Views from the Stalls and Views from the Sofa - My reviews and thoughts on all things theatre and television. Follow me on Twitter @LikeTheMonth_

Monday, 28 March 2011

Being Human Series 3 Fan Awards - The Results!

You have spoken.  After two weeks of voting here are the characters and moments you voted for as the best of Being Human Series 3!  Drumroll please……………….
Favourite Partnership
1.       37.38%  -   George & Mitchell

2.       24.3%     -  George & Nina
3.       16.82%   -  Mitchell & Annie
4.       14.95%   -  McNair & Tom
5.       5.61%     -  Annie & Nancy
6.       0.83%     -  Other (Herrick & Mitchell)
George & Mitchell  -  With both George and Mitchell becoming closer to the women in their lives this series, less screen time was allotted to everyone’s favourite bromance, but boy were their scenes together memorable,  culminating of course in their heartbreaking final moment.  With one line; ‘I’m doing this because I love you’; George & Mitchell’s friendship was both ended and cemented and I have no doubt that it was this scene that won the duo this award. 
Favourite One Ep Wonder
1.       30.84%  -  Sasha

2.       23.36%  -  Adam
3.       18.69%  -  George Sands Senior
4.       13.08%  -  Wendy
5.       11.21%  -  Edgar Wyndham
6.       2.8%      -  Vincent
Sasha – ‘Like the Beyonce album’ – may not have been around long but clearly made a massive impact, triumphing in a tough category here.   With a great performance from Alexandra Roach, Sasha went through her own journey in her episode, Type 4, causing madness and mayhem on the streets and in the clubs of Barry before her genuinely moving exit.   Who would have thought a zombie Welsh chav would prove such an inspired idea?!
Favourite Recurring Character
1.       48.62%  -  Herrick
2.       33.03%  -  McNair
3.       13.76%  -  Tom
4.       3.67%    -  Lia
5.       0.92%    - Nancy
Another tough category here but despite a strong showing from newcomers McNair and Tom, there was only ever going to be one winner and the baddest bad guy on the box convincingly took first place.   After his resurrection at the end of Series 2, we were all waiting for the moment Herrick would make his appearance and although the beginning of Series 3 was strong, it still felt like the show stepped up a gear on his return.  His amnesia was unexpected but provided a genuinely gripping source of tension as the show progressed, before his inevitable return to his old self, with Jason Watkins simply mesmerising both as the confused and terrified ‘Uncle Billy’ and the vengeful, sadistic Herrick.  Is there a better TV villain?
Favourite Series 3 Episode
1.       34.23%  -  Episode 7 – Though The Heavens Fall
2.       21.62%  -  Episode 8 – The Wolf-Shaped Bullet
3.       16.22%  -  Episode 5 – The Longest Day
4.       9.01%    -  Episode 3 – Type 4
5.       8.11%    -  Episode 4 – The Pack
6.       5.41%    -  Episode 1 – Lia
7.       3.6%      -  Episode 2 – Adam’s Family
8.       1.8%      -  Episode 6 – Daddy Ghoul
The penultimate episode, wonderfully titled ‘Though The Heavens Fall’ proved most popular (and has by far the most hits of all my reviews), superbly bringing together all plot threads of the series so far and ending with a truly shocking final ten minutes.  After this episode, anticipation for the series finale could not have been higher and it seems most of you agreed this was a particularly stunning hour of television. 
Series 2 of Being Human was often criticised for being too dark, yet it is interesting to note here that no matter how enjoyable they may have been at the time, the more outright ‘comedy’ episodes of Series 3 have proven the least popular in the overall vote.  This is not to say that people disliked these episodes, however it appears that this year the darkness of the series has been embraced perhaps more than previous years and that the series has perhaps finally found the balance between comedy and drama. 
Favourite Series 3 Regular
1.        57.89%  -  Mitchell
2.       21.05%   -  George
3.       14.91%   -  Nina
4.       6.14%     -  Annie
In the most emphatic victory of them all, Mitchell is voted your favourite regular character with what can definitely be described as a ‘landslide’ vote.   It is undeniable that Mitchell behaved erratically throughout the series, in turns scared and scary as he struggled to deal with the repercussions of his past actions.  There were frequent glimpses however of the Mitchell we all love and his relationship with Annie allowed him to show his charismatic, caring side.  After his final act of redemption, nothing will ever be the same again and with Mitchell’s story coming to an end it is a fitting victory for a character that has taken his place in so many hearts over the past three years. 

