Over the years, cult following of the show Buffy the Vampire Slayer has seemed to grow tenfold. A little while back, a close friend of mine and her husband decided to re-watch all the episodes of all the seasons from start to finish. Needless to say, it ended poorly… and when I say “poorly”, I mean they went on a Buffy spree that culminated in a fantastic couple’s Halloween costume. What makes us all fall so hard for the sweet-yet-badass Buffy? Is it her adorable ability to off the undead in one fell swoop? Her friends? Her hair? Perhaps it’s the “everyday”. After all, we love the silly conversations, the stories, the idea that a “nobody” can be somebody.
If you happen to count yourself one of the teen slayer’s biggest fans, you may appreciate the following recommendation: of all the vampire and werewolf shows that have aired in recent days, one of them stands out boldly and runs against the pack (…no pun intended). For fans of the BBC’s fabulous lineup of television programming, it may not come as a surprise. The UK’s answer to Buffy, Vampire Diaries and the beloved Supernatural came with a twist in the form Being Human. A few years back, my Hulu queue had recommended a few shows, one of which was the aforementioned; I had never gotten into the whole “Vampire Obsession” that seemed to spring directly from Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight series, because to me, vampires were something to be afraid of and not ogled. I chalk it up largely to Nickelodeon’s Are You Afraid of the Dark? and a particular episode where Nosferatu would climb out of movie screens at night and terrorize teenagers, subsequently scarring me for life. Still, I began watching the recommended Being Human, partially out of curiosity but certainly with bucket loads of wariness.
Three minutes in, I was hooked.
The show’s simple tagline offers up a brief synopsis: “A werewolf, a vampire and a ghost try to live together and get along.” Seems simple enough, yes? Right. Here’s where things get interesting: the first episode.
The original trio of principle characters includes Annie Sawyer (Lenora Crichlow of Sugar Rush), a ghost who haunts her old abode, and friends George Sands (Russell Tovey of Him & Her), a werewolf, and John Mitchell (Aidan Turner of The Hobbit), a vampire. In an attempt to live normally in their abnormal conditions, George and Mitchell decide to rent a flat in Bristol and take low paying, under-the-radar jobs as hospital porters; George deals with his monthly change by using an old, locked-up chamber beneath the hospital where there is very little chance of being caught mid-transformation, and Mitchell… well. Mitchell just does his best not to kill random strangers in the street for their blood. After 117 years of futilely attempting to stave off his bloodlust, Mitchell does fail from time to time.
A short while after the boys settle into the new flat, Annie, still upset over not being able to interact with anyone except by haunting them, knocks over a few things and upsets the furniture to entertain herself….Except this time, the boys can see her, as both George and Mitchell are supernatural beings. Hilarity ensues. Alright, hilarity and horror. Soon, the three discover that trouble will find them, seek them out even, no matter what precautions they take to guard themselves and the public against the terror of their situations; they uncover the real reason Annie is left as a ghost, in limbo between the worlds, dangerous acquaintances who do their best to convince George to lose control during the full moon and an entire pretentious network of vampire elite who will stop at nothing to bring Mitchell back to his murderous roots.