A few years ago a friend of mine told me about a show they had seen on BBC America about a vampire, werewolf, and ghost living together. I remember they said to me, “I think it’s called Being Human. You should check it out, it’s right up your alley.”
Needless to say I was all over that like stink on, well, something very stinky and after watching the first episode I was hooked. It’s everything I love about the supernatural genre combined with wit, charm, and hilarity. The show is now on its fourth series and I am happy to say is just as wonderful as ever. If you have never watched BBC’s Being Human, then let me enlighten you as to why it is kind of amazing.
1). IT’S REFRESHING AND ORIGINAL. These days we are bombarded with stories about vampires and werewolves. Every other new film or show is jumping on the supernatural bandwagon, which I wouldn’t mind so much if the stories weren’t so derivative of each other. Being Human thankfully does not fall into this category. The main characters are unique and endearing, and they stand apart from the stereotypical depictions that occur with supernatural creatures.
The whole concept of the show is that these three people who live together are just trying to get on day by day and live normal lives. They just happen to be supernatural beings. Yes, there is occasionally a vampire conspiracy that needs to be thwarted, but for the most part the show in its core is about overcoming struggles, addiction, fear, and building the strength to be a part of a world from which they may feel greatly disconnected. The creator of the show, Toby Whithouse, originally envisioned a show about a sex addict, an agoraphobe, and a man with anger issues trying to live together. He decided to throw in the supernatural element and Being Human was the result. Instead of relying on the gimmick of having vampires, werewolves, and ghosts, the show is great because it has issues we have all faced at one time or another.
2). IT’S HILARIOUS AND WELL WRITTEN. The show is really funny. I wouldn’t necessarily put it into the category of comedy, but it has made me laugh out loud more often than some sitcoms. The writers are superb at creating witty dialogue and it is beautifully executed by the actors who help make the characters, despite their otherworldly traits, seem incredibly real and engaging. Aidan Turner, Lenora Crichlow, and Russell Tovey have wonderful chemistry as the roommates and interact so naturally with each other. Aside from Russell Tovey’s character, George, occasionally transforming into a werewolf, the activities that go on in the household remind me of the way housemates in the real world deal with problems.
This scene is one of my favorites of the whole show. It demonstrates how our three supernatural housemates deal with issues and how even someone who is over 100 years old can have a tantrum when they miss their favorite television show:
3). IT HAS EYE CANDY. In case you haven’t noticed, the actors on this show are pretty dishy. Their dish factor is also emphasized because they have accents. I must confess I am one of those typical girls that swoons over accents. Please feel free to sigh and roll your eyes at me during this moment. Done? Great, now let’s move on and enjoy the pretty pictures.
4). IT HAS GREAT CHARACTERS. George, the werewolf, is the embodiment of “adorkable” and stands apart from the typical werewolf portrayal. He may have a savage beast lurking inside of him, but most of the time he is is erratic and awkward in the cutest way. Even if he accidentally destroyed everything during a transformation, I would love having him around. He also has the most adorable scream ever. As his vampire friend, Mitchell is the perfect contrast. He is the tall, dark, smooth, but not without his own quirks. Despite being over a century old, he has the enthusiasm of someone in their twenties which makes his portrayal of a vampire so refreshing. He is haunted, but he’s not constantly skulking about. Just don’t piss him off. Ever.
Annie, the ghost, is sweet, sincere, and tries so hard to stay positive even in the most distressing situations. She has her own demons to overcome, but regardless her excitement over things, such as being called a “slag” by a complete stranger because they were able to see her, makes her character a total delight. There’s a scene when she’s practicing how to sound scary because she wants to haunt someone. These are characters you can not only relate to, but wish you had as pals. They’re unique and so well portrayed that I could imagine bumping into any one of them.
5). IT HAS GREAT VILLAINS. The villains on this show are not one dimensional characters that constantly laugh maniacally and are typical portrayals of evil. They’re juxtaposed, complex, and at times themselves are the victims of tragedy. What I particularly love about the villains of Being Human is that their personalities are unassuming and unexpected for the vicious creatures that they deep down are. They may smile and act just like you and me, they may even make you laugh, but it’s all a cruel mirage.
6). MARK WILLIAMS (YOU KNOW, ARTHUR WEASLEY) SHOWS UP AS A VAMPIRE. In Series 4 Mark Williams shows up as a vampire who wears a shirt that says “Team Edward”. I don’t think I need to explain why this is awesome.
His role in the vampire community is the “vampire recorder” and his character is a huge nerd. It makes me smile.
WARNING: THIS NEXT SECTION HAS SPOILERS FOR SERIES 4. IF YOU WANT TO BE COMPLETELY SURPRISED THEN GO NO FURTHER. IF YOU DON’T MIND BEING SPOILED THEN CONTINUE. YOU’VE BEEN WARNED!
7). EVEN AFTER LOSING TWO OF THE MAIN CHARACTERS IT REMAINS A WONDERFUL SHOW. Being Human did something that very few shows have been able to do and that is remain entertaining despite a major cast change. I won’t say in what manner the characters exit the show, but by the time Series 4 starts Mitchell is gone, George’s girlfriend Nina (Sinead Keenan) is gone, and George is gone, leaving Annie by herself and horribly conflicted. Since this is Being Human, we still need a vampire and a werewolf to make the package complete! Tom, played by Michael Socha, becomes a regular and the main werewolf of the show and we are introduced to Hal, played by Damien Molony, a vampire with a mysterious past who has locked himself away from the world.
Very rarely can a show survive and continue after losing a majority of the main cast. Many times the show loses its integrity, fizzles out, and becomes a shadow of what it once was. Thankfully this did not occur with Being Human. This is a major testament to the writers and actors of this series. Not only does Series 4 succeed in continuing the legacy of Being Human, but it is in fact my favorite series since the very first one! It is just as charming, hilarious, and witty as ever.
Damien Molony and Michael Socha play off each other wonderfully with an “odd couple” dynamic and by no means are Mitchell and George’s replacements. They add something new to the show, keeping it fresh and original. Watching them interact and and grow from begrudging acquaintances to close friends too much fun. As the series continues you learn more about Hal’s past and discover that there is a lot more to him than meets the eye.
The show has also been confirmed for a fifth series, so there is more to come! Huzzah!
There you have it, my reasons as to why you need to watch BBC’s Being Human. Now, stop reading this and Netflix this show immediately! Go!