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TV Review: The End of the F***ing World

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Netflix’s latest series will fill the Skins shaped hole in your life. 

Based on the comic book 'The End of the F***ing World' by Charles Forman, the premise of the show centres around a mismatched teenage couple who decide to go on a road trip around the country to escape the mediocrity of their miserable lives.

Alyssa (Jessica Barden) has just moved to town and she’s loud, brash and doesn’t trust people who fit in. She sets her sights on the quiet, mysterious and socially awkward James. But this isn’t your average boy-meets-girl story.

James (Alex Lawther) is convinced he’s a psychopath. He has been killing animals since he was a child and has decided it’s time to move on to humans, and Alyssa is the perfect first victim. Before he can kill her he has to gain her trust, so James decides to pretend to fall in love with her.

What ensues is a road trip across Britain, where the two teenagers seem to be running away from everyone and everything. Their disappearance leads to a police investigation, which works as an interesting sub-plot as two female police officers, who may or may not be in love with each other, are trying to piece together James and Alyssa’s whereabouts. 

Witty dialogue and fast-paced episodes mean that The End of The F***ing world will have you hooked from the first watch. This genre of dark comedy-drama has been missing from our screens for a while, with American high school dramas dominating the young adult genre. It’s a breath of fresh air and unapologetically British echoing back to the popular Channel 4 young adult shows from the mid-noughties (Skins, My Mad Fat Diary, Misfits etc.)

It perfectly captures the feeling of teenage angst without being cliché or over the top. If you look beyond the dark comedy on the surface, the complex relationship between parent and child that lies at the heart of the show will leave you feeling melancholic after the devastating last few moments of the final episode. 

Beautifully shot and set to a dreamy soundtrack composed by Blur’s Graham Coxon, you’ll be transported back to your teenage years and left yearning for a second series.

The End of the F***ing World is available to watch on Netflix.  

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