Farewell “Being Human” on BBC
The ground-breaking show Being Human has breathed its last, at least in the UK. Such is the news this week. A program whose premise–a ghost, a vampire and a werewolf all become roommates–fairly reeked of sitcom a la The Munsters, yet proved itself a popular and compelling drama! It touched on things like addiction, personal responsibility, the freedom of the individual, prejudice and dealing with the dark side of human nature. Many might say it did a better job of this than True Blood on HBO.
Zai Bennett, an executive at BBC Three, had this to say, “Being Human has been a fantastic and faithful friend to BBC Three. It’s featured some truly exceptional actors and storylines through the years and I’d like to thank Toby and the production team for their vision and passion. However, all good things come to an end and at BBC Three we’re committed to breaking new shows and new talent and who better to pass that baton on than Toby.”
Along the way, the program in its five (or four and a half) seasons (called series in the UK) underwent enormous shifts of character as well as locale. One thinks of Blake’s Seven, which after the second year lost Blake! Or Torchwood, the Dr.Who spinoff that steadily whittled away at its cast until only two were left–one of them immortal so that was a given really.
For this, the last series/season, none of the original cast members remain. Vampire Mitchell (Aiden Turner) is long since gone. Werewolf George (Russell Tovey) died last year while Ghost Annie (Lenora Crichlow) has always been dead, but finally moved on. For the final six episodes we have Ghost Alex (Kate Bracken), Vampire Hal (Damien Molony) and Werewolf Tom (Michael Socha).
Interestingly, the show also started dealing with ever-increasing scale, at least in some ways. Last year even involved time travel, and efforts to prevent a future in which vampires ruled the world with humans kept in concentration camps–a storyline in which ghost Annie finally learned the reason she hadn’t moved on. They even confronted a group of ancient, supremely powerful vampires called the Old Ones (shades of the First Ones on The Vampire Diaries or maybe True Blood‘s Authority). Yet the series remained focused on the intimate, the efforts and lives of a few important individuals, flawed but trying to do the right thing. This last storyline is supposed to involve the central trio confronting none other than the Devil himself.
Executive producer Rob Pursey, the show’s said “Working on Being Human has been a truly great experience. From the first one-hour pilot, all the way through to this climactic series, we’ve been given real creative freedom and encouragement. It’s a credit to BBC Three that such an unusual idea has been allowed to flourish and evolve in its own unique way.
“I’d like to take the chance to thank Toby for his incredible writing and storytelling; the other screenwriters who’ve made the series their own; the three producers who’ve nurtured the show; and the many directors who’ve helped us establish the show’s unique tone. Being Human has also opened the door to new acting talent, including some incredibly exciting younger actors, which is a legacy we all feel proud of. We will miss Being Human, but feel inspired that there is a place for series like this on British television.”
Of course the show’s American version with the same name continues, as quite probably will the fanfic (if Moonlight still has its fans, then certainly this one will as well, for years to come).
Are you sad to see the British version of Being Human go? What do you think of the current, final season? We’d love to hear from you!