Last week, I said that I was looking forward to the conclusion of In The Flesh, and Easter Sunday, a time supposedly all about resurrection, seemed the perfect time to bring the series to a close - hopefully with the resurrection of a few more PDS sufferers. I’ll cut to the chase though, there wasn’t really anything huge that could have been considered a fantastic ending to the series. Nothing really kicked off, even in places where it could have done brilliantly, and the same old issues kept cropping up.
Episode three was a chance for the Walker family to come together. Kieren and Jem finally came to terms with their differences, thanks to Kieren having a flashback of his sister choosing to save his life, and losing her best friend in the process, as Kieren ate her brains in his ‘untreated state’. Suddenly it became clear just why Jem had such distain for Kieren thus far, but with the chance for both of them to talk about the situation, we finally saw the two on the same side; Jem even appreciating Kieren’s newfound friendship with Amy, no longer just a ‘rotter’.
One thing for sure though, the state that Kieren and co. were in culminated in some touching moments, especially regarding Kieren and Rick. Rick’s acceptance of his undead state showed the best and worst parts of his return to Kieren’s life. Coming back gave him the opportunity to say his goodbyes in a way that he didn’t before he died first time around, and the state of their relationship was undoubtedly the most touching in the series. He couldn’t take his father’s orders to kill Kieren, which ultimately drove Bill to kill his own son- hoping that the vicar’s prophecy of a second coming would be true, and Rick would come back for the second time.
On a side note, the musical choice for the series comes with mixed feelings, too. Each episode has been neatly rounded off by the terrific Keaton Henson, with his haunting voice and fragile guitar playing beautifully adding to things lyrically as well as in spirit. Charon, from his first album, Dear, played over the credits in Episode 1 as Kieren’s family took in the fact that he’d narrowly avoided being killed, with Henson crying “there’ll be coins on my eyes, to pay Charon, before I let you near my son” (Charon, in Greek mythology, was the ferryman who transported the dead into the underworld, in case you were wondering).
With Keaton Henson playing in the background, Kieren carries Rick’s coffin into the graveyard- a dead man burying his dead best friend. For a series that went the way it did, it ended well, and in the right tone. Amy, who brought the excitement, and (for want of a better word) the life, into the undead, was away with the mysterious undead preacher and his loyal group of followers. The series really made nothing of him, and in three, hour-long episodes, there will be many who will have wanted to see that possibility take shape.
Maybe others will see it differently, and maybe In The Flesh will come back. If it does, it’ll have to do so with something extra - more of Amy and what became of her at least. This series may have been lacking in places, but the prospect of what could become of it leaves me looking beyond all that; in excitement about what Dominic Mitchell might be able to do in future.