Spoilers for episode four of "Skins" coming up just as soon as I find a better place to store my Pop Tarts...
"Chris" was the first episode I watched live on BBC America instead of on a screener, and it was amusing for two reasons: 1)The title card explaining exactly why they're subtitling some of the dialogue, and 2)The previews for next week's episode, which continue to push the show as some kind of giddy sex romp, when it so clearly isn't.
Yes, Chris spends large chunks of this episode either naked or tumescent, and there's a wild party sequence, but it's a terribly sad episode. From the minute Chris wakes up to find the cash envelope from his mom, it's clear something isn't right, and as the party goes on, even Chris' friends can tell he's out of control. And the nudity, though played for laughs at first, turns into an easy symbol of how much Chris has lost. Older brother, dead. Dad, wants nothing to do with him. Mom, nuts and on walkabout. House, wrecked and taken over by a hippie squatter. Clothes, no doubt being worn by the hippie. And when he starts popping the Viagra again at the end, it's no longer a joke, but a sign that, even after all this loss, after his friends and Angie warning him that he has to change, he still can't resist popping those pills, even with no girl around to use them on.
(By the way, exactly how cheap and available is Viagra in the UK? Chris is popping them like candy, and the teacher who previously occupied that dorm room doesn't even think to take his supply with him, where I'd think any American guy who needed the stuff wouldn't dream of leaving them behind.)
We've been talking about how each episode is told (mostly; see the ongoing Tony/Michelle/Sid/Cassie comedy) from the main character's point of view, and that's why the adults are so often two-dimensional (or, in the case of Chris' biological parents, not seen at all), and I thought the sequence with Chris' stepmom really brought that home. Yes, she's British and therefore genetically required to be polite at all costs (or so pop culture has taught me), but when somebody drops your baby, I would think the maternal genetic programming would override the British stuff.
And that scene led to the episode's highlight: Chris at his brother's grave (which I didn't realize was Peter's, even as I figured Peter was dead) telling Jal about the best day of his life, which would qualify as most people's worst. But Chris so clearly loved his brother -- who, from what we can see here, was the only member of the family to give a toss about him -- that Peter's moment of kindness mattered far more to Chris than his public humiliation. Chris' life is still one of constant humiliation (and still often penis-related), and now he doesn't have his brother to bail him out. Really well-played by Joe Dempsie.
What did everybody else think?