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Giveaway and Review: The Fades Season One

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I confess that I knew absolutely nothing about this show before I started watching it.  From the box art I could tell that it was a horror show that involved monsters of some sort, but that was about it.  Now that I have finished the first season, I am completely convinced that everyone needs to check this show out (if you haven’t already).  It is a wonderful twist on the zombie genre with an endearing, relate-able protagonist and disturbingly almost-sympathetic villains.

Official Synopsis:

The Fades is a new supernatural horror series by 2011 Royal Television Society Award-winning writer Jack Thorne (the original UK Skins). Iain De Caestecker (Coronation Street) is Paul, a young man who is haunted by apocalyptic dreams that neither his therapist nor his best friend, Mac (Daniel Kaluuya, Skins, Sucker Punch), can provide answers for. Worse still, Paul has started seeing the Fades – the spirits of the dead – all around him. They’re everywhere but normally can’t be seen, heard or touched – until now. An embittered and vengeful Fade has found a way to break the barrier between the dead and the living. and Paul, Mac and their loved ones find themselves in the middle of it all. The worst is only yet to come as the fate of humanity rests in the hands of the two friends who already have enough trouble getting through a day in one piece, let alone saving the world.

The writing is witty and fun and the acting is solid.  Iain De Caestecker does an excellent job playing the unwilling “nerd” hero who spent his childhood playing superheros only to be forced into a real-life superhero role as a teenager.  Daniel Kaluuya plays the best friend perfectly by creating a believable character out of a variety of emotions/personality traits, including awe of his friend’s new abilities, fear, loyalty, and (more than anything else) geekdom.

Perhaps my favorite characteristic of this show is the fact that both Paul and John (the big bad) are well-rounded adversaries.  Neither are perfectly good nor perfectly evil.  Paul has moments where he screws up while John has at least one moment where I felt somewhat sympathetic towards him.  The secondary characters are not necessarily as fleshed out in terms of personalities and flaws, but I think the writers did an amazing job building a world and believable characters out of only six episodes.  I imagine we will get more from the other characters as the seasons progress.

Fair warning, there is a decent amount of gore (not really bloody/splatter gore but more like ‘body horror‘) and there are a lot of religious (mostly Christian) references.  While both elements are consistently present throughout the series, I never felt as though either got to be so much that it took away from the storytelling.  It’s clear the show is dealing with Christian ideology (plenty of references to angels and ‘ascending’) but it also does not ever really focus on the “God/god” question.  The ideology is just there to add to the story and somewhat natural given the subject matter of ‘life after death’.  As for the gore, there were plenty of moments where I felt a little ‘icky’ with regards to the visual effects on the screen, but I’ve also definitely seen worse in modern horror.  Again, it’s not really your traditional excessive bloody gore, but more like gooey, oozy skin-related gore.  I can’t elaborate beyond that without giving away serious spoilers but just as a heads up, you probably shouldn’t be eating while watching some of the later episodes (a mistake I made and regretted).

In the end, I strongly recommend this show for any fan of horror, zombie, or ghost stories.  And luckily for those fans…Nerds in Babeland have two copies of the first season of The Fades to giveaway on DVD! In order to enter, comment on this post and tell us what your favorite horror movie or TV show is (either or works).  We’ll select two winners at random on Friday, March 9, at 12 pm EST.

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Review: Merlin Season 3 DVD

Available now on DVD!

Just about everyone who comes to this site obsessively watches or at least knows about Doctor Who, Torchwood & Sherlock. But are you aware of the other equally as enjoyable shows from the BBC such as Primeval, Robin Hood (I strongly suggest you RUN and watch all three seasons to see how awesome Richard Armitage is to tide you over till The Hobbit comes out, or at least until the next trailer), and of course Merlin.

Official Synopsis: Merlin is back with even more magic, adventure and romance as the young wizard struggles to protect Prince Arthur in the perilous world of Camelot. While battling deadly assassins, mystical monsters and the most powerful sorcerers Camelot has ever seen, Merlin must work harder than ever to conceal his unique abilities while King Uther redoubles his war against magic. Featuring exciting new villains, white-knuckle stunt sequences, and spectacular CGI monsters, Merlin season three is more thrilling than ever.

