Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Review: Being Human Series Five - Episodes 4-5

With ‘The Greater Good’, Being Human seems to have realised that it is in its final series as here, after a couple of generally light-hearted episodes, things very suddenly shift up a few gears. Several plot threads that have been bubbling under the surface are addressed such as Hal realising he is responsible for Crumb and attempting to set him back on the right path – whilst his one-time romance with Alex also begins to resurface. Also interesting is the new light we get to see on Tom’s character as he has to mentor innocent werewolf Bobby in the ways of the world, when usually Tom is the pupil.
Although the character of Crumb slightly grates with this reviewer, he gets a decent role here, his struggle with humanity reflecting Hal’s own problems, and Ricky  Grover’s Bobby is an endearing soul meaning that ‘The Greater Good’'s glut of characters and their different story lines work, with most coming off well.
Talking of lots of characters, there’s an unexpected family atmosphere to this episode with previously shady or mistrusted characters such as Rook and Crumb almost being part of the gang. Even Hatch muttering away evilly in the background is like a grumpy grandfather. It’s fun to have this aspect to the show although, as I'm sure you’re aware, it doesn't last.
Overall, this episode serves its role of getting the series to the high stakes (awful pun intended) it wants for the two finale episodes and delivers some occasional laughs and surprisingly touching moments.

‘No Care, All Responsibility’ is a stronger episode than the previous as, in affect, it’s the one where Hal, Tom and Alex’s world comes crashing around them. Thankfully each one getting a sizeable chunk of the action.
Tom has got the chance to mature considerably in the last two episodes and Michael Socha rises to the challenge as Tom here starts to feel 'feelings' for a new waitress at the hotel. Similarly, Kate Bracken does wonderfully, Alex acting as the audience surrogate here as she finally catches on to the fact that Captain Hatch is not just a simple old man. Meanwhile, Damien Molony delivers another top-notch performance as Hal tips ever-closer to the precipice, looking noticeably scruffier and out-of-it than previously seen. To see a character so obsessed with cleanliness and order giving in to chaos is near heart-breaking. That said, Evil Hal is a lot of fun.
He isn't the only bad character getting some time this episode, though. Mr Rook is becoming one of my favourite characters this series with Steven Robertson just treading the right line between respectable civil servant and callous, driven man-on-the-edge. His partnership with Hatch over these two episodes is great stuff, highlighting Rook’s vulnerability yet determination and Hatch’s coercive nature.
As this is the penultimate episode of the series ever, of a show that has had had some really great cliffhangers, it is perhaps not quite as thrilling as some past pre-finale episodes (Series One and Series Three spring to mind as having stronger shock value), although it is a very effective ending in terms of both horror and emotion. All the worse things that could happen do, including a very creepy and unnerving scenario for one of our heroes which hopefully doesn't end up being their fate.
Because we know the finale to end all finales is coming next week much of the plot developments for this episode are a tad predictable although there is at least a couple of turns that aren't totally expected. However, thanks to the fantastic work the writers and actors have done you’ll be drawn in completely, caring for everyone’s favourite supernatural trinity. And worrying whether they will make it to the end.
He. Will. Rise.

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