The Fades

The Fades has been showing now for four weeks on BBC Three. It is a mash of different genre’s from Fantasy to Horror, but according to the official press release it is classed as a Supernatural Horror. There is a element of comedy mixed in as well from Mac, Paul’s best friend. Here is a synopsis of what the show is about, copied from here.

Iain De Caestecker (River City, Coronation Street) is Paul, a young man who is haunted by apocalyptic dreams that neither his therapist or best friend, Mac, can provide answers for. Worse still, Paul is starting to see the Fades – the spirits of the dead – all around him.

They’re everywhere but they can’t be seen, smelt, heard or touched by living beings. But now an embittered and vengeful Fade has found a way to break the barrier between the dead and the living and Paul, Mac and their friends and family are all right in the eye of the storm.

But the most terrifying twist is yet to come – the fate of humanity rests in the hands of the two friends who already have enough trouble getting through a day in one piece, let alone saving the world.


I had mixed thoughts on the show when I first watched it. The characters didn’t seem right to me. You have Paul who is the main character but then is quiet and dark and moody. You have Mac the supporting character who has more lines and is more “present” on screen than Paul. Paul’s twin sister, Anna, is TOO bitchy.

But after a while, the solid acting from all three of the characters I have mentioned comes through and you start to actually like the characters and they start to develop. Anna is still a bitch but deep down you can see she cares for her brother. Paul starts to see a girl and accept who is in within the group of Angelics, and you see him starting to stand up for himself. Mac’s humour comes out more as a character trait, not cheesy lines scripted in for cheap laughs, this is made more apparent as we see a bit of his story at home with his dad.

Episode Four is the latest to air, and what an episode. It was the best episode so far, with the tension being cranked up and the emotions trying to start peoples waterworks. I won’t tell too much for those who haven’t watched it yet, but there are quite a few moving scenes in the episode.

The episode is made even greater by Joe Dempsie‘s portrayal of Fade/Human, Polus. Polus is the main antagonist of the show and leaders of the Fade “army” for lack of a better word. He was solid as Chris in Skins and he is solid as Polus in this. It is a true testament to his acting skills that he can play two widely different parts and pull them off so well.

At times the dialogue in the show can be quite “on-the-nose”, ie, we are told exactly what is happening, but this feels very natural and not forced at all. It always occurs when it should occur and not once have I felt bogged down in information. That’s the things with shows like this, if you are creating a whole new set of rules of your take on death and the afterlife, of course you will need to be blunt about it and get it across, but as The Fades does correctly, you can’t force the information onto the viewer, you have to feed it in to your shows IV slowly.

I can’t wait for next weeks episode because everything is starting to go into motion now after setting up the basis and the story for the series, now is the time to focus on the elements that have been introduced and hopefully we’ll watch as Paul kicks Fade ass with his super powers.



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