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Date TimeAugust 26, 2019
VoiceOnce representing British drama at its best, as the storylines got darker it slowly turned into Goodfellas
How Skins went from teen noir to soapy despair
You can pretty much divide people’s memories of doing their A-levels into two camps: a) those who found the experience full of detentions, sexual frustrations and “your mum” jokes, akin to The Inbetweeners; or b) those who found the experience full of sex and drugs at some groovy rock’n’roll sixth-form college, much like Skins. Written by father and son team Bryan Elsley and Jamie Brittain as “a show about teenagers, but one that actually means something”, Skins was commissioned as E4’s flagship show.
They held open auditions to find “real” teenagers, snagging Dev Patel, Daniel Kaluuya and Kaya Scodelario, and bagging the now grown-up annoying kid from About a Boy (Nicholas Hoult) to play Tony. Skins wasn’t afraid to tackle the dark issues. The very first episode included a car crash, a sleeping pill overdose, an unwanted debt to a drug dealer, and a plan to help geeky Sid lose his virginity. For comparison, the The Inbetweeners’ First Day revolved around Will having to wear an embarrassing name badge, being photographed having a poo and then getting busted for underage drinking. Just saying.

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