Class: The Lost – review

miss-quill-and-charlie-class-the-lostAs the first season of Class comes to an end, Patrick Ness takes no prisoners in The Lost. It was action packed, it shuffled the deck and nobody came out untransformed. Was it any good? Yes, I believe it was. There are some bits I have qualms about, but overall a decent piece of entertainment.

Who are The Lost?

At the core, this series has been driven by two foreground narrative arcs and a background arc. What I mean is, in the main (and there are other plot devices going on), the season has been about:

  • Miss Quill v Charlie v The Shadowkin
  • April & Ram / April v The Shadowkin
  • The mysterious governors.

So, a sci-fi story, a love story and, in the overlap on their Venn diagram, a dark race of evil guys with but a single motive.

In terms of being lost, I think many characters lost their way at various times, so in a sense they are all lost. The title should, though, go to the alien spirits trapped in the Cabinet of Souls and who presented an option to destroy the Shadowkin in an act of genocide.

The story set out its stall early. Close relatives were killed, the Shadowkin were here to force the issue regarding April’s heart, and tension mounted before the dramatic finale. None of the core set of characters is able to go back to life as usual, and if there is a follow-on season much will be different. The story had a second conclusion in taking us behind the scenes to the world of the governors, and here the audience has two ways to react to the appearance of a monster from modern Doctor Who. I’m in the camp who thought it unnecessary, I know some thought it really clever.

There are more gripes, and I detail those next.

Some gripes

Patrick Ness has been keen to give all the main characters the focus at various times in the season, and naturally wanted them to all have something to do in this. In the case of Tanya she suffered some more misery, but had nothing to do in the resolution. We also had a scene where the very pregnant Miss Quill became almost motherly but we also had a dreadful trope with a skilled warrior training someone in combat in ten minutes. All a bit nice but all a bit rubbish as well. OK for a child’s fantasy but even Luke Skywalker struggled to master the Force and the light sabre in a few hours.

I also didn’t need the last twist with April and Corakinus swapping bodies at the end. Step to far? I think so. An interesting challenge for the newly declared love between April and Ram, but will this mean she needs some new photo-ID?

Gripes aside I’ve enjoyed Class, and would welcome another season. Let’s hope it gets some better viewing figures when it hits late night BBC 1.

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