Season 3 of Merlin is when everything changes. We finally get to see why Katie McGrath was cast as Morgana. Up to this point there has been something a little off in her performance. My sister couldn’t stand her at all. I have always put it down to the fact that she is Irish, doing an English accent that sounds more like an American one. Also that they kind of left her in this “pretty pampered princess” box, when what she is clearly excellent at is being BAD ASS EVIL witch princess out for revenge.  She truly begins to shine in this season and I just love it.

 

 

I also absolutely adore Emilia Fox as Morgause, the equally bad ass evil witch, sister to Morgana. I know they are supposed to be evil; they do some pretty evil bad girl stuff. But along with that, they truly love one another.  Ultimately Morgause just wants to see her sister in her rightful place and Morgana has lived her life terrified that she had magic and what would happen to her if Uther ever found out.

We also see the relationship between Merlin and Arthur progress, while Merlin is still Arthur’s servant they are developing the friendship that anyone familiar with Arthurian legends has been waiting on. Their comedic timing is so perfect, and it lightens up the heavier aspects of some of the story lines.

The special features disc has some real gems. Along with the typical “behind the scenes” and “deleted scenes” features there is also footage of the 2010 SDCC panel moderated by Jenna Busch, including both the full blooper reel that was shown to the panel as well as a second one not shown before. I was in tears from laughing so hard. Seeing Anthony Head losing his shit over and over again on different scenes is worth buying the DVDs
alone.  But when you factor in that Bradley James (Arthur) is a complete spazzy goofball it’s double the fun.

So if you haven’t already started watching Merlin I suggest you do so and get season 3 while you are at it.

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Doctor Who Recap: S6x06 – The Almost People

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WARNING: SPOILERS

The Almost People. It’s a loaded phrase, as it’s meant to be. First heard in “The Rebel Flesh”, Amy: “Almost coming?” The Doctor: “Almost people,” it’s rife with possibility. While the Flesh may be continuing their rebellion, the gangers are getting closer and closer to being as human as any of us.

Scripted by Matthew Graham and directed by Julian Simpson, (despite the cries heard across the Atlantic, of MOOOOOFFFFFAAAAATTTTT,) the conclusion of the second two-parter in S6 is full of twists, turns, and more than a bit of horror both blatant and subtle.

Harkening back to “The Impossible Astronaut”, we’re left questioning what we’ve been told. Was that the Doctor? If the Doctor’s ganger is the Doctor too, could that have been a duplicate who died?

Duplicates are important in this season. We’ve got a monastery full of duplicates, a duplicate Doctor, and Rory. Rory spent two thousand years as plastic, and we know that he remembers it. In TRF, the memory of what being less than human and yet, so very human, gave Rory empathy for the gangers. Or did it? Was there something more to it than that?

We pick up where we left off, with the ganger Doctor. Is this what it’s like for the, “Real,” Doctor? Sorting and contextualizing all those selves with each regeneration? “Reverse the jelly baby of the neutron flow,” sums it up quite nicely. If you’ve got sharp ears, you’ll hear a few past Doctors, including Tom Baker and David Tennant. The idea of two Doctor’s makes the humans uncomfortable. Fear and revulsion, tempered by her love of the Doctor, color Amy’s interactions with his doppelganger. Meanwhile, the Doctor seems thrilled to be part of a matched set. Except for the shoes.

The, “Us and them,” mentality espoused by both native groups of gangers and humans, begins to be echoed by Team TARDIS. Rory has, despite doubts when he runs into two Jennifers, thrown his lot in with the Doctor’s aim of saving both humans and gangers. Amy is far more suspicious of the ganger Doctor, and the gangers in general.

We’re shown the ways the humans and gangers really are the same people: Cleaves’ headaches, Jimmy’s attachment to his son, yet Jennifer is bent on revenge. As a human, Jennifer’s a mouse and as a ganger, she’s the id unleashed.

