103 – Chris

Rin says: I’m still lamenting the lack of original credit shots. If only for the fact that I couldn’t get a clear cap.


Rin says: Okay here we go. Chris Collins. I was probably the least excited about this ep more than I have ever been over a Skins episode. You’re just never going to beat Chris Miles, and I don’t really have any desire to see you try.

Sophy says: I have to concur. Chris’s series 1 episode is one of the high points of Skins history for me. A tough act to follow, let alone, you know, copy.

‘Orthosex’. That sounds interesting. Like perhaps orthopedic shoes are involved. Or something.

Sophy says: lol, pump and snatch. Nice one. And can we start calling Chris ‘The Penis’ now that Le Dong is out of the picture, Rin?

Or maybe ‘Penis head’? Thoughts?

Rin says: Maybe we take a leaf out of Chris’ book and call him ‘Penis Face.’ He better get out of the way, PENIS FACE.

Sophy says: The Penis/shower curtains. It’s a thing.

Anyway, Chris’s mum, cash, etc. If you think we’re helping you out with the plot on this one you’re dreamin’.

Rin says: I have this sudden desire to go to Bonnie Doon. Ahhh..the serenity.

Sophy says: Stanley delivers Sid’s line re: premium bonds, with a lot less comic gusto and a little more cute, adding defensively that he’s been investing his birthday money since he was seven. Chris does a lot more emo-ing than these caps would have you believe.

Rin says: Emo-ing. To actively emo.

Rin says: I feel for you President Andrew Jackson. (Yes, I had to google to check who was on the twenty.)

Please, never rap again Abbud. Or do anything ever again. Just die.

Sophy says: What is it with this show and presidents? First Nana’s trash-talking Eisenhower, now Abbud is smut-raping Jackson? I don’t.

Rin says: I hate him you guys. I find everything about him annoying. Everything. Bring back Dev/Anwar.

Sophy says: My notes whilst watching this scene were simply: “i want to SLAUGHTER ABBUD.”

I mean this was just amazing. Honestly what happened? I’m just picturing Ryan O’Nan reading the script and thinking ‘Hm, this Anwar fellow is far too subtle in this scene. You know what we need? We need him to rap whilst throwing the money around. And this time the others will find it cute instead of irritating. (Because they’re stupid.)’

And then Carol from Episodes just points at him and says “I know what you mean.”

On another, less upsetting note, I have to give the prop department, um, props, for the fish shaped jelly mould on the wall. Lovely.

Sophy says: Anyway, Tony joins Chris in a spot of emo-ing, before moseying over to deliver the ‘You have an important question to ask yourself’ line woefully. Hit and miss, James. This was a spectacularly flat, straight-off-the-cue-card, don’t-actually-understand-the-language-I’m-speaking miss.

Chris gets his debauchery on, and I really like the jacket he’s wearing. It sort of feels like a tribute to the Adam and the Ants song that played in the original scene. Kind of a shame they went for generic noise-music this time, though.

Yes, you heard me. Noise-music. I’m old.

Rin says: It’s okay, when people visit your house and ask if they can use your wireless, you hand them a radio.

Sophy says: Yeah. I have a generous spirit….

Rin pats Sophy’s head.

Rin says: I’m not bothered by the Tony/Tea, I’m not fussed whichever way it goes. I also really don’t care. I don’t find myself rooting for anyone on Skins except for…..

Sophy says: I’m more bothered by the Tea/Abbud, because the kid playing Abbud makes James look like he has a solid future in the business. The dialogue in this scene is already about as heavy as a bowling ball in a puppy’s paws, and his stilted, self-conscious delivery just makes it that much worse.

“Make exceptions,” Abbud says to Tea, aaaaand we cut to Tony staring broodingly at his favourite lesbian. I see what you did there show. Subtlety, US Skins. You are sadly lacking in it.

Rin says: CADIE!

Sophy says: See now Cadie is a good exception to make. Especially in those shorts.

Anyway, she decides to pretend she’s Cassie for the sake of fitting into her storyline for this episode, and is all “Hi :*)” with Stanley. It doesn’t ring true. Nor does it work for Stanley to be so dismissive of her. Whilst this little moment wasn’t in the original episode, it is a perfect example of the dangers of partial copying – of creating new characters who from time to time behave exactly as the old characters did or would have. It’s like when you’re in school and you copy off your friend during a maths test, and you can’t see very well, so you get the right answer, but a whole lot of the steps on the way to it are all wrong. It’s obvious you cheated. That’s kind of how I feel about this Stanley/Cadie business.

Rin says: Totally agree. Cadie is a much stronger character at this point, than Sid is. I’m hoping the show breaks away from the Sid/Cassie storyline and gives Cadie someone else to be interested in. I strongly fear they won’t though.

Sophy says: Another change here. In the original Chris simply invited Angie to his party, and when she showed up she tried to pretend – to him, perhaps also to herself – that she thought all the other teachers would be there. I could just imagine her getting ready to go over there with her nice, civilized, completely inappropriate bottle of wine, thinking ‘I’m sure he’s invited all the other teachers :-j This will be a perfectly normal evening :-j He saw me naked the other day :-j Normal :-j :X :-.

Here they had Chris outright trick Tina by pretending his mother wanted to discuss his education with her. This is unfortunate on two levels – first it makes Tina a whole lot less grey than Angie was, and tends to dampen any chemistry there may have been between them – but there was none to start with and this Chris has never even seen her naked so I guess that doesn’t matter. Um. Secondly it’s out of character for Chris – or at least for the Chris I knew and loved. He didn’t do scheming. He didn’t do petty. The funniest, sweetest thing about the entire Chris/Angie business is that Chris was so bizarrely optimistic and out of touch with reality that he honestly thought they could just be. He asks her out, they have a bit of a dance, easy peasy!

I don’t get that here, even though I’m getting everything else that goes along with it. Again, it feels like these characters cheated on their maths test.

