Skins on BBC America, Aug. 17
BBC America has been reading my blog and noticed I was a fan of Skins, so they asked if I would help give the US premiere of the series an extra shout out on the blog. With pleasure! The first two episodes will air Sunday night, Aug. 17, at 9 p.m. It's rated TV MA, so I hope that means there won't be too many bleeps and blurs.
The first series (or season) aired in the UK last year and was one of the most controversial and talked about programs of 2007 when it was originally shown on Channel 4. You've never seen teen angst played out quite like this on television. The story revolves around a group of friends in Bristol, who are in their final year at college (the British equivalent of high school) and about to enter adulthood and uncertain futures.
Tony (a very grown up Nicholas Hoult from About A Boy) is the good-looking bad boy; Michelle is his clingy, smart girlfriend who hides behind a sexpot image; Sid is Tony's sadsack best friend who's been in love with Michelle for ages; Cassie is a self-destructive anorexic in love with Sid; Jal is on the verge of becoming a brilliant musician and usually the voice of reason; Chris is a hardcore party boy abandoned by his parents; Anwar is raised in a strict Muslim home, but is desperate for his first shag; Maxxie is the cute gay boy and Anwar's best friend; and Effy is Tony's little sister who seems to somehow hold everyone (and everything) together as the series progresses.
Although aimed at older teens, this is pretty adult fare. Skins is realistic in its overt sexuality, drug use and liberal profanity, which might be a hard pill to swallow for some parents. It certainly was in the UK. A second series of Skins aired earlier this year in Britain, but BBC America will link them together for one unbroken run. While series one was all about partying and hooking up, the second series took a decidedly darker turn as the characters grew apart after one is in a traumatic accident and another dies at the end of the series. For all the bravado, Skins ultimately becomes a very moving drama about what it's like to be growing up in the 21st century. If you get BBC America, watch it. This is what appointment television is all about.
You can find out more about the show at www.bbcamerica.com/skins. Below are some exclusive photos BBC sent to me to share with you, including the lovely Michelle (April Pearson), serious eye-candy Maxxie (Mitch Hewer) and a cast photo. You can see the full set of Skins photos at Flickr.