Being Human (US Version) Review

Being Human (US Version) is a 2011 supernatural drama television series created by Toby Whithouse, starring Sam Witwer, Meaghan Rath, Sam Hutington, and Kristen Hager. Serving as a remake of the BBC show of the same name, the series revolves around three roommates living in Boston, the trio attempting to live a normal life despite being a ghost, a vampire, and a werewolf.


Positives:

  • Great characters
  • Terrific cast
  • Good special effects
  • Great story
  • Great performances
  • Good score
  • Great writing
  • Great character development

Negatives:

  • n/a

Plot:  The premise of the show follows Aidan (a vampire), Sally (a ghost), and Josh (a werewolf) who try to live together and get along as they attempt to deal with their afflictions as best they can while attempting to blend in with the ordinary humans and live a “normal” life.  The story is pretty damn engaging as we see these characters dealing with their own personal demons as well as the normal and abnormal societies.  The first three seasons have pretty cool and interesting stories, although when it comes to the fourth season some of the stories start to show their wear but the series comes to an emotionally satisfying conclusion. (4 out of 5)

Characters:  Despite being a vampire, Aidan doesn’t want to kill again due to his extremely bloody past and his maker Bishop. Hell, he tries to distance himself from the vampire society and his thirst for blood has him more like a drug addict. Josh is a werewolf trying to work on finding a cure.  Josh is definitely the humor of the group.  He distances himself from his family and friends when he becomes cursed. Loved the brotherly relationship between Aidan and Josh. Sally is a ghost trying to solve her own death while trying to cope with the afterlife. Sally’s optimistic, fun, and free spirited and that makes her a very likable character.  When the others are going through their problems she tries to help despite whats going on with her. Another of the main characters is Nora Sergeant, Josh’s love interest who he accidentally curses. Josh and Nora relationship feels grounded because of the ups and down of the dealing with the normal and supernatural societies.  Love the growth and development of the characters and their relationships with one another, especially when it comes to them coping with the events that happen in their backstory.  There’s tons of likable characters as well as despicable ones, all with interesting quirks and backstories. (5 out of 5)

Cast: Great performances by the main cast including Sam Witwer (Aidan Waite), Meaghan Rath (Sally Malik), Sam Huntington (Josh Levison), Kristen Hager (Nora Sergeant). Witwer, Rath, and Huntington have great chemistry together and it is enjoyable watching them together onscreen.  Supporting cast includes Dichen Lachman (Suren), Susanna Fournier (Zoe Gonzales), Connor Price (Kenny), Amy Aquino (Donna Gilchrist), Deanna Russo (Kay Neely), Patrick Kiely (Nick Fenn), Kyle Schmid (Henry), and Alison Louder (Emily Levison). Like I said, great performances. (4 out of 5)

Visuals:  The series is extremely well shot, with a good focus of the characters. There is a great use of special effects when it comes to the creature designs.  The deaths, blood and gore are handled pretty well.  There are some really wonderful shots of the city and the set pieces are good. When it comes to the costume designs (when it comes to the history bits) are pretty good. The werewolf animation looks good though it could’ve been better.  (4 out of 5)

Score:  Loved the musical composition by FM Le Sieur.  There is a lot of great themes that reflect the story; when things are emotional the music gives a lot of depth, and when things are action packed it gives it some great edge. (4 out of 5)

Writing:  The writing for the show is pretty solid; it’s smart, it’s funny, it’s dark.  Unlike the UK version the world feels more established, more structured.  There are rules and the rules are clear (in the UK version the rules around ghosts interacting with the living world is very inconsistent).  Sure, there are new elements introduced but it fits within the established structure.  Love how diverse the elements are.  There are moments of humor, and some pretty touchy ones.  When it comes to the violence, it can be pretty brutal and grotesque.  I like how the show explores humanity as we follow these characters as they discover what it means to be human. Also, the series does introduce some pretty interesting concepts such as the vampire/werewolf hybrids, virus that kills vampires, the afterlife, zombies, and even the Alpha werewolf idea. One of the ideas that probably should’ve been ironed out a bit better was the idea of Sally having witch powers.  It’s an interesting idea and they do pull it off but there are one or two moments where it’s a bit reaching. (4 out of 5)


The Verdict:  In the end, Being Human (US Version) is actually an awesome remake.  I found few problems with the series.  It has a fantastic cast, awesome performances, great characters, great direction, great score, awesome writing, and a great moving story that leaves off on a sound note.  Being Human (US Version) gets 4 out of 5.

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