darnaguen: (being human)
[personal profile] darnaguen
 Okay, so. The big epic Being Human post. Since we're getting a new episode tomorrow I'd better do it now or I'll never get around to do it.

Where to even start?
It's back and it's glorious and after the gloomy and uneven second series and the long, long break it's so wonderful to see it's back in top form. Because at its best, Being Human is probably the best thing on TV lately. The quality of writing and acting, the sense of realism despite the supernatural themes, the inspired music choices (Girlfriend In A Coma? Genius!)...

I mean, I realize it's not for everyone. Some people want complete polished escapism from their TV shows, and Being Human is sometimes brutally real, shoving in your face very real issues and situations, and the characters are sometimes morons and do ugly things (and I mean in a REAL way, not in a sitcom way) because that's what being human is sometimes.

That's also why I'm bit iffy on the Syfy remake. I just feel it's unnecessary and I'm afraid it's not going to be able to get the point across as well. For example, the main trio all look like underwear models. Even George Josh. (Yeah, I know, I know. Anything else just wouldn't be profitable in the US and all that.) And from the clips I've seen, the chemistry just isn't there and none of them comes across as particularly likable.

Aidan just seems to be channeling Edward Cullen (or maybe Bill Compton), while Mitchell's whole point is that he's this huge happy-go-lucky Irish dork who looks after his friends and invites the whole neighborhood for tea and wears yellow and coos at babies, but then he's also a volatile, vicious blood addict who can slaughter that same neighborhood in a blink of an eye if you piss him off too badly.
I don't sense that kind of layers in Aidan. (Aidan the Syfy vampire, that is. Aidan Turner certainly has them.)

And Sally is whiny and self-absorbed and Josh's "awkward" behaviour is completely unrealistic and let's leave it at that. :p

-------

But anyway, the new episode. I'm not going to write a deep-analysis or anything because that would take forever, so I'll just write down some random observations and things I liked etc.

- "I bet Heaven doesn't have chemical toilets." Way to be hilariously unprofessional, real estate lady. :D

- As someone on Tumblr said: "John Mitchell, cockblocking since 1900s." Probably since 1800s. *giggle* Poor Nina in her sexy lingerie. What on earth did Mitchell do with that radio? Try to get on purgatory wavelength?

- Nina being a medical professional who takes her job seriously and demands the boys treat poor dying Sean with respect. Awesome.

- "I’m doing this. I'll take everything they’ve got: Death, God, the Devil, none of it frightens me!" Oh Mitchell.

- "This is John." That was so interesting, I wonder why George introduced him as John. Nobody ever calls him John. Also, "Are you Death?" Oh Mitchell, don't look so taken aback, you look like you could be related to them. :D

- Lia was kind of amazing, and that was an amazing performance from Lacey Turner. More on that later.

- Hmm, they changed Mitchell's "recruitment" year from 1916 to 1917. It probably means nothing, but because I'm an obsessive history geek and he's Irish I can't help but wonder if he was already in France during the Easter Rising, and what he thought of that. He was probably a Home Rule supporter because he'd enlisted and all, or maybe he just didn't care one way or another. Like he told Bernie, back then in Ireland you didn't have very many career choices, especially if you weren't from Dublin, so maybe he just enlisted out of boredom. I've been thinking of this way too much. :D But the whole WW1 thing is such an interesting and unusual backstory for a vampire.

- "Must be a concept album." Aahahah.

- Such a great contrast between Arthur and Sally. It doesn't only show how jaded and vicious Mitchell got in 40 years, but also a certain ugly double standard. I mean, I don't know if he killed men any less brutally at that point, but... you get the point.

- Mitchell needed to go through that and hear all that and admit his guilt, but I also have a feeling Lia (maybe for the benefit of Them or just for personal revenge) is doing exactly that: playing mind games. Especially the whole thing with Annie and Mitchell. I can't decide if she was being purely manipulative when she said that to Annie, or if she was being half-sincere, like "Go and love him while you still can." She did look kind of regretful after Annie left, like she's sorry to get her involved.
And it's not like they wouldn't have gotten there eventually because DUH, but argh. Poor Annie is just probably too naive to question her motives for saying that and she doesn't know what Lia just put Mitchell through and he's not gonna tell and... argh. Curse you, Toby, for being a cruel genius.