Favourite Scene  - WINNER  - The Final Scene
Despite a wide variety of suggestions encompassing all episodes, one scene clearly took the lead.   As Mitchell returned to the house in the final episode he made one final devastating request of George and I defy anyone to watch the scene without at least welling up.  I could hardly bear to watch and yet could not look away and with two simple words (‘Stand up’),  George broke the collective heart of Being Human viewers everywhere.   In a series where the characters struggle to retain their humanity, this was in many ways the most ‘human’ scene of them all and if Mitchell had to leave, I can think of no better way to go.  Watch again, if you can bear it! 
2nd place : This is shared between the final moments of ‘The Pack’, with George, Nina and Tom forced into the cage at full moon & the montage at the end of ‘Lia’, with Annie’s accompanying monologue.  
3rd place: This is also shared between Mitchell and Annie running towards one another and hugging after he rescues her from purgatory  & Herrick and Mitchell in the car together in the final episode, before Mitchell eventually stakes Herrick.   
Obviously as these were open questions there were so many possibilities and so many brilliant suggestions.  Answers were wide-ranging, from the dramatic (Mitchell is arrested, Mitchell and Lia on the train), the romantic (Nina reveals she is pregnant, Mitchell & Annie kiss for the first time) to the daft (George watches Titanic with George Snr)! Suffice to say, there are so many highlights from each episode this award could be given to any number of scenes.    
Funniest Line/Moment 3 JOINT WINNERS
Annie merging from Auden to Cheryl Cole -  I think the clip says it all.
 I’m already dead! I’m already dead! I’m already dead! ’ – a typical Annie moment  from Episode 3 – Type 4.  (I have no link to the exact clip, so if anyone does, let me know and I will post it here!).  
Chicken Envy – a brief moment, proving that sometimes no words are needed to provide a genuinely hilarious moment.  Here it is, depicted in screencaps!

2nd place : George’s arrest for dogging and Nina’s subsequent rescue (and amazing facial expressions) mid-transformation. 
3rd place: ‘It can’t happen like this. Not here. Not in Wales!’  - Mitchell’s cry upon being arrested in Episode 7;  looks like it wasn’t just me that found that bizarrely hilarious in the moment!
Again, there were so many suggestions that it was very entertaining for me just to read back through some of the hilarious moments this series.  Honorary mentions go to Annie’s excuse of ‘ventriloquism’ in The Pack and George’s ‘I thought we were supposed to be the scary ones’ in Type 4.  Plenty of other hilarious one-liners were mentioned of course, particularly from Nina (‘George, you’re chitchatting…with a gimp’; ‘well it’s better than Norge’) and the master of the one-liner you-think-perhaps-you-shouldn’t-laugh-at-but-you-do, Herrick (‘Even Seth knew that and he used to point at planes’,’Sorry about these two, it’s clearly dress down Friday’).   It is impossible to mention all the moments voted for but suffice to say Series 3 was certainly as hilarious as we’ve come to expect from the show!

Scariest Moment – WINNER
We have a clear cut winner once again, with almost half of the votes in this category, it is the moment Herrick appears in the kitchen, back in police uniform and stabs Nina.  
Having been waiting for Herrick to return to his old self, the moment he did became a classic scene of the series.  Jason Watkins and Sinead Keenan were both brilliant and the tension was almost unbearable as Herrick toyed with Nina and simultaneously us as the audience, as we wondered whether or not he was going to do it.  Of course, this is Herrick we are talking about, and there was only ever one outcome.  If you can stand to watch again, here is your winner….
2nd place : Herrick appears at the bathroom door, then enters and becomes drawn to Nancy’s neck  as we wonder whether he will bite. 
3rd place: A good old-fashioned scare as Sasha suddenly appears at the door in Type 4.
Honourable mentions to the ‘will they won’t they’ element of the final scene and every appearance of the cage.  As the cage was scattered throughout the series, people have voted for different instances in particular, for example, Herrick & McNair’s flashback, the wolves trapped at full moon and Annie and Mitchell inside with the wolves circling.  If all mentions of the cage were clubbed together it would have come in at 3rd place, but it is clear that it provided many memorable moments of Series 3. 
Favourite Music Choice – WINNER – ( click on song titles for links)
-           Herrick leaving ‘Uncle Billy’ behind was always going to be a huge moment in the series and needed a brilliant soundtrack to accompany it.  Who would thought a bit of Shirley Bassey would be so perfect? 
-           As the wolves prepare for their next transformation, this very appropriate choice of track provided a brilliant accompaniment to a montage that was both funny and dramatic.   
-           Also in Episode 7, as things are getting biblical………
4th place  Death In Vegas -Dirge

-           A perfect accompaniment as Herrick shows Nina the journal at the end of Episode 5, this track encompassed Nina’s feelings of bewilderment and horror as she discovered what Mitchell had done.
It has to be noted that there was a lot of love also for the recurring themes used throughout the series, particularly in the final scene.   The music of Richard Wells has been a real highlight this series, capturing the changing dynamics and the emotional core of the show.   The influence of the soundtrack really can’t be underestimated and he has done terrific work this year. 