Rin says: I was seriously rooting for Chris/Angie, because I always felt like Chris was so innocent about it all. It wasn’t about banging his hot teacher, it was very genuine. Usually I’m not a huge fan of student/teacher relationships because it’s usually really creepy (Remember Pacey???) and the ~scandalous nature of it is always played up. There was just something about Chris/Angie that made me feel like it was adorable.. and even later when Angie came back, it was only significantly different because of Chris/Jal.

There’s just nothing about Chris/Tina that has the same sheen as Chris/Angie. That shiny shiny sheen.

Sophy says: This is doing nothing for me. I have nothing to say.


Rin says: Being manipped onto their bodies, I just… love your work.

Sophy says: Kudos to Daisy for making Chris Collins’ choice a whole lot simpler than Chris Miles’!

Sophy says: I was sort of sad they left out the old couple and “Speak for yourself, Casanever.” But then I remembered the lady on the bus and how I told them they weren’t allowed to do that kind of thing anymore so… *pats Skins US on the head*

Rin says: You get so worked up over your own kind. It’s kind of adorable. *hands you your tea, and faces your chair towards the window*

Rin says: There is just something so weird about the appearance of Tony’s body. Like, he’s not proportional or something. IDEK.

Sophy says: I know right. He’s just so… little. Seriously, when Michelle kisses him I just feel sort of grossed out. It’s like she’s molesting a cabbage patch kid.

And oh man… now all I’m ever going to see when I look at Tony Snyder is this…

It’s cute how Stanley is sort of purposely hiding under his ridiculous hair <3

Rin says: Um. I’m just going to bring it back to just before you talk about Stanley’s hair. Because YOU CAN’T JUST DROP A BOMB LIKE THAT and then go back to our regular viewing. I used to have 3 cabbage patch kids, and I had fond memories of them which you have now ruined. Childhood destroyed.

Sophy says: 8-.

Sophy says: Okay so… the problem I have with this scene is that Tony Snyder seems younger and lamer and generally less HBIC in than this Michelle. This scene does not fit him. Pure and simple. When I watched this unfold in the original I was seriously creeped out and saddened by the note perfect portrayal of an emotionally abusive relationship. I didn’t get that at all this time around even though the dialogue was begging me to. It doesn’t help that Rachel completely squandered the ‘Your eyes are supposed to blur too’ line, playing it as half throwaway, half chastising, where April had infused it with a bone-deep worn-out hurt and humiliation. I’m all for a reinterpretation of the characters, but you can’t keep giving them the same damn lines and expect it to work. Skins dialogue is not random. It’s not interchangeable character to character. This show is basically treating it as though it is, and I’m actually starting to find it mildly offensive.

Rin says: I’m not offended by it, but I continue to be baffled. You spend all this time creating these characters and nurturing their stories, only to try to recreate them into hollowed-out versions of themselves. Is nothing sacred anymore? D: I mean, yes, of course BE has every right to do with them as he pleases, as the creator..but but.. if I was BE. I would have declared all past Skins as sacred, never to be tampered with, and then just gone about creating new characters/stories for the US. BUT I’M NOT MR ELSLEY AND I NEVER WILL BE :(( *CLOMPS AWAY*

Sophy says: It’s not that they’re re-doing, that I can handle. It’s that they’re re-doing the same lines with what are essentially different characters. It’s like… they’re implying that the dialogue exists in a vaccum with no direction as to how to play it, no sense of who the characters are beyond the words on the page. So eg. Rachel can say the same line as April but with a completely different vibe and it’s totally valid. Well to me it’s not. Good scripts are more than just bald dialogue and well-constructed characters are more than that just how the actor might choose to play a certain line.

I guess my eternal problem with these re-done episodes is that if they’re too similar they’re sort of pointless but if they’re too different it’s disrespectful to the integrity of the original vision.


Rin says: I JUST. NO. NO NO NO NO NO. This is not Daisy’s fault. This is the wardrobe department. What the fuck were they thinking? It’s disgusting.

Sophy says: Honestly? I’m with the puritanical hordes on this one. Please stop.

Sophy says: Wait what? Why do they have milk mustaches? Chris and Jal drank out of bottles. These two drank out of cups. Seriously, first Stanley with the chocolate, now this? Is the inability to nourish oneself without getting crap all over one’s face a theme or something?

Rin says: It might be an epidemic. We better keep an eye out for outbreak of milk mustaches, we don’t want to be caught in the fray.

Rin says: Oh, so that’s where the credit shot is from. And the logo is still in the way <3

Sophy says: That fucking logo, I swear *shakes fist*

This scene was… it was okay. I guess. Britne did a lovely job, but it just simply can’t buy that she would be interested in Stanley. Like, at all. I just keep wanting her to stand up and say “What just a fucking minute. Why am I, awesome Cadie, hanging around with this random loser who keeps babbling on about some other girl’s tits? GOODBYE FOREVER STANLEY.”

Also it turns out that the only motivation for Tony asking Cadie to lie about Stanley’s virginity was to get Tea to take her top off. Which I hadn’t really understood during the last episode. And also which… holy pathetic, Snyder.

Sophy says: Pizza. Yum.

Rin says: Pizza. Good.

Rin says: HASHAHAH suck it Tea. You’ll never win the gayest race now.

Sophy says: As if she ever had a hope with Effy around. BURN!

Rin says: Where did the screw come from.

Sophy says: His mum left it for him. For when he runs out of money. Then he’ll have a screw? Yeah.

Rin says: Back in your day he could trade it in for a nickel, he could!

Rin says: I don’t blame the mum for leaving. If I lived in a room that looked like that I would have runaway too. Interior decorator seriously needed.

Sophy says: Oh god. This scene. They just killed it with American. This is one of the most breathtakingly funny/sweet/poignant moments in Skins history, and I guess someone decided it wasn’t obvious enough for their audience, because they felt the need to add breathy woe-vocals, and a ‘What’d you do mom :(‘ on top of Jesse’s emo-face. And bam. Moment ruined.

Rin says: Oohohhhhhh his reflection in the broken mirror. GEDDIT? HE’S BROKEN TOO.

I almost expected him to see his reflection and sigh heavily, ‘Who am I??’



Sophy says: Now that is a show I need to see.

Rin says: Cadie talking up their sex was kind of cute.

