‘I thought she could be interesting to kill. So I pretended to fall in love with her’.
Originally written as a graphic novel by Charles Forsman in 2013 then released in October 2017 on Channel 4’s on-demand service All 4, it is through Netflix that ‘The End of the F***ing World’ ‘is getting a rare second chance at reaching a big audience and becoming a deserved hit’ according to Digital Spy.
Maybe it was eclipsed by follow up series of the wildly popular ‘Stranger Things’ and ‘Narcos’, or the release of ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ or maybe it was the unavoidable adverts on All 4 but whatever the reason, ‘The End of the F***ing World’, now rated 100% on Rotten Tomatoes, deserved a bigger audience.
Stylish American drama laced with dark British humor, the series follows lead protagonist James, a self-described ‘psychopath’ who kills animals for fun.
Accompanying him is Alyssa, the secondary protagonist with a difficult homelife who sees an opportunity for escape in James.
The pair run away together and develop a deep bond through their shared experiences. All the while, James plots Alyssa’s murder.
Notable moments from season one, which consists of eight 20 minute episodes, include breaking into the house of a serial killer, locating Alyssa’s biological father, and an armed standoff on a beach.
Some might recognise Alex Lawther from Charlie Brooker’s ‘Black Mirror’ or Simon Amstell’s ‘Freak Show’ and the actor has admitted to Vice that he has ‘a soft spot for the unorthodox’.
Despite the dark nature of his most recent work, Lawther insists that he ‘always looks for levity’ in his roles and what he really enjoyed about ‘The End of the F***ing World’ ‘was the strange humour’.
Starring opposite Lawther is Jessica Barden whose CV boasts a list of similarly dark projects including; ‘In the Dark Half’, ‘Mindscape’, ‘Comedown’ and she played ‘Nosebleed Girl’ in Yorgos Lanthimos’ 2015 dark surrealist success ‘The Lobster’.
Initial themes of teenage angst quickly give way to much deeper emotions, both dark and light, as the relationship between Alyssa and James intensifies.
The on screen chemistry between Lawther and Barden is enthralling and their relationship endearing despite the marcarbe dramatic irony of the situation.
Lawther attributes the ‘strange sort of curiousness that James and Alyssa have for eachother in the very beginning’ to the differences in these two talented young actors personalities.
‘When you’re faced with someone that’s so different from you in that way, you end up being a bit fascinated by them’, he tells Vice.
‘Game of Thrones’ Gemma Whelan and Wunmi Mosaku, who won the BAFTA for best supporting actress for her role as Gloria Taylor in ‘Damiolola, Our Loved Boy’, head up the support cast as two police officers hot on the tails of the escaping James and Alyssa.
Netflix only released ‘The End of the F***ing’ World’ on January 5th 2018 but series two rumours are already flying.
The online consensus appears to be that there simply must be a second helping of this 100% rated show on Rotten Tomatoes however, nothing has yet been confirmed.