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Misfits 5.03 "Episode Three" REVIEW

TV REVIEW Breaking up is never easy, my friend

Episode 5.03

Writer: Howard Overman

Director: William McGregor

THE ONE WHERE Abby discovers who she really is: the imaginary creation of a girl called Laura. Meanwhile Finn suffers unusual advances from Greg and a lad who can fly comes to Rudy's rescue.

VERDICT Possibly the best series five episode yet, this is Misfits in a (mostly) minor key. The power of love, indeed. Abby is the Misfit of the week this week and her tale is a touching one - suitably telegraphed on the soundtrack. Her initial belief that she's discovered what she is - a lesbian - is quite sweet but that's ramraided by a fiendishly clever dollop of high-concept: she was, in fact, created in the storm by the power of Laura's mind and is not a "real person" (Rudy tweaks her boob just to check). Laura, who, long ago, had an imaginary friend so she could escape from warring parents (again, the Misfits parents theme). And when this is realised their new relationship feels more like a parent's or a sister's, curtailing any further sexual contact. Abby's still real though - if you cut her, does she not bleed? - so how does she go forward from this numbing revelation? It must be worse than finding out you're a clone. It's nice stuff, well handled.

Providing laughs alongside the melancholy are Greg's attempts to seduce Finn in the only way he knows how. Suffocatingly. Their "Power Of Love" duet has to be one of the great Misfits scenes. The probation worker who "doesn't have a secret" then exhibits remarkable resilience in recovering quickly from being thrown off the balcony. Thought that was yet another Misfits probation worker biting the dust there (which would have been a shame). The would-be burial and engineered car accident scenes are also rib-ticklers, the three stooges - a splendid sombrero on Rudy by this point - deciding it'd be a good idea to get Greg's wanger out ("it's really warm!") before crashing him into Jess's car. And that KitKat hasn't been up anyone's arse.

I've warmed to this team now, just as they've warmed to one another. It's cute the way they stick together and look out for themselves, like on their initial quest to find out what's happened to Abby (they certainly get their money's worth with their discovery). There are times when you almost think: it's a shame we won't see them again after this series. But then you think, well, no, maybe it's not such a bad thing. Misfits has had a good run and isn't quite springing the superlative surprises like it used to. But episodes like this are pretty flipping good.

JESS - LIKE GARBO - LAUGHS The first time surely? And don't she look lovely!

TOP TUNES Never mind the brace of Frankie Goes To Hollywood songs, the truly glorious one is East 17's gorgeous, enrapturing Christmas classic "Stay Another Day". Problem with that, buster?

WHAT WOULD CHEKHOV SAY... when, rather than a gun being introduced in the first act to go off in the third act, it's a Swingball! It takes the monster out pretty well. Quite scary monster too.

IT'S WOSSERNAME! Laura is played by Lydia Wilson, whose genre credits include Black Mirror , Dirk Gently , Never Let Go and worst film ever made , Richard Curtis's About Time (where her character had the not-irritating-name-at-all of Kit Kat).

BEST LINES

Abby (to Laura's boyfriend): "Hi, I'm Abby the lesbian. I'm her new girlfriend. You've been dumped."

or

Finn (to Greg): "I have to go. I have herpes."

Russell Lewin

Misfits broadcasts on E4 on Wednesday nights.

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