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Cult Recap

'Misfits': What happened in episode three?

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Simon in Misfits

© Channel 4

Warning: This article contains language and/or sexual references that younger readers are advised to avoid.

Season 3, episode 3 | Aired Sunday, Nov 13 2011 at 22:00 GMT on

After last week's brilliant Curtis character study, we were back on more familiar ground with this week's episode of Misfits - a villainous character with a power (though we did become sympathetic towards him), more of the Superhoodie storyline, and romantic entanglements.

But while this might be what we're used to with Misfits, that doesn't mean it's lazy - instead, it's wonderful to see how the show continues to make the most of its format and remain surprisingly inventive.

We began with Simon again practising his free running skills (and Iwan Rheon conveys Simon's joy in success brilliantly). But when Simon comes across a mugging, he realises that actually he could use his powers for good for once.

Gratifyingly, it's not easy - Simon gets headbutted and his hand is stamped on before he finally manages to push the attacker away. The muggee is ridiculously grateful, and also just a little bit excited about meeting a real life superhero.

But Simon doesn't want to be identified and jumps away when his beneficiary turns away (funnily enough, this is almost the part where he seems most like a superhero). He's running on adrenaline, though - when he gets to a safe place and takes off his headgear, he's grinning like a fool. And when Alisha finds him bandaging up his hand, he squeals: "Someone stamped on my hand!" like he's just won the lottery.

But Alisha's not happy - she doesn't understand Simon's obsession with becoming the Superhoodie. Simon says he has to save her, but Alisha points out she's already safe - she can't die because of something that happened in the past (and my mind explodes). In fact, Alisha's terrified that Simon will go back in time and die. "If you travel back in time you're dumping me, and I don't get dumped, so it's not happening, okay?"

It's time for community service, though, and today our Misfits will be involved in 'preventative intervention' (as bizarre probation worker Sean puts it: "They'll say how they f**ked up then you tell them how not to f**k up again so they don't end up as big f**k-ups as you.") And, in what is a ridiculous coincidence but is forgiven in Misfits, the guy Simon saved is one of the participants.

Shaun (Craig Parkinson)

© Channel 4



Simon's obviously keeping his gaze averted as the guy - Peter - reveals that he stole a handbag so that he could get a girl's attention (yes, that's a classic chat-up line, that). Tellingly, he explains that he did it because he wanted to be a "hero" by giving her her bag back. Take note.

Anyway, Simon ends up peeing next to Peter in the toilets and offers him some counsel - it won't be like this forever, Peter will find a girl that likes him (a nice reminder of just how much Simon has grown over the series). But Peter recognises Simon's voice and sees his bandaged hand and puts it all together - he's the guy in the mask!

Simon doesn't want his identity to be revealed, and refuses to go for a beer with Peter - he should just forget him. Of course, as Peter stares down at Simon's bandaged hand, Rudy walks in and gets the wrong end of the stick (he thinks he's staring at, um, something else). That means Simon has to insist to Rudy he's not gay. Rudy is not exactly receptive.

Peter goes home and ends up drawing Simon. Then, weirdly, he meets Simon and they begin chatting about how Peter is a fan of superheroes and how most people think Simon's a freak ("They don't understand what it means to be prepared to risk your life, to be prepared to die for what you believe in".) Then Simon creepily asks if Peter would be his best friend. I was pretty convinced from the beginning of this scene that it was a fantasy, but it's worse than that - Peter's drawn the whole thing, and it's come to life.

Later, Simon's too busy talking to Peter to spend time with a confused Alisha. He even ends up taking Peter to his lair and telling him everything about the Superhoodie (this confused me a little - did Peter simply draw something vague, like that Simon tells him "everything", or does he have some kind of premonition?)

Crucially, Simon reveals that the Superhoodie ends up being shot and dying while saving Alisha, adding that it is his destiny to be killed (Peter's all awestruck by this. It's almost cute). But when Alisha shows up, she's not impressed and forces Simon to send Peter away (I love petulant-Alisha. She's not taking any nonsense). As she admonishes Simon and tells him she never wants to see "that f**king suit" again, Peter seems a bit irritated in the lift...

