Monday, March 14, 2011

Being Human: The Wolf-Shaped Bullet

Somehow I felt that the rug was pulled from under my feet during this finale.

Last week's set-up of the potential outing of vampires was quickly defused by Herrick's "rescue" of Mitchell from the police cell. I suppose all the dead bodies with double puncture wounds to the neck wouldn't be a clue? And Nina's near death was conveniently and abruptly reversed by a returning Annie later in the epsiode. Two of the bigger cliffhangers from last week wrapped up a little too quickly.

Whilst Herrick took Mitchell from the police station to the cage-fighting set (they got their money's worth out of that, eh?) for a heart-to-heart, Annie heard about Nina's hospitalisation and rushed to the emergency room. The best bit of the episode came as Lia contacted Annie using a dead police officer's bloody body and then Annie had to step through someone elses door to Purgatory once again.

There it soon became clear that, indeed, Lia was a liar (as predicted back in episode 1) and she'd just made up the wolf-shaped bullet prophecy to make Mitchell twitchy around George and Nina. However, Annie convinced her that her vengeance wouldn't solve anything but would instead mean that Mitchell would continue to claim other victims - including George, Nina and their unborn baby. Quite how Lia was able to roam around Purgatory and exact her revenge when none of Mitchell's other victims have done so wasn't made clear. Also, I thought in previous series that the afterlife was desperate to get Annie and yet here it is, happy for her to return to the world of the living - just in time to save Nina and baby.

Back in the cage, it appears George had already guessed that Mitchell was the Box Tunnel murderer and so this little news doesn't faze him. But knowing that Herrick might have killed Nina does throw him over the edge. Hmm, but wasn't Mitchell originally all for killing Herrick and it was Nina who decided to keep the vampire time-bomb in the attic? Anyway, love and grief are never rational, so we got a wonderfully tense scene which culminates in Tom, McNair's son, rushing in dusting a vamp bodyguard on the way (what happened to Tom after this though?).

I felt that the forward shift in time about two-thirds through this episode was somewhat sudden. George, Annie and a fully healed Nina (and bump) were back at Honolulu Heights - wasn't that cordoned off by the police? Weren't they still sweeping the place for evidence? Has someone cleaned up all the blood? Meanwhile, Mitchell was in a car watching the sunrise with Herrick. After discovering that a vamp cannot be resurrected from a stake to the heart (but not exactly learning how Herrick managed his comeback), Mitchell deals with his old mentor.

The final 20 minutes or so, when a deeply troubled Mitchell came back and wanted George to kill him, was dragged out a little too much for my liking. All the tears and hand-wringing felt a bit forced to me. Was the point that Mitchell could never be redeemed, that he would always feel the hunger and go on to kill again? Yes, George and Annie loved him - and he loved them back - but it seemed a bit of a shitty ending for him (if we're to assume vamps = drug addicts then the only resolution is for them is to die?!?).

Then there was the introduction of the Old Ones. Brilliantly played, but kinda out of nowhere really. They seemed to wrap things up too easily whilst introducing the threat for season 4, if they decide to make another series. But without Mitchell, would another series really work? I'm not sure it would, but I'd be happy to be proved wrong.

So, an entertaining final episode which I enjoyed immensely but which, strangely, also disappointed me. I felt last week's episode was stronger and more thrilling; this seemed to drag things through the ringer for far too long. Still, a decent end to the series I guess and, perhaps, to the show as a whole.

Next week - it looks like the Becoming Human mini webisodes are being collected together and shown on BBC3. Good call. Plus, we'll finally discover who the heck killed Matt.


The Acrobatic Flea said...

I think that the idea that vampires are a metaphor for drug addicts only works on some levels.

Vampires are brutal, bestial murderers that survive on the blood of human beings - and despite attempts to sanitise them (that started in Buffy and have led to the sparkliness of Twilight) - this was really the only way the show should go.

Killing off Mitchell was a brave move - but it was the right move.

But yes, you have to wonder where the show can go from here (if it goes anywhere)?

Nimbus said...

Until the Box Tunnel murders, Mitchell was shown as one of the few vampires who was controlling his blood lust. So for at least one and a half series he was "sanitised" and not surviving on human blood. My comment about linking Mitchell to drug addicts comes from those early days when the conditions of each of the house mates sort of had real world analogies. I think these have somewhat fallen apart now.

So, yeah, sure the end of series 2 showed us what they really are and the end of this series re-emphasised that. In retrospect I agree this was the right way to go - vampires should always be cruel, bloody murderers.