Sophy says: That’s because Britne is wonderful and natural and should always be in scenes regardless of the context. She also did a nice job on the line about how they can’t eat the pizza till Chris pays.

The pile driver dialogue was pretty funny.

Sophy says: Chris has a tanty at them when they want him to pay for said pizza and is more or less all ‘1000 DOLLARS IS NOT A LOT OF MONEY YOU SELFISH, THOUGHTLESS JERKS *angst angst*’ He heads off to the store to try and return the CD player he bought.

Rin says: I very much appreciated the Americana of the store. It looked very retro, and somehow Chris’ shirt matching the decor really made me happy.

That’s about it though.

Sophy says: Yeah, this scene was a bust. Unfortunately, whilst the sales assistant in this version is just as pimply as the original, he doesn’t have the acting chops. I think part of the problem may also have been the direction – the scene was really rushed, which made the dialogue seem like words spoken rather than thoughts vocalized.

Also Jesse played this scene with a shade too much anger/frustration/fear for it to really be comical. And see here’s the thing with his performance overall. It’s not bad – I’d even go so far as to say that his acting is good in comparison to some of his cast-mates. He’s relatively natural, and he has his own little facial quirks and all that. It’s fine. It’s nice. But at the end of the day he’s too straight.

Um, no this is not a Rophy gayest thing. Bear with me.

The thing is that Jesse played Chris as a normal guy who sometimes does abnormal things. Whereas Joe played Chris as, you know, a damn weird kid. The whole way through the episode, I couldn’t quite put my finger on what felt different about the character. And then I rewatched the original and it was very quickly very clear.

See UK!Chris is subjected to exactly the same bullshit, but his response is very different. When US!Chris’s mum up and leaves, he’s upset about it from the get-go, and visibly so, whilst trying to pretend it doesn’t matter. UK!Chris seems to be pretending it isn’t even really happening. When all of US!Chris’s money has run out and the kids are asking him to pay for the pizza, he gets pissed at them, whereas UK!Chris is all kind of  :-? :)  :-s :) Here, with the sales assistant, US!Chris is angry and scared and showing it. UK!Chris was frustrated, sure, but he was also kind of actually enthused when he was telling him how to get rid of his acne. Basically US!Chris responds to all of these things the way a regular kid would. And then he also takes a bunch of pills. UK!Chris responds with a strangely uniform somewhat disconnected cheerfulness. He takes it all on the chin much longer than he should, it’s water off a duck’s back and the duck is rolling a joint… He barely actually seems to be thinking at all. Ever. And that is what makes it so affecting when we finally see him falling apart at his father’s house. Because by then he’s desperate – he is honest to god, desperate. And watching it all hit him so hard, hits the viewer hard right back. Like. IN THE FACE.

I’m also very confused by a little alteration in the dialogue here. In the original Chris cheerfully tells the assistant that he bought the stereo from his yesterday and he was “chuffed to sell it.” In this version Chris tells him he was “dying to sell it.” Now I can see how the word ‘chuffed’ might not work for an American audience, but ‘dying to’ is an odd translation of it. It seems to indicate that rather than simply being helpful and friendly as original Chris is suggesting, the assistant was in fact desperate to get the thing of his hands. Which… why would that be a helpful thing to remind him of whilst trying to take it back?


Rin says: I had nits once.

Sophy says: I would pick your nits. Lovingly.

Rin says: JUST LIKE OUR ANCESTORS :(( :(( 8-.

Sophy says: YES, JUST LIKE MY DEAD PEERS :(( :(( :((

Rin says: WHY WAS THE DOG IN THERE? D: Animal torture, call the fucking RSPCA.

Sophy says: And to think, PETA is one of the sponsors who wants to jump on the MTV Skins ship. To be fair, the dog was in the port-a-loo in the original too, it’s just that he was smaller so there was probably more space between him and, well. I don’t want to think about this anymore.

Rin says: Wow. This was not a welcomed change in the editing of Skins. It looks like something you try when you’re 13 and trying to make fanart, using as many filters as possible. Seriously? Stay away from the solarize filter.

My pants were never coming off. In fact, I think an extra pair of pants came on. Like a chastity belt.

Sophy says: Yeah seriously. I saw this and simply thought “It’s like someone gave a hamster photoshop.”

Rin says: Remember how we were like, fairy lights instantly make a scene pretty? Yeah, not true in a trashy crack den apparently.

Sophy says: I like the colours here though. The salmon pink of the wall and the lime green of the shower curtain.

Rin says: I’m kind of happy that they didn’t add ‘Fuck it!’ to any of the graffiti on the wall. I can imagine they were tempted to.

Sophy says: This was… fine?

Sophy says: Again… fine. Although Joe’s little shrug kind of made the scene in the original.

Rin says: It’s the scenes like the Chris/Tina scene that show why copying the original so closely just doesn’t work. It’s stupid and rather unbelievable how this Chris loses his blanket, he does so by just walking towards Tina and letting go of the robe. Tina immediately goes to pick it up to cover him back up. In the original Chris loses his cool by shouting, ‘I fucked up!’ whilst simultaneously standing up and using both his hands to gesture, causing him to lose his blanket. Angie then proceeds to comfort Chris by telling him he didn’t fuck up etc. and only after does she pick up his blanket from the floor.

The differences are subtle, but they add up, and ultimately it’s things like this that make the original more refined and purposeful.

Considering this comes years later after the original, you’d think it’d be more refined, not the other way round.

Sophy says: What’s freaking me out is that Chris absolutely looks like a child right here. As in child, not man-child. As in, it would be creepy and pedophilic for anyone old enough to teach in a high-school to see that last cap there and have any feelings of a sexual nature for him whatsoever. I don’t know, you guys. Joe would have been 19 when he filmed this episode, whereas Jesse is 17. Now, they’re both believable as 16 year olds. Just… one comes off as younger-16, the other as older-16. And you really, really need your character to be older-16 if you’re going to do a teacher/student romance. Like really.

Rin says: They couldn’t find a tshirt that fits? Honestly? This was no time to try and make a gimmick out of Chris.