The next morning, Alisha's cutely making breakfast, but Simon doesn't want any of it - he stands stock still and starts delivering clich├ęs like "I have to face my destiny alone" and "Being a superhero is a heavy burden". Yes, he's "terminating" their relationship "for the greater good". And, of course, it's all down to Peter's scribbled pictures.

Alisha (Antonia Thomas)

© Channel 4



Alisha's devastated, and goes to cry on Kelly's shoulder. And when Rudy finds out, he can't help but suggest that Simon is a "proud, beautiful gay man who likes to rub and touch other men's penises" (though he does the old "I can't tell you" trick first). But Alisha refuses to believe it (and starts hitting Rudy, quite wonderfully).

Alisha stalks off and soon runs into Peter, who thinks it's for the best that she and Simon broke up - "very few superheroes have successful relationships". But Alisha's furious and there's a scuffle... which ends up with her seeing some of Peter's drawings. Alisha's a smart cookie and she figures something up... but Peter's already gone home to scribble some more!

Alisha meets the other Misfits (minus Simon) in the bar and they confront Peter. But they soon have to chase him. They corner him in a dead end, but Simon - dressed as Superhoodie - has been watching and jumps down. After some quick explaining to Rudy about who the Superhoodie is, as Alisha remains very quiet indeed, they expect him to help - but of course, Simon is on Peter's side now.

Superhoody

© Channel 4



We get a fight, but it's all shown through Peter's drawings - a beautiful technique which works really, really well. When Alisha, Kelly, Curtis and Rudy wake up after being beaten, Peter and Simon have gone - they're watching from above.

The next day, Alisha's crying at the community centre - Simon's not showing up. She decides to use her power to find him and discovers that he's with Peter looking at comic books in his lair. The group decides to go and investigate Peter's flat (which neatly allows Kelly to use her power to disable the alarm) and discover the drawings...

They soon figure out what's going on, and Alisha suggests that they rip up the drawings to break the spell. Simon ends up flinching, clutching his head and falling over, but it works. He realises he's broken up with Alisha and gets unbelievably teary, staring at her photo. And when Alisha arrives, he apologises over and over again as Alisha says it wasn't his fault. It's beautiful, heartbreaking, and generally oh-my-God.

It's not long before Peter finds his torn-up drawings, and when Simon confronts him Peter insists he was just trying to help. After all: "You told me. You told me if you don't go back in time she'll never fall in love with you. If she doesn't fall in love with you, you won't do what you have to do." (Yeah, me neither.) Still, Simon is fed up of this superhero nonsense - it's a "fantasy" - and he's never going to leave Alisha.

So Alisha and Simon are all made up - yay! - but don't get too comfy. There's a Superhoodie watching them from a nearby roof - yup, Peter's gone all the way! Later, Alisha is walking along by herself when she hears a noise, and naturally breaks into a run. She stops to catch her breath, but when she turns round, Peterhoodie is there!

Simon (Iwan Rheon)

© Channel 4



Meanwhile, Simon's in his lair where he discovers the photo of him and Alisha taped to a mirror with the ominous words: "Come to the warehouse on Tipton Street." Sure enough, Alisha's there, tied to a chair with her mouth taped up. Simon runs and jumps like a proper superhero, but when he gets there, Peter has a knife. They fight and someone gets stabbed, but at first it's not clear who it is. Of course, it's Peter.

Simon releases Alisha, while Peter murmurs: "You did it. You saved her. A superhero has to be prepared to die for what he believes in." Yes, and Peter's about to do just that. Again, Iwan Rheon was superb - his conflicted, devastated face was almost horrifying. Certainly, it was an emotional moment, especially when we got a bird's eye shot of Peter's body lying lifeless in a pool of blood.

Later, Simon and Alisha sit on the floor shivering, and Alisha announces: "I don't want you to put that suit on ever again." Simon agrees to burn it along with Peter's body, but of course he doesn't. Instead, he returns to his lair and hides it in a secret part of his locker before going to kiss Alisha.

