Misfits 2.04 Review
2.04 Meet Ollie. He’s an environmental protester starting his community payback. And guess what? He has a power! Is the gang about to get a brand new member?
Whilst out on the street picking up rubbish the gang runs into Tim. Tim is aggressive and irrational – pretty much what you’d expect from their estate. Unfortunately for the Misfits, he has taken a particular dislike to them: they had better start running.
Elsewhere Nikki, the mysterious girl from Curtis’ flash forward, has a heart-transplant which causes some unexpected side-effects...
Tune in to Season Two of Misfits every Monday on HULU! And check out the Misfits website for other treats.
Nick Hanover: So, this is actually my all-time least favorite Misfits episode, which makes me really curious to hear your thoughts on it...
Felicity Gustafson: Least favorite? I didn't think it was that bad. I thought the Simon saving Alisha part was a little cliched, but that was about it. I'm still not sure how I feel about the guy stuck in the video game.
Nick:Let me clarify: hidden in this episode is something potentially great. But there's so much garbage clouding it that it's difficult to focus on the good.
Felicity:It was a pretty busy episode. There was a lot going on. A little too much comedy, a little less plot.
Nick: It's insanely crowded. You've got Tim, a guy whose "power" is that he's living some kind of Grand Theft Auto existence. And then we get the strange appearance of Ollie the teleporter, who is killed specifically so the subplot about Nikki can accelerate, leading to Nikki getting the miracle organ donation she needs to not only survive her health issues but turn into a misfit herself. And on top of all that, we have the conclusion of Future Simon's story arc, with his tragic untimely demise.
Felicity: Future Simon's story was cut pretty short. I expected him to be sticking around longer. And as an opposite, Ollie lasted...what? 10 minutes? I figured he'd at least make it through the episode. Right after he died, I remember sitting there wondering what just happened. It didn't seem to accomplish anything by killing him off. Then later I saw the part with Nikki. It seemed a little too convenient.
Nick: I almost expected to have Curtis do his usual deus ex machina thing until I realized where they were actually going with Ollie. So much of this episode functions like that, which is why I hate it. It's plot advancement for plot advancement's sake rather than artful storytelling.
Felicity: In most episodes, I like the pacing. This one did seem a little rushed. On some level, I do feel bad for Curtis though. Despite his thing with Nikki, he did just break up with Alisha and probably feels utterly useless because he can't control his power.
Nick: I feel like Nikki and Curtis' relationship was almost built around both of them feeling useless because of their inability to control their powers.
Felicity: Well, you're right. Nikki has no clue what's going on. At least Curtis knows, even if he can't do anything about it. So they'll basically cling to each other because everyone else is useful...? I'm not sure where they're going with it, but the rooftop future scene with Curtis and Nikki gave some foreshadowing.
Nick: Not to spoil anything, but the show does a poor job of exploring the complexities of that dynamic. Season two as a whole starts pretty strong and starts sagging right about now. It has an absolutely killer finale though, which makes up for a lot.
Felicity: Well, considering the whole season's only 7 episodes, at least I won't have to wait long to watch that part. I like how Misfits has the shorter seasons. It's much simpler than having 12-22 episodes to go through.
Nick: Technically it's 6 and a Christmas Special. The Christmas Special is nowhere near as good as the season's actual finale. Though the Christmas Special has much bigger ramifications, in a sense. But I'll stop with the vague, menacing teasers now.
Felicity: So it's definitely a 'must watch'? Even if it's not amazing?
Nick: Yes. I'm pretty certain it sets up the entirety of the new season.
Felicity: Okay then. There's nothing worse than a filler episode.
Nick: Anyway, back to the episode at hand. Another huge issue I had with the episode is how instantly dated it looks and feels.
Felicity: What do you mean?
Nick: The video game aspect. I think doing a "video game" anything is always a big gamble because video game technology changes so much.