Amy’s confrontation with the ganger Doctor is chilling, as she reveals that she’s seen the Doctor’s death. His response is even more frightening, because this is perhaps the first time since “The Beast Below”, that we’ve seen this sort of rage displayed as he slams Amy up against a wall and exclaims, “. . . It’s all the eyes say, ‘Why?'”

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Duplicity and accusation, secrets and lies, and a game of survival of the fittest. Jennifer manipulates Rory into accessing systems that won’t recognize a non-human. The dialogue is such a subversion of the, “helpless female,” human Jennifer imagined herself to be, that it raised the hairs on the back of my neck.

A phone call tips the balance, as ganger Jimmy speaks to, “His,” son.

Ganger Jennifer: “You tricked him into an act of weakness.”
Ganger Doctor: “No, I helped him into an act of humanity.”

There is reconciliation and redemption among the gangers and humans, but Jennifer is still a threat and the factory’s going into meltdown. The ganger Cleaves and Doctor stay behind to destroy Jennifer, and the Doctor reveals that they swapped shoes. A happy ending seems to be in store.

Except. . .

Everything we know is a lie. The story’s been telling us this, all along.

The final words of the ganger Doctor to Amy, “Push, but only when she tells you.”

The many, many instances, perhaps going back to the fifth season, where the Doctor has commanded Amy to, “Breathe.”

Amy is flesh, a duplicate.

Doctor: “Hold on, we’re coming for you. . .”
Amy: “I’m right here.”
Doctor: “No you’re not, and you haven’t been for a long, long time.”

We see Amy wake up in a a sterile white room, obviously pregnant, and the mysterious woman with an eyepatch is there, telling her to push.

Matthew Graham has managed to take a Frankensteinian premise, and make it much more horrifying, while Simpson’s direction has brought Arthur Darvill forward as the voice of benevolent altruism and courage in the face of both a mob mentality and shocking betrayals. Matt Smith plays both Doctors in very different ways, and Karen Gillan embodies the loyalty we expect from Amy, while at the same time showing us the fear and betrayal as Rory steps away from his wife to allow the Doctor to destroy her. Ganger Amy may be a duplicate, but she doesn’t know it. This isn’t a self-aware, willing participant in the real Amy’s abduction, this is a shell, holding Amy’s living consciousness.
Sarah Smart’s Jennifer, is absolutely bone-chilling, but I really found myself connecting to Raquel Cassidy’s Cleaves. Cassidy manages to make both human and ganger versions equally human and equally flawed, and she’s definitely a match for the Doctors in attitude.

We’re left with questions: How long has Amy been a duplicate? Who took her, and why? Is she really pregnant? Is the child in the space suit Amy’s child? If so, how can the child regenerate? Moffat has said we’ll learn who River Song is before the mid-series break, so we’ve got to wonder: Is Amy River’s mother?

We’re also given answers: The indeterminate pregnancy is obviously a reflection of the fact that Amy’s ganger is connected to Amy, and the TARDIS can sense both. The Silent’s command that Amy, “Tell the Doctor what he must know, and what he must never know,” has a probable explanation: Amy told him she was pregnant, and that she’s seen him die. Although I doubt that it’s that simple. Things are rarely simple with Steven Moffat.

A running theme this season, has been that someone other than the Doctor is the emotional center of each episode. In “The Doctor’s Wife” and “The Almost People”, we see the Doctor shoulder some of the emotional burden, but I think the sense of him as an observer is intentional. It’s implied that he’s known Amy isn’t Amy for a while, which gives the detachment some context. It will be especially frightening if we learn that Amy hasn’t been Amy going back to some point in the fifth series. Since we know Rory remembers being The Lone Centurion and the whole two thousand years of waiting for Amy, will Amy have memories of being in captivity and being in the TARDIS?

The takeaway from “The Almost People”, breaks down as follows: 1) We’ve got a lot of questions heading into the mid-series break, and it’s likely that only a few of them will be answered. 2) Some of the arc threads have their origins as far back as the fourth series. 3) This is where it gets complicated.

With the title of the mid-series finale, “A Good Man Goes To War”, we’re led in a particular direction. River is in prison for killing a man, “A very good man.”

Does the title refer to the Doctor, or someone else entirely?

