Woman: "I'm going to save the world. I'm going to kill that baby."
I’m not sure how I feel about
tonight’s episode. On first watch, I hated it. Second time through, I
actually quite liked it. Following last year's finale was always going to be a challenge. Season three was to Being Human what "Children of Earth" was to Torchwood. Mitchell's death was always going to leave a void, but to give Toby Whithouse his due, he threw virtually everything
at this episode to fill it. He gave us a vampire apocalypse,
supernaturals galore, glimpses of a dystopian future, and a mysterious
war child prophecy written on nipply parchment. On the downside, he gave
Arthur Weasley a job, killed off half the cast, and replaced them with
suspiciously familiar surrogates.
Whithouse’s defence, there's not a whole lot you can do when an actor
wants to leave. But Nina’s off-screen departure -- from a fan’s
perspective -- was particularly galling. She went out for a walk. She
died. End of story. Not exactly the most epic of outs. Similarly,
George’s departure felt rushed and oddly predictable. Russell Tovey
intimated on Twitter that we wouldn't be seeing much of George this season, but I expected him to last longer than one episode. As soon as Tom suggested going after Griffin, I knew
George wouldn’t be coming home. So much for promising not to die. He
knew he was walking into a trap, yet he went anyway. It's almost if he wanted it to end. Kind of like Mitchell last season.
George’s half transformation was also a little lacklustre. His prosthetics looked like something out of Carry on Screaming.
George fooling his body into changing (despite there being no full
moon), felt like like an expedient way of saving Eve, ripping up a few
vamps, and causing massive organ damage. His death, however, did feel
like a fitting end to his story. Tom and Annie’s emotional farewell
had me in tears, as did George naming his baby with his final breath.
Crichlow, Tovey and Socha shone in those scenes. In truth, George --
like Mitchell -- was a spent force. After three seasons of trying to
outdistance his past, Mitchell chose death, and tonight George followed
suit. Which is a sobering message for the gang back at Honolulu
Heights. Is there no way for them to be happy in this world?
Which leaves us with Annie – arguably the show’s weakest character. Now, I love
Lenora Crichlow and I love Annie -- but the writer’s haven’t known
what to do with her since season one. They seems to think she’s there purely
for comic relief (despite her best performances coming from dramatic
situations). Whether Annie can carry a season on her own remains to be
seen. True, she’ll have Tom and Hal to help her -- but Hal’s currently
an unknown quantity, and Tom -- despite being an enjoyable side
character last season, has a long way to go before becoming a leading
man. But he does have potential. I loved his not-so-subtle hints about moving into Honolulu Heights. And he does have chemistry with Annie. Their good cop/bad cop routine showcased their burgeoning friendship nicely.
blood being deadly to vampires was new (I think), and casts a whole
new light on last season’s werewolf cage fights. Maybe perspex walls
would have been more prudent? How comfortably this development sits
with existing show lore, I’m not sure. The same goes for the war child
prophecies. I’ll be honest, a lot of the new stuff seemed thrown in
there to broaden the show's mythology. Which, in fairness, may be exactly
what the show needs. For it to prosper after such crippling character
setbacks, it needs to change and to grow. So kudos to Whithouse for
The concept of another trio of supernaturals living a parallel lifestyle to Annie, George and Mitchell, initially
took some believing. Watching Leo, Pearl and Hal, felt like watching
the American remake of the show -- but with English accents. Amazingly,
the Southend-on-Sea posse also have a dark and brooding male
vampire at their centre; a bossy motherly female ghost; and a less than
robust looking werewolf. Coincidence? Probably not. I’m assuming Annie
and Tom will eventually replace Leo and Pearl in Hal's supernatural
trinity. Leo already looks close to checking out, and having two
female ghosts in one house seems like one ghost too many. I predict
Pearl will be stepping through her own door in the not too distant
All in all, this was something of a mixed bag.
I'll admit, most of my dissatisfaction came from losing Nina and
George -- which of course isn't the show's fault. If anything, I should be sending Tovey and Keenan pissed off tweets via Twitter.
(Not that I will: they both seem lovely. But, still... bastards!)
