In the Flesh
The gripping finale of BBC Three’s award winning In The Flesh starts in episode 5. The community of Roarton cajoled and beguiled by Maxine Martin has finally turned against the PDS sufferers, and the battle lines have been firmly drawn. Kieron is framed for the release of the Rabid’s from the Doctors Surgery, whilst Simon has an assignation with a representative (played by the always excellent Anthony Flanagan) of the undead Prophet who gives Simon the order that Kieron must die in order for the second rising to occur. Through the use of flashbacks we see the history of Simon and how he ends up as part of the undead Prophets disciples, and again we are drawn into the conflict and the difficulty that the peace leads to. How can they PDS sufferers live with themselves knowing what they did during the rising? And how can their families live with them, knowing what they are capable. It is this uneasy question, the one that is ducked by some characters (Kierons parents for a start) or tackled head on by others (Maxine Martin and the HVF) which drives the narrative, and the drama. The uneasy truce has swept it under the carpet for now, but like many family secrets they have a habit of coming out into the open. Meanwhile Amy, with her new friend Phillip has discovered that she is starting to feel things again like the rain on her face. With less action than last week, but with more plot revelations and intrigue opened up, this episode feels like the calm before the storm, the dawn before the battle, and leads into the finale, where nothing will ever be the same again. Episode 6 is the finale, the big one, the reveal, where the conflict turns in the graveyard. Kierons parents have him locked up and ready to send back to Norfolk.It all hinges on the graveyard, where Kieron, dosed up on blue oblivion by Gary is in a rabid state, and in a confrontation between him and his Dad, and with Gem stood there pointing a gun to him, his Father finally steps up to the plate and in the contemporary parlance, mans up. Maxine Martin finally reveals her true colours, with an unseen twist that she wants the second rising so her little brother can return, and in the graveyard again stabs Amy, who was coming back to life, believing her to be the first risen. Amy dies for the second time, properly. Her mysterious illness wasn’t linked to PDS; she was coming back to life (in a plot twist that had more than an echo of the Warm Bodies film about it). Maxine Martins quest ends with her own downfall, as she unravels in public urging the villagers to kill all the PDS sufferers in Roarton. As a character Wunmi Mosaku has played her rise and fall to perfection. In fact the whole cast have been uniformly excellent, with each character no matter how small being perfectly cast and played. As the drama is played out, the hints and reveals have been brought out beautifully, whilst Harriet Cains as Gem has really stood out, her performance as she’s been through all the emotions has been a delight to watch. The final scene where an unknown team start to dig up Amy’s grave hints that In the Flesh is set to return. This has been one of BBC Three’s finest drama productions, and if it does get another season it could be the biggest thing they produced since Being Human, and could probably eclipse it in quality.