The TwShiloh household recently began watching the BBC series Being Human and it’s pretty good stuff. The plot revolves around three people sharing a house and the twist is that they are a vampire, werewolf and a ghost.
The show follows their attempts to blend in and join humanity while struggling with their various trials and tribulations. One doesn’t need to have an overly analytical mind to realize that these three paranormal states are, in fact, metaphors for much more mundane (and common) plot lines that fill TV dramas. The vampire is an addictive personality (blood, cigarettes, bad girlfriends) and plays the role subtlety and well. Lycanthropy raises all sorts of issues of self loathing and struggling for hiding one’s identity and is clearly supposed to represent repressed homosexuality. Even though the character is hetero, he is just shy of Nathan Lane’s flamboyant Albert from the Birdcage with a lot of hysterics and startled exclamations. The ghost is a young woman who’s struggling to find (and establish) her own identity. In life she defined herself only through others and so had little independent existence.
Without the paranormal angle this could just be a bad soap opera. With it, however, the writers are able to do some interesting things with the characters without getting too heavy handed as well as introducing a bit of fun.
And it is fun. The series is styled as a comedy-drama and there are equal bits of both. The plot lines are fresh, with a nice amount of unexpected twists and some interesting ideas about the horror archetypes thrown in.
Two seasons have been broadcast thus far and a third is on the way. If things go as they have in the past, my positive review will be followed shortly by the BBC announcing that they’re canceling the show immediately.
The only thing I can really ding the series on thus far is that there’s far too much snarling going on. When the vampires are mad they bare their teeth and hiss (like we’ve all seen oh so many times before). But really, is that what they’d really do? How often have you seen a person hiss? Or make some incredibly contrived affectation? And for the few times you’ve seen someone try it, how often has it worked? Still, that’s a minor point….Check it out and enjoy.
Here’s the trailer: