Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A Vampire, A Ghost and A Werewolf: Being Human

I am not generally a fan of shows that are adapted from their original UK versions into something different for US audiences.  Even though I am the US audience I  think that when they recreate shows over here and change bits and pieces so we "get it" they often end up destroying the show.  "The Office" made the move just fine, but "Coupling", one of my all-time favorite shows, was completely ruined once it crossed the ocean.  I watched the first two seasons of the original UK Being Human and can't wait to start watching season three, so when I saw they were bringing it to the US I was more than a little nervous.  It was like that feeling you get at the top of the roller coaster when you see just how big the drop is going to be and realize there is no turning back, you just have to hold on and hope for the best.

Two episodes into Being Human I have discovered that the drop wasn't nearly as bad as I had feared.  In fact, it's actually a pretty fun ride.  The show still revolves around a vampire, a werewolf and a ghost trying to live normal lives alongside us humans.  I love that the place they rent is still seedy and that the ghost, who only the vampire and werewolf can see, is stuck in the same gray sweater and leggings that she was stuck in throughout the original.  The setting has been carried over nicely, but more importantly so have the characters.  They've lost their British accents and now references things here instead of there, but at heart they are the same.  This last episode was just fantastic and had a nice bit of emotional punch.  I'm hooked on this one as much as I was the original.

Sure, it isn't exactly the same.   It's impossible for these actors to do precisely what their British counterparts have done, but they lend their own unique interpretations to the roles.  Truly, I have only one complaint.  The storyline is so similar that the suspense of the original is missing for me.  If you never saw the original then you're going to be in for a more exciting ride as you see what lies ahead for our trio.  I am hoping they change things just enough to keep those who know the story a little more on the edge of our seats.  Either way, this is one UK transplant that I'm enjoying and, fan of the original or not, it's definitely worth your time.

6 comments:

  1. Nicole,

    I've watched, and enjoyed, Being Human on BBC America. I thought I would give the US version a try, but couldn't even make it through the entire first episode. I was hoping that they would at least try something different. But, I already know what happens to these characters, and seeing them starting their journey together all over again, just turned me off. I give this show a big fail. Already deleted it from my TiVo season pass list

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  2. Wow! Not even through the first episode? Well, to each his own, but especially for that first episode I would expect it to be very similar to the original since it's really just character introduction.

    I would like to see the storyline expand, not in a different direction, but into additional stories that still work within the framework of the original but add to the history.

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  3. We just watched the first episode on-demand tonight. I approached it with much the same mindset that you had and didn't really enjoy the first half of the show. But by the mid-point I was getting into it and by the end I was looking forward to the next episode. Hopefully they will shake things up a bit so that we can enjoy watching both versions.

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  4. I personally came into this show fresh not having seen the British version. But so far I am really enjoying it. The characters have really good give-and-take and I really like that the characters are flawed and are struggling through their 'conditions'. I know that's the point of the show but too many times today you see characters with these conditions are in their glorious peak. Ha. The one thing I don't get (and I haven't looked it up) is the vamps walking around in the day. Maybe its explained later?
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  5. I'm trying to remember the exact details of the sun and vampires in the original. I know they don't like the sun and the vampire wears sunglasses and coats alot, but I don't remember a detailed explanation. Although these vamps violate my burning-into-flame rules, they don't sparkle so I'm okay.

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  6. In the last episode they explain the vampire in sunlight situation. Sally asks why they dont 'explode' and Aiden answers that long ago they were nocturnal but they have since evolved and become photo-sensitive. This is plausible and I accept this answer more than sparkling in the sun (Twilight)or wearing magic rings that allow it (Vampire Diaries).
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