In the Flesh S2 Ep6

If In the Flesh doesn’t get a third series, there’s no justice in television. With the sixth and final episode of series 2, the story isn’t over by a long shot, and it left us hanging as the apparently-dead body of a major character was exhumed, reminding us that, in the In the Flesh universe, we have no idea when physical death begins and ends.

On the upside, at least for the fandom, series two ended in in such a way that fans can be content to imagine a more stable future for Kieren, with his family restored and Simon back at his side. Siren (Simon/Kieren) is easily the biggest ship in the fandom, so that was a good move. Their status as a couple isn’t really clear by the end, but even as a friendship it’s healthier than it’s ever been. Simon betrayed the ULA and helped save Kieren (along with Steve’s unconditional love, which I never doubted, even at his most conflicted) when Gary drugged him with blue oblivion on the supposed day of the Second Rising — the day Simon was meant to kill Kieren. Without the ULA and the ulterior motives driving Simon, they could be good for each other. And it’s pretty clear that Kieren, like Amy before him, is exhibiting signs of changing into a living being. What will that mean for His relationship with Simon? Will Simon change too? Will he accept Kieren if he becomes human? Is that even actually what’s happening? We must know.

Kieren's non-drab look for Amy's funeral

Kieren’s non-drab look for Amy’s funeral

Not that the series 2 finale was happy by any means. The body that was exhumed in the last moments of the episode was, sad to say, Amy’s. Amy had become mostly human again, her body shedding almost all characteristics of undeath. Then, predictably (mostly because the BBC inexplicably released promo photos for the episode that clearly showed Amy’s funeral), she was killed by Maxine, who believed that she, not Kieren, was the First Risen. Amy apparently died of a wound that wouldn’t have made her flinch in her undead state, proving she had changed. I’m not sure why Maxine would think stabbing a PDS sufferer in the chest would kill her, but it was important that she did, because now we know for sure that they can become living again, at least to a significant extent. While it seems like a revelation that means hope for Kieren and Simon, there must be more to it. What happens after a PDS sufferer comes back to proper life? Amy died so soon after her heart started beating, and Kieren was only in the early stages of the change by the end. What does it mean?

And Maxine — not the political extremist she presented herself as, but something even more terrifying: someone who will do anything, kill anyone, to undo a personal tragedy. She hadn’t wanted to reign in PDS sufferers to protect the people. She’d wanted to help the ULA bring about the Second Rising. When the ULA failed, she took it upon herself to kill the First Risen. When Amy’s apparent death didn’t do the trick, she crashed the Roarton Winter Fete and spilled the truth: it was all about bringing back her dead brother, whose death she felt responsible for. She implored the townsfolk to kill all of the remaining PDS sufferers to bring about the Second Rising, shocking the crowd. Dale took her down with a cattle prod, and that was the last we saw of her. The town was left a bit less trusting of the Victus party, but not a whole lot less prejudiced against the PDS.

Zoe and The ULA protects the graveyard

Zoe and The ULA protects the graveyard

With Maxine apparently gone, it looks like the new antagonist will be Halperin and Weston, makers of the PDS drug neurotryptolyne and the ones who took Amy’s body. If you watch episode 2.5 closely, it’s a good bet that the pharma company is behind the Undead Prophet, too. With Simon a traitor to the ULA, it looks like Zoe will take his spot as leader of the small Roarton faction. Jem dumped Gary, choosing to put Kieren and her family first, even asking for help in dealing with her PTSD, but Gary is still important, one of the show’s most grey characters, representing the not-quite-over-the-Rising feelings of a lot of Roarton residents. But if there’s anyone I want to see more of in future episodes, it’s Shirley, Philip’s mother and one of the most compassionate of the living characters. She works for Halperin and Weston because she truly wants to help PDS sufferers and their families. She could be a foil for the company as its motives become more questionable.

When the second series was just starting, I made the decision not to read the episode synopses available with the ITF press materials. If it ended with everything wrapped up neatly, implying no more episodes to come,  I didn’t want to know. If it ended in a cliffhanger, I didn’t want to get my hopes up. As it happens, it has a pretty cliffhanger ending with the exhuming of Amy. Clearly, In the Flesh is meant to have more episodes. Now all we can do is hope, and tweet (use the tag #saveintheflesh and tweet to @bbcthree and/or@bbcamerica) and petition to keep it going.