Sophy says: Isn’t this Sid’s thing? The tightness of the shirt and the reindeer on it keep making me think of Megadog. OH MEGADOG. 8-. (Rin says: I LOVE MEGADOG!!!)

Also I’m just going to take a second here to weigh in on the Daisy-helps-Chris issue. When Jal did this it seemed sort of natural. She’s the sensible one and she’s the one who cares – that was established pretty early on, most notably in the scene with Sid in 102, where she is the one to hang around the longest trying to offer him support re: Madison Twatter. The fact that this is happening an episode earlier in US Skins, and that the aforementioned scene was altered, makes Daisy’s involvement feel a little contrived in comparison. I mean, sure, Daisy has Jal’s set-up lines in this episode – the milk mustache bit, the ‘You try it’ response to Tony… but the trouble is that prior to those set-up lines Daisy had pretty much just been written as Girl with Huge Knockers and a Trumpet who says Stupid Things about Rich People and Lesbians.

They’re unceremoniously dumping Daisy into Jal here, much as they did with Tony, Michelle and Cadie. Again, this is the downside of using the ready-made script.

Rin says: AHHAHA. I love that smug son of a bitch.


Rin says: Whenever anyone looks directly at the camera, I think of that Buffy outtake of Seth Green repeatedly looking into the camera and Nicholas Brendon tell him it’s bad. Anyone know what I’m talking about? Anyone? Bueller?

Sophy says: HE JUST KEPT DOING IT. HE WOULDN’T STOP. Seriously, kid, save it for your video diary.


Rin says: Trippy. I can’t stop staring.


Rin says: First it was CHRIS HAS A FATHER?? :O :O And now it’s CHRIS HAS A BROTHER?? :O :O

Sophy says: I like the step-mother. She was actually a pretty decent translation, though a bit less upsetting. But then the whole scene was less upsetting. In the original I honestly felt sort of sick with foreboding throughout the whole thing, because the change of mood was so unnerving and you could just feel that we were getting to the heart of the matter – suddenly, finally.

And okay, what? In the original it makes sense that Chris insists the baby photo isn’t of him, but of Peter, because, well, he looks at the damn photo. Come on, show, this is basic sense you’re not making. Actually, it’s basic sense you have unmade.

Rin says: This editing. I can’t even. I only included one of the black ~fade outs, because really, we don’t need to see it again in cap-form. But just imagine it goes in between all of the next caps.

It was horrible. Skins has never had to try in terms of editing. This just made it seem like they thought the original sequence wasn’t good enough so they had to jazz it up. Which never works. It’s such a pig with makeup kind of deal.

Sophy says: Absolutely, just… no. And why? And no. Hamster/photoshop.

Rin says: HE DOESN’T DROP THE BABY. Why bother showing him picking up the baby if he’s not going to drop it? THAT’S THE WHOLE POINT. DROPPING BABY <3

Like, have you ever been more shocked than when you first saw Chris DROP the baby? Seriously. That takes balls.

Sophy says: Omg in the original when he dropped the baby my stomach just plummetted with it. I’m disappointed they took that out, because it was just the most shocking and perfect expression of how utterly lost and broken Chris was at that moment. It was like he just ceased to be for a second, and if he wasn’t being, how could he be holding onto anything? I don’ t know… it also had all kinds of dark and wonderful undertones re: resentment of the child and self-loathing and guilt and loss and… I guess it was a little too bleak – a little too weird – a little too UK!Chris for US!Chris.

Rin says: I was quite impressed with the burning of the ~Skin.



Rin says: Nope, that line still isn’t working.

Sophy says: IT WORKS FOR ME OMG. Probably not quite in the way it was intended.

Sophy says: Look, I’m not going to go into detail about how utterly devastatingly beautiful the writing here is, because this episode, whilst perfectly fine and all, is a pale imitation of the original – this scene is a pale imitation of the original. I’ll pour forth my soul about it when we get to recapping gen 1. For now I’ll say: Jesse was fine. Joe was immense. I was moved this time around, but I was sick with feeling when I watched the original afterwards.

And here’s the part where I get all up in Ryan O’Nan’s face for showing that he does not understand the subtleties of this script. Because they left out a scene in this episode – a little scene that really matters in the context of this big one. The scene at Chris’s party with the small child selling drugs. Now I’m sure it’s cut out for a reason, so as to avoid an uproar from the Parents’ Television Council, because I don’t know, I guess it’s going to encourage 8 year olds who aren’t even watching the show to do drugs or something. But see it’s important. If they were going to cut it out, they really needed to replace it with something that would at least servicably perform its function in the wider scheme of things. Because that little scene, omg. It absolutely sets up the big reveal, even if you don’t consciously realize it on first viewing. There was Chris, sitting with a kid who might have been around his age in the story he tells at the end of the episode, teaching him how to roll a spliff – showing him what his hands can do now. And the kid is even calling him ‘Bruv’. That’s what makes the line about being able to roll a spliff even if he couldn’t tie the knots in scouts work; that’s what makes it so poignant when he leaves the spliff on the gravestone for his brother – for the memory of his own small self.

Rin says: I also liked Jesse, he did well, all things considered. Really wanting to see him make this character his own somewhere down the track, with fresh material. I mean, Chris Miles isn’t the easiest character to go up against at any rate, so I think things will get better once we’re further down the not-so yellow brick road.


Rin says: I never noticed Eura was there until I was looking at the caps. Like, that was after watching the episode twice. So later when she pops up, I felt creeped out. She just came out of nowhere, like some sort of ghost, haunting Tony.

Sophy says: I remember in the last recap Rin said Eura gave off a kind of ‘special younger sister’ vibe. And I’ve gotta say, the fact that she’s hanging around Tony and his friends kind of boulsters that.

Rin says: When I was like, in year 1, I used to sometimes hang around my brother who was 2 years above me. But I soon outgrew that, it appears, Eura did not.

Rin says: I could get behind that. JUST SOMETHING DIFFERENT, PLEASE.

Sophy says: You mean something different from Blandy right? I am with you. 100%.

Rin says: Who are you talking about?

Sophy says: Yeah, no. Not buying it, however well Britne sells it.

