Skins Wiki

The Fourth Series of Skins originally aired on E4 from January 28, 2010 to March 18, 2010.

Series 4 continues to follow the "second generation" of characters, which are featured in both Series 3 and Series 4. They are replaced in Series 5 by the "third generation".

This is the first series that did not have any character video diaries, unlike the previous three series.

In terms of the show's continuity, Series 4 begins 3 to 4 months after the events of "Finale" (3.10).[1]

Further, a new academic school year has begun, with the characters now in their second (and final) year of sixth form (equivalent to senior year of high school in North America).


The fourth series retained the nine main leads from the third series.

Kaya Scodelario returns as Tony's younger sister Effy Stonem, who after the fallout with Freddie, Cook, and JJ, seems to have dissapeared, begging the question "What has Miss Stonem been up to since sailing away?"[2][3]

Lisa Backwell returns as Pandora Moon, Effy's best friend who after reconciling with Thomas, "Miss Moon got to live happily ever after. At least for the summer. So now she's giving the rest of the gang career advice".[4][5]

Merveille Lukeba returns as Thomas Tomone, now with his family living in Bristol, "How's Thomas settling in to Bristol life?"[6][7]

Jack O'Connell returns as James Cook, who after seemingly rejected by Effy, it is unclear if "Cook get the girl?"[8][9]

Luke Pasqualino returns as Freddie Mclair, who after the fallout between him, JJ, and Cook, it is unsure if "they still the Three Musketeers or has a certain someone gotten in the way?"[10][11]

Ollie Barbieri returns as JJ Jones, who seems to be the least affected by the fallout, begging the question "how have our Three Musketeers fared since we saw them last? Allow JJ to explain using metaphors and a bit of physics".[12][13]

Real life twins Megan Prescott and Kathryn Prescott return as identical twins Katie Fitch and Emily Fitch, respectively. Katie, having finally acknowledged her sister's homosexuality, "how is Katie since rock-gate and finally letting go of that sister of hers?"[14][15] while Emily, now in a relationship with Naomi, seems "much happier than ever before".[16][17]

Lily Loveless returns as Naomi Campbell, who now fully accepting of her own sexuality and in a relationship with Emily, seems to be "even more passionate and reckless".[18][19]

Klariza Clayton also returns as secondary character Karen Mclair, who now having given up her goal as being singer, has decided to become a hair dresser and has strengthened her relationship with Freddie.[20]


Series creators Bryan Elsley and Jamie Brittain served as show runners for the fourth series, however only Elsley served as an executive producer, along with Charles Pattinson, George Faber, and John Griffin.[21]

The fourth series was produced by Company Pictures.

The main staff writers for the fourth series were Jamie Brittain, Ed Hime, Ben Schiffer, Georgia Lester, Sean Buckley, Lucy Kirkwood, and Bryan Elsley.[22]

Christine Healy served as the producer for the fourth series.[23]

The regular directors for the fourth series were Neil Biswas, Philippa Langdale, Esther May Campbell, and Daniel O' Hara.[24]

The fourth series' incidental music was composed by Fat Segal, who also composed the show's opening theme.[25]

The fourth series' theme song is a remix of the official theme tune used for Series 1; however, it is also a different remix from the ones used for Series 2 and for Series 3.[26]

