Another buried treasure on ABC2 hits our screens with the UK’s six-part dramedy series, Being Human. Three twenty-somethings share a flat in Bristol (the same city that’s home to Skins) and all three share supernatural qualities.
Mitchell (Aidan Turner) is a dashing vampire who works as a hospital porter when he isn’t melting hearts. He looks out for George (Russell Tovey), who isn’t so chuffed about being a werewolf, especially when the calendar ticks around to “that time of the month”. Transitioning, he reckons, is worse than when you watched your cat have kittens. They share a house with Annie (Lenora Crichlow), who suffers the affliction of being a ghost, unable to interact with the real world that surrounds her.
All three struggle to keep their secret from the outside world. Within the confines of their apartment they are free to shed their outer personas and empathise with one another.
Mitchell, with his ability to wander openly in daylight, is one of several TV vampires that enjoy such luxury (ie. Moonlight). Interacting in the real world, he also bonds more with humans and resists a devious vampire leader trying to lure him back to the dark ways. True Blood, anyone? The fact that Aidan Turner is completely hot is somewhat distracting, but don’t let that put you off, wink wink…
George, meanwhile, is more comic in dealing with his animal instincts – echoes of An American Werewolf in London – while Annie just wants to reunite with her former fiancé (and their landlord), who now has a new girlfriend and can’t even see her in front of him. OK, I guess that’s Ghost. But the referencing of three other tales shouldn’t diminish from the entertainment value inherent here.
In this show’s rather hip and urban take on classic characters, the three principals are given plenty to work with. Their relationships and the issues they face simply in trying to get through the day comprise the bulk of this show, which has a rollicking time doing it. The budget is modest, and this puts more focus on the actors, all of whom rise to the challenge. Being Human succeeds rather well as a small ensemble piece, with the feeling of an indie theatrical three-hander. Sink your teeth into it.
Being Human airs 9.20pm Friday on ABC2.