Rin says: IKR. Not even Britne can save it, which probably means we need some new directions, and no. I’m not saying bring the Glee Club in. Stay away from us Glee…far far away.

Rin says: Daisy and Michelle were a hell of a lot more excited than any of the others. Michelle SCREAMS, ‘NIPPLES!!!!’ and just what?! LOL.

Sophy says: lol oh Skins US. So racy.

Sofia’s face is completely adorbs, I can’t even. And I spy the tattoo which makes me think it’s actually hers. SHE’S A FIGMENT YOU GUYS. A FIGMENT, I TELL YOU.

Rin says: I’m seriously surprised we didn’t get a comment about it on the last recap. I was sure someone would confirm or deny the tattoo was real.

Rin says: Awww, you made momma proud.

Sophy says: 8-.


WHY IS SHE HANGING OUT WITH THEM ANY WAY? She has her own friends and places to be, I’m sure?

Sophy says: I’m not sure. Special.

Rin says: She may be on a funny farm, but she still knows what’s up.

Sophy says: It’s a simple equation really.

Rin says: I always find it ridiculous when people on TV are somehow stowed away inside a car. Like when there’s someone ~waiting in the backseat…or in this case trunk. HOW DO THEY GET IN. HOW?!



Sophy says: Yeah, this bothered me for that reason. Plus it’s just kind of creepy and gross. No wonder she is looking at him like she’d rather pluck feathers out of her pores than make out with him.

Rin says: So her niece stayed with her for a bit, and completely redecorated her room? ….NO. Too much.

Sophy says: AND THEN LEFT ALL HER 1001 TOYS BEHIND? Ugh. Stupid. And I know they don’t have student housing in the US or whatever, but I just don’t buy that this woman would let him stay in her home. Ironically I might have believed it with Chris and Angie in the original, but not with these two. And just… the lingering on either side of the door? It was so… *facepalm*

Rin says: HAhahah it was the best when it even panned in to show Chris with his hand on the doorknob. CAUSE YOU KNOW. We didn’t already get it.

Rin says: I think it’s something about the way we don’t see him stick the packet onto the wall which makes it have less impact. Visually it’s just a really nice call-back which completes the circle. If they were going to copy the whole packets all over the wall, they should have at least copied that final touch. OH WELL.

Sophy says: Agreed, entirely. Jesse does a nice job with his little faces here, but the symmetry just isn’t there… I don’t know. It lacks panache. And it also seems kind of silly that she’s giving him a room-warming present when it’s just a temporary – and very shady – arrangement. It just feels kind of random, whereas in the original the sentiment worked… ugh fuck it okay? I’m just going to rewrite this scene in a way that works for me because I can’t… trying to talk about this is like having a conversation with someone who has lipstick on their teeth.



We zoom in on a car in which Chris sits – passenger seat, buckled up. Overzealous lame Canadian teacher is in the driver’s seat.

Chin up, buddy!

He attempts to punch Chris playfully on the chin, but Chris jerks away at the last second, eyebrow raised like this guy some kind of overzealous freak, which he is.

Overzealous laughs stupidly. He taps his fingers against the wheel.

(gesturing towards the house they’re parked outside of)
Bet those nice folks in there are dying to meet you.

Chris stares at the overstuffed backpack in his lap. Overzealous stares at him.

(looking at his watch)
Oof! Would you look at that.

Chris leans over and looks at his watch, a mildly confused expression on his face.

It’s about that Dancing With The Stars time of night.

Chris stares at his backpack some more. Overzealous stares at the street.

(with a second attempt at the chin-bump)
Chin up, bu –

Presto! Chris is out of the car and on the sidewalk, holding his huge backpack by one of the straps, looking up at the house. Overzealous drives off, tentatively at first, then a little too fast.

Chris walks up to the door and somebody appears suddenly from round the side of the house, bumping into him. It’s Tina. She’s holding something; water splashes onto her shoes which are like, pink or something. In the brief kerfuffle we get a glimpse of a fish in a tall glass.

(pleased to see her)

(pleased to see him too, but a little sheepish)

There is a pause which seems awkward for her but not so much for him.

You’ll be alright, Chris. They’re good people.
A little on the bible-bashing side but…
I spoke to them. On the phone. Not here.
Here I was just… lurking.

Chris continues to smile, perhaps a little less brightly than he was initially, than he does usually.

(looking down)
Hey, nice fish.

(looking down too at her wet hands holding onto the glass)
Oh! He’s actually for you. Your friends said you liked fish, so…
I thought he might make you feel more at home.

Chris just smiles. After a beat Tina hands him the glass. Another beat. She hurries off down the street looking surreptitiously around her.

Chris gazes after her, then looks up at the door. He lets out an ‘Oof’ similar to the one Overzealous delivered in the car. He reaches into his pocket, and we close in on his open palm to see 4 or 5 miscellaneous pills all covered in lint, also a nickel and a skittle.

He shoves it all into his mouth and swallows it with the help of some of the fish’s water, being sure to cover the top so his friend is safe.

He taps the top of the glass when he’s done, smiles at the fish. We close in on the fish, swimming around in the rest of the water. We hear the doorbell ring.



And on that note… this episode was pretty cool in and of itself – judged in isolation I’d say it was the strongest episode of Skins US so far. It’s just that it can’t even begin to compete with the original – and if this show wants to work for Rophy, it’s going to have to stop trying.

Rin says: STANDING AND APPLAUDING. STANDING AND APPLAUDING. I’m still waiting for my naomily fanfiction by the way.

OH AND. Well. If we could sum up our feelings about this episode in a single macro it would be…

Rin says: Always and forever. Chris Miles.


Rin says: I’m nervous. SO SO NERVOUS. I mean, it looks mostly new and different, but people have been saying that she repeats a Cassie line i.e. Look up if you like me. SO GOD KNOWS what else has been copied. There are just things people, things you do not touch. And that is 102 Cassie. SIIIGH. But I’m also quite excited because, gosh darn it, I continue to really like Cadie.


Rin says: When I check in, shame checks out! :D

Rin says: CRY MORE TEA. Maybe you and Effy should put your minds together to find ways to be a better gay.

Sophy says: Their minds or their lady-parts?

39 Responses

  1. reign_anne
    reign_anne at · Reply

    Sophy, you nitpicker! But I love it when you nitpick!

    I watched this with my friend (who never watched the original) and frowned/reprimanded me when I was outraged that Chris did not drop the baby! She said I was mental and weird for wanting a scene like that. I did not even try to explain to her. I found it exhausting to even try.

    US Skins, they appear to be attempting to be subtle but apparently gets stuck in the attempt. By now, Tea and Tony and hook up and I could care less. Actually, can they just do it and be done with it because all this brooding/longing look that Tony is throwing at Tea is embarrassing. And WTF Tea, scope the place out and discover the power of pussy, stop acting all uncomfortable/whatever that face is. Or you know just disappear or something.

    Nothing in all the episodes holds my attention, its either I fall asleep or forward the scenes. Funny that I could watch the rude, crude, filthy, and irreverent scenes in Misfits and not cringe but a short scene with the simple presence of Abbud just makes me cringe, continuously and repeatedly.

    Also, Eura is practically nonexistent. Effy was mysterious, Eura is just invisible, literally. Because I do not even see her and when I finally do I cannot even recognize her, I keep on asking ‘who’s that girl? Oh, its Eura.” Shame.

    Please tell me that your recap for Rich’s episode is up next.

    As always, thank you for the LOLS.

  2. Lily
    Lily at · Reply

    I kind of have the feeling that if UK Skins never existed in all its glory then I could maybe take a shine to Skins US.. but honestly, I just can’t keep wanting to laugh or cringe or run away. I’ve found I don’t particularly care about any of the characters at all, which is freaking me out because, well, … it’s part of the amazing Skins Universe. But really, it doesn’t belong there at the moment. I agree that if they wanted to create a believable, successful remake, I feel like they should have taken the basic premise of Skins, but recreated the show entirely for a US audience, with entirely new characters and stories. It just doesn’t feel… convincing? or something. Lol at the lipstick on the teeth.. that’s exactly how I feel. I feel almost awkward watching it, and I can’t focus on the good coz all I can see is the lipstick! I MISS CHRIS PUCKING MILES! I can’t fall in love with Chris Collins, I just can’t :(

  3. TheRealTRXD
    TheRealTRXD at · Reply

    I feel like a total loser for defending Skins US before it aired, because this is just… terrible. It failed pretty much everywhere it could… the script is terribly rewritten, the Tea episode was full of “I’m a lesbian” and a predictable plot twists and then lame cliches, which is something Skins UK does sometimes, but in a smart way, and it only takes up about 15 minutes of the episode! Tea’s episode just felt like it was a little girl putting on high heels and makeup trying to be her mom, and it just look ridiculous. (That’s a good analogy… I’ll go with that one).

    Daisy, put your boobs away! Your not on the street corner looking for work so why are you constantly trying to find ways to show as much of your bra as you can? It feels like the wardrobe department violated her.

    Okay, next episode is its last chance, the second original episode and also Cadie…

  4. Mia
    Mia at · Reply

    *Incoming rant*

    Not gonna sugarcoat it, shit acting was shit and Chris Miles is probably turning in his grave. The whole delivery of the Peter’s grave scene was horrible, the dib dib dib part and.. oh, it was just so forced. I can’t even. Plus Tina is ugly and Angie looked like Katy Perry/Zooey Deschanel, so suck it Tina.
    And also, what is US chris’s motto gonna be? “bleep it”? Ridiculus. *points wand at skins US*

    This is gonna sound stupid but Dragon ball was a really enormous part of my childhood that I will nostalgically treasure and love forever and when the US decided to make the “Dragon ball Evolution” movie, it felt like they just took a big dump on my childhood memories. Skins is to my young adulthood what Dragon ball is to my childhood and they’re doing it again. It feels like they’re desecrating our collective sanctuary and it really really upsets me. Because it’s not just MY skins, it’s ours. It’s like part of something that defines a generation. It’s like trying to remake Harry Potter, there is only one Hermione Granger. ETC.

    If I could make a wish it would probably be for money but it would also be for US skins to stop this nonsense before they get to gen 2, seriously, am I the only one who worries about it? I’m in college and I don’t worry about final exams, instead I worry about how devastating it would be if they got to gen 2.
    I’m not being nasty or anything Skins US, I don’t even think you realise you’re doing it. It’s just it makes you look like a desperate whore.
    Ok, so overly dramatic fan girl is overly dramatic but what do you want me to do? Six seater table. etc etc.

    1. Lily
      Lily at · Reply

      “I’m not being nasty or anything Skins US, I don’t even think you realise you’re doing it. It’s just it makes you look like a desperate whore.” Ahaha nice :) They need some Katie Fucking Fitch action. But really, I’m agreeing a thousand times over.. I’m just trying so hard to like it!

  5. Mia
    Mia at · Reply

    Also, even if Rophy doesn’t talk smack about Skins US.
    Standard gen 2 recap = 2 to 3 pages long
    309: 4 Pages.
    306: 5 Pages.
    Skins US: 1 page long.
    In short, skins US is just for the lols.
    Plus, it doesn’t make rin’s pants come off.

  6. Nemesis
    Nemesis at · Reply

    I love this recap so much! And I agree, Tea is lacking serious gayness (Effy WILL win the race this season, without even being in it!), while Cadie and Michelle just go for tiny bland children with no reason at all. Seriously, I still have the picture of Cadie as Stan’s babysitter in my head and now you planted baby Tony in there… And since you nicely point out that the ACTUAL baby is more HBIC than US!Tony (Or as I call him Phony) ever will be – well…
    I’m pretty sure they’ll keep pushing for Cadie/Stanley and Tea/Tony though. Because if I’ve learned anything from US television it’s that the hottest girls fall for the lamest, ugliest guys and let them treat them like shit for no reason at all. Also, lesbians just need to find a tiny boring guy to tell them “I matched you good” and then they’re “cured”. Who would’ve thought… Learning something new every day. Which brings up the question, do the writers of US Skins believe in this sexual-orientation-is-a-choice bullshit? Because they’re acting as if they do, and it’s just sad.
    As is this carbon copy of Chris… and his playmate teacher. Seriously, what’s up with this casting team?
    And I’m totally with you on Daisy’s top. What the fuck was that? Is she supposed to end up a hooters waitress/tiny stripper?

