Ficus Reviews: Skins Series 5, Episode 2 (S05E02)

Posted: February 5, 2011 in Ficus Reviews
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As underwhelmed I was at Frankie’s episode last week, I was as impressed and indeed blown away by this instalment. I dare say this was one my favourite Skins episodes of all time. I don’t think I can articulate how much I loved this episode. Except to say I cried. Tears of joy.

Ficus Recap

I really hate recaps. I have to remember what happened and then summarise it and make it succinct. It’s truly a painful experience. What makes it worse is that I tend to think it is redundant given my belief that if you are reading this review you have surely seen the episode. Right?

Anyway. This episode focused on Rich, a metal-head dedicated to music. He also hangs out with his ranga friend (brother?) and calls his dad by his first name. He sees a girl that looks like a female version of himself in the library and requires help talking to her. Enter Grace, aspiring ballet dancer. The two form a close bond. Rich initially refuses to ‘compromise’ by entertaining the possibility of any form of relationship growing between the two. He asks the library girl out. She annihilates him. He Temporary loses his hearing. He watches Grace dancing ballet. He cries. It was beautiful. They connect. He tries to ask her out before she is whisked away be her pretentious friends. End Recap.

One of the things I really loved about this episode was the character development. Rich seemed to undergo real and transformative change. He began the episode as I guy wearing the ‘Skin’ (see what I did there?) of a metal-head. That’s who he thought he was. But as the episode progressed he seemed to realise that a ‘metal-head’ was merely the template by which he was living. It wasn’t ‘him’ so much as a part of him. He embraced other parts of himself he didn’t know existed. I seem to think the Rich we saw at

the end of the episode was the ‘real’ Rich, if you know what I mean.

This contrasts starkly with Frankie’s episode. She started as whatever she is and ended that way. Her change was mainly a psychological one in which she confirmed her existing persona. That’s fine. But I still don’t think she understands who she is, or I don’t at least. (I don’t like her hair)

I loved the potential relationship between Graceful Grace and Louty Rich. Grace’s friends will be a barrier to this possibility but I’m sure in ‘Episode Grace’ (episode 7) she’ll make a choice, find her skin. Plus she looked pretty awesome as a metal-head.

Another thing I loved about this episode was the humour. I found the first episode to be sadly lacking in humour, one of the essential components in the success of the series. I laughed a lot in this episode. The scene where Rich approached metal-girl in the library was a classic. “I’d rather rim the shit-smeared asshole of a horse with AIDS then…” essentially get with Rich.

On that rather vile note I’ll end this review. Next week we have Mini’s episode. I’m sure we’ll discover there’s more to her than the crazy cutthroat bitch we have seen so far. Or there will at least be an explanation behind her exterior self. Perhaps she did what the librarian told Rich she’d rather do…ewwww…oops this isn’t Dan-Blair Watch.

Rating: This is the first episode I bestow the ‘Five-Leaf Ficus’ rating.

Until next time

Keep Watching Your Screens

A Rejuvenated and sorry he ever questioned Skins…Ficus

  1. Omniscient Sponge says:

    *Spoilers Ahead Also*

    This episode was a definite improvement over last week’s. Perhaps it was just easier to relate to Rich. Although I would hesitate calling it the best skins episode of all time (BSEOAT). The writing this season seems to lack believability, the characters being so anti-stereotypical that they basically become stereotypes themselves. Or is it the characters themselves trying to fit into stereotypes? Perhaps I am too far removed from the target audience to appreciate the struggles of a 16 year old British “College” student.
    Rich crying like a baby was a little extreme I thought. Unless they were tears of immense sadness at the thought that his only form of entertainment would be watching ballet for the remainder of his silent life.
    The humour was a welcome return. The clever placement of screaming metal as Rich mumbled and fumbled his way through the most awkward library introduction in history was just classic. And the “incest” joke just topped it off.
    Ending with Maiden did prove to improve my opinion of the episode. The music selection was top notch. I predict this will be the highpoint of the series, except for perhaps Alo, because gingers are just plain funny.
    And no-one seems to know what Frankie is. Besides annoying.

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