Episode 3 of Heartstopper starts with Nick searching online and doing a quiz, trying to determine if he’s gay or not. The quiz he does comes back at 62%.
Tellingly, Nick keeps all of this bottled up and brushes aside the gym chatter about Tara and Imogen later that afternoon. The root cause of this stems from Harry’s 16th birthday party. It’s at St George’s Hotel and although he initially invites Imogen along, Nick really wants to go with Charlie. He invites him along and Charlie agrees.
The thing is, agreeing to go to this party messes up his current plans with Tao and the gang, given it’s supposed to be film night. Tao isn’t exactly happy while Isaac is more nonchalant about the whole thing. Elle simply sends a message, promising that they’ll all be together soon.
In their absence, Elle heads over to see Tao, wondering what to watch together. Their conversation soon takes on an edge of romance, but neither admits as much. However, they do toast to their friendship and agree to stay as besties.
At the party, Nick and Charlie find one another and begin chatting. Harry shows up and goads Nick into talking to Tara. While they talk in private, Tara admits that she’s a lesbian. She doesn’t want to make it a big deal but wants to be open about it.
This helps Nick, who is teased by Harry over being friends with Charlie. However, Nick bites back and calls the kid homophobic, determined to return to Charlie. En-route, Nick brushes off Imogen’s confession that she likes him and watches as Tara and Darcy kiss on the dancefloor.
Back at the sofa, Nick reconvenes with Charlie, who reveals how he stood up to Ben and pushed him away. Nick and Charlie eventually decide to find somewhere quieter, rushing through the numerous rooms of this hotel.
Finally on their own, away from the pulsating music downstairs, Nick admits that he might go out with someone who isn’t a girl. As they touch hands, sparks fly again as Nick agrees to kissing Charlie.
It’s a beautiful, simple kiss, one that sees both their hearts race as a result. After a moment of looking at one another, they kiss again, properly and passionately, as the whole world dissolves around them and they’re both locked in one another’s embrace. At least until Charlie’s dad comes to pick him up and Nick hears Harry outside.
After this kiss though, Nick doesn’t message him back and Charlie believes he’s messed up. With all hope lost, rain pours outside as Nick shows up at the door!
The Episode Review
Heartstopper storms back on screen with a heart-stopping kiss and a beautifully written segment about young love. The whole idea of having sparks fly and the pair confront their own feelings regarding one another is so tender and well written.
Not only that, but Heartstopper also manages to effectively navigate the trials and tribulations of love, alongside the obnoxious “popular” crew. As someone who was bullied for years, this segment is likely to resonate with anyone else who went through a similar situation, peer pressured into trying to act a certain way. Nick embodies that perfectly as he wrestles with how he really feels.
This has been a thoroughly entertaining and very well written show so far though, and the romance at the heart of Heartstopper serves as the beating heart of this ensemble, pumping life into every facet of this production. Fingers and toes crossed that Nick and Charlie make it out of this together at the end!