Last year I did a review of the first episode of Skins Season 5. Trouble is I didn’t get any further than that. It’s been the most popular search term on my blog so with the new season upon us I thought I’d take another crack at it. Just for you Skins fans!
As always be wary of spoilers, make sure you watch the first episode (and season 5 at that too) before reading this review.
So what has happened to our lovely bunch of characters over the course of last season? Well Rich got his hair cut. Oh and I guess he got married to Grace. Franky has come out of her tom boy phase and is now openly feminine and heterosexual, and has a thing going on with Matty. Nick is no longer with Mini or Liv. And of course we have our roaming bachelor; Alo.
This is a ‘Everyone’ episode, meaning the focus is on the group, as per usual for the first and last episodes of a season. We open in Morocco. To start with I felt a bit nervous, reminding me of the time the first generation of Skins took a trip to Russia. Fortunately this episode wasn’t as camp and unbelievable.
Everyone is having a grand old time on their dirt bikes. There’s a few complaints but it’s all in good fun. Maybe too much fun. Before you turn off your viewing device in disgust at their happiness, just you hang in there, real drama is about to unfurl!
The gang turn up at Alo’s promised land to find an abandoned villa with an empty swimming pool. Rich is relegated to a mattress on the roof due to a shortage of bedrooms.
Franky and Matty eventually arrive, but Franky’s not in a good mood. I remember feeling sorry for Franky last season, but here she’s being a downright bitch. Matty doesn’t know what’s going on. Poor, poor Matty.
That night Alo follows the sound of music to find a raving party at a nearby villa. Luke, another Britonian, stares at Franky dancing alone amongst the crowd. Franky tells Matty how she’s bored of him. Then she comes upon Luke on the balcony and the two share an intimate dance.
The next morning a little unexpectedly (but not if you saw a few hints in the Alo episode last season) Mini tells Alo to put away his porn and try the real thing. The happy go lucky Alo, doesn’t turn down her request, and the two sleep together.
The gang rejoice as Mini has discovered the secret to fill up the swimming pool. Their fun is disrupted when Luke and his pal show up. Again Luke stares at Franky. He says that he’s been using this villa to stash his weed but they work out an arrangement. He invites the gang to his beach party (Two parties in a row? A bit party animal this Luke is huh?).
While the gang are at the beach party a few of Luke’s crew is back at their villa recovering his weed. They’re just taking back their weed right? Nothing to be concerned about right?
Luke doesn’t give up his obsession with Franky. He takes her aside and eloquently persuades her to run away with him. Luke’s mate tells Matty that in order to get Franky back he needs to drive the weed to Marrakech — be their drug mule.
Matty sits in the drug-loaded car and watches Franky take off in Luke’s car. After learning that Luke is no good Liv hops in the car with Grace and Matty, and convinces Matty to drive. An epic car chase begins… until a truck (it’s always a truck), makes Matty swerve, and off the road they go. As the car hurtles over the side of the road, I feel sick in the pit of my stomach. A tear rolls down my cheek. I can feel that someone is going to die. And so can Rich.
It turns out Grace is the unlucky victim. As we might’ve guessed from Rich’s gut feeling back at the beach party. We’re left only guessing until we find Grace is not dead, but in hospital with a coma (season finale of Skins anyone?) and the rest of the gang is in their first day of school at Roundview College — all rather miserable. Even Doug, deputy headmaster, doesn’t lighten the mood. Grace’s dad, Headmaster David Blood, is of course taking a leave of absence. Matty is nowhere to be found since the accident. And for good reason too, despite injuring one of his friends he is under suspicion for the drugs found in the destroyed vehicle.
How Grace got to the hospital in Bristol is anyone’s guess. It seems a bit strange to cart her overseas on a plane with the rest of the group. I would’ve thought that she’d be better off in a hospital in Morocco. But maybe that’s just me.
Nick is a bit upset that Matty hasn’t tried to call him. He soon receives a call from Matty but doesn’t pick up. I’m not quite sure of the logic behind that one, but we can all be pig-headed at times can’t we?
Rich attempts to see Grace but the nurse will not let him. He hands her a CD, mentioning that he and Alo had put it together. We hear the enchanting chorus from Grace as she lies motionless in her hospital bed. End scene.
I had my doubts during the start of the episode. I almost thought I had grown out ofSkins. That it was no longer for me. But in the end it all paid off. Skins is back. It’s amazing. And I cannot wait for the show to start focusing on individual characters again. It’s what makes the show so unique.
I hear that there’s a new addition to the cast this season so that should be interesting. I hope that doesn’t mean something bad for Grace. Don’t freak out or anything, that’s just speculation on my behalf. I love Grace too *Sniff, sniff*.
The preview for next episode shows it’s all about Rich. Join me next time for another review / recap (that is if I manage to keep this up!).