Sunday’s TV: Review- Being Human is a Must Watch

January 22, 2009 by  
Filed under Reviews

Being Human, BBC 3, Sunday 9pm Alert Me

BBC Sci-fi’s normally run along a certain path involving terrible costumes, hokey effects and slightly camp baddies. Great for family Sunday arvo’s but in no way living up to the US Sci-fi scions like Buffy, Dead Like Me or Battlestar Galactica.

Finally though, we have a contender.

BBC returns to its successful Pilot that was aired last year with a slightly new cast and a brilliant first episode of Being Human.

The premise: a vampire, werewolf and ghost live together in a london flat, trying to get along with the pitfalls of real life, complicated further by the supernatural. It sounds like the start of a joke but actually Being Human has a surprisingly dark edge to it.

Annie is the sweetest girl, loves making tea for everyone and a good chat. Problem is that she’s a ghost, and most people don’t see her.

George and Mitchell both work has hospital interns, only once a month George transforms into a were wolf that likes to kill people. Mitchell has a tougher time, being a vampire his bloodlust is constant. Although like all vampire protagonists, he’s trying to give up the old drinking-blood-thing.

It’s a tight episode, and with its dark twists and self referential humour it takes far more from Buffy than it does from Dr Who but still retains a British sensibility. Like the best sci-fi Being Human is more about it’s human conflicts than supernatural effects, managing to endear these supernatural twenty somethings to your hearts.

Hurrah for the BBC for commissioning a grown up sci fi at last. This one should go on your Must Watch list.

Cornelius says:

This is really very good stuff. I’m very much a cynical TV snob, but it’s always a delight to stumble across an example of perfection, which is how I would describe episode 1; a programme with darkness, humour, intelligence, warmth, surprises, and a wonderful cast. The fact that I am one of a select few who knows about the programme also has something to do with it, no doubt!

I watched it twice, and also re-visited the pilot episode – which is available in full on YouTube by the way.

J.B. says:

Loved the pilot! Am glad to see it’s back on the box again

Jill says:

I agree with D.Somers, this doesn’t really sound like a Sci-Fi show, more like some sort of supernatural/fantasy show; which is what I’d likewise call Buffy and Dead Like Me.

I’ve always thought the BBC does pretty decent Sci-Fi shows, just not nearly enough of them. Dr Who has to be up there with the best in my book (along with Battlestar Galatica and Star Trek, the top 3 Sci-Fi TV shows of all time) and – although not really Sci-Fi either – Red Dwarf is obviously an absolute classic.

Never really been keen on the supernatural shows like Buffy, once you chuck rationality out the window, anything can happen and you tend to get Deus Ex Machina’s all over the place to cover-up sloppy writing.

I do trust you guys however (most your reviews have been spot-on for me) so will give this show a chance.

G. Franklin says:

I saw the pilot and it was brilliant. Very British, funny and dark. who cares what the label is?

D.Somers says:

Since when does supernatural/horror/twenty-something angst fall into the Science Fiction genre? Lazy. Why not call Coronation Street and Top Gear Science Fiction while you are at it.