NB: Check your calendars, America. We’re now a week behind the UK, due to BBC America deciding Whovians wouldn’t be bothered watching television on Memorial Day weekend. The scheduled air date for the second half premiere is September third. Labor Day weekend. If you want to make sure we’re not put a week behind again, tweet @BBCAmerica.

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Being Human 3×8 – The Wolf-Shaped Bullet

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This is it, folks – the end of the third season of Being Human. This has arguably been the best season yet. I certainly have been on the edge of my seat almost the entire time. Everything we have seen up to this point all comes down to this episode. To recap: Mitchell has been arrested in connection to the train massacre, and Nina has been attacked by Herrick, who has regained memories of his past life. And that’s where we left off in the previous episode.

Warning: There are almost certainly going to be spoilers contained in this recap. If you haven’t seen the episode yet, consider yourself warned and proceed with caution.

We start the finale with Tom finding the dead and injured left from Herrick’s attack. Nina gets sent to the hospital, where Annie finds her and receives a message from purgatory. She has to return in order to prevent the wolf-shaped bullet from getting Mitchell. It is here we learn that the prophecy was a sham devised to mess with Mitchell’s head, as punishment for her death. Fake or not, it became a self-fulfilling prophecy that Mitchell has made come true. Annie convinces Lia that revenge is not the answer and goes back to try to fix things.

While all this is happening, Mitchell escapes prison with the help of Herrick, but it ends up being his removal from one prison to another, as Herrick knocks him out and takes him away. Mitchell tries to convince Herrick that he is willing to join forces in order to survive. The only way to do this though is to turn against George, who has been kidnapped by Herrick’s men. And thus the prophecy is set up, with George and Mitchell thrown in a cage and forced to go against each other. Herrick fills George’s head with thoughts of Nina being killed and how Mitchell lit the fuse that started it all, and George loses control. Mitchell tries to explain he is not actually working for Herrick, but George doesn’t want to hear it. Russell Tovey conveys George’s heartbreak and betrayal excellently here. It is this look of contempt that finally makes Mitchell realize how far off course he has gone, which in turn pushes him to finally make the right decision and kill Herrick himself.

Best scene in the whole bloody season (or at least this episode) goes to when Mitchell comes home, faces the rest of the group, and asks George to kill him. It looks at the relationships that we have seen form over three seasons, especially the friendship that has formed between Mitchell and George and how it has changed them both. The scene takes three people who used to call Mitchell friend and shows them considering killing him.

I guess when I said “best scene ever” I should have said “series of scenes,” because the last 15-20 minutes of this episode are some of the best moments in television. George and Mitchell facing off and examining their friendship in a scene that is both simple and powerful. You honestly don’t know how it will all play out. Mitchell does everything to taunt George into killing him, but George continuously tells him “this will not work”. Aidan Turner does a remarkable job of conveying the pain that Mitchell carries with him (and has throughout the entire series). Just as George is ready to do as Mitchell asks, Wyndam (one of the old ones) stops them and says he is forcing Mitchell to join him. He gives a fantastic speech outlining his plans for everyone, and just as I am thinking how amazing next season is going to be, the biggest surprise of the season comes – George kills Mitchell in order to stop Wyndam from using him as a weapon. If George had to kill Mitchell, I’m glad he did it out of love and friendship instead of from a place of anger. Their final words almost broke my heart, they were that moving:

George: I’m doing this because I love you.

Mitchell: I know.

This scene was made especially moving thanks to the acting of Tovey and Turner. Also, kudos to the writers for their work on the show and a fantastic ending.

Final wrap-up – I didn’t think the team over at Being Human could top this season, but what they have set up for Season 4 has me wishing I had my own personal TARDIS so I could jump the waiting period and see what happens next.

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Being Human 3×7 – Though the Heavens Fall

 

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Sorry for the gap in postings. The end of the semester at school has left me with very little time. To recap, the detective involved in the train massacre is on Mitchell’s tail and looking to prove he is the one responsible. This episode of Being Human focuses on the continued investigation, as well as the continuation of the “wolf-shaped bullet” story we started in the beginning of the season. I also think it’s worth mentioning that I have been negligent in warning people about spoilers, and for that I am sorry. For future reference, if you haven’t watched the episode yet then you probably shouldn’t be reading these recaps. And with that being said, here is my recap of “Though the Heavens Fall”.