Favourite Series
1.       49.04%  - Series 3
2.        35.58% - Series 1
3.        15.38% - Series 2
Finally, I asked you to vote on how this series compared to the previous two and almost half of you voted Series 3 as your favourite yet.  To top the very popular and groundbreaking Series 1 is a huge achievement but is well deserved after a very strong third series, that balanced the humour and drama perfectly with an overarching story arc that was never less than gripping.  Series 3 took big themes and tackled them in a mature, compelling way whilst never losing sight of what made the show special, the characters and their interactions with one another.  Personally I believe the third series has set a new standard not just for Being Human but for British drama in general, and from this vote it looks like a lot of you agree.  Here’s hoping the quality is as high in Series 4. 
 My Picks
Ok, I did say I would let you all know my personal highlights and seen as I made you choose it is only fair that I choose myself! 
Favourite Partnership – George & Nina/Gina/Norge   -  This was an easy one for me as I believe George and Nina have grown to form such a warm and solid partnership, with Russell Tovey and Sinead Keenan bouncing off one another so well that they have created a realistic couple it is impossible not to root for.   I love the way George softens Nina and Nina makes George stronger, the two appear very different and yet complement each other perfectly.  Their decision to go back and save Adam in Episode 2 is a perfect example of how united they have become and what with their little hairy baby on the way I am looking forward to seeing how this relationship develops in Series 4. 
Favourite One Ep Wonder  -  George Sands Senior  - Although I would perhaps have moved the episode ‘Daddy Ghoul’ to  earlier in the series I was very impressed with the performance of James Fleet as George’s father.  He very subtly took on the mannerisms and speech patterns of George and it is a sign of a great performance when you can so readily and so easily believe a duo to be father and son when seeing them for the first time.   We have been spoiled in Being Human with such strong guest stars that always make a massive impact on their respective episodes and I hope this tradition continues in Series 4. 
Favourite Recurring Character – Herrick – A tough choice this one as I loved both McNair and Tom and it’s a shame I couldn’t justify giving them a category of their own!  They certainly made a huge impact upon the series and I’m sure most of us would welcome seeing them again, but in choosing my favourite recurring character I have to pick William Herrick.  I stated in a previous review that I cannot think of a better screen villain and I find Herrick fascinating to watch as he switches from charming and charismatic to malevolent and violent in an instant.  His incarnation as ‘Uncle Billy’ gave the character a different dimension, resurrecting him in an unexpected way that was very interesting to watch and even almost garnering sympathy for the villain before returning him to his murderous state.  Jason Watkins has been terrific and I will miss his threatening presence in Series 4!
Favourite Episode – Episode 7 – Though the Heavens Fall -  I chose along with the majority here, picking the penultimate episode as my personal highlight.  This was an instance where everything came together, plot, direction, acting and music, to create a gripping hour of television that tops anything I have seen recently on British TV.  This is an episode I could watch repeatedly and never get bored. 
Favourite Regular – Nina – I think the results of the main poll prove how popular a character Mitchell is/was, however I am going to go against the grain here by choosing Nina.  I can understand the criticisms of Nina as being judgemental etc. but have to admit I don’t agree with them.  I have avoided ‘the blame game’ all series but I believe that every decision a character made can be understood if you look at events from their perspective.   In her first full series I felt Nina made the biggest impact, fitting in perfectly to the extent that at times I struggled to remember what it was like without her.  Nina made me laugh probably more than any other character this series, with fabulously deadpan one-liners, but she also provides a counter to Annie’s occasional ditziness.  Sinead Keenan has proven herself to be fantastic at both the comedy and drama elements of the show, forming an excellent double act with Russell Tovey and I believe the introduction of Nina as a regular has made George a better character.  I hope some of her strength and attitude can rub off on Annie in Series 4.   
Favourite Scene – The Pack – The Return to the Cage – After much deliberation I eventually plumped for this final scene from Episode 4, with George, Nina and Tom forced into the cage to transform.  I loved this scene because it was so unexpected and felt genuinely unpredictable and allowed McNair and Mitchell to put their differences aside to stage a rescue.  For a mid-series episode, the level of tension was almost unbearable, the direction and music adding to the frantic atmosphere.  I love the final scene too, but for me personally, this was the moment I realised Being Human was taking things to a whole new level in Series 3 and for that reason stands out as my favourite of the series. 
Funniest Line/Moment – Nina’s exasperation with George Snr in the park -   Eventually I had to choose this scene as I could not stop laughing as I watched this scene unfold.  Nina’s growing exasperation at having to deal with not one but two George’s was brilliantly played, culminating in the line ‘you’re a bit…rapey…now’. Which may not be particularly politically correct but was certainly bloody funny ( and accurate! ).    In a very close second place for me is this line from Herrick in Episode 5; ‘If you don’t mind me saying old son, I think you’re a bit touched with the simple stick’.  Of all the lines this series, this is the one that I have most used myself in conversation!  Neither of these moments were actually picked by anyone else in the vote at all incidentally, which I take to indicate just how many hilarious moments there were this series, rather than that I am just weird and the only person to find them funny!
Scariest Moment – Herrick enters kitchen in police uniform and stabs Nina – Concurring with the majority here, this scene is the very epitome of an ‘edge of your seat’ moment. I’ve talked in more detail earlier but realising Herrick was back, coupled with not knowing what was going to happen made this the scariest moment of the series for me. 
Favourite Music – Propellerheads feat. Shirley Bassey – History Repeating  - Again, agreeing with the majority here, I eventually picked this track, probably because I love the song anyway and had never imagined it could be used so effectively in Being Human.  With this, Hungry Like The Wolf and Gods Gonna Cut You Down, all used in Episode 7, voted the most popular of the series, this perhaps shows just how important a good soundtrack is to creating memorable drama. 
Favourite Series – Series 3 – Yep, in case you haven’t guessed by now from reading this piece and from my previous reviews, I loved Series 3!

So, with that, I shall bring this incredibly long blog post to a close.  Thank you to all that voted in these awards, I hope you have enjoyed reading the results and that it has been interesting for you to see how opinions measure up to yours.  A massive thank you to those that have read my reviews, I am very new to this and so seeing people were actually reading was a massive boost to me and really encouraged me to continue. 
I hope you will all join me here again for Series 4, but for now, here endeth the Being Human Series 3 blog posts! 

Monday, 14 March 2011

Being Human Series 3 Awards!

Being Human Series 3 is over and it really feels like the last eight weeks have flown by.  I'm certainly going to miss it and so to keep the Being Human love going a little longer I thought it would be fun to see what you all thought and dish out our very own Being Human awards! It isn't going to be massively scientific & I'm keeping it to positive questions only, it's just for fun after all.

You will only be able to vote once in each category so choose wisely, by all means bookmark the page and come back later as voting will  be open until midnight on the 27th March.  So if you feel you have to recover from the finale first there's plenty of time!

Happy Voting!

I know we have seen more of Adam than any of those thanks to spin off Becoming Human, but he did only appear in one episode of Being Human and so it is this category I have to include him in. Please try and base your decision on the main series alone!

Ok, so here is where it gets a bit more complicated. If I tried to cover all the options for these categories there would be way too many and I would be bound to forget someone's favourite. So here it is your choice. Write your pick for each of these categories. I know it will be tough but try to keep it to just one answer and click finish survey when you are done

And there we have it, voting closes midnight on the 27th March, so check back later for the results and for my own personal picks and review of the series.

Thanks for voting!

Being Human Series 3 Episode 8 - The Wolf-Shaped Bullet - Finale Review

What’s the Story?

Being Human Series 3 comes to its devastating conclusion and things will never be the same again.

What’s the Verdict?

It should go without saying but just in case, HERE LIE SPOILERS! BIG, MASSIVE, HUMUNGOUS SPOILERS!

Well, how emotionally drained are we all feeling after that? The third series of Being Human is brought to a shattering close in this episode, tying up not only the plot strands of this year but in many ways the past three years, with some lovely moments of continuity and an ending that really feels like the closing of a chapter.

Was it a satisfying conclusion? Yes, but I can’t pretend that it was perfect and so perhaps should get my quibbles out of the way now. The ending of last week’s episode was almost apocalyptic in its scope, it really felt like the world was on the brink. Yet Mitchell’s arrest was dealt with very quickly in the opening. That photo that was built up so much last week? Well Herrick just took the card from the camera. The fact that Being Human does not drag its feet is usually something I love, but here I have to admit it felt a bit rushed and a bit, well, easy. I am delighted to see Nina and their little hairy baby back to full health (something which I was not expecting at all), but although her speedy recovery was explained, I’m not convinced it was an entirely satisfying payoff to the truly excellent cliffhanger of last week. Annie’s whisper seemingly bringing Nina back was very interesting though and something I hope is explored more.

It wasn’t too much of a shock to learn that the wolf-shaped bullet prophecy was a figment of Lia’s imagination after all and this reveal does slightly trivialise all the tension that hs gone before.  However, the mocking version of Frere Jacques told by a zombified police officer was a genius touch, an innovative way of communicating the message that managed to be genuinely creepy. Although Lia was talked around rather quickly by Annie, it has hopefully allowed Annie to realise just how strong she can be, with or without supernatural powers, she is capable of great things just by being herself.

After Herrick triumphantly returned to his old self last week, we were treated to some more fantastic scenes with Jason Watkins, gleefully taunting both Mitchell and George, destroying their worlds with a smile. I have been trying to think of a better screen villain than Herrick and have ultimately decided that there isn’t one. Everything about Watkins’ performance is brilliant, managing to somehow be charismatic and funny whilst embodying a malevolence and danger that no one else on television can match. I was surprised to see such a relatively low-key ending for such a memorable character and can't shake the feeling that he perhaps deserved more, though it was a great scene and situating it in such a beautiful location was an inspired idea.

Amidst all of this we learned what McNair was writing last week and the montage and accompanying voiceover and Tom buried his surrogate father was very moving. Lets hope we see more of Michael Socha’s adorable Tom.

This episode belonged however to Aidan Turner’s Mitchell, his series-long downward spiral leading to an emotionally devastating conclusion. After a relatively George-lite episode last week, this episode brought the friendship of George and Mitchell back to the fore and suffice to say, no-one does heartbroken quite like Russell Tovey. In the cage and believing Nina to be dead, George attacked Mitchell with such intensity and rejected him with such contempt and yet you never for one second doubted the strength of their bond.

It is this bond, this genuine love for one another that leads George to fulfil Mitchell’s request, ramming a stake into his heart to protect Mitchell’s future, ‘inevitable’ victims and to save him, knowing his soul would be destroyed by being forced to act as an ‘attack dog’ for Old One, Edgar Wyndham. Mitchell’s death could not have been sign-posted more clearly all series, and yet it is somehow still a genuine shock when the moment comes. With hindsight, it always had to be George, who once depended upon Mitchell but has found his own family and his own way to live with his curse as Mitchell has struggled with his (Plus, let’s face it, George is the only character that will be unequivocally forgiven by the fanbase). Tovey and Turner gave such emotional, heartbreaking performances that there was not a dry eye in the house and this will surely go down as one of the most memorable scenes in Being Human history. In fact, I can’t think of another programme that can provide a scene that compares to this.

And so it transpires, that it was not a wolf-shaped bullet we should have been worried about, but rather a Hobbit-shaped bullet, as Aidan Turner departs for Hollywood. If you haven’t already done so, I urge you to read the letter from Toby Whithouse here, explaining the decision to kill off Mitchell. Personally, as devastating as it is, I think it was the right thing to do. Mitchell’s past indiscretions have been redeemed and his death was heroic and unforgettable. Having Mitchell disappear between series’ would have been the worst thing ever and having his spectre hanging over Series 4 would have hindered the other characters and meant we were all perennially disappointed, forever waiting for a moment that would never come. Of course, death is not always the end in these shows and there is always a chance, but we were told clearly that there is no coming back from being staked and this really does feel final.

Suffice to say, the show will never be the same again and there will be a lot of very upset fans out there. This series has however been consistently brilliant and there is nothing on television at the moment that quite matches it. For this reason, I am already looking forward to series 4 (which has just been officially confirmed) and I hope that people will continue to watch and support the show as it begins a new chapter. We still have three brilliant central characters and a new, intriguing villain in the shape of Edgar Wyndham. What with that and the fact it looks the writers really are going to answer the question of what happens when werewolves procreate (because I bet we all thought the baby would die & they would sidestep that issue didn’t we?!), we have plenty to look forward to in a new series.