- Also, I love Annie forever for prolonging her stay in the purgatory long enough to ask Lia what happened to her, genuinely concerned. Which is probably what made Lia feel a bit bad for all the awfulness they put her through.

- Oh, there's this tiny moment, just before we see Annie appear from the light, when it's like his whole being lights up in this really beautiful and subtle way, like he senses her before he even hears her. (Which isn't even all that unlikely given his violent physical reaction to Annie being torn to purgatory. They have an interesting bond for sure.) Guh, Aidan, you're awesome.

- Just... this. All this.

- "You saved me too." Another really interesting throwaway line. 'Cuz Mitchell has always either treated his women like crap or then put them on a pedestal, expecting them to be his salvation. And here he's saying she already has been. Way to get a clue, boy, she has always brought the best out of you anyway. :D

 They're so... Ugh, I can't handle them, they're breaking my heart already.
(Also, if the rumors are true and Lenora and Aidan are a RL couple, they're averting the trope about RL couples not being able to play romance etc. convincingly HARD.)

- Lol, (sort of) cockblocked by Wales. Also, was I the only one kind of thrown by Annie suddenly having perfect perm and make-up and different clothes? Does getting out of purgatory change your appearance if you're a ghost? Or power of love or epic hugging? Or Wales? IDEK.

- They were CRUEL to poor George and Nina. Cruel. But aaaahhhh, the OT4 montage. And teapot. And Mitchell's dorky dancing. And the hula. And Mitchell beaming away and Annie being completely unimpressed by the Hawaii theme, and George and Nina smooching cutely and Annie looking at Mitchell kind of like "Hey, shouldn't we be doing that too, you know?" and Mitchell just smiling back at her like a huge clueless, adoring puppy. Oh my heart.

- Of course, because this is Being Human, the sunshine and rainbows have a constant threat from some very dark clouds in the horizon. There are vampire-hunting werewolves, Mitchell's actions are going to catch up with him eventually, Herrick is back in one way or another; Nina might be pregnant now, and as completely adorable as they are, Mitchell and Annie are not going to have an easy path ahead of them 'cause not only do they both have their complicated relationship histories and respective supernatural states, transition from friends to something else is never without some complications, I think.

So, agree? Disagree? Did I forget something essential? I'm sure I did. Let's discuss!

Oh, I also have some fanfic recs (from the whole show) and songs I keep associating with certain characters and relationships and that I would vid if I knew how, but I think I'll make a separate post for them, this is already huge.

Date: 29 Jan 2011 17:18 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lostarkeo.livejournal.com
OMG! This post is amazing! You summarized everything perfectly and I agree with all of it! Especially on what you said about the Syfy version of Being Human. I agree, that there's really no chemistry there so far and the message of the original show will definitely fall through the cracks. I still tune in to watch it, mainly to catch the random one-liners and to pick up on something that I may criticize on, haha!

I was pretty shocked to hear George call Mitchell "John" too because we really haven't heard his first name in the show, have we? I mean, I knew it was John, but I don't recall it ever being said. I found that bit rather interesting.

And I love the information you provided on the World War I backstory! I wish I could be a history buff like you to recall such facts and what not! :D

I know what you mean about deciding whether Lia was "being purely manipulative when she said that to Annie, or if she was being half-sincere, like 'Go and love him while you still can.'" I can't decide either, but I'm definitely leaning towards the latter option. She knows what's going to happen to Mitchell and perhaps advising Annie and pushing her along was her way of saying, "Go and love him while you still can." It's so tormenting, not knowing truly what's going to happen, lol!

Do you really think Mitchell will truly die though? It tears my heart just thinking about it. We can't lose such an essential character, we just can't! Like you said, Toby is an evil cruel genius! lol! It's just not possible, I refuse to believe!

And yes! That tiny moment before Annie shows up at the end of the hallway and there appears to be an "I can feel her" expression on his face! We have such great actors to portray subtle emotions like that, I'm so thankful!

Are there rumors of Lenora and Aidan going out? REALLY? Oh my gosh, all this time I thought Lenora was married to some un-Aidan character. If those rumors are true I think I'd actually go to fangirl heaven! lol!