 

“Whatever you are, it doesn’t have to define you” – Nina

In the last recap I talked a lot about Herrick through a psychology “nature vs nurture” lens and whether he had come back evil or not. Now is the time to comment on how good an actor Jason Watkins is. He does a fantastic job at making us question how dangerous Herrick is. There are moments where I think Herrick doesn’t know what he is, but usually something happens to make me certain he is more dangerous than any of them know.

Besides the focus on the usual cast of characters, this episode also brought back the McNairs (our second favorite werewolf family, next to George and Nina). Father was injured, so they went to George and Nina for help and shelter. Having the McNairs stay there will prove problematic, however, since it is a full moon that night. (Isn’t that always the way these stories go?) Mitchell plays it cool but is clearly nervous, what with the whole “wolf-shaped bullet” prophecy looming over him.

Mitchell is really the focus of most of this episode (and most of the season, in fact), since he has two stories that revolve around him. The other characters are still important though, as we get to see everyone’s reactions as they slowly learn the truth (or at least begin to suspect). Something I want to bring up about this is Annie’s reaction when she finds out about the scrapbook Mitchell is keeping on the train massacre. Watching her as she assumes that Mitchell must be investigating the massacre himself (so that he can bring Daisy to justice), I couldn’t help but see a classic case of denial and rationalization.  To anyone who is tired of my psych analysis of this show I’m sorry, but when you study this stuff you can’t help but see it everywhere. In this case, I couldn’t help but think how funny it is the lengths we will go to see the best in the people we love. They could do terrible things, and our friends can see what they really are (much like Nina sees what Mitchell really is), but we will do whatever it takes to convince ourselves that they are actually good people. I’m not saying Mitchell hasn’t changed since this incident occurred, or that he doesn’t deserve a second chance. On the other hand, it could be that I have become so attached to this character that I, too, will simply brush it off and say “everyone deserves a second chance”. I am curious what others have to say on this issue.

In classic Being Human fashion, this episode concluded with multiple twist endings. First up, there is finally evidence linking Mitchell to the train massacre. In a surprise twist though, the head of the investigation is actually a vampire and has been trying to cover this up the entire time. It all falls apart, and Mitchell allows himself to be arrested. Problem: What will happen as he is being processed in the police station and they take his picture? They leave us hanging here on this one, to ensure viewers watch the season finale (as if there was any question as to whether or not I would be watching it at some point).

The other surprise twist for the night was connecting the opening flashback to Herrick being the cause of an innocent being turned into a werewolf and the innocent turning out to be the elder McNair. Their both being in the same house may or may not be a coincidence, but McNair plans to use it towards his advantage and finally get some sweet, sweet revenge. Everything goes horribly wrong, and Herrick ends up the victor in this cage match. I don’t think I even want to know how Herrick fended off a werewolf attack WITH A BLOODY KNIFE. I don’t care if he is a vampire, that just seems impossible to me. Clearly he has embraced his inner vampire, as he also kills the detective who has Mitchell arrested. This final act seems to finally bring back the memories about his past life, which is unfortunate for Nina, who is left alone in the house with him. Herrick wants revenge for what George did to him, and hurting Nina is the best way to make that happen. It is unclear whether or not she will survive this attack. I want to say she will, since she is a main character, but this show has so many surprises that I can never be sure.

My final thoughts for this one are focused towards Nina’s pregnancy (assuming she and the baby both survive their recent attack). I said I wanted to see where they were going with this, since the baby seems to be able to survive Nina’s transformations. After the comments made about the size of the baby being abnormally large, I believe the “baby” is literally a werewolf baby – as in, it’s not going to be born as a human. I might be off here, but it does seem more likely with each new piece of evidence we get on the matter. Of course, this is assuming the baby survives mommy being attacked. Another concern is if they will be able to hide what they are while Nina is being treated in the hospital. But assuming everything works out and we get to see the baby being born, any thoughts for or against my latest theory are welcome.

