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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Whatever happened to the greatest drama series ever to be shown on TV?
I am, as you all know, referring to Skins series 3, a program I have watched more than any other and even written a 16000 word review/recap of it. It was a series that reached out and touched people. Like Glee, it transcended its target demographic. It was important television and Series 4 was the most anticipated (by me anyway) program ever since the moon landing...
Published on 30 May 2010 by Ian Williams

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Buy if you liked series 3, don't expect it to satisfy you.
I must start off by saying that in my opinion, series 3 was excellent. Like many others, I wasn't really keen on the idea of a completely new cast. However, these feelings of doubt soon vanished, and I found myself enjoying this series just as much as the previous two. After watching the final scenes of the last episode of series 3, I sat in wait for what was sure to be a...
Published on 30 Jan. 2011 by Joe


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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Whatever happened to the greatest drama series ever to be shown on TV?, 30 May 2010
By 
Ian Williams "ianw" (Sunderland, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Skins - Series 4 [DVD] (DVD)
I am, as you all know, referring to Skins series 3, a program I have watched more than any other and even written a 16000 word review/recap of it. It was a series that reached out and touched people. Like Glee, it transcended its target demographic. It was important television and Series 4 was the most anticipated (by me anyway) program ever since the moon landing.
And then we got Skins series 4 which was like being slapped with a wet piece of cod. It wasn't all bad, not by a long way, and did have some good stuff. But what it didn't have was the magic of Series 3. So, what happened? And I should add that in my attempt to find out, we'll doing serious spoilers, so if you aren't already familiar with it, you'd be best off reading another review.
It opened promisingly if grimly. Sophia, a girl unknown to us wanders through a heaving club, walking by or bumping into our friends. After walking past a snogging Naomi and Emily she climbs onto a balcony and jumps off. The first two episode are about the aftermath. When Naomi lies to the police in front of Emily, Emily starts digging into what really happened. What she finds out shatters her relationship with Naomi, even though they've just moved in together, and they spend the rest of the series in a living hell as Emily is full of anger and resentment and Naomi is full of guilt and self-pity.
Thomas, who had been running the club night is expelled from Roundview by the new ruthless head who speaks softly and carries a bull-pizzle whip with which to lash recalcitrant students. Actually that's a metaphor, or maybe just a fantasy of mine. Thomas then undergoes his own journey into the heart of darkness by foolishly if understandably (she's hot, she's talented, she's from the Congo, and she wants him anyway) having sex with his minister's daughter and then, stupidly, tells Pandora who won't, at Effy's urging, forgive him.
So far, so glum.
On the other hand, Katie 4king Fitch comes up trumps. When her family starts to collapse around her due to her father's incompetent financial dealings, it's Katie who holds everything together even to the extent of getting them to movie in with Naomi and Emily. What do you think, Mysterious Voice-over from The Weakest Link? "Well Ian, from the weakest player in the last round, Katie has become the strongest in this one." Thank you, sir. Katie, unlike some of our characters, is growing up and doing a good job it it.
The next biggest surprise is Cook. An even bigger one is his mother who is just as selfish a monster as his father was in series 3. Except she's a millionaire conceptual artist who has loud sex within the hearing of Cook and his 10 year old half-brother. Cook comes to learn that his actions have consequences which he finally faces up to and it appears that he too is beginning to grow up. Sadly it doesn't last.
Thank god we get some well-earned light relief with JJ falling in love with a single mother who cute and pretty and bright enough to realise that a gentle 18 year old who flirts with old ladies at a checkout is a better bet than her chav ex-boyfriend. There are lots of funny scenes and painful ones too, plus an encounter with JJ's quiet father who has always thought that JJ would do just fine even while he tolerates JJ's mum dragging him to see dopy shrinks. And it has a happy end.
Meanwhile, Freddie and Effy (my two least favourite characters) are living in a haze of drugs, sex, and madness. Freddie blames his father for his mother's suicide and when Effy develops similar symptoms he can't cope. This leaves Effy at the mercy of an obsessive psycho-shrink who makes her even worse and who, when it seems she's out of his clutches, murders Freddie and Series 4 jumps the shark. Madness is a serious and important subject and it was right to tackle it in Skins. But what they should not have done was to introduce a genuinely homicidal psychologist into the mix and reduce it to cheapest and crudest of melodrama. More than anything else, this ruined series 4 for me. And getting his comeuppance from Cook didn't help any either.
And so to the last episodes when loose ends are tied up and relationships are resolved. Like you, I desperately wanted Naomi and Emily to get back together properly and if they hadn't I would probably have destroyed the television set and stalked the writers with a baseball bat. That's another metaphor; I wouldn't really. So, no surprise, they did get back together with lots of crying and some kissing (not enough). Thomas, in the space of five minutes is seen running by a coach who tells him he's international class and fixes him up with a sports scholarship at Harvard. Wow! And they say fairy tales don't happen. Pandora, who was always cleverer than she admitted to be, has got several squillion A*s and a history to scholarship to- Oh, you'll never guess.
Outside the party in Freddie's shed where all this has been happening, lurks psycho-shrink who is followed home by Cook who finds, all neatly laid out in the living room, the evidence that his best mate has been murdered. Violence is about to ensue when the credits come up.
Great cast, great acting, great adult guest stars, and some bloody horrible plot developments. Still, we'll always have Skins 3.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Buy if you liked series 3, don't expect it to satisfy you., 30 Jan. 2011
This review is from: Skins - Series 4 [DVD] (DVD)
I must start off by saying that in my opinion, series 3 was excellent. Like many others, I wasn't really keen on the idea of a completely new cast. However, these feelings of doubt soon vanished, and I found myself enjoying this series just as much as the previous two. After watching the final scenes of the last episode of series 3, I sat in wait for what was sure to be a cracking fourth series!

...However, this was not the case.

There was so much potential for this series, it literally couldn't have had a better build up. But I was sadly let down by the down right absurd story lines and acting that wasn't really up to scratch. The fifth episode (Freddie's) is by far the most weirdest one ever created. Now don't get me wrong, he is my favourite character out the lot, but I sat shocked at how jumbled and out-of-place everything seemed in his episode. I wont spoil it for you, just see for yourself. The other episodes didn't offer anything new, it was just so average for such a great program.

BUT, there are some redeeming factors, such as two episodes that stood out from the rest. These being Cook's and JJ's. They are GREAT. Cook's episode sees him having to come to terms with what he has done, and realising what harm he's done to other people. It was fantastic to see this sort of character arc, and it brought him to life, which definitely made him to most interesting person to watch during the series. Then there's JJ's episode, which sees him start to fall in love with a girl who works at the same confectionery store as him. But it turns out that she comes with some baggage. This episode seemed to turn a blind eye to everything else that was going on in the series and concentrate on itself. Which is a good thing by the way.

So to finish off, the bad episodes outnumber the good, and the ending will leave a bad after taste. So I'm afraid to say that as a hardcore skins fan, this has been the worse series so far. I wouldn't go as far as to call it a rubbish series, but it is when you compare to the first, second and third.

Buy it if you liked the third series, but don't expect it to satisfy you.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as series 3..., 17 Mar. 2010
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This review is from: Skins - Series 4 [DVD] (DVD)
Unlike a lot of people, I welcomed the change of cast at the end of Series 2. I never really "connected" with any of the characters from the first generation, so for me the change wasn't unwanted.
When I first saw series 3 - and this may have been because of my low expectations - I was instantly impressed. The characters seemed a lot more interesting, genuine, and it was also nice to see the characters actually meet and become friends (which we didn't get to see in 1 and 2).
Having seen all of the episodes of Series 4, I think it's fair to say that this series is not as good. This is ironic, as this is probably the most ambitious of all of the series so far. The main problem is that, like the previous three series, each episode focuses on a character, but in this case there is too much focus, almost to the point that it excludes the other characters. Obviously, if you like the character, you will probably enjoy the episode, but if you don't care for them, you probably won't. For example, I watched Thomas' episode on television as it was the first episode, but probably will avoid it when watching the series again on DVD.
For me, the Emily/Naomi relationship is the most interesting storyline of the show, and whilst Emily's episode was good, I felt annoyed that Naomi wasn't given her own episode this series (and contrary to what people claim, the last episode is not "mainly" Naomi's). To me, it just seems strange that the creators chose to give Thomas and Katie their own episodes, yet Naomi and Pandora - who are, in my opinion, much more interesting and entertaining characters - don't. Pandora was extremely underused this series, which is a shame.
The Freddy/Effy/Cook triangle is also more interesting and emotive this series, which is a good thing as it is the main focus of at least three episodes.
Ultimately Series 4 is better than most things on TV despite its flaws, and in my opinion, is better than Series 1 and 2. It just doesn't live up to the high of Series 3.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fading but still great telly, 18 April 2010
This review is from: Skins - Series 4 [DVD] (DVD)
Like many of the other reviewers here, I enjoyed this series of Skins, but felt there was something amiss. Series 3 surprised me (you know how we all hate change ;), I warmed to the characters and the previous incarnation of misfits were long forgotten. However, series 4 meandered. It was almost as if any depth of our characters was used up and worn out in the previous series, leaving some of the episodes lacking. It's the first time that I've found myself able to put the kettle on without pausing the dvd, simply because they were just not as 'all-out' engaging as before.

That said, there were still some Skins moments that had the grin/laugh/cry triggers going on.
I can't believe I'm going to say this, but I thought the whole Freddie exit was just wrong. I can't elaborate for fear of a spoiler, but needless to say, the last 5 seconds of that scene I could have done without!

Roll on series 5. How will the first scene open? Will it involve a hill in Bristol and someone on a space-hopper? Oh the anticipation !
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Weepy and a little bogged down in the mud., 7 Mar. 2012
By 
Julia Havard "Heights47" (Swansea, Wales) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Skins - Series 4 [DVD] (DVD)
Simply put the decline of Skins begun in Series 3 picks up pace and frankly only gets worse. Mainly everyone has a problem everyone is unhappy unsure and yet unwilling to do something about there is no humor copious amounts of suicide self harm and a very bleak narrative an story arc. The issue is Skins has always been unafraid to tackle serious issues but at the same time these issues were centralised to one specific character with the others helping them come out the other side and get over their own adversities which dint happen once again it became Effy, Cook Freddie with the others playing puppets in this great game. It was difficult to sympathise with Effy when she seemed determined not to help herself. And the final nail was the awful finale with a hollow death (remember how sad it was to say goodbye to Chris) and really stupid conclusions (Harvard anyone) or no conclusions (katie, Emily, JJ, Naomi) simply put a depressing dull series with little light to its very very dark shade.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Epicc :), 6 Jun. 2010
By 
Whitney S. Cunninham "WhitneeSiann" (East Midlands, ENGLAND) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Skins - Series 4 [DVD] (DVD)
Skins: Series 4 is darker and deeper than ever as the gang - led by the irrepressible Cook (Jack O'Connell) - return for their second year at college.

With more twists than a particularly tangled roller-coaster, each characters story is played out with a clever fusion of drama and delight - reflecting those unique years of carefree yet life-changing experiences.

Boozing, sexuality, drug taking and mental health problem are some of the issues to be tackled in the show's fourth outing as the show - which has never been afraid to court controversy - again sets out to shock.

But superb acting added to a very solid script gives the series a gritty, realistic edge even during the somewhat surreal moments that are conjured up.

As well as the talented cast of kids, the Channel 4 series is smattered with celebrity appearances from the likes of Will Young, Pauline Quirke and Hugo Speer.

They're joined by the wonderful - but criminally underused - new headteacher David Blood, whose scheming to improve grades is an amusing diversion from the main - and far heavier - plotlines.

One quick word on the ending.

I'm not a rat so I won't spoil it for those of you who have yet to tune in.

However English teachers always tell the GCSEs student never to end an essay with "And we woke up and it was all a dream" because it's the worst possible way to end a story.

Well, Skins came up with a pretty close alternative according to the hundreds of complaints from aghast fans.

I, for one, loved it.

Questions at the end of programmes always spark debate rather than the rather routine 'all-wrapped-up' feel that so many dramas strive to provide for end of season finales.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Poor very poor., 3 April 2011
This review is from: Skins - Series 4 [DVD] (DVD)
Well i through series 3 was bad, this is just the worst series of skins ever. And they plan to make a movies based around this gen why. The only way the film could work is if cook is killed by foster in the first scene of the film. And they need to bring all the 1st gen back and have the 2nd gen in it. The only episode i liked was jj's he was again the best charater in the series. Katie was o.k but the rest where poorly used, some characters were under used like panda and thomas or in cook and effy's case over used effy's story would have been o.k if it was not a rip off of cassie's story in series 1. And cook some how getting out of prison give me a break. It is funny all the fan that use the skins blog some how think that cook could survive in the situation he is left in at the end of series 4. But a grown man with baseball bat against a child who is face to face with the man that killed freddie sorry only one realistic ending there. But if they do a film and it based around the 2nd gen it could be as unrealistic as the 3rd and 4th series . To end if you liked skins series 1/2 stay away from the 2nd gen like the plague and skip straight to series 5. If i could give this 0 stars i would. Read the book much better even cook comes across better in the book. I'm just glad they have series 5 now and with 6 out next year skins is looking up again.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!, 25 Mar. 2010
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This review is from: Skins - Series 4 [DVD] (DVD)
As always, this series of Skins was fantastic. The writers really know how to do a good teen drama. Is it always realistic? No. But it paints a picture of youth that is never captured on TV on any other program. They treat the young as human capable or real emotions and the dedication they give to the show really shows onscreen. What a well made show!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Skins- series 4, 19 April 2010
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This review is from: Skins - Series 4 [DVD] (DVD)
Series 4 has at times continued with the fine tradition of Skins, although, like its predecessor series 3, often leaves you dissapointed. Overall, it does edge out series 3 into last place but it still consistently has poor endings to most of the episodes, especially the last one. Although all episodes are worth watching, some, such as the Katy and Freddie episodes, are at times quite dull. And why virtually no Pandora for instance? Cook is also often under used, probably the best character in the show, whereas boring Freddie never seems to leave the screen on some episodes. Overall, good, but still can often leave a sour taste in your mouth. And the less said about the ending too the last episode the better.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The story of Naomi and Emily, 3 Aug. 2013
By 
Aj121 (Coventry, United Kingdom (for now)) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Skins - Series 4 [DVD] (DVD)
For me, the second generation of Skins was the story of Naomi and Emily's relationship; this is despite a media focus on characters, such as Effy, and the 'shock' drug-fuelled scenes.

Continuing from the end of the third series, Skins series 4 is much darker than its predecessor and deals with sensitive issues such as mental health, and receiving the news that you are infertile; the show also deals with many teenage issues such as young love, and the fear of leaving behind your friends to move to university.

Amazing performances from Lily Lovless, Kathryn Prescott, and Ollie Barbieri ensure Skins series 4 is worth a watch.
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Skins - Series 4 [DVD]
Skins - Series 4 [DVD] by Kaya Scodelario (DVD - 2010)
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