Such an exquisite and detailed post! I wish I did something like this, but I could never gather my thoughts together and write a coherent review haha! :D
Edited Date: 29 Jan 2011 17:20 (UTC)

Date: 29 Jan 2011 22:37 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] darnaguen.livejournal.com
Bwahah, thank you! Only took me nearly a week to get it together, and even then I forgot like half of what I was supposed to talk about. :D

I think Mitchell's first name has come up once before. If memory serves, he once introduced himself as: "My name is John Mitchell and I have killed more people than you have met." sometime in the second series. In that context it made sense, but I still don't know why George decided to introduce him as John. To be polite, I guess.

Heh, if Mitchell's backstory wasn't tied to circa 1916 Ireland, even I wouldn't probably be able to just throw pieces of information like that around. I just have a strange obsession with the history of Irish independence and have sometimes toyed with the idea of writing a kind of AU fic where Mitchell joined the Irish Republican Brotherhood instead and fought for the independence. Patrick Pearse would have loved his "going down in a blaze of gunfire and glory" spirit. And now I'm geeking out again. :p

I guess we'll find out why Lia did what she did and said what she said. And if They maybe have it in for both of them for bending and breaking the rules of Death or whatever. Maybe they didn't like Annie refusing her Door for Mitchell and are now punishing them both for it?

My personal theory is that what Lia said is a kind of self-fulfilling prophesy. It wouldn't perhaps happen otherwise, but they are manipulating him towards it. Whatever happens, I think the finale is going to blow everyone's mind. Whatever happens to Mitchell, I hope there'll be a way out so there's a possibility for another series even with Aidan in New Zealand being a dwarf.

I have no idea if there's any truth in those relationship rumors, for all I know they could just be having an epic reallysuperclose friendship like Billie Piper and David Tennant. They'd be a cute couple, though. :D

Abd thank you again, it was fun. :D

Date: 29 Jan 2011 17:49 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] miserywaterfall.livejournal.com
Weee! Great review! It was such an amazing episode, I was squeeing all the way through!

I watched about 10mins of the US version and I was not impressed. It was dire :P


Also, yay for listening to the Baebes :D <3!

Date: 29 Jan 2011 22:41 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] darnaguen.livejournal.com
Thank you! Wasn't it just? I was smiling like an idiot for like an hour afterwards and would probably have squealed and flailed like a 12-year-old if my boyfriend hadn't been watching with me. :D

Baebes are awesome! <3

Date: 29 Jan 2011 21:17 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] huivanta.livejournal.com
"- Just... this. All this."

This part had me WEEPING. Their acting is just sublime and heartbreaking!

Awesome post!
As for Syfy-Being Human.. Not even going to check that out I think.

Date: 29 Jan 2011 22:43 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] darnaguen.livejournal.com
That part is my new happy place. Don't remind me of the dark clouds in the horizon. *sticks her fingers in her ears and goes LALALALA*

And thank you, it was fun to write it. :D

Date: 29 Jan 2011 22:47 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] huivanta.livejournal.com
*has ears covered* WHAT DARK CLOUDS, THESE ARE HAPPY TIMES! LALALALALALAAAA!
Seriously though, I am dreading whatever is coming. I ADORE Mitchell.

..And the actor playing him (yum xD), I'm just about to try out a movie he's in; Alarm. Ever seen it? (Or anything else with him in it for that matter.)

Date: 30 Jan 2011 11:25 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] darnaguen.livejournal.com
Haven't even heard of it. O_o Only other thing I've seen Aidan in was Desperate Romantics where he played the Pre-Raphaelite artist Dante Gabriel Rossetti. It was pretty awesome and he was frequently in some state of undress. xD

Date: 30 Jan 2011 11:38 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] huivanta.livejournal.com
I found it through his IMDB-page, otherwise it would have been totally unknown to me as well. Not the best movie, but Aidan is always awesome to watch. (If you, like me, despise annoying female characters I do not recommend Alarm though, I wanted to strangle the b****.. xD)

Aidan in some state of undress you say..? Sounds like I have to find that movie.. *shallow* Btw, was I the only one that was suprised at the fact that he's only 27? o_O

Date: 30 Jan 2011 11:39 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] huivanta.livejournal.com
Wait, Desperate Romantics is not a movie is it? Anyway, must watch. Need more Aidan! xD

Date: 30 Jan 2011 12:22 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] darnaguen.livejournal.com
Yeah, it's a miniseries about a bunch of young painters who party like rock stars and screw everything that moves (well, Aidan's character does anyway xD). It's pretty hilarious, especially as Amy Manson, the chick who plays Daisy in BH, plays Rossetti's epic, fucked-up love Lizzie Siddal. :D
From: [identity profile] decadentdream.livejournal.com
This calls for a semi-long response haha.

OK firstly US vs UK. Well I have to agree with you, hon. I didn't watch the US version, but I did sample a few previews and read some interviews for the sake of curiosity and to stave off the NEED to see the UK version b4 it aired and you are completely right about all those characters - especially putting into light US-Aidan vs Mitchell. I remember the actor playing Aidan saying he was just going to treat the role like the character had a massive addiction he was struggling with. Well... yay, that's the point of moden-day torn vampires, isn't it? The thing that makes Mitchell so beautiful is that being a vampire is not ALL he's about. Yes he has his days of doom and gloom and "I hate my life, why am I like this?!?!?!?" but at the same time GAWD the man has REAL emotion - he loves, he cries, he gets embarrassed, he jokes around with his mates and wants to spend his days of eternity on earth watching "The Real Hustle" instead of saving the world. He holds down a job and hates it, yet at the same time realises exactly why he needs to do it. I mean... the man is amazing, no?

And aside from Mitchell, the other characters - I cannot imagine ANYONE pulling off a George-like character the way Russell Tovey does. You believe he's geeky and paranoid and loveable, and to have someone like Josh on the US version fill his shoes - he's just too pretty to be convincing enough to play that. I was actually REALLY surprised when I first watched the UK show because people in the role of Annie would (and usually are) considered to be annoying in my eyes, yet Lenora was so goddam loveable and the chemistry between all 3 of those characters (not to mention the later addtion of Sinead as Nina) is so amazing that THAT can't be easily replicated.

What on earth did Mitchell do with that radio? Try to get on purgatory wavelength?
It's a ghosty thing. There's a theory that runs around the supernatural realms that the dead can speak through electronic devices/electricity via pulses to let the living know they're there. So this would include flickering lights, tv static, and radio static. Of course BH went a little more literal by showing Annie (cause it woulda been boring otherwise haha) but, yeah, that's what Mitchell was trying to do with his ten thousand radios - get a signal from somewhere.

"This is John." That was so interesting, I wonder why George introduced him as John. Nobody ever calls him John.
I thought that was interesting too. I took it as George trying to conceal Mitchell's true identity - perhaps by way of giving him a different/uncommonly used name so ppl (incl. ppl on the other side) might not be so quick to realise "Oh, this is MItchell, that dastardly vampire we've been looking for. Let's take his soul NOW!"
Edited Date: 30 Jan 2011 00:35 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] darnaguen.livejournal.com
Yup, Mitchell is awesome exactly because he's not defined by his vampiredom most of the time. I mean, of course vampires have it pretty easy in this canon, they can eat and be out and about in daytime etc. But if you didn't catch him on one of his killing sprees or see his eyes turn black, you probably wouldn't even guess he's a vampire. A split-personality mass murderer, maybe, but not a vampire. :D
While Sam Witwer looks like a Tortured Prince of Darkness even when he's not playing Aidan, I was just watching Battlestar Galactica with my bf last night and suddenly he's on the screen acting all tough guy and I'm like "Aaaieeh, get out of my screen not!Mitchell!" I know, I know, I'm being unfair. :p

Annie and George, that's another reason Syfy should have gone about it differently and created a completely different trio of supernaturals. A vivacious lesbian latina vampire, for example, and a werewolf lady who was a sweet young high school teacher and a ghost of an accountant who had no life and got mugged and killed on his front porch?
They wouldn't even have to change the storylines too much, but the feel would be already completely different and would probably work way better. Oh well.