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Being Human 3×6 – Daddy Ghoul

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We start this week with a little history lesson, as we flashback to Herrick explaining the concept of an heir to Mitchell. An heir will inherit all your secrets, and be able to bring you back if something happens to you. The mystery of how Herrick was brought back is now somewhat revealed, although details are still missing.

 

 

Flash again to the present and the once mighty Herrick is now living in our group’s attic. I have to say though, Herrick might actually be scarier like this than he was when we knew him in his prime. Where before we knew what we were getting, we’re not really sure what to expect with this version. Mitchell has moved from his first instinct of trying to kill him, to keeping him alive for information about how Herrick survived a werewolf attack. The chances of this backfiring on him are huge, but he either doesn’t realize this or doesn’t care. For now, Mitchell’s main concern is finding a way to survive the predicted werewolf attack that is supposed to kill him.

 

Mitchell has two stories converge in this one, with an investigator knocking on their door to ask questions about the train massacre he was involved in. I really thought this woman was going to end up food for Herrick, but she walks out almost as quickly as she walks in. Of course this story can’t end that easily though. The woman comes back on another tip, this time to ask about Daisy. The “you’re going to regret coming back” moment comes with Herrick and the investigator talking in the bathroom. Anyone else think of “The Shining” when Herrick is watching the woman through the glass of the door? I definitely thought Herrick was going to kill her right then. It does way more damage by leading her to the information she needs to prove Mitchell’s involvement in the massacre, however. For better or worse, Mitchell realizes what has happened and calls her out on it. The suspicions have been placed though, and this woman is not going to let go any time soon. Too little, too late, burning that evidence, Mitchell.

 

The story with George for this week involves his father, who has passed away and is found as a ghost at his own funeral. This gives Being Human a chance to make another ridiculous scenario seem normal (a werewolf and his ghost father catching up on old times like it’s completely normal). George takes it upon himself to help his father figure out why he hasn’t moved on to the other side yet. It’s funny seeing them together and how much alike they are. There was also really good casting for this part, as they even look somewhat alike (at least enough that they could be related).

 

After doing a lot of digging, we find out that George’s father is not actually a ghost. He faked his death because with losing his wife to another man and not knowing his son was alive, he didn’t think anyone would miss him. The story now becomes him trying to win his wife back. I have to say I’m usually good at seeing the twists coming, but this one took me by surprise. It all works out in the end though, proving that happy endings can happen sometimes.

 

George’s family might have a happy ending for now, but with only two more weeks left I think it’s safe to assume things are going to heat up for our dysfunctional little family unit. Can’t wait to see what Being Human has cooked up for their grand finale.

 

BEING-HUMAN-BBC-The-Pack-Season-3-Episode-3

Being Human 3×4 – The Pack

 

George and Nina are starting a family and Mitchell and Annie are starting a relationship… and that’s what you missed last week on Being Human.

 

That’s right, last week we ended with Mitchell and Annie kissing (finally!) and thus admitting their feelings for each other.  This week they explore their new relationship in all its wonderful awkwardness.  Think about it – a vampire and a ghost are trying to have a “normal” relationship.  That’s gotta lead to a few awkward laughs.

 

Mitchell has other things to worry about besides how to approach his new relationship with Annie, though.  In the beginning of the season we heard a prophecy that he would be killed by a werewolf.  It’s no surprise then that Mitchell freaks out at the new werewolves that George and Nina have asked for help with their pregnancy.  The werewolves don’t like vampires any more than Mitchell likes them.  Mitchell might be overly cautious here with the prophecy in the back of his mind, but that also might not be a bad thing.  The older of the two werewolves definitely does not like Mitchell and is looking for the first chance to do some vampire slaying.  Mitchell tries a preemptive strike that backfires, and ironically forces the two to work together to save their stolen friends.  Enemies learning to work together for a common cause – this is our Being Human lesson of the week.  It is great seeing Mitchell make the decision to save McNair instead of letting him be killed.  Any time Mitchell makes the conscious choice of life over death it gives us another reason to be proud of him.  His past has haunted him for as long as we’ve known him, but even though he isn’t perfect (and who of us is?) he still tries to do the right thing when he can.  Kudos to the writers for keeping his character (and everyone on the show) consistent.