    Totally looking forward to your coverage of “Rich” which will hopefully be as Grace-full as humanly possible, and by that I simply mean I want to see tons of pictures of adorable Grace/Rich. THAT’S Skins. I don’t know what this US show is… maybe they thought we’d buy it if they just copied enough of the original script?

  7. Rob
    Rob at · Reply

    I agree with almost all of this review and also have mixed feelings about the next episode as well. However I still decided to look at the Chris Webisode Tarp Car and I don’t know if you’ve seen it but its great, it really is, just what I would have imagined Skins US to be. I can even tolerate the beeping in it it’s so good, and Jessie and Rachel really get a chance to shine in it. It makes me wonder though why, if they can make a scene this good then why can’t they put something as good as this in the actual programme.

  8. Molly
    Molly at · Reply

    Cadie wore JEAN SHORTS and you didn’t tell Sophia?!

    You pinpointed my problem with most of the cast re: looking so damn young. The issues the characters dealt with in series 1 were on different levels of “adult,” so it was really important that they could play older. Especially Tony and Chris. Cassie had an illness that often involved a Peter Pan complex, so she was allowed to look/act/dress young.

    So scared of this week. Full disclosure – I’ve struggled with severe anorexia and my family and boyfriend cried all through 102. It is astounding how nuanced and wonderful the writing is. The thing that’s bothering me about Cadie is that, well, I can’t tell what her deal is. Cassie was a nutcase, but she had a mental illness. I’m afraid they’re just trying to make overly quirky and weird without well though reasoning behind it. For example (I’m sorry, Skins gen 1 is one of my passions), in 101 Cassie’s rearranging of the kitchen is quite odd but appropriate in the context of her mental illness. I can’t tell if they’re giving Cadie an ED, but she has one, than the whole cheese puffs things was kind of a lazy gimmick.

    Also, since this is my first time commenting, I just wanted to thank you for your wonderful recaps! You’d think that such a great show would have people chomping to recap it, but you guys and Heather really are superlative.

  9. H
    H at · Reply

    Since you already watched Chris Miles’ gen 1 episode to compare, why not Rophy it??
    I’m only being practical, you see. :-w

  10. folkpants
    folkpants at · Reply

    Once again, I’m gonna blame America. Subtlety is not something that America does well. The show seems to have been re-written on level that is just a dumbing-down. The thought is American audiences and especially MTV audiences can’t be bothered to pick up on the subtle beauty of a show like Skins. So it has to be completely spelled out for us and badly. And of course America can never see anything as amazing as Chris dropping the baby. That was such a great UK moment. And the baby macro has been my favorite of the US Skins recaps. Thanks ladies.

    I’m done commenting on the US version. I pout during these episodes then get totally blown away watching the Series 5 episodes. It is so superior I can’t even…thinking about defecting to UK perhaps…

    1. Olive
      Olive at · Reply

      “Subtlety is not something that America does well.”

      What about Mad Men?

      1. Nemesis
        Nemesis at · Reply

        Don’t get me started on Mad Men. Why do people like this so much? The only well-done thing I’ve ever seen on this show was a guide to abuse and cheat on women. I’ve watched more, because I was waiting for SOMETHING to happen, but I don’t remember anything at all. Except being really, really, really bored. More than when I watched US!Tony’s episode.

        1. Sophy
          Sophy at · Reply

          Seriously? You didn’t even like the part where PEGGY OLSEN IS PEGGY OLSEN???

          1. Nemesis
            Nemesis at · Reply

            No. The only thing about it that I like is Joan’s style. Oh, and Jon Hamm when he’s not Don Draper, but doing something smug and awesome, like SNL. I can’t like Paggy because I don’t like the whole show (Which doesn’t make sense when I think about the fact that I watch V every damn week only for one character, but then it’s Morena playing her, so… she’s Inara Serra. It doesn’t really count as an example.)

    2. folkpants
      folkpants at · Reply

      US Skins should be re-named “PUCKS.”

      1. Sophy
        Sophy at · Reply

        lmfao! ♥

      2. Nemesis
        Nemesis at · Reply

        I don’t get it. Ok, now I feel dumb. I’d get “sucks” and “fucks”, but “pucks” i never heard.

        1. Sophy
          Sophy at · Reply

          Pucking hell! It’s actually a reference to the new show ‘Episodes’ :)

    3. maga
      maga at · Reply

      “Subtlety is not something that America does well.”

      lol. glad we’re not making sweeping generalizations or anything.

  11. Eskimo Jo
    Eskimo Jo at · Reply

    “When I watched this unfold in the original I was seriously creeped out and saddened by the note perfect portrayal of an emotionally abusive relationship. I didn’t get that at all this time around even though the dialogue was begging me to. It doesn’t help that Rachel completely squandered the ‘Your eyes are supposed to blur too’ line, playing it as half throwaway, half chastising, where April had infused it with a bone-deep worn-out hurt and humiliation. I’m all for a reinterpretation of the characters, but you can’t keep giving them the same damn lines and expect it to work. Skins dialogue is not random. It’s not interchangeable character to character. This show is basically treating it as though it is, and I’m actually starting to find it mildly offensive.”

    I CAN’T EVEN. APPLAUDING FOREVER AND EVER AND EVER. ~EXACTLY my thoughts except said so much more eloquently. I wish I could like… print this out and paste it to my forehead or something. Tears in my eyes, seriously. So right on. x x

  12. whiplash-girlchild
    whiplash-girlchild at · Reply

    I didn’t think it was that bad. Wow. Hrm. I thought the acting was better in this ep than the 1st two. Why is everyone still hating on Eura? Christ. She hasn’t said or done anything. Everyone needs to get off the whole Effy tip. Jump off Eura’s jock, per se. Omg. I still think they may fumble through this entire season. It may take awhile to find their own voice, I’m optomistic compared to all of fandom apparently….but as Oscar Wilde once said, “We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.”

  13. buttermequeasy
    buttermequeasy at · Reply

    Oh dear lord. Whenever Jesse speaks, I feel frightened because it seems like his voice is about to crack … and he’s going to have an emotional breakdown. Like why, Skins US? Me no gusta. Good job on the recap BTW! Love you guys. Waiting for 502 in all its glory. :)

    1. Mia
      Mia at · Reply

      Lol , “No me gusta”

  14. Hanna
    Hanna at · Reply

    Wow! I completely agree with ALL of this. Reading this made me realize that Chris’ episode is what made me fall completely in love with Skins. It’s still one of the most beautiful episodes to me. Mostly because of Joe’s acting. I can’t tell you how many times I rolled my eyes during this episode. Especially the gravescene which in it’s original version is flawless..you can’t replace Chris Miles, I already knew that. But they could’ve at least tried to do him justice.

  15. Jamie
    Jamie at · Reply

    I love your guys’ recaps! They’re brilliant.
    This episode was a no-go for me though, no one beats Joe as Chris. I agreed completely with your guys’ inputs.

    I have a question though,
    when are you going to recap Rich’s episode for Skins UK 5?

    Also, I’ve been REALLY curious as to why you guys haven’t recapped Emily’s episode in Skins 4? The first two episodes…
    I’d love to see them recapped. So much!

    Hope you answer!

  16. Mad
    Mad at · Reply

    Heh, that bargain store they went in is this hilariously gigantic bargain store in Toronto called Honest Ed’s. (I’m pretty sure anyway, I recognise those price signs.) It is so stupidly big with stairwells all over the place that you can literally get lost in it. (I think it says that on the wall somewhere, come in and get lost for a bit! Or something.) And it has ridiculous kitsch like golden Jesus art. And these 50 cent rompers made out of material that feels like it is embedded with barbed wire.

    I agree with Rob, y’all should definitely have a look at the Unseen Skins for this episode. The rest of the show REALLY needs to be like that if it is going to be good. At first I didn’t think the censoring and editing would matter that much, but I think it might actually be affecting the quality of the show. At first I was like “who cares, bleeping doesn’t really bother me,” which it doesn’t that much, but it seems like the little things, like the not dropping the baby, that are really affecting the show, like they are just treading a bit too lightly. I think it is because it is America, unfortunately. They really should have just gone all Canadian and made it take place in Canada, and then sold it the States like they did with Degrassi. Then they could do what they want, like when they refused to show Manny’s abortion episode for a long time. I think basing it completely here in Canada would have made it better. And then if Americans wanted to watch the unedited, uncensored versions of the show they could just dl it.

    1. Nemesis
      Nemesis at · Reply

      Am I the only one who doesn’t care that he failed to drop a baby? It might be because I sorta like babies, or because Skins US has so many problems, I consider this the slightest. One of those.

  17. Miss Erin
    Miss Erin at · Reply

    This episode really tested my patience… to the point that I could only force myself to sit through half of it on Tuesday. It took me until today to bring myself to finish it. And to be truthful, I only finished it so I could read this recap. But a large part of me kind of wishes I didn’t finish it. Not that this recap wasn’t worth it, but the episode itself was just painful to watch. It’s been a long time since I have seen the original episode… but this remake still managed to make me frustrated and almost angry. Actually, no, I take back the almost. The baby scene made me angry! Seriously, what was that? It made no sense. At all. *angry sigh*
    I’m really trying to give MTV a fair go, but, well, Sophy, your “It’s just that it can’t even begin to compete with the original – and if this show wants to work for Rophy, it’s going to have to stop trying.” statement is spot on. Spot. On. Rant over.

    Also, Cabbage-Patch-Tony with his little chubby arms… LOL!

  18. anamewhatsinaname
    anamewhatsinaname at · Reply

    couldn’t agree more with everything you said.

    skins u.s. has been god awful so far. i can’t believe BE is involved in that.
    tony is ridiculous (+tony/tea). i can’t even

    can’t believe i was so looking forward to it all these months

  19. lobstersforlife
    lobstersforlife at · Reply

    I was rereading your recap (yes rereading, your recaps continue to be infinitely better than Skins US itself, they are basically why I am sticking with Skins US. Also because I keep hoping it’ll get better.) I must say this episode was just painful to watch for me, Joe and Chris Miles and that episode will never be matched in my opinion, I would elaborate but I’m pretty sure Sophy just said everything I feel about it.
    Moving on. On this Skins US episode I was at first weirded out that Chris would find a box of Viagra in Tina’s niece’s room, which just doesn’t make sense. But now I just actually read the box’s label and hey, they’re oral contraceptives. Which, if I understand well, won’t do absolutely nothing to Chris other than give him a dose of some ~lady hormones? Which like, heh? Also in the original the whole point was the cycle aspect of the thing, he starts off the episode taking viagra, has an erection for pretty much half of the episode, then doesn’t take anything when he’s been thrown out of his house and breaks down. It all just culminated in the end when he took another viagra pill and basically, went back to be ol’ crazy Chris. A cycle, right? I’m not crazy?
    So. Oral contraceptives? For women? Really?! I don’t know what’s more upsetting.
    Oh and by the way, from now on I am just going to assume that Sophy’s version of the end of the episode is actually what happened. What was on my tv was just too upsetting.

  20. Daniela
    Daniela at · Reply

    I’m not watching anymore but I read the recap and is so much fun, I *might* watch Cadie’s episode just for the sake of her beautiful face.

  21. Jess
    Jess at · Reply

    Don’t know of this was already answered or not but Tea’s tattoo isn’t just drawn on it’s Sofia’s actual tattoo

  22. badjujuboo
    badjujuboo at · Reply

    WHY WHY did I only find your blog once USskins is over and cancelled and I CANNOT LAUGH AT ALL THE THINGS and AGREE WITH EVERY SINGLE THING YOU SAY!


    honestly, the pair of you are awesome xx

  23. imgur
    imgur at · Reply

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