Monday, March 26, 2012

My Review of Being Human's 4x08: "The War Child"

Written by Toby Whithouse
Directed by Philip John

Annie (to Mr Snow): “Give me back my fucking baby!”

Oh, Annie, who knew you could have such a wicked tongue on you? No, seriously if it wasn’t Hal embracing his inner potty mouth for most of this episode, that line would’ve been kind of shocking but we all know the real shock that happened in this episode, don’t we?

I’d love to say that Annie exiting this show was actually a massive shock but seeing as it’s been telegraphed all season long, it’s more inevitable that her journey would come to an end in this episode. However, even I didn’t actually expect her to blow up the Old Ones and baby Eve in order to prevent the former from taking over the world.

It’s really hard what to make of the situation – morally what Annie was incredibly dark and barbaric but at the same time, by committing such an atrocious act she managed to ensure the world was safe. Also by doing that act, she cancelled the older version of Eve out and went through her own door with the baby version in hand.

Lenora Crichlow was a trooper to stick throughout the entire fourth series and while there were times when it looked like Annie might have been overshadowed a little by Tom and Hal’s growing friendship, I think this was a good way to end her time on the show. It’s just a small pity that we didn’t actually get to see Mitchell, George or Nina but then again, I wasn’t expecting too.

Despite Annie’s murder of Eve, the episode did highlight the struggle she had with even entertaining the idea. She got defensive when explaining to Tom and Hal about her role in the prophecy and even when Cutler attempted to kill Eve, Annie’s first instincts were to protect the child rather than kill.

Speaking of Cutler – I knew he wasn’t going to make it out of this episode alive. I did however assume that it would’ve been either Hal or Mr Snow who did him in but Annie staking him after he got the chemical peel from hell worked too. I was curious as to what happened when vampires entered a home uninvited and now I know it’s rather grisly. I’m gonna miss Cutler but I think it was right that his story ended here though.

As for Mr Snow though – it’s amazing what a TV series can do. Anyone who’s read my Sherlock reviews will know that Mark Gatiss doesn’t really do it for me as Mycroft but here, I absolutely loved him as Snow. He was kind of like this show’s equivalent of Russell Edgington with a bit more of a debonair wit about him too.

Snow’s creepy determination to prevent Eve’s death maintained the reality that she was necessary for the vampires to take over the world but it was his scenes with Hal and Annie that impressed the most. I’m kind of disappointed in a way that Snow did perish because I would’ve loved more scenes with him and Hal.

Mark Gatiss and Damien Molony played off each other well and I almost got the implication that Snow might have been Hal’s maker. I’m probably way off base but the fact that Snow had a strong hold over Hal was something that didn’t really get explored in this episode. It was largely mentioned but apart from Snow making it out sound like Hal was his puppet and the latter’s desperation to stay away from him, we really didn’t get much of it.

Annie and Snow were also captivating to watch. Snow made the classic villainous mistake of underestimating Annie’s intentions towards Eve’s welfare and it cost him his life. I guess this should now mean that the Old Ones are out of the equation but in this show’s effortless methods of adapting, I can’t wait to see what Mr Rook and his band of domestic staff are going to bring for the next series. It might be nice to have another main Big Bad that isn’t a supernatural threat.

Last but not least – Hal ended up bound to a chair while Tom and Alex attempted to wean him off the blood (seriