Misfits: Old Souls

Misfits S01E02 “Episode 2”

Oh, okay, Misfits. I see how it’s going to be. You’re just going to start stomping all over my heart from the very second episode, eh? Well FINE. I can take it. I survived Season 5 of Supernatural. I made it through the series finale of Chuck. I ENJOY THE MOVIE BEACHES.

You won’t get the best of me. I eat sob stories like this for breakfast.

So, back at community service, Nathan lamented his still undiscovered superpower to his fellow ASBO cohorts when the gang stumbled upon a naked dude just chillin’ in the parking garage. Nathan recognized him as his mother’s boyfriend, Jeremy, which led Kelly to remark—after getting quite an eyeful of Jeremy—“Your mom will hurt.” Oh. Awkward.

Awkwardness abounded at a senior citizen tea/lunch/dance event when Alisha’s kindly grandpa of a dance partner touched her skin and almost had himself a heart attack. Meanwhile, still reeling from the incident with his mom’s beau, Nathan found solace in hitting on a hot community volunteer named Ruth. Ruth was pretty awesome. Ruth actually never stopped being awesome... but she DID stop being hot, establishing an important aspect of the mysterious powers that the freak storm rained down upon London—there may or may not be a temporary aspect to them.

While Curtis fretted over the threatening, Tony-themed note in his locker and Simon bonded with the mysterious “shygirl18” online, Nathan hit it off with the beautiful blonde Ruth. He’s taken up living at the community center since his mother won’t let him move back home. His revelation about Jeremy’s naked foraging didn’t help much, reminding Louise entirely too much of Nathan’s past full of endless B.S.: “It’s like when you said Richard was sexually abusing you!” she claimed. I guess Richard didn’t last very long.

“It’s not like that! This is TRUE!”

Not really helping your case there, Nathan.

Ruth turned up at the community center after the old people party to retrieve her purse and ended up sticking around for a night of glorious debauchery with Nathan... until he was distracted from his rooftop advances by yet another naked Jeremy sighting. Really? Worst timing ever.

Armed with a blurry cell phone photo of Jeremy’s junk, Nathan told his mother all about her boyfriend’s midnight strolls. Louise couldn’t care less. Jeremy had already come clean to her about the unusual urges he felt to act like the dog he’d once had as a child, urges he’d recently developed after that strange and unusual storm. Louise loves and accepts Jeremy, weird urges and all, and encouraged Nathan to do the same.

Nathan opted instead to track Ruth down and pick up where they’d left off before Jeremy showed up, or, you know, return her cell phone. Whatever. He showed us that he could multitask and Ruth showed us that she was wise beyond her years by encouraging Nathan to give Jeremy a chance and understand where his mother was coming from: “The only thing worse than being lonely is other people knowing you’re lonely.” Put more bluntly, she told him to grow up.

They got frisky on Ruth’s gram’s stair lift, made their way to a bed that looked, well, kind of like the one in my own gram’s bedroom. That’s when I started getting the weird vibes. One awkward O-face and a second round of sexytimes later, Hot Ruth started morphing into bathtub-lady-from-The-Shining Ruth. Nathan was horrified and freaked and probably felt like he needed a shower while Ruth explained that she didn’t live with her gram, that all the elderly bling was hers, and that she had inexplicably turned back into her youthful self because of the freak storm. She begged Nathan to stay and said she could feel herself aging again.

If this had been any other show, I think Nathan would have stayed. But this is Misfits, which takes a delightfully warts-and-all approach to its heroes, and Nathan bailed, leaving Ruth sad and alone once again. Her words to Nathan about growing up and letting his mother find happiness with someone before it was too late became all the more poignant.

The following day, another dance found the ASBO gang more participatory in the events, except for Nathan, who once again made a beeline for the exit when Ruth, restored to her proper 82-year old body, shyly approached him. Later, feeling guilty, he returned to her house to apologize, only to find that she’d passed away—a worn photo album of her younger self resting on her lap. She said earlier, after Nathan expressed horror at shagging “someone’s gram” that she wasn’t anyone’s grandmother, and the black-and-white photographs of a smiling, smoking, flirting Ruth, prophetically tapered off toward the end, giving way to a solemn adult and a lonely old woman.

Nathan replaced the book and moved in to kiss her cheek, but wussed out and opted for patting her head instead. I honestly don’t know what to do with these realistic responses to awkward situations. I’ll just file them away to save for when one of the other shows that I like makes its characters do something eye-rollingly schmoopy. Glee. I’ll save them for Glee.

Nathan returned to his mother and apologized, gave her his blessing to continue seeing Jeremy (not that she needed it but it was a nice gesture), and in turn, she offered to let him move back in if he could make a real effort to respect Jeremy and turn his life around. However, despite seeing the error of his ways when it came to his mother’s romantic interests, it was unrealistic of Nathan to think that those feelings would just dissipate. Part of Nathan’s difficulty in accepting Louise’s partners over the years stemmed from immature jealousy, sure, but part of it also stemmed from protectiveness—and while Nathan can work on his jealousy, he’s still very much protective of his mother and perhaps, given his own experience with a partner affected by the electric storm, he may still harbor concerns about her involvement with Jeremy the Man-Puppy.

In the end, he agreed to come around and visit, but rejected her offer to let him move back in. In a way, our Nathan grew up a little bit.

Now if only he’d find his SUPERPOWER!



NOTES

– Simon turned invisible when Nathan blew off his offer to help handle the Jeremy situation, which was sad and unfortunate, until Simon peeved on Kelly and Alisha changing in the locker room and realized that he might have actually ended up with the best superpower ever (for hormonal teenage boys).

– Nathan really does have the worst O-face ever.

– After Alisha’s unfortunate encounter with the officer who busted her for breaking curfew (again), Sally seemed eager to become BFFs. I really don’t like Sally. She gives off a vibe. Am I wrong? I don’t think I’m wrong.

Comments (23)
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Arguably the best episode of the series (some parallels to the later episode involving the Gorilla). I thought the story line with Ruth was geniunely touching. The way she tried to approach Nathan at the senior's centre after she turned back and his response, which was completely in character, was really heart breaking. It was the kind of "small" episode focussing on the characters that this show is really good at.



I could be wrong, but I thought Ruth turned out to be the only person we see in the series with a "temporary" power. There is also no explanation for why some people (or gorillas) get what they wish for, others get random powers, and others go crazy.
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Will finish season 2 tonight. Yeah thats a twist didn't see coming.
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Are you only just now watching this show? Ah, you have a nice ride ahead of you.
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Talk about awkward situations. This show is abound with them. But it's awesome, so I'm okay with that. Really looking forward to where they go from here.
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not wrong at all, so in love with this show
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Brilliant series... it is just so funny and I love the unpolished humour and ew! moments... I like all the characters though it is hard not to have a soft spot for Nathan and actually also for Simon... both actors do an amazing job!
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Misfits is HILARIOUS! The brilliant humor juxtaposed against all the killings and serious stuff is truly an eye opener. Nathan is a "jerk" but he provides the main attraction for the series. What gets you is the no nonsense REAL in your face situations in everyday life. Not some made up projections of how teenage angst is, aside from the supernatural stuff obviously. The only puzzle for me is (spoiler) if one of them can turn back time, why wouldn't or couldn't he since ALL the accidental killings would have had been just a memory ya? Great show Misfits.
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It's pretty fun to read these reviews: it's like going back in time for me to when I watched the series online. It seems really long ago now, but it couldn't have been more than a year ago.



Anyways, yeah this show is the bomb. Especially since their powers all reflect their personalities (which obviously means Nathan's power is the ability to be incredibly obnoxious and yet somehow likeable at the same time :P). It's a shame the seasons are so short, but they are good. Plenty of humour, but it's realistically grounded.



Note to readers: don't watch the american version when it's produced. It undoubtedly will fail to recapture what makes this series so good, because instead of simply letting the show speak for itself, they will try to shape it to pander to american audiences that aren't sophisticated enough to appreciate quality.
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MISFITS IS BRILLIANT!!!!! Loved it, shame the new series dosent have the any of the original cast.
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@gr297689, thanks for the totally incorrect spoiler. :/
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Hilarious.
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Nathan is the best part about this show. Love Misfits.
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Nathan gives me the creeps -- maybe he doesn't wear well. I am at s2e4. Have you heard about the USA remake?
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I've heard about it, but I haven't heard MUCH about it. I know Josh Schwartz is one of the names behind the remake, so I'll probably check it out because I LOVED Chuck...and that's about all I have to go on. :/
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UMM...didn't I watch this a few years ago??? There is a thing called torrents and this and season 2 is readily available in the states. Oh by the way Nathan quits the series after season 1...not much left to it after that. Enjoy
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You probably have. It's been around for a few years and available on Hulu through season 3, but it only recently started airing on television, from the very beginning, on Logo in the US-- which is what I'm covering. I know I could just go ahead and marathon everything on Hulu, but I'm just letting it unfold organically as it airs on US television for all the fresh eyes out there.
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Robert Sheehan didn't leave the show until after season 2 and there have been 3 seasons so far.
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you're in for a rollercoaster with this show. it's great
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all this Misfits talk makes me want to rewatch it.. CURSE YOU WB/BBC AMERICA FOR RELEASING IT IN THE US ONLY ON DVD! if only I had the $40 +whatever the shipping from UK to US would be to import the Blu-rays from the UK (region free. woot)...
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HULU + has three seasons -- I think that is all there is. It's 8$-US a month, but you could burn thru them fast & save some money on the Blu-rays.
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yeah I know they're on Hulu, but I don't like streaming stuff like that, I'd rather own things.
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Loving your recaps. Brings me back to when I watched the first series!

You're right about Sally.
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You shouldn't just focus on Nathan's story. Granted this episode was rather Nathan oriented other things happened with other characters that you didn't go into detail about. He's not the main character, it's like friends, there is no main character, or rather they're all the main character, however you want to look at it.
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