Tuesday, February 8, 2011

SyFy's Being Human Has Almost Won Me Over

I first started seeing this poster during my morning commute about 4 months back. As with any advertisement I see for SyFy "original" programming, it sparked my curiosity. Syfy's original series have always been more of a hit than a miss for me. Even though I never jumped on the Battlestar Galactica bandwagon, shows like Eureka and Sliders(I know it started on Fox) have always caught my attention. I didn't know what to expect from Being Human, but all I need to do was a little bit of research to get my answer. And when I got my answer I felt nothing but contempt and disgust for the show and SyFy itself.

I found out Being Human was all about 3 roommates who happen to be supernatural creatures: a vampire, a werewolf, and a ghost. It sounded like it was going to be a mixture of The Munsters and Three's Company, two shows that work fine on there own based on the time period they were popular. Campy monsters were very "early 60's" and swingin' singles did the late 70's justice. Mashing the two up together together to represent a modern day series would surely be atrocious, even for the Twi-tards. The thought of it not only pissed me off, but made me physically ill just thinking about it. In my mind, there was no way I would ever watch such a disgusting display of primetime entertainment. Or so I thought.....

As with many Americans, I am but half of a greater whole known as the monogamous relationship. And we all know with any good relationship there are equal parts give and take to keep a balance. Mary might not want to see every sleazy movie out of Italy and Japan, but she will sit by my side night-after-night watching them with me. In return, I try to give equal time to House Hunters and whatever is on Discovery Investigation. Not only is it fair, but I can honestly say most of the time it's an enjoyable experience for both of us. When the subject of Being Human came up about a month ago, I expressed my disdain. Not that it really mattered because My Beloved had an interest that rivaled my own in seeing The Cape (which turned out to be utterly disappointing). So we had an unspoken agreement to sit through both, no matter how what.

Within five minutes of watching the pilot episode, my disgust quickly turned into a silent rage. This was all due to being exposed one of my biggest horror-related pet peeves: daywalking vampires. If there is one thing that really pisses me off about the current batch of myth-raping vampire shows, and movies, it's the daywalker. Without Death-By-Sunlight as a deterrent, vampires are essentially unstoppable predatory gods, and that just makes for a boring storyline. Adding daywalking to my preconceived ideas on how the show was going to horribly play out was just a recipe for disastrous opinion. Or so I thought....

At this point in the series, I have watched three episodes. What I thought was going to be an excruciating hour of keeping my lip's zipped in discontent has actually turned out to be somewhat of an enjoyable new ritual with the girlfriend. By the end of the first episode my rage had subsided and by the end of the second episode I actually found myself slightly content by the turnout. After last night's episode I actually found myself talking it up a bit to my roommate.

Being Human didn't turn out to be as cheesy as I thought it was going to be, although it still has a cheese factor. Based on the premise it really can't be escaped. Thankfully the show is nothing like what I thought it was going to be. What little humor there is isn't slapstick as I was expecting, and the storyline and character development are interesting. The plot is character driven instead of premise driven. I was expecting the focus to be more about kooky roommate relations with the living area as the only backdrop. Although the living situation is an integral part of the storyline, what really shines is the focus on the personal struggles each of the characters have to endure on there own. The vampire has to deal with fighting his predatory urges and wolfboy has that whole Jekyll/Hyde ego vs. id struggle. Although I think ghost girl is the weakest link and most disinteresting, she still has to struggle with her new life being dead, which is probably, by my opinion, is what really brings what little comic cheese there is in the series. Even though it's not needed, it is still appreciated. The violence isn't half bad either. Although shows like CSI throw more gore at the audience in one episode than three of Being Human, it's far more violent in comparison to such weekly shitfests as The Vampire Diaries. I find the horror aspect to be an almost fair trade off for the lack keeping the mythology of the vampire accurate.

As much as I hate the idea of vampires walking around during the day appalling, Being Human has turned out to be an entertaining series. I've even been considering taking a look at the original British series, which I hear is better. I'm not going to say I've been completely turned to it as to be called a fan, but I'm no longer opposed to this new Monday night ritual following How I Met Your Mother.


  1. the casting is all wrong you bloody americans are just gunna ruin somthign great.

  2. Just like we ruined the Office, right? Riiight.....