Then, as the episode ends, we return to Peter's apartment - where everything that has just happened is seen in his drawings. It's truly upsetting, and if you didn't feel sympathy for Peter - who was initially just a bit of a villain - you have no heart. Misfits continues to surprise you, punching you in the gut when you least expect it. It's proper, quality TV, and I love it.

Simon (Iwan Rheon)

© Channel 4



Miscellaneous Misfits
  • As someone who can't quite wrap their head around time travel, I love the fact that the characters don't have a clue about it either. It almost seems like a little meta nod to fans who complained about how certain storylines didn't work.
  • Speaking of which, I loved that Rudy thought Superhoodie was the probation worker. It was a bit of a popular theory among fans, right? Cheeky for Rudy to decide that actually that theory is "f**king ridiculous" though.
  • "It's a bit cheesy, but can I get a photograph of us together?"
  • Big, big shout-out to Vince Pope, who has composed some truly beautiful Misfits music that fits wonderfully with the show. It's so darn rousing and works perfectly.
  • "How does it feel?" "It hurts." "Good."
  • Rudy continues to be a delight, right from his first appearance in this episode - childishly congratulating himself on managing to balance on some chair legs. Amazing.
  • Also, Rudy's story about falling in love with a girl who disappeared - when he'd actually been going to the wrong flat - was brilliant.
  • AND Rudy boasting that he could disable the alarm because he has a BTEC in computer science, making the alarm ring louder, and then admitting he didn't pass his BTEC.
  • "Why would I be daydreaming about a chicken?"
  • I love how Sean can't be bothered with anything. Kelly offers Peter her advice - "don't go round stealing other people's handbags" - and Sean's response is: "Brilliant. Right. You're done."
  • "Word of advice. Don't ever suggest the probation worker was sexually abused as a small child. He did not like that at all."
  • Yet another fantastic, bizarre power with Peter's drawings. When will Howard Overman run out of ideas?
  • Michael Marcus, who played Peter, was another brilliant guest star. It's great to see young, new talent like this.
  • I'm glad we got to see other-Rudy ("the boy who cried tumour") again this week, as I missed him last weekend. That whole scene with Sean being supremely unconcerned about Rudy's supposed twin doing community service was a lot of fun, and a bit of welcome light relief.
  • There are a lot of messed up people in Thamesmead, right?!
  • I loved the scene where Simon broke up with Alisha - Iwan Rheon got the blank, stock-still thing perfectly.
  • It was fun when Alisha described Simon as the best sex she's ever had and Curtis was hurt - it pulled us back to last week and was a tiny moment of continuity. (Also, we got Rudy boasting that he's now fully in control of his bodily fluids...)
  • Speaking of which: "All blokes say that. The next thing you know, you've got c*m all over your face and in your hair."
  • Kelly downing that pint of "expensive French" lager? Hot.
  • I'm quite enjoying the Kelly-Seth frisson, though it hasn't reached its peak yet. I thought the banter about Kelly's nan was sweet, and Seth's devastation - and guilt - over his dead ex-girlfriend was surprisingly moving. It was also fantastic to see a scene in which someone explains that they're grieving, and Kelly can only say: "Sorry, yeah." It's partially cold, but feels real - who knows what to say in those situations? I don't think this is the last of Keth/Selly though.
  • "I split up with you. Why would I do that? What was I thinking? Look at you! I want you back, I want to get back together. Can we do that? Don't say no. Please don't say no." (!!!)
  • "Play ball, or play hardball." "What does that even mean?"
  • I like how unfit Rudy is. He can't even run a couple of feet without coughing violently.
  • "He needs to try some internet dating, or a salsa class. I've heard they're fun. We're not here to sort out his social life, are we?"
  • I continue to adore Kelly and Alisha's unlikely friendship. Last week, they ate Cornettos and stalked Seth. This week, Kelly let Alisha sleep over. So cute.
  • "Very romantic! No, we've moved on from all those cheap innuendoes about his sexuality. I'm listening now. What's the plan?"
  • "You're a f**king rocket scientist." "Yes I f**king am!"
  • Oh, and next week? NAZIS.
What did you think of the episode? Leave your comments below!

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