It's a ghosty thing. There's a theory that runs around the supernatural realms that the dead can speak through electronic devices/electricity via pulses to let the living know they're there. So this would include flickering lights, tv static, and radio static. Of course BH went a little more literal by showing Annie (cause it woulda been boring otherwise haha) but, yeah, that's what Mitchell was trying to do with his ten thousand radios - get a signal from somewhere.

Yup, I know how that works (another [livejournal.com profile] ontdcreepy member here ;)), and I got that he probably tried to form a connection to Annie, but the whole thing just never really went anywhere, did it? My memories of that scene are admittedly a little hazy, though.

And yeah, that was one of my theories as well, that George was kind of trying to conceal Mitchell's identity a little in case Sean said something to someone. I love how this show just throws little things like that around and then gives no explanation whatsoever. :D

Comment 2 of 2

Date: 30 Jan 2011 00:33 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] decadentdream.livejournal.com
Especially the whole thing with Annie and Mitchell. I can't decide if she was being purely manipulative when she said that to Annie, or if she was being half-sincere, like "Go and love him while you still can."
Yeah, IDK on this one. I was thinking it a bit strange that she was somewhat exacting her revenge for her death (and you're right, she was being all very mind-game about it0, but to suddenly change sides and go "Hey, go love him" seemed a bit odd. I mean Annie is naive enough to go "SURE!". I didn't think there was an ulterior motive there, but you have me thinking... you could be right. (And Lacey is supposed to be back at the end of the season, isn't she? Which should roughly prove this theory then...)

Way to get a clue, boy, she has always brought the best out of you anyway. :D
Definately. Definately. They don't even need to hook them up to break my heart. They break it the way they are already!

was I the only one kind of thrown by Annie suddenly having perfect perm and make-up and different clothes?
HA no. I was like "What the hell? Why did we suddenly change?" I didn't think there was any real need for that. It's like saying we look different in purgatory than in RL. I think they should have kept her the same, you know? So we could keep on the "She's been through hell, but LOOK! SHE'S SAFE!" ideal. I think it would have made more impact rather than spinning it into so kind of perfect fantasy dream sequence (though LOL Annie's line of "I want to go back" at the sight of what was around them was enough to knock you back out of thinking it was a fantasy).

Re: Comment 2 of 2

Date: 30 Jan 2011 12:16 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] darnaguen.livejournal.com
Yeah, IDK on this one. I was thinking it a bit strange that she was somewhat exacting her revenge for her death (and you're right, she was being all very mind-game about it0, but to suddenly change sides and go "Hey, go love him" seemed a bit odd. I mean Annie is naive enough to go "SURE!". I didn't think there was an ulterior motive there, but you have me thinking... you could be right. (And Lacey is supposed to be back at the end of the season, isn't she? Which should roughly prove this theory then...)

Yeah, from what I've heard she's back in the last episode and apparently feels sorry for something she did. Maybe the whole werewolf thing was a lie, or a self-fulfilling prophesy. It's pretty impossible to tell yet how Mitchell and Annie's attempt at a relationship will go, but it certainly can't be all sunshine and butterflies and Lia probably knew that. Damn, like you said, they'll probably break my heart in any case. *rocks back and forth in a corner*

Yeah, they should have kept her the same for time being, and then maybe had this brief scene in the house montage where she comes out of a room smiling proudly and pointing at her new look or something. I know Annie's appearance is affected by how she feels and her confidence level, so maybe they were trying to make the point that it was Mitchell's influence or something. Or maybe they indeed wanted to create this perfect romantic setting with the beach view and all only to have it figuratively cockblocked by the fact it's Wales. I have no idea. :D

Date: 30 Jan 2011 18:43 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] diamondrocker.livejournal.com
All my thoughts about the new episode and the fail that is being human: us?

RIGHT HERE IN YOUR POST.

(and on the subject of Lia's last comments to Annie about hooking up with Mitchell, I'm falling on the "that seemed waaay too random to be sincere" side of the fence, and it felt more like a harbinger of doom rather than a sunny "you two go off and be adorable together!" sentiment)

Date: 30 Jan 2011 22:00 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] darnaguen.livejournal.com
Hee, glad you agree. :D

And yep, it had this kind of malicious undercurrent, like she kind of said "go be adorable together" but really meant "go break each other's heart to million pieces". Oh, this show is killing me. *rocks back and forth*

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