All episodes written by: Howard Overman
Do you miss Buffy the Vampire Slayer and just wish that the show had been a little more nasty and full of cursing? Well, then, I have the show for you! The show is hilarious, sometimes legitimately trilling and even scary, fun, well paces, defiant, subversive, and just a fun watch. It helps that, just like most British shows, the season is a tightly packed six hour-long episodes, so the action never lets up and the show knows exactly where it wants to end up. It’s not the most original show I’ve ever seen, as I said it owes so much to Buffy that sometimes it kinda feels like a bit of a ripoff, but it’s anything but boring.
Cara Theobold (Downton Abbey) plays Amy, a mentally ill young woman who has just stopped taking her anti-psychotic medication. Her illness is that she sees some people’s faces as demonic – their flesh is peeling off and just below the surface of the skin is a hell-like fire. One evening one of these people she sees as demonic begins to attack her, and she is rescued by a foul-mouthed young woman named Raquel, played to perfection by Susan Wokoma (doing a 180 from the ultra religious character she hilariously plays on Chewing Gum). Raquel informs Amy that she is not actually crazy, instead she is a “seer”, someone who can identify those possessed by demons. While I really did like the show, I really wish they had played a little more with the audience. The awareness that Amy was not actually crazy came a bit too soon in my opinion, it would have been more fun, I believe, had the audience not really known if what she saw was true or not – if we were asked to root for someone who perhaps was just deranged and attacking people for absolutely no reason, other than because her sanity was in question. Instead, the mythology of the series kicks in right away and any doubt of these characters’ sanity is quickly dispelled.
We soon find out that the demons have a plan, and they are led by Callum (Tony Curran), who poses as the girls’ psychiatrist, who hilariously always kills or beats someone anytime his plans don’t go exactly according to plan. Let it just be said that his plans don’t go according to plan quite often so there are a lot of casualties in his wake. The girls take it upon themselves to fight the demonic opposition, even if they don’t really have a good plan – just balls, some underwhelming weapons, and a lot of misplaced belief in themselves. They are sometimes aided by Jake (Lewis Reeves), Amy’s friend and coworker who has a crush on her and is turned on by all things gross, lesbian, and weird. The actor playing Jake is so charming, funny, and innocuous that he turns a character that could so easily be gross and threatening into something quite cute and even weirdly pure. Arinze Kene plays Tyler, Raquel’s brother and Amy’s love interest, and while he isn’t given much to do and isn’t a very interesting actor or character, he is very very pretty to look at, so there’s that.
Aside from demon fighting, there is a little bit more mythology. While trying to exorcise a demon that entered her best friend/roommate Suzanne (an exorcism that involves peeing on the friend), Amy accidentally turns her into a revenant/zombie. Suzanne (Riann Steele, Scrotal Recall) is then forced to fight between her human and inhuman natures, which has disastrous and hilarious consequences.
I am excited to see how the show progresses, how the friendship between the two leads flourishes, and all the funny, scary, cringeworthy places the show goes to next. I’ve been missing a fun and hilarious horror-esque show, and as someone who was a huge Buffy fan in its heyday I now have two new demon ass kicking cool chicks to root for, and that’s pretty badass!