (Robert Sheehan). He's the most outrageous personality, someone for whom the phrase "anything for a laugh" is far too tame. He crosses over the line and then continues. But he gets the funniest lines, and you do get to know the reason for his attitude; it's a strange combination of utter asshole and sweet guy, sometimes all at once.

  • Kelly (Lauren Socha). She has serious anger management issues and speaks in an accent that US viewers might be hard to follow. But ultimately, she is worried about what people think of her.

  • Curtis (Nathan Stewart-Jarrett). A near world-class athlete, but whose career was derailed when he was caught with drugs. He's the most decent person of the bunch, though he is filled with regrets.

  • [Alisha; blogger had mistakenly called her "Lauren"] (Antonia Thomas). Party girl supreme, who is not afraid to use her sexuality and good looks to get what she wants. Her power is actually more a curse than anything useful.

  • Simon, the loner, gains the power to turn invisible; Kelly, who's insecure, gains the ability to read minds; Curtis, who regrets his actions and wants to turn back time, gains the ability to anticipate future possibilities (à la Nicholas Cage in "Next") and maybe even reverse time; Alisha, the sexy one, gains the unsurprising ability to drive people wild merely by touching them. Nathan doesn't discover his particular superpower until several episodes in, but he has a good time guessing: immunity to pain? ability to fly? ability to shoot webs?

    The show is hilariously bizarre, features some cheesy special effects, makes its share of pop-cultural references (some of which I don't get because I'm not plugged into UK culture), and somehow remains endearingly, even touchingly, human. "Misfits" has been around since 2009, but was only recently released in the US on Hulu, where it has since become one of Hulu's most-watched TV series. Each season of "Misfits" is short-- only about six episodes-- so it won't take me long to plow through the first two seasons. Season 3 is in production, but without one of the central characters. Americans may have to wait a while for Season 3.

    Hulu needs to show more foreign TV. And on that note: for the curious, Hulu does have the entire 62-episode arc of "The Great Queen Seon Deok."


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