In our latest SFXclusive interview we chat to the former Invisible C**t and future Superhoodie Simon about the journey from zero to hero on the set of Misfits series three
So how does that knowledge of his own future affect him in this series?
Quite a lot, it’s quite a heavy burden. It has a big affect on his relationship with Alisha because obviously they’ve fallen in love. He feels a lot of pressure there. She initially fell in love with him from the future, so it’s quite a heavy thing for someone who’s quite shy to deal with. But he still needs to go. Well, he feels like he has a destiny that he has to fulfil. But it’s just how he finds that journey.
Series two ended on a huge cliffhanger where your powers were up in the air, are you excited about your new power? Is it even better than invisibility?
I don’t think it’s better, but it’s different. Simon’s journey is less power-based, it’s more about what he has to become, so it’s less about the power for him now and more about his future and his burden.
So is his decision about his power formed by where he wants to end up?
Yeah, he doesn’t really know that’s the problem. It’s quite a difficult thing for him to know because obviously he’s got this most amazing girlfriend all of a sudden out of nothing and he’s been torn between wanting her and having to face this destiny that he feels he has to face. So that’s the struggle within him, throughout.
So what about the knowledge he’s eventually going to sacrifice himself. How does that weigh on his mind? Does he think he can prevent it?
The problem is, because of the way time travel works he can’t prevent it. It’s a destiny but it’s whether this version of the future will end up being different or not. And I guess that’s the thing between Simon and Alisha. Her argument is, “Why do you need to sacrifice yourself?” But I think Simon is perfectly willing to accept his fate and die if he needs to, because that’s the way it should be and that’s how his brain works. It’s like, “This is how it is. This is my destiny and this is how it happens.” You’ve seen all the films!
We were surprised he was so willing to give up his power in the Christmas special. Who wouldn't want the power of invisibility? Why do you think he did that?
I think it’s because Alisha was saying his future self said he was meant to do that, so he followed that. And also, he doesn’t need that invisibility any more because he’s less introverted and shy, and he’s more accepted, so that part of his personality is in his past, so I guess he doesn’t really need that invisibility. But I don’t think he would have gladly given it up if she hadn’t of said that’s what was supposed to happen.
In the second series, Simon was the person saying, “We have a duty because we’ve got these powers, we’ve gotta help people.” Is that still the case in the third series? Does he waver at all or is he still that voice?
Yeah he’s always the one that has the right plan and nobody tends to listen to him until it’s too late, every time. It’s like, “No, you really should start listening to Simon now, he’s normally right!” So yeah, it’s still that kind of feeling, he’s very honourable and very happy to have this purpose and meaning in his life that he didn’t really have before, to save people and to become a superhero.
So back in the real world, how has Robert leaving and Joe joining the show affected the feel on set?
Well, they’re very different, but they’re also very similar in many ways I think. Robert was more of Mick Jagger front man, Joe’s more of a Keith Moon drummer kind of vibe. Which I think is different, because it would have been difficult for somebody to come in and be the lead…well he wasn’t the leader but was the most prominent figure. But I guess because Joe’s character joined the group he’s kind of a limb they didn’t know they had. But it’s very different, it still really works and he’s really funny, Joe. He’s got a different kind of humour but it’s very funny, he’s a crazy guy as you’ll know when you see him!
Nathan and Simon always had a somewhat antagonistic relationship. Is that the same with Rudy?
In a way, yeah, but now Simon doesn’t have to take so much from him, because he’s got more confidence and more status. So this new character, Simon can brush him aside a bit more, but they still have that because they’re both completely different people. You still have that great comic clash of characters, where you’ve got this really sensible person with this ridiculous person, and then how they meet in the middle is always funny.
Continue to the next page for the second part of our Iwan Rheon interview.
What about supervillains, because, of course, last year a lactokinetic nutjob caused you a lot of trouble?
Yeah, there’s a lot more of the villains, because I guess the gang become more like superheroes themselves anyway. The problems that are occurring now are more and more people with powers, so therefore they have to stop these people, so you’ve got more baddies basically. More antagonists coming along that they have to deal with.
Will the general public finally find out about their powers this year?
No, I think they learned their lesson from the last time round. Should have listened to Simon you see. If you listened to Simon then everything would be fine! But then we would only have about five episodes this season.
Are you envious of any new powers that you didn’t get?
Not really, no. It’s sort of become less about the powers, feels like that for me. And more about the characters again which is cool. But obviously the powers do come into play quite a lot. But because we’ve picked them they’re not so much… the old powers were almost like an extension of their personalities or a flaw in their characters. These are less like that.
Seth is back this year as a regular character, how does he fit in with the group? Is he on community service?
No he’s come in as more of an outsider from the group. He becomes more of a part of the gang because there’s storylines where he’s linked with other character, so he becomes a part of the gang a bit more, they grow a co-dependency through the series with different characters.
You received a lot of praise for your dual role in the second series. Were you pleased with the reaction?
Yeah, I’m pleased with how the response has been. It’s just wonderful to have such a different challenge in one show. To almost get to play two characters although they are the same character, but the other one is so different in so many ways. So yeah, it’s been a great experience. Now, the difficult bit is to link it all up in this series.
So if you’re linking it up will we see Simon come out of his shell a bit more this series?
Yeah, I think he has to. You see more of the journey and how everything’s affecting him, and you see that transformation, which you started seeing in the Christmas episode and throughout series two as well. I think now, his confidence and his own skill and his ability… he starts believing in himself, his confidence grows as his status grows.
One big talking point this season is the fact that Robert Sheehan has left. There was a big outcry online when that was announced, how do you feel as a member of the cast when people are saying things like that?
Well you just have to remember that although Rob is fantastic and what he did was amazing and almost unique, he didn’t write it, and he didn’t direct himself, he got a lot of support. Though what he did was fantastic, Howard wrote it and put those words in his mouth. And the rest of the cast helped support him and create his character, you don’t just have one person you have five people bouncing off each other as opposed to one person doing it. It’s still got the same writing and the new character Rudy plays a similar role, but in a very different way. It’s a shame if people get negative about a show they love because one of the actors isn’t in it any more. It has to carry on, we’re all happy for him to do whatever he does, but you can’t get dismayed about that kind of thing.
Do you get to do any parkour yourself?
Yeah, there’s a lot of that, particularly in episode three. You see that story explained there. But he’s not good straight away.
Kind of like learning to skate I guess, as we just saw you doing in your break!
Yeah it is. As I was re-learning then. I was quite pleased with how well I can do it then.
Everyone will be able to see it on the DVD now as well.
Yeah yeah, me falling on my arse.