Having Hal move his gang to Honolulu Heights (as per next week's teaser)
seems like a step in the right direction. The house desperately
needs an infusion of new blood. It almost looks like a film set
between takes. Cold. Uninspiring. Bereft of life. It seems like a
lifetime ago when George, Mitchell, Annie and Nina danced in front of
its painted palm trees. Leo sees his group as protectors of humanity.
Hopefully, that's an ethos Annie and Tom can buy into. They need
something to unite them. To give them purpose.
But it'll be hard seeing strangers stood in familiar places. Currently it feels like watching Buffy
with Buffy, Willow and Xander no longer in the cast. (Well, maybe not
Xander. Annie's probably Xander.) Hopefully, as we get to know the
characters, the feeling of strangeness will dissipate. Whether I
continue to watch is wholly dependent on how the new elements develop,
how likeable the new characters are, and how interesting the season arc
is. So far, I'm cautiously optimistic. There's some really strong
stuff here. I suspect it's just a case of re-acclimatising to the new
characters. I truly believe the show can be great again. Or maybe it
still is great, and I just can't see it yet.
Bits and Pieces:
-- The rest of the Old Ones arrive in two months; just in time for the season finale.
What on earth was Mark Williams doing with that tea towel on his head?
I half expected him to say "This season, I'll mostly be wearing
special robes and a special hat".
-- The curse repairs what it damages -- unless you're old.
Cutler's already annoying me. I'm not sure Andrew Gower is the right
actor for the part. His physical presence really doesn't match his
mouth; although, he did beat a hasty retreat once George started taking off heads. Maybe he's just the cowardly type.
-- Griffin's not a patch on Herrick. Uncle Billy would eat him for breakfast.
-- If werewolves can trick their bodies into changing, is it possible they can trick their bodies into not changing?
-- When Michael Socha says "dick head", he sounds uncannily like his sister, Lauren Socha.
A special shout out to both Russell Tovey and Sinead Keenan for giving
us three years of greatness. Russell, we'll never forget George's part
in The Real Hustle meltdown. Sinead, we'll never forget Nina's
massive hair, her kind ways, and her foul mouth. She totally unleashed
the shit storm.
-- At times it felt as though Annie was channelling Rik from The Young Ones.
-- Is anyone ever
going to decorate Honolulu Heights? I know it's full of depressed
supernaturals, but would it kill someone to pick up a paint brush?
Let's hope Leo, Hal and Pearl are more house proud. Their place
actually looked pretty decent.
-- How does Superman cut his hair? Reflected heat vision or gold kryptonite. How else? Or maybe his hair just doesn't grow.
Actors never look convincing when they're choking people. Give those
necks a squeeze, for God's sake. It's not as if you're going to kill
anyone. George's neck snapping routine was also pretty lame.
I'd like to think George met up with Mitchell and Nina some place
nice. Certainly not that shit hole Annie ended up in a few seasons ago.
-- Why could the guy who killed "the woman" see her after she died? Was she commanding an army of werewolves or something?
-- It was implied that "the woman" was Eve, right? I didn't just imagine that?
-- The backdrop to London 2037 was dreadful. It was so obviously a painting. The smoke didn't move. Even I know the smoke's supposed to move.
Dewi: "Do I talk too much? 'Cos my mother can't stand it. She has to lie on the sofa with a door sausage over her head."
George: "Nina left. Nina died. So, like I said... she doesn't leave this room."
Tom: "Even McNair gave me a name, and he ate my parents."
Hal: "No looking at medical websites. Last time you convinced yourself you had heart disease."
Leo: "I had all the symptoms. Shortness of breath. Constriction of the airway."
Hal: "All the symptoms of someone who put their jumper on back to front."
Hal: "If a ghost loses their root, and their familiars, they fade. She will disperse, and drift away on the breeze like smoke."
George: "What's to talk about? I thought you wanted me to stop moping?"
Annie: "George, I meant have a shower. Not storm the Bat Cave. Besides, it's... erm... Splodge's first transformation."
Tom: "I thought we could do this together, like me and McNair, back in the day."
George: "Tom, I am not your fucking father!"
Tom: "You ain't nobody's father."
Regus: "We're all going to die. Game over. Because of this baby."
George: "I have to be with my Nina."
Hal: "We need a miracle."
Annie: "So, this is how it starts?"