You would that think by now I would know how to spot a vampire when I see one. The same goes for werewolves–and don’t get me started on ghosts. I’ve read all of the Twilight and Sookie Stackhouse series; and watched the shows that were born from these two franchises. Hell, I even watched Fright Night, which, oddly enough, kind of combined the whole vampire and wolf thing. I have seen enough Ghost Hunters episodes to earn me respect on several internet forums (should I choose to comment). So you think I would be prepared for a show like Being Human. Yeah, one would think that, but I guess I wasn’t.
I should probably interject a side note here before I continue the review. I have only seen the first disc of Being Human series 1, so take my opinion with a grain of salt. The Netflix site has been down all day today (egads!), thus knocking off the entire watch instantly queue from my potential viewing pleasure. At home, I have the first disc of Being Human and The Crazies, but I promised my husband I would watch The Crazies with him (it can’t be any worse for a date night film than Bridget Jones’s Diary). So, Being Human it is. And, after watching the first few episodes, I’m not complaining.
OK, so here is the setup: a vampire, a werewolf, and a ghost walk into a bar– no, I actually meant to say they live together in a flat in England (you can see how the lead-in for a joke would come naturally). I am not actually sure how they found each other yet. It is quite possible they answered each other’s ads on craigslist (maybe a missed connection?). Each one of these supernatural beings has issues. George (Russell Tovey) is probably one of the dorkiest werewolves in the world (but that makes him an interesting character) and has to come to terms with his “condition.” Mitchell (Aidan Turner) is a vampire with a heart of gold. Like most of the vampires in contemporary fiction these days, he just can’t bring himself to drink human blood. Weenie. And Annie (Lenora Crichlow) is a ghost with unresolved issues keeping her from moving on. They all just want to fit into human society, but their paranormal natures keep holding them back.
The series started out a bit slow. The introductory credit sequence lightly touched on the three main characters and how they became what they are. But that is about all it explained. We have no idea what brought them together. Hey, aren’t werewolves and vampires sworn enemies? If not, that means Twilight lied to me. Nooooooo! I can’t deal with that today. Not on a day when Netflix is down; and they sent me the second movie in my queue when the first said “short wait,” thus dashing my hopes of receiving that elusive third DVD. Whatever. Someone is lying to me– either the BBC or the Twilight books (unless the rules are changed for England. They do pronounce words differently, so maybe rules of supernatural are different as well. It’s the whole herb versus herb argument all over again). Whatever the case, they live in a flat together, just like a Three’s Company with fangs. The series starts to pick up steam in the second episode, allowing the characters to become a bit more developed. By the third episode, I was hooked. Just what I need, another TV series to follow.
While I am liking the story and the acting, the effects are super cheesy. The werewolf transformation effect I believe would be difficult to carry out. Very few franchises have done this well, and this show is not one of them (Van Helsing, while kind of a crappy movie had pretty cool werewolfing if I remember correctly). I find it a little odd that after George’s transformation, he ends up looking like G’Mork’s head (the wolf dude from the NeverEnding Story) was slapped onto the body of a man in a bear costume. Creepy, yes, but not in the way I am sure they intended it to be. Here is a fun fact: apparently vampires, like sharks, have eyes that turn black at the scent of blood. Nifty (but does their skin sparkle in the sun?).
I found myself pulled into the show. Most likely because the drama is dragged out over several episodes, and the audience is only offered little pieces of the backstory at a time. But it kind of works for me. And as long as it works for me, I will keep watching.
Netflix Queue: 463