Episode List

# Title Featured Character(s) UK Viewers Original airdate Total
1 "Thomas" Thomas Tomone 1.475 million[A] January 28 2010 30
Our gang are back after the summer break, in a seemingly protective bubble – their hedonism. There are no consequences, no tomorrow and everyone will live forever. Then Thomas experiences a life changing event, causing him to question everything - his faith, his family and even his choice of friends. The reverberations will reach far beyond Thomas's story, affecting the lives of all those we know around him...[27]
2 "Emily" Emily Fitch 1.145 million[B] February 4 2010 31
Emily and Naomi are loved up and enjoying their extended summer of love together. The thorn in Emily's side is her family. Her mother is unable to accept Naomi as anything other than a bad influence, and is keen for Emily to go travelling alone without her girlfriend, offering her money as a cash incentive. Emily is intent on standing by her woman and showing her mother they're stronger than that. When the police return to College to speak to Emily and Naomi, Naomi lies in the interview and Emily is forced to go along with it. Emily is keen to discover why the police knew their names and thought they were friends with a girl they'd never met. Naomi tells Emily to leave it, admitting she dealt the drugs to Sophia the night she died. Emily can't leave it and turns detective. At the same time the Fitch home is in disarray - dad Rob makes a shock announcement and the tension between Emily and her mother pushes the family to breaking point.[28]
3 "Cook" James Cook 1.249 million[A] February 11 2010 32
Cook is in prison. After beating someone up at the party in front of a room full of witnesses, he's told by his lawyer that he has no choice but to plead guilty. But Cook isn't willing to accept responsibility and pleads not guilty, and is released on bail. Cook is told he must return for his trial at a later date. He's fitted with an electronic tag and is told he must to stay at a fixed address between the hours of 7pm and 7am. Unfortunately for Cook, that fixed address is his mother's home. Cook's mum is a super successful artist, and their home is a mansion and his former home with his little brother. But it's no holiday, as Cook and his mother Ruth clash again and again. Cook is trapped at home. With Sophia's death playing on his mind, and few people to turn to, Cook is helped by an unlikely ally, and he starts to question his actions. Will Cook do the right thing and escape a prison term?[29]
4 "Katie" Katie Fitch 1.247 million[A] February 18 2010 33
Katie Fitch has a problem. Katie’s family’s bankrupt, and they’ve got nowhere to live. And under the strain of it all, Jenna and Rob seem to be headed for splitsville and James Fitch is scared. At the same time, Jenna’s new company ‘Let’s Get Fitched’ has its first client: Bristol Rovers wag Brandy, a friend of Katie’s through her Guillermo WAG phase. And Katie’s got to make sure the hen night goes with a swing. So Katie’s got to do what she does best: hold it all together under a mask of make up and a fixed smile. As well as this, Emily’s spinning out of control – angry with her family, Naomi and everyone else. During 24 hours of Katie’s life she tries to fix her family, her home and everything else. Katie strives for perfection, but her 24 hours are tinged with a sadness she’s coming to terms with all alone as she learns the perfect life may not exist after all.[30]
5 "Freddie" Freddie Mclair 1.193 million[A] February 25 2010 34
Freddie is loved up. Completely. He and Effy are enjoying their time together and carrying on their hedonistic ways with no thought of tomorrow. His father and sister never see him and neither do the rest of the gang. At College, he’s been threatened with expulsion if he doesn’t get his work in. He’s given a final warning by new teacher Mr T Love and the pressure’s on to fix things. Only thing is, Effy’s not on the same page and it’s Freddie she takes it out on. Freddie’s left to work out whether Effy’s worth fighting for this time. As everything starts to unravel, he’s in a race against time to fix what’s most important to him.[31]
6 "JJ" JJ Jones 1.150 million[A] March 4 2010 35
JJ is in love. Lara Lloyd is sweet perfection and he’s smitten. But JJ thinks she’s way out of his league and lacks the courage to ask her out. Thomas tells him he should make a move, and if he doesn’t, he will. So JJ plucks up the courage… With the date from hell behind them, JJ’s concerned Lara will run a mile when she learns he’s the way he is. Plus there’s an ex boyfriend who’s still in love with her who will always be on the scene. But it’s JJ’s friends and family who are really messing things up. His confidante is an escaped Cookie, his mum and his psychiatrist Doctor Felly are concerned about his new attitude, and Emily’s worried that Lara will break his heart, and tells him so. Everything conspires to mess up JJ’s pursuit of Lara, so JJ realises he’s got to do this all by himself. And that’s what he does. Almost all by himself anyway.[32]
7 "Effy" Effy Stonem 1.052 million[A] March 11 2010 36
Effy has been in a psychiatric hospital recovering since she tried to take her own life. After lots of sessions with her counselor John Foster, he tells her she is ready to go back home. Effy is worried she could slip back into her previous state, but John assures her that as long as she is disciplined she will be ok, and she will still visit him for sessions. Effy becomes clear headed, focused and hopeful for the future, taking each day at a time. As all of her friends receive their A-level results, Effy seems to have moved on completely from the Effy Stonem she used to be. Freddie and Anthea become concerned; Effy’s stronger and more self-assured than she’s ever been, but something isn’t right.[33]

Note: This is Freddie's final episode.

8 "Everyone" Everyone 1.126 million[A] March 18 2010 37
With their A-level results in for most of the gang, thoughts about the past and the future are on their minds. Thomas is running fast, Katie is doing her best to match make, JJ is baby sitting, Cookie’s up to his old tricks, Emily’s confused and Naomi’s had enough. Effy is released and pining for Freddie. But no-one knows where he is. And Pandora has news of her own, but is anybody around to listen? As most of our gang congregate at Naomi’s they’re all trying to get along and make sense of recent events to a backdrop of chaos and 80's music. Slowly the gang end up in the one place that makes sense. In their final moments they are reunited once more and anything could happen: make-ups, break-ups, punch-ups. But one thing’s for sure, it will be eventful, and for some, there's no going back.[34]

Note: This is Pandora, Thomas, JJ, Katie, and Karen's final episode.
This is Effy and Naomi's final episode until "Fire: Part 1" (episode 7.01).
This is Emily's final appearance until "Fire: Part 2" (episode 7.02).
This is Cook's final episode until "Rise: Part 1" (episode 7.05).

* A^ All ratings are official ratings taken from BARB's database, unless otherwise stated. Total Viewers include official E4+1 ratings.[35]

* B^ All ratings are official ratings taken from BARB's database, unless otherwise stated. Total viewers include unofficial overnight ratings for E4+1, as they were not in the top 10 rated E4 +1 programmes for that week. [35]

Skins Shorts

Main article: Unseen Skins#Series 4

Skins Shorts are a series of canonical online-exclusive mini-episodes that fills in a narrative gap somewhere in the timeline from the episode it correlates to. During the course of Series 4, nine "mini-sodes" were released on the day after each new episode aired.

All the mini-sodes were eventually included as a special feature on the DVD release of Skins: Complete Fourth Series, but can be viewed on the Official YouTube Channel.


To advertise the fourth series of Skins, E4 created a trailer featuring the cast in scenes from the Series, but in an abstract art style. However, the trailer is much darker compared to the third series' trailer, as it reflect the darker tone of the fourth series. The song used in the trailer is "The Reeling (Bubblegum remix)" by Passion Pit.


Character centric trailers for each of the main leads were also released. The songs used in these trailers include "New Theory" by Washed Out (Effy), "Fighter Plane" by Ellie Goulding (Naomi), "Contact" by Foreign Beggars and Noisia (Thomas), "When I'm With You" by Best Coast (Katie and Emily), "Lust For Life" by Girls (Freddie), "It's Nothing" by A Place To Bury Strangers (Cook), "Diminishing Return" by Ali Love (JJ), and "Low Shoulder" by Toro Y Moi (Pandora).[36]

Other promo trailers were also released, featuring "Drop Down" by Designer Drugs[37] and "It's My Own Cheating Heart That Makes Me Cry" by Glasvegas.[38]


The Fourth Series received mixed reviews in the UK, but with higher praise than compared to the previous Series.

Criticism was especially placed on the darker tone of the Series, which critics and fans alike deemed too dark in comparison to the previous three series. Others criticized the Series' storylines (most explicitly the John Foster-Effy-Freddie storyline) for being ultimately mishandled, as they believed the show was unable to decide which storyline would be the main one; thus, many storylines were deemed erratic and rushed with no big payoff at the conclusion of the Series.

The Guardian gave the Series a positive review, especially praising how the show dealt with teenage sexuality (most explicitly the Naomi and Emily relationship), stating "The best scenes in Skins aren't about sex, they're about characters trying to figure out what to do afterwards. Take away the programme's outlandish plot devices and rampant sex scenes, and what remains is a surprisingly accurate portrayal of adolescence's emotional roller-coaster: the terror of falling in love, the attitude that mistakes insouciance and hardness for independence and strength, and the aggressive posturing that screams "don't touch me, I don't need you" but whispers "if you leave me I'll die". In short, it's about being a teenager."[39] gave the Series a mixed review, stating that "[Skins] has always attempted to be brave television and usually succeeds, with risqué storylines and characters alongside quite controversial issues but sometimes, like in most of this, the latest series it tries too hard."[40]

Reception in North America was similarly mixed, but also more positive than compared to the previous Series. gave the series a positive review, stating "Skins seems to have learned from the myriad of mistakes in the last series on the evidence of Series 4, with the cast this time round seem a lot more confident in their performances. Future episodes seem promising enough, though, and, hopefully, the shorter run will result in tighter writing than the bloated and unfocused third series. Maybe E4's flagship drama can finally come of age this time round.[41]

DVDTalk gave the series a mixed review, stating that "Series 4 still struggles to juggle its cast as fluidly as the first generation. Although [the Sophia storyline] is a clever way to tie most of the characters to the same central "hub" in different ways, it's still imperfect. JJ, for instance, plays almost no part in the incident, and although his "featured" episode is a charming one, it's totally separated from pretty much anything going on during the overall arc. Other plot developments, such as the growing rift between Emily and Naomi, unnaturally sit in a holding pattern until the writers can devote an episode to it. The idea of giving each character (or most of them, anyway) an entire episode focusing on them is a strong one, but the writers need to work harder to make sure it remains a plus rather than a hindrance. But for the most part, the Series showcases a cast that survived the growing pains of a television show in flux, and continues to deliver a similar, if not quite the same experience that fans became hooked on in the first place."[42]

International Airdates

BBC America chose not to air the Fourth Series in North America (it was instead available on Netflix's Instant Watch),[43] opting to instead release Skins: Volume 4 on DVD January 11, 2011.


Series 4 was nominated for the TV Choice Award for Best Drama, while actors Jack O' Connell and Kaya Scodelario were nominated for Best Actor and Best Actress (respectively) for their portrayals of James Cook and Effy Stonem.[44]

Series 4 was also nominated for the National Television Award for Best Digital Choice.[45]

Series 4 won Best TV Show at the 2011 NME Awards.[46]

Home Media Release

Main article: Skins: DVD Releases#Series 4


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