Sky’s mini series Hit & Miss, about a transsexual killer, is not the most thrilling show on TV. But it certainly has its moments.
In all honesty, if you looked up the plot of Hit and Miss, chances that you will never watch it. The story revolves around Mia, an assassin, paid to kill ruthlessly and efficiently. But here comes the twist, Mia is a pre-op male-to-female transsexual. There’s more. Her ex-girlfriend (from when she was a man), has died and has named Mia the legal guardian of her four children, one of whom Mia has fathered. Bewildered? You are not the only one. Watching Chloe Sevigny as Mia, clad in a shapely ink blue dress, telling her eleven year old son Ryan (Jorden Bennie) that she is his father, makes for the one of the most bizarre scenes you are like to see on TV in modern times.
Speaking of, while Mia is touted to be the killing machine, there’s actually very little killing involved. At least, in the pilot. Excepting of course, a couple of random hits which she executes with little emotion. Frustratingly, at this point there are no motives provided.Who are these people she has killed? Why did she kill them? How did Mia become a mercenary? Given her looks, she might as well have been a model. There are no answers, just more and more questions.
And that is another thing. “I am a woman stuck in a man’s body,” Mia tells Ryan, her son, begging him to understand. But it is hard to comprehend for Ryan, or for us. By no stretch of imagination, does Sevigny look, seem, act or feel like a man. The harder she tries, the less convincing it is. From what we’ve seen, Hit and Miss is not thrilling, but neither will it send you into a coma. The end of the episode, for instance, when Mia beats the abusive landlord into a bloody pulp, the inherent savagery and righteousness of the action has you cheering for her even without realising it. And it is moments like those that saves the show from becoming ridiculously camp and over the top. Otherwise, the dialogue is grim the tone weary, and the landscape bleak, in a way only English productions can be. And that it came from Paul Abott, creator of Shameless and State of Play is no surprise.
Bottomline? Hit and Miss is disturbing and bizarre at times, nuanced at others. But it pushes the boundaries of your comfort zone and for that alone its worth a watch.
Episodes of Hit and Miss can be found online.
The “It girl” of the ‘90s, Chloë Stevens Sevigny’s debuted with Kids (1995) but gained serious critical and commercial recognition for her first mainstream role in the critically lauded Boys Don’t Cry (1999). She acted in American Psycho (2000), Party Monster (2003) and Brown Bunny (2003).
Behind the Scenes
Hit & Miss was born when Paul Abbott combined “two series that shouldn’t fit together”. One about a transsexual mother-of-five, the other about a hitman. The idea went to writer Sean Conway, whose research involved “strange Google lists detailing sex changes and hand guns.” Sky lapped it up.
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