Misfits s03e04: killing Hitler

Misfits killing Hitler
A review by Nalini Haynes
  • Creator: Howard Overman
  • Stars: Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, Joseph Gilgun, Iwan Rheon, Lauren Socha, Antonia Thomas
  • Watch this if you like: comic book movies

He aint no Bill but here we see an attempt to kill Hitler.

This is possibly Misfits‘ most ambitious story to date. When Curtis could travel through time, people made smart-ass comments about him going back through time to kill Hitler. Curtis couldn’t because he couldn’t control his gift. After Curtis sold his gift and purchased another – as you do when your gift has saved your life and the lives of your friends repeatedly – Curtis asked for an exchange; he wanted his old gift back. The answer? Some ‘old Jew’ had bought it; he intended to kill Hitler.

Now we see that old Jew – Friedrich Hirsch – go back in time to do exactly that. Friedrich lays flowers on a grave and writes a letter explaining his survivor guilt and desire to now – at long last – do something about Hitler. He travels back to 1930s Berlin to kill Hitler before the genocides start.

Friedrich is old and frail so Hitler overpowers him easily, stabbing him in the gut. Probably looking for a wallet to identify the old man, Hitler finds a mobile phone before Friedrich travels back to the 21st century.

The Nazis reverse-engineer the phone, changing history by winning the war – and successfully invading Britain.

The Misfits have different lives in this alternate timeline although they all seem to have their ‘current’ powers. An underground movement operates to help those with powers escape the Nazis because they’re the new Jews. Shaun, the odious probation officer, willingly works for the Nazis, slacker that he is. Shaun’s post-coital cigarette is only a touch more subtle than Smokin’ Joe’s cigar after Budget 2014. Simon makes puppy eyes at Alisha who is Shaun’s – reluctant – girlfriend. I suspect Alisha would enjoy the perks of being a wallflower.

Too many people have raised the ‘kill Hitler’ time-travel paradigm; Misfits used this concept to good effect. My only criticism is the ending was a bit too neat, doing the ‘TV series restore’. I enjoyed this episode and recommend it not just to Misfits fans but to those ‘collecting’ and exploring examples of time travel and alternate universes.

My rating: ★★★★☆ 4 out of 5 stars

My review copy is Misfits boxed DVD set including seasons 1 to 3; it looks like that’s no longer available and the nearest equivalent is a boxed set including seasons 1 to 4.