Skins series 2

Paul Cook 13/05/2008

The second series of Channel 4's groundbreaking youth drama Skins is out now and with 8 fully loaded episodes and an entourage of special features it's well worth those hard-earned pennies.

Series 2 sees Tony, the tragic victim of a bus accident try to get his life back on track whilst his friends Sid, Michelle and Maxxie try to get on with theirs. Sister Effie, the likely-lead for series 3 which will see a new cast implemented as the original moves on into adulthood also features more prominently. It's end of school and time for exams but the group still put love, loss and the continuing party of teenage life first.

Series 2 of Skins elaborates on the representation of modern teen culture and society and goes about it with style and poignancy whilst keeping a serious core rooting the show in reality first and foremost.

Musically, Skins is an eclectic goodie bag of treats. Asobi Seksu, Foals, LCD Soundsystem, Pendulum, Chemical Brothers and Crystal Castles feature amongst interspersed classics from Johnny Cash, The Stranglers and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. Also GIITTV favourites Sigur Ros, Animal Collective and Battles pepper the soundtrack making for an ultimately fantastic musical ensemble to accompany a fantastically well-made drama.

Each episode of Skins series 2 is based on one or two particular characters and portrays everything from drug overdose to teenage pregnancy to the loss of a loved one. Dealt with poignantly and respectfully, Skins offers an alternative, sometimes more realistic way to deal with the trials and tribulations of teenage life. One thing that many will be glad to see is that the consequences of drug abuse and under-age alcoholism are dealt with more seriously in series 2, contrasting the controversial portrayal the subject was given in the first series.

Effie along with an entirely new cast will feature in series 3 of Skins and fans of the show are pleased and upset in equal numbers. The show's makers want to portray a particular section of teen society without lingering on the original cast, whom, by the end of this series are to be divided anyway as they follow paths to University and College. One can only be excited at the prospect of another series of such a fantastically addictive drama.