Being Human: Season 3 Review

(Warning: This review contains spoilers.)

“You'll be the villain now.”
“Christ. I always was.”

Season 3 of the BBC's Being Human can be summed up in this exchange between Herrick and Mitchell. Mitchell, once the friendly neighborhood vampire, starts the season trying to live with himself after the Box Tunnel 20, and as the season progresses, he realizes that he will find no redemption in this life. He is presented with two choices. He can fully embrace his dark nature, join Herrick, and be a survivor, or he can die. There are no longer any choices left for him. Season 3 of Being Human is about the show making the case for Mitchell's death.

Being Human started out as a show about a vampire named Mitchell (Aidan Turner), a werewolf named George (Russell Tovey), and a ghost named Annie (Lenora Crichlow) living in a house together and trying to maintain their humanity. At the start of season 3, the gang has moved to Wales, and George's werewolf girlfriend Nina (Sinead Keenan) has moved in with them. Mitchell is trying to find a way to bring Annie back from purgatory and hopes that by saving her soul, he will atone for his role in the Box Tunnel 20 massacre. Annie cannot come back, however, without Mitchell paying a price. Mitchell is told that he will be killed by a werewolf, causing him to suspect every werewolf he meets.

Meanwhile, Annie, continuing her streak of falling for the wrong men, latches onto Mitchell as her savior, and she falls in love with him. Several other new characters are also introduced this season including a socialite zombie named Sasha (Alexandra Roach), teen vampire Adam (Craig Roberts), and a werewolf father-son duo McNair (Robson Green) and Tom (Michael Socha) who spend their lives hunting down vampires. Near the end of season 3, Herrick (Jason Watkins) also comes back from the dead but can't remember anything including the fact that he is a vampire.

Season 3 takes several detours that initially don't make sense when they happen, but they make more sense when looking back on the season as a whole. Subplots like the bratty teen vampire Adam, Mitchell's fan-boy stalker Graham, and the zombie girl Sasha are good examples. If the season's overarching plots were Mitchell dodging the “werewolf-shaped bullet” and Herrick coming back to life, it is difficult to see how these subplots move the main story forward.

Graham started out as a goofy character but quickly turned creepy. Graham idolizes Mitchell for the Box Tunnel 20 massacre, something Mitchell and the audience want to forget about. Mentally, the audience wants to go back to the lovable recovering addict of previous seasons, and Graham's introduction is meant to prevent just that. Graham keeps a scrapbook of newspaper articles about the Box Tunnel 20 and makes a big deal of showing it to Mitchell. Mitchell acts like he is repulsed by the book, but even after killing Graham, Mitchell keeps the book. By having Mitchell keep the book, the audience cannot write off the Box Tunnel 20 as a moment of weakness or a stupid mistake. Viewers must face the fact that Mitchell might even take pleasure in remembering what he did.

Adam and Sasha serve a very different purpose in the future of Being Human. Adam's storyline is less about Mitchell and Herrick and more about proving that George and Nina can save the day without Mitchell's help. Season 4 will prove whether the show can survive without Mitchell, and the episode “Adam's Family” was sort of a test run for the writers with George and Nina. Similarly, Sasha's episode “Type 4” set up potential for future episodes, but the episode's real focus was on Annie. Out of everyone in the house, Annie has the strongest interest in Sasha, and her good heart and kindness towards Sasha continued to make the case that she could still be an interesting character independent of Mitchell.

While the whole of season 3 might not have been as strong as season 2, the final three episodes made up for any shortcomings in the rest of the season. “Though the Heavens Fall” might be the best hour-long television episode I will see all year, and their use of Angela Bassey's classic song “History Repeating” was sheer brilliance. The season finale also gave the perfect ending to Mitchell's character, and though it was heartbreaking, nothing about it felt cheap. This was the ending that had been set up all season, but like Mitchell, the audience had to run from it and deny it before finally embracing it. Season 3 of Being Human ended with a tearful goodbye to a beloved character, and it simultaneously kicked off a whole new storyline for George, Annie, and Nina. As a fan and as a lover of good television, I cannot wait to see where Being Human goes in season 4.

Blu-ray Bonus Features

Special features include interviews with the cast, a tour of the set, and deleted scenes.

"Being Human: Season 3" is on sale May 3, 2011 and is not rated. Comedy, Drama, Fantasy, Horror, Romance. Directed by Charles Martin, Colin Teague, David Ohara, Philip John. Written by Toby Whithouse, Brian Dooley, Jamie Mathieson, Lisa McGee. Starring Aidan Turner, Alexandra Roach, Jason Watkins, Lenora Crichlow, Michael Socha, Robson Green, Russell Tovey, Sinead Keenan.

May
25
2011
Rachel Kolb • Staff Writer

I love movies, writing, and breaking into song in public. You can follow me on Twitter @rachelekolb or check out more of my work at http://rachelekolb.wordpress.com.

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