All that is left to say is a huge thank you to everyone involved in the making of this series that have provided a fantastic eight hours of television that to me have seemed almost like a masterclass in storytelling. The writing, direction, score and of course the wonderful cast have created a truly unforgettable series that I believe has set a new standard in British television drama. I wish Aidan Turner the very best for his post-Being Human career, thanks for the fantastic memories you very talented man.

A massive thank you also to all of you who have come on the Being Human journey with me this year, coming back week in week out to read and comment. It really is appreciated and I hope you have enjoyed it as much as I have. Being Human on this blog is not quite over yet however so I hope you keep reading and join me again for Series 4.

Best Scene

Despite many brilliant scenes in this episode, there is only one real candidate here. From the moment Mitchell made his gut-wrenching request, I was on the edge of my seat. I didn’t want to look and yet I could never dream of looking away. When Annie nodded to George through her tears, my tears started to spill over and all I could think was ‘Are we actually doing this? Is this actually happening?’. This scene had everything, including a beautiful moment where Annie and Mitchell declared their love and even Nina and Mitchell made their peace. As the score swelled the intensity grew, we thought it was the moment, it was going to happen and then ---- enter Edgar Wyndham. After last weeks similar double bluff with Nina & Herrick, I thought I was prepared for the same to happen again, I stayed on my guard but the scene went on for just the right amount of time to allow me to start to relax before delivering its final twist. And all for love *sniff*. RIP John Mitchell.

Best Lines

Herrick : ‘Rule One of Vampire Club. Do not get arrested. Even Seth knew that and he used to point at planes.’

Zombie Policeman : ‘What’s that barking? It’s all starting, like a row, of dominoes, can you stop them falling, someone’s due a mauling, here it comes, the wolf shaped gun. Annie listen, here’s your mission, Mitchell’s toast, if you’re a scaredy ghost, come to purgatory, stop shit getting gory, or a big bow-wow, ends his story now’. - A brilliantly original, creative and creepy nursery rhyme to the tune of Frere Jacques.

Mitchell: Killing those people on that train, do you think me, her and George are going to be eating a pizza in front of The Real Hustle now that’s out? - One final mention of The Real Hustle *sniff*

Herrick : You’ll be the villain now?
Mitchell: Christ, I always was.

Herrick: Sorry about these two, it’s clearly dress down Friday.

Herrick: Well thanks everyone for pissing on my parade. Come on, me and the boys wanted a fight! There’s popcorn! And at half time we were gonna have a Nespresso!

Annie: Gilbert! Somewhere here there’s a man called Gilbert. Find him. Tell him Annie sent you. He’s, he’s really nice. - More wonderful continuity from Series 1.

Nina: Vampires and their inscrutable bullshit! ¬- Nina, cutting through the bullshit once more.

George: What if you ran away to Scotland.
Mitchell: I’d kill people in Scotland.
George: What if we kept you in the attic?
Mitchell: Our success rate there is less than 100%. - Even despite everything, the show keeps its sense of humour.

Mitchell: You were the love of my long life.
Annie: And you were the love of mine.
Mitchell: Thank you, all of you. You made me human.

Edgar : You’re going to dance for me, you are going to kill and rampage. You are going to be my attack dog. And the day that you say no is the day that I crucify George and Nina. In Regents Park. – Much like last weeks ‘Not in Wales’ line this made me laugh? Am I missing something here?

George: I’m doing this because I love you.
Mitchell: I know. - Again, *sniff* .


As one chapter closes another opens. What is the Old Ones’ plan? Edgar doesn’t need to be invited inside, what other ‘tricks’ has he picked up? He says there will be a lot more ghosts, can we expect more friends for Annie in Series 4? What will happen with Nina & George’s little hairy baby? It looks like Nancy really is dead, or is she? Where did Tom go and will we see him again? Just how will George, Nina and Annie be able to take on an army of vampires? Can the show survive without Mitchell? (Personally I think it can, it will be very different, but it can). Can we have Series 4 as soon as possible please?

I am carrying out our very own fan awards for Being Human Series 3 - click here to have your say now!

Monday, 7 March 2011

Being Human Series 3 Episode 7 - Though the Heavens Fall - Review

What’s the Story?

In the penultimate episode of Series 3, the police are closing in on Mitchell and Annie’s detective work leads her to a devastating discovery.  McNair and Tom return on the full moon but McNair and Herrick have met before... Meanwhile Herrick is becoming overwhelmed by his ‘hunger’ and is struggling to resist the lure of Detective Nancy’s blood.

