Monday, 26 January 2009

Being too human

I watched Being Human last night on BBC3. Oooh it could have been good. But it wasn't. Not really. . .

The opening section had promise. I really liked the idea that the vampire character was first bitten in WWI. It was wonderfully random. But the 'laughs' are weak. The section where Russell Tovey rushes around a wood searching for a place to transform, constantly bumping into other people was just embarrassing. And the use of music is awful - like Scooby-Doo, but worse.

The lead actors are good. The leader of the vampires is particularly good because he does not conform to the usual goth stereotype. Aidan Turner as the vampire and Russell Tovey as the werewolf are fine - Turner is weirdly more lupine than Tovey, but Tovey's perfect because he looks like a puppy. Lenora Crichlow as the ghost isn't great, but that's not her fault.

I realise that the BBC probably spent its entire special effects budget on the werewolf transformation sequence (and incidentally, isn't it about time someone came up with a new spin on this? American Werewolf in London was a long, long time ago) but is she a ghost or not. If she is a ghost how is she sweeping the floor and making cups of tea. We can see her, but if we couldn't, would we see a cup floating about? How does Tovey hug her? Is she solid? Because if she can move things around and be touched then isn't she actually just a flatmate?

She's a ghost. I want to see through her! I want her to walk through walls!

Production values are always going to be a problem in a programme like this. It was never going to have the gloss of Heroes. But that can be a good thing. Heroes has ended up chasing its own CGI tail. It can be all about the writing.

Strangely this concept echoes something I have had on my computer for a while. My idea was better (of course) and rather than put me off, it strikes me that perhaps I ought to have another look at that. . .


  1. the weaks were really weak, i agree, what we need is the old hammer horor films again

  2. Well I loved Hammer films of course. The first film I ever got into under-age was a Hammer horror film. But I was thinking this needed to be more subtle rather than more camp. If it really wants to be funny, it needs to really do some work on that. But scary and funny are often mixed and seldom - in my opinion - sit happily together. They tend to cancel each other out.