Felicity: Yeah, the game was pretty dated. It looked like an arcade game. They could've made it a lot better with something more current. Though it did show the difference between how people act in real life and in games like Grand Theft Auto. Like when it was shifting from viewing aspects as he ran over the granny on the sidewalk. In a game, nobody thinks twice about it and generally you're rewarded for the bad behavior. In real life, you've just killed an old woman and dented your car. And I will admit to liking seeing our Misfits all hanging from meat hooks. It was rather hilarious. Simon telling Nathan he had to take one for the team and get cut to pieces with a chainsaw and Nathan whining, but eventually doing the right thing.
Nick: There were some great Nathan/Simon moments, and Nathan's ability was especially useful this time around. But the gimmick was almost unbearable at points.
Felicity: It did make me wonder... if Nathan got a bullet in the brain, would he survive that? He's supposed to be immortal, but immortality does have its limits.
Nick: That's a good question and one I've wondered myself. I had hoped that we would get to see the full extent of Nathan's ability, but with Robert Sheehan no longer in the picture I suppose that won't be happening.
Felicity: Probably not. There's always a possibility of a new character having the same power though. It'd be a little coincidental, but not unheard of.
Nick: But it is kind of like Wolverine, where writers just make his healing factor as powerful as it needs to be for the story. I remember a Civil War tie-in where Wolverine was freaking incinerated completely and survived.
Felicity: That's something I've always wondered about him too. Good to know.
Nick:Maybe when Sheehan exits the picture they'll write in a storyline where he was operated on by a strange government agency that turned him into a feral manimal. He could be called Honey Badger.
Felicity: Hahaha, hey, with Nathan, you never know. He'd probably sign up for it.
Nick: I should send them a pitch.
Felicity: You should. I'd watch it.
Nick: Misfits could use some offshoots, I think. Honey Badger is as good a place to start as any. In terms of what happened with Future Simon here, what are your theories about the rest of the season? I already know what's going to happen-- mwahahaha!-- but I'd love to hear what a new viewer believes will happen.
Felicity: Hmm. It's really hard to say. I can see where your hintings at Alisha becoming Simon's guide are taking root. Obviously we know that something big's still going to happen. So something's going to out their powers to the world. ...If I find out it was Alisha, I will rant and hate on her some more, haha... There's only 2 more episodes, so I'm not sure. They'll have to squeeze quite a bit into those few, but considering the way Misfits does its pacing, I think they'll pull it off. Honestly, I don't really know.
Nick: Do you like that aspect of the show? Or would you prefer things to be clearer?
Felicity: No, I like it. If you can guess everything, there's no reason to watch the show. Then you just get mad about everything being cliched. I really think the pacing is key. Because they can fit so much in just one episode, the show can literally turn around at the drop of a dime. Makes it harder to predict what'll happen.
Nick: It helps that they've kept a relatively narrow focus. I honestly do think that was the issue that broke Heroes-- they tried too much.
Felicity: Either they tried too much or didn't try enough, either way it ended up being a sinking ship.
Nick: So, let's rate this one...
Felicity: I'd still stick with for this one. It was a little slapshot, but it had some pretty comedic moments that I enjoyed.
Nick: for me. Some truly great moments, but a whole lot of bullshit.
Felicity: Haha, well you can't win them all. I expect the next episode to be better.
For more Misfits action, check out our previous reviews:
Episodes 1.01 & 1.02
Episodes 2.01 & 2.02
When he's not writing about the cape and spandex set, Nick Hanover is a book, film and music critic for Spectrum Culture and a staff writer for No Tofu Magazine. He also translates for "Partytime" Lukash's Panel Panopticon.
Felicity Gustafson was born in Ohio and, after the astounding realization that there was more to do than look at trees and cows, she decided to become a nerd and got into comics, anime and video games. New to Comics Bulletin, she sticks mostly to reviewing things out of the horror and comedy genres. She spends most of her time working in the manufacturing industry, finishing her computer degree and steadfastly avoiding ham fat at all costs.
Got a comment or question about this column?
Leave at message at the Reality Check Message Board.