I am a big fan of BBC’s Being Human. From the pilot through to the end of Series 1, I was very pleased with the unconventional take on a genre that is very familiar to me (as an old school tabletop roleplayer with fond memories of playing games such as Nightlife)
Far from being as dark as the US series Supernatural (another favourite) Being Human still managed to pull no punches and elements of series 2 carried this forward to good effect. The aftermath of Mitchell and Daisy’s retribution on the tube for example; or the horrific possibilities of George’s near transformation in the school.
Series 2 had a weak start, from a supernatural horror point of view, but picked up quickly. The early concentration on Annie helped add to the series’ mythology, the “doors” from series 1 playing a much more sinister role. Along with this we have sinister god botherer, Kemp, and his team successfully conducting surveillance on the house. Despite this, I think Kemp and his team were somehow underplayed. The resources available to Kemp imply a far greater organization than we see, even at the end with the introduction of Kemp’s catamitic storm troopers.
The BBC did make good use of the web through this series, much of what we know about characters such as Lloyd, Ivan and Daisy come from the various blog posts and the CENSSA website, detailing Lloyd’s findings and research into the paranormal entities he has come across.
Lacking the teen angst or mundane americana of US series like True Blood and The Vampire Diaries, Being Human still manages to hold its own, interspersing elements of the supernatural with day to day Bristol life. At the end of series 1, Mitchell, George and Annie had finally grown together as a family unit; series 2 tears that apart as George and Mitchell struggle independently to deal with Herrick’s death. So wrapped up with their own issues (Mitchell controlling the local vampires and George struggling to build a surrogate family) they ignore Annie, leaving her to cope with her own horrors alone.
The final episode had a lot to live up to when you think back to the end of series 1. I can’t say I agree with all the decisions made by the writers but I can see why they made the choices they did and appreciate the roller-coaster ending they give us. There is an obvious direction for series 3 now and a good choice of antagonist for our heroes to be hampered by. There were times series 2 seemed to lack direction but I doubt this will be a problem with series 3.
Now if only the BBC would learn from the US networks. 8 episodes is far too short for a series.