What’s the Verdict?

Had I had to post this review at 10.01pm last night, I think it would mostly have consisted of ‘ARGH! NOO! NINA! MITCHELL! HERRICK! OHMIGOD!’.  Thankfully, I have had the chance to sleep on it and re-watch the episode, so hopefully my thoughts now will be a little more coherent!  It is still difficult to know where to start however, with this episode cramming so much action and drama into the hour that I felt genuinely awestruck at the end. ‘Let justice be done, though the heavens fall’; when it is Herrick saying these words, you know something is not quite right with the world and Being Human is about to deliver another rollercoaster of an episode.

Beginning again with a prequel, the opening teased us with another appearance of the old Herrick and reminded us of the glee he takes in being the orchestrator of someone’s suffering.  The ‘someone’ in question this time, was none other than a freshly scratched McNair and in this moment the seeds were sown for a final showdown between the two.  The reappearance of McNair and Tom at Honolulu Heights reignited Mitchell’s fear, as he desperately attacked Herrick again for his resurrection secret, in vain once more.

When Detective Nancy made her suspicions about Mitchell known, he saw an opportunity to rid himself of her threat and help Herrick return to his old self and there was a definite, dangerous glint in his eye as the thought crossed his mind.  Had Mitchell gone through with essentially feeding Nancy to Herrick, I think the character would have become completely irredeemable.  Although he has done terrible things in the past, we have seen his anguish, remorse and regret.  The cold-blooded sacrifice of Nancy would have been a step too far and I was so relieved that he stopped Herrick in time, the Mitchell we love is still there. 

Indeed, the Mitchell Annie loves is still there too.  Upon finally realising Mitchell was the perpetrator of the Box Tunnel massacre all along, the solitary tear rolling down Annie’s face was heartbreaking as the scales fell from her eyes.  She is devastated, disgusted even, yet still she vows to stand by her man, providing Mitchell turns himself in.  This does seem a bit naive on Annie's part but she has been thinking so much about Lia, the other victims and families, that she is not considering the bigger picture and the ramifications Mitchell's arrest will have upon them and on society.  Ultimately he is not given the option to go to the police himself and is dragged to a particularly seedy, ramshackle looking police station (someone please tell me that isn’t really the police station of Barry?), knowing that when his photograph is taken vampires the world over will be ‘outed’. And that the world isn’t ready for it.   

Lenora Crichlow and Aidan Turner were both fantastic, as the devastating secrets came spilling out and they both faced the consequences.  Indeed, everyone was feeling the consequences of their past actions in this episode.  Nina’s regret over reporting Mitchell was obvious, as she realised too late that perhaps she needs Mitchell to protect herself and her new family. McNair confidently descended upon a still terrified Herrick, finally believing he would have his revenge and never entertaining the notion that he would fail.  Even George was reminded of his brief dalliance with Daisy. 

Although lighter on laughs this week, there were so many wonderful touches entirely unique to this show and the plot threads woven into each episode finally came to fruition, building to another compelling conclusion.  If you were to put together the final ten minutes of each episode of Being Human Series 3 and watch them all together, I think they would need to be preceded with a health warning, so dramatic and heartstopping has each conclusion been. 

For those final minutes were truly incredible, from the moment Mitchell was dragged from the house and Nancy ascended the stairs I was on the edge of my seat and the reappearance of the old Herrick as he attacked Nina was genuinely jaw dropping stuff.  The writers have really toyed with our feelings and morals in this series, I have hoped for the return of the evil Herrick but certainly not at the expense of Nina.  Yet despite hating what he has just done, we are left in a position where he may be Mitchell’s best hope of escaping.

So much happened in this episode that I have not yet even touched upon the death of Daisy, how sad I am to see McNair depart, how adorable Tom is and the revelation that Nancy’s boss Cooper was a vampire all along and that Annie stepped up to save her (though it explains why he was suspiciously apathetic regarding Nancy’s investigation).

It has to be emphasised again however just how well written, directed and acted this episode was, with some inspired music choices really complementing the action.  I do have one minor quibble though, that Annie appearing and disappearing at convenient moments is in danger of becoming a bit too contrived.  Last episode she decided to disappear just as Mitchell confronted Nancy in the hallway, this episode, despite saying she would go with Mitchell, she is nowhere to be seen at the police station, then not at the house when Herrick slaughtered the police officers and stabbed Nina.  Just where on earth did she get to?  As I say, it is a minor quibble, that does not affect my enjoyment of the show, but I do think the writers are more than capable of coming up with an explanation to this, or utilising this power of Annie’s in a slightly more skilful way. 

In summary though, this was a fantastic episode, which wove the threads of the series together to set a genuinely shocking chain of events in motion.  We knew that eventually Annie would have to learn the truth about Mitchell, and in some ways have been waiting for the moment to come, so credit to the writers for still managing to do this in a creative and compelling manner.  By the end of the episode, everything had changed and we look set for a truly memorable finale.  Let’s just hope my heart can take it!

Best Scene

The soundtrack in Being Human has always been used to a fabulous effect and the montage to Duran Duran’s ‘Hungry Like The Wolf’ was a particular personal highlight.  The attention to detail in this show never ceases to amaze me and the little touches in this sequence evidenced what makes this show so entertaining.  Tom producing a massive chicken on a string and Nina’s playful nod to George as he produced his comparatively inadequate chicken was hilarious but then the cut to Herrick silently pocketing the knife Mitchell used last week (presumably only seen when Nina changed his bedding) demonstrated how well the tone has been balanced this series between comedy and drama. 

As much as I loved this montage however, the standout scene yet again revolves around Herrick, as he dons his police uniform once more.  It is immediately apparent he is back to his old self as he toys both with Nina and us as the audience, mulling over his ‘dilemma’ in such a calm, matter of fact manner that makes him all the more terrifying as a villain.  Jason Watkins and Sinead Keenan were both excellent, with the fear in Keenan’s eyes obvious as Herrick descended. I could hardly bear to look and yet at the same time could not look away, I felt so relieved when he walked out and horrified seeing him virtually glide back in.  I expected Nina to suffer repercussions of her naive yet admirable defence of Herrick, but certainly was not expecting him to stab her in the back quite so literally!  I don’t think I have made any secret of my love for Nina this series and really hope she pulls through this.  As twists go however, this was one hell of a shocker!

Best Lines

‘I mean you’re what 19, 20? You shouldn’t be killing vampires from a shitty camper van, you should have chlamydia. And a 24 hour hangover’ – There’s just something odd about George of all people giving this advice to Tom.  I mean, it’s George!

Tom: You people really do swear a lot don’t you? Just an observation.  McNair says it suggests a limited vocabulary.
George: Oh right does he, well actually I can speak six different languages, so McNair can just.....piss off.

Nancy: ‘Why has John and now you given me the name of someone who died before the cocking coronation?’

Cooper: You’re not really getting this aren’t you? We can’t be arrested.
Nancy: What are you? The bastard masons?

Herrick: I’ll assume that you are the victim of another barbarity I am supposed to have committed
McNair: Another barbarity? Fucking Southerners.  -  Sorry Southerners, but being as Northern as Robson Green I did laugh at this one!

Dr Hayley Hamilton : You’ve got twigs and stuff in your hair
George: Oh god, we went camping last night
Nina: Yeah that’s the other thing, we always get really worried after we’ve been camping.  You know the cold and stuff.
Dr Hamilton: So don’t go camping.
Nina: George....makes me....

Mitchell: ‘Please let me go. It can’t happen like this, not here. Not in Wales!’ – Er ...what?

Police Officer : Right then Gloria O’ Swanson, Time for your close up. – Sorry but I happen to love Sunset Boulevard and therefore must document all references!


Will Nina survive? And the baby? I suspect only one of them will make it. What will happen when the police see Mitchell has no reflection? Was there any actual significance to the ‘Not in Wales!’ line? Do vampires have any plans in place if one of their own is arrested, will they descend on Barry to rescue him? What about the Old Ones and the ‘retribution from overseas’? After Episode 1 I asked ‘Is Lia a Liar?’ We still don’t know, but we now have fewer candidates for the ‘wolf-shaped bullet’. What will Tom do when he finds out about McNair? And George about Nina? What did McNair write down before his transformation and one-way trip to the attic? Nancy looked very much alive to me, did she get that ‘evolutionary promotion’ after all? Can we all cope with another episode as intense as this one?!

EDIT - One more question following the death of McNair, do werewolves get a door when they die? I don't think we've seen a werewolf go through a door yet have we? Any thoughts on this?
Tune in to the series finale, Sunday night, 9pm on BBC3, check out the Being Human blog at  for chat and and behind the scenes videos and follow @bbcbeinghuman @russelltovey and @sineadkeenan on Twitter.