Series 1, Episode 4
Date of release: October 24, 2017 (All 4)
This happened to be an interesting episode. A lot of things that I predicted would happen after the end of the previous episode did in fact happen and that made me very happy for a change — predictability was served, but the way it was served made for a more intriguing character study in the long run. Not only did James become an actual, emotional human being with this episode (realizing he is not a psychopath, realizing he just wants to be with Alyssa, realizing he has done something wrong), but he also started to look less like Dylann Roof with his cheap new haircut, so there is a stark and wonderful development right here. Also, Alyssa is kind of becoming the truly bad figure in this different love story, considering she doesn’t really know what to do, how to deal with the emotion she is having after Clive’s death, or how to behave and what to think while hanging around with weird and mysterious James. It’s almost like there could be material for conflict between the two — the road trip could stop here, and Alyssa and James could be standing against each other, and all this over a sort of misunderstanding. He wants to lighten up the load of his mind and accept punishment for the evil thing he has done, and she just wants to move on, forget that things happened (and she really wants to forget that image of Clive and his stabbed neck), and get to her father. Alyssa can’t think of James as the good guy, because he murdered someone, yet she doesn’t realize he also saved her life. Meanwhile, James grows out of his shell and decides to take action on his own, after being mostly passive through the previous three episodes (minus punching the crap out of his dad). In a way, Alyssa became the passive character by not doing anything about what just happened (hell, even her new haircut was styled by James, according to her voiceover), and James became the active character. That’s quite a change from two episodes ago.
I did love the notion of Clive’s murder becoming the focal point of James and Alyssa’s story though. First of all, applause for the two detectives — oh wait, this is England, there they are called inspectors — I immediately started liking Eunice and Teri, and there is some chemistry and weirdness in their partnership that warrants its own television show. Hey, if someone ever plans to revive a show like NIKKI & NORA, which didn’t even make it past the pilot stage on UPN back in the middle fo the first decade of the millennium (I never liked the short-lived web series that followed out of the positive word of mouth of the pilot — it looked cheap and it never seemed to focus what it wanted to be), here are two characters you can take immediately, because they have been established already. I can only hope that Teri and Eunice will be recurring characters for the rest of the season. After all, Bonnie and Clyde-kinda characters need cops who chase them, and I still want THE END OF THE F***ING WORLD to be the Bonnie and Clyde-drama I was hoping for it to be after the previous episode. Which means Alyssa and James have to find each other quickly again and do something else that’s dark and messed up. Maybe kill another rapist and serial killer that gets them celebrated in the public?
By the way, I was so pissed that Clive’s mother burned the polaroids. When Teri and Eunice found Clive without the pictures surrounding him, I already suspected that mommy wasn’t too happy about her son’s legacy, but when her burning the pictures was depicted, I wanted to put my arms through the screen and hit Clive’s mother for doing this. Dammit, James and Alyssa could have been something like heroes in the world of the mistreated and abused — the teenage couple who roams through England, constantly comes across evil people, kills them, saves lives in the process, all while being ferociously hunted by the police. I don’t think that THE END OF THE F***ING WORLD will become exactly that, but hell, that certainly is quite the idea for another TV drama. I already feel sorry for what’s about to happen to James and Alyssa, even after Clive totally deserved to be murdered.