Modern Day Superheroics

The plan was for this post to be a discussion of the premiere of The Cape and how it compares to other superhero series. However, I may have not actually watched The Cape yet. No, instead I may have spent the past week grinding through both seasons of Misfits, at the behest of several friends.

For those who haven’t heard of it, Misfits is a British dramadey about a group of kids serving community service who gain superpowers from a freak storm. It’s R-rated and hilarious and extremely well done. To put it in comic book terms, Misfits would be a Vertigo book. Hands-down the best show to feature superpowers I’ve ever seen.

What’s so good about it? Well let’s start with the production values. The effects are… well let’s just say much better than Heroes. The acting is great across the board, the choices and usage of music are both phenomenal (something UK series seem to do much better than US ones for some reason), even the camerawork is great. Srsly, Misfits has a really cool visual style, wherein large portions of the shots are often out of focus. Really cool.

On the powers side of things, they’ve picked some really cool ways to visualize what people can do, and also they’ve got some really great characterization of people with powers. Sorry to go back to Heroes as my whipping boy (probably won’t be the last time though), but this is how to write people suddenly developing powers and have it feel ‘real’. Which isn’t to say they play the ‘verse as 100% realistic, but the characters’ reactions and interactions are what you’d expect from an actual person.

There are also some wonderfully original powers in Misfits, and how they’re used is always nicely thought out, both from a plotting perspective and from a character point of view. At a total of thirteen episodes it isn’t exactly a long series at this point, but the plots are so varied and original from one episode to the next that Misfits will remain fresh for however long it runs.

Earlier I called the show a dramadey, and it certainly fits into the ‘hour long drama’ category, but Misfits is also one of the funniest shows I’ve seen this year. The series has a wonderful combination of very broad humour and very black humour, which is a) awesome and b) quite British.  Nathan alone makes the series better than most sitcoms I’m currently watching.

I’m not sure if any North American channels air Misfits yet, so you may have trouble getting a hold of it *cough*torrents*cough*, but I guarantee it would be worth it.

-Jerk

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~ by Jerk on January 18, 2011.

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