 

This week’s review was shorter than usual because everyone’s stories sorta merged together instead of sprouting off in different directions like they sometimes do.  With the season halfway over, look for things to heat up as we approach Mitchell’s “wolf-shaped bullet”.  Personally, I’m looking forward to more development of how George and Nina handle their new werewolf family, as well as Mitchell and Annie’s budding relationship.  What are the rest of you looking forward to in the second half of the season?

 

Being Human 3×3 – Type 4

I’m behind on my Being Human posts because of a combination of schoolwork and going away for spring break (which was of course earlier than everyone else’s). What you are about to read is for Episode 3 – “Type 4,” which was about a zombie.

Being Human has showed us vampires, werewolves, and ghosts. In this episode we finally added zombies to that list of supernatural wonders.  A woman dies and somehow reanimates… and then follows Annie home. “If she was just dead dead then no problem, but that is just weird.” Funny the distinctions we make when dealing with the supernatural.

The real problem here is not the zombie in the house. Well, that is a problem. Besides that though the real problem is that the girl is in denial about her condition. The group wants to send her back to the hospital, yet again saying “it’s not our problem,” but the hospital she came from seems to be involved in some shady practices, so they let her stay in the house.

Eventually the girl comes to terms with her situation, and the problem changes to what she is supposed to do now. Annie and Nina having a “girl’s night” with their newest resident corpse was what I’m calling our “Being Human” moment for the evening. Basically a “Being Human” moment is what I call it when the show takes an unusual circumstance and tries to humanize it (like a werewolf and a ghost going out for a night on the town). Things turn bad again when the zombie princess starts to decompose. They take her back home and try to help the best they can, but there’s not much that can be done. The girl is dead, and biology can’t be held back forever. She leaves us with a reminder to live life to the fullest and not let opportunity pass you by, because you never know when it is all going to be taken away. Another great message from what has become one of my favorite shows.

Side story for the week was George and Nina’s argument about the fact that she is pregnant and whether or not George has any say in Nina’s decision to have an abortion. I have said it before how much I love this show (and science fiction in general) for the role they play in important issues like this. The issue of abortion and whether the father has any rights in the decision-making process is definitely one of the biggest debates we have today. In the end this story ends up crossing over with the main one, because the girl’s message helps Nina make the decision to keep the baby. Annie is also moved by this message to finally admit to Mitchell how she feels. The episode ends with the two supernatural love birds kissing, and fans everywhere cheering that it didn’t take the whole season to make this happen.

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Being Human 3×2 – Adam’s Family

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Annie is back from Purgatory and things are odder than ever. This week we got to see Annie and Mitchell be awkward and adorable as Annie settles into life back on our side, and Mitchell lets slip that he brought her back because he missed her.

Cue “Awwww”

Also, Annie has decided to follow him everywhere he goes, declaring herself his guardian angel. Of course no one else can see her so it looks a little crazy when Mitchell is talking to her, which is its own brand of hilarity. Plus it’s fun watching them pretend they don’t secretly like each other. It’s like supernatural high school!

Speaking of which, the supernatural side of the show wasn’t ignored; no worries there. This week we get a kid who is also a vampire. Of course this “kid” is really 46, but he has the emotional maturity of a teenager since that was when he was turned. This looks like a job for Mitchell…

The idea of Mitchell mentoring this kid gives us the Being Human classic combo of serious and humor that the show is best at. Mitchell has problems with the idea of another vampire hanging around, but the kid needs someone to teach him. Of course Adam (that is the kid’s name) adds humor to the situation by acting like the adolescent he emotionally is. Things take a turn for the serious when Adam’s father, who was in the hospital, passes on. Not only does Adam lose a father, but also a food supply. This adds even more pressure for Mitchell to help him.

Mitchell has a contact who claims to have a more civilized system put in place, so that is where Adam is sent. The “system” mentioned is a human who willingly gives his blood to be fed upon. We might find this questionable, but the person gives an interesting argument to justify his actions:

“Better a short life filled with pleasure than a long life filled with joy.”

