When you are in your mid-twenties, there aren’t many things you can do for the first time in your life (except of getting a mortgage loan, perhaps). Usually you already have pretty vast experience of various situations, people and emotions and maybe even start to think (with arrogance typical for fairly young people) that nothing is able to surprise you or extract from you feelings you haven’t felt so far. In the end twenty-few years should be enough to get to know yourself in almost every possible way, shouldn’t it? Well, it’s just rubbish.
Few months ago I had an opportunity to watch the beginning of the fifth season of Skins. You obviously know that series, and in case not, Wikia will do much better job than I in helping you catch up. I’ve been fixed viewer of this series since the first season, but after the fourth one I stopped, shaken by the vicious and senseless murder of Freddie. Few years have passed and in the Autumn of 2014 I rejoined the show curious about its third generation of characters and the new plot (honestly, how many aces do producers have up their sleeves?). And it blew my mind. Completely. That was when I realized there were some things I haven’t done or encounter in my entire (not-so-long-after-all) life.
Skins generation 3 is definitely the most moving series I’ve seen (and trust me, I’ve seen a lot). I’ve never felt so connected to characters of any other TV series or film. Yes, there were some titles I liked, some I still consider masterpieces, but none of them has given me such an emotional turmoil as Skins did, and, hell, it tasted good! For the first time in my life I’ve felt something ancient Greeks called catharsis. It was a huge charge of emotions and feelings that accompanied immersing myself in the story, just as if I hadn’t been watching a TV programme, but experienced a real life, with its ups and downs. Sometimes Skins felt even more real than the real life itself, and this is quite an achievement. I still don’t know how they’d managed to do it, but third generation of Skins is of a few magnitudes greater than the previous ones.
Dakota Blue Richards playing Franky (left) and Freya Mavor playing Mini (right) are the most captivating actresses in the third generation of Skins.
Despite the fact I’d been watching Skins for severals years and I’ve seen dawns and dusks of two previous generations, none of them had made such an impression on me. With generation three writers simply surpassed themselves. Those characters were authentic, their problems complex and dilemmas probable. They just felt real, in every possible aspect. I really had to restrain myself from instantly watching the whole two seasons they’d been featured in. Skins generation 3 sucks you in more than virtual reality in the brand new Oculus Rift headset, and then leave you crying, laughting or just craving for more.
Whilst I’m aware of the great job done by writers and producers, I cannot give them the whole credit as actors and actresses in Skins were just awesome and contributed greatly to its success. Despite their young age and (in most cases) lack of experience, they did it really well. I loved performance of two main female characters - Franky portrayed by captivating Dakota Blue Richards and Mini played by excellent Freya Mavor. They just rocked! Seriously, you won’t find any simillar duo in any other series, past or present. Their relationship is magnetic and multi-dimensional and changes as the series progresses. I also loved that the storyline for generation 3 is not so dark as in previous two seasons of Skins (this statement doesn’t quite fit for season 6, but that is a different story…). There is more hope, more joy and… yes, love, than in seasons 3 and 4, yet I feel this generation is more mature in some way, but it’s a way that doesn’t deprive Skins of its original flavour. It’s just memorable.