Valid argument? I think that is a matter of perspective. Obviously it works for him. Plus it has a certain poetry to it.

Nina and George don’t like the system too much though. No sooner have they made it back home than they turn around and go back to recollect Adam. Probably for the best because this house just screams “crazy”. I realize different people have different lifestyles, and I respect that, but someone Adam’s emotional age should not be mixed in with any of it. If he was older and more mature I would say, “whatever floats your boat,” but he hasn’t reached that point yet. Kudos to the writers for yet again using a supernatural story to represent a real world problem. One of the things I love about science fiction is how it manages to make tough messages like racism and addiction easier to hear. The genre should get way more respect than it does for just that reason.

Going on with that “life lessons” theme is this statement from Mitchell to Annie towards the end of the episode: “Stop defining your life by what you do for other people.” This is something many of us could do to remember. Honestly though, Mitchell has lots of great lines in this episode (and the series in general). He has another one about “surrounding yourself with good people” which also rings true for anyone struggling (even if it’s with “normal” issues and not vampirism). This ability to connect supernatural and real world problems is what Being Human is all about. Two episodes into Season 3 and I can already tell this season is going to be just as strong as the ones before (if not stronger).

BEING HUMAN

Being Human 3×1 – Lia

Saturday night on BBC America saw the Season 3 premiere of Being Human. In case you are having trouble remembering where we left off last, Annie got sent through the door to the other side and is now trapped there. Mitchell and George are trying to get her back. And now, onto Season 3…

We open Season 3 with Mitchell making contact with Annie while checking out a new potential living space with George and Nina in Wales.  She is in a “waiting room” where she is being held until they assign her a new location where she will be moved to. It appears to be some sort of holding cell for ghosts.

Back in the real world, our group have come up with a plan for Mitchell to cross over to the other side so he can attempt to rescue her.  George and Mitchell wait for a terminal patient to pass on so Mitchell can follow him to the other side. This scene demonstrates Being Human‘s gift for balancing humor with the more serious aspects of the series. It’s something I have always admired about the writing of this show.

Mitchell walks through the door and finds himself in his own personal purgatory.  This is a brilliant method to give us a look at Mitchell’s past without using the usual overused methods. It is through this means that we see his first kill as a vampire and how it made him feel. We get to see inside his tortured soul and understand what drives him today (because it is our past that fuels our actions in the present).

As time runs out for Annie, Mitchell continues searching through Purgatory to find her.  He eventually finds a door that reveals his guide through this process has been one of his many victims.  As she introduces him to one victim after another we can see Mitchell break more and more.  Aidan Turner (who plays Mitchell on the show) does an excellent job portraying the pain in his soul through a single tortured look of those eyes. When he finally stops claiming to be a victim and admits his animal nature, the sorrow in his voice makes us feel the pain he is feeling better than any of the words he says.

There was a side story involving two characters who we were briefly introduced to early on in the episode but still have not developed much attachment to by midway point.  It seems to be a father and son who are both werewolves, and the father is captured and forced into some sort of cage match where an innocent victim is caged with the about-to-turn werewolf and forced to fight for his life. This story is only enhanced by the fact we see a mirror scene of George being incarcerated during his transformation, also with an innocent. The scene of George asking to be killed before he transforms almost had me tearing up (shut up, I’m a girl). It was great following it with Nina trying to remain composed while negotiating his release by claiming he was essentially crazy and needed medical attention. The ebb and flow of tension regarding George’s situation being eased by Nina’s appearance then tensing again as they transform together (proclaiming their love for each other before completing the process) is one of the prime examples of what makes this show great. It reaches out and touches every emotion imaginable (fear, joy, love, sadness, and everything in between).

The episode ends with both Mitchell and Annie being allowed to leave and return home.  They are both told they will cross over again though, when their time comes.  Their reunion is especially nice with Annie running towards him and yelling, “You saved me!” and Mitchell replying, “You saved me too.” You can tell the love they have for each other in this reunion.

Mitchell brings Annie home, thus bringing the family back together. That is what this show is really about when you think about it – it’s about finding love and family and how the people around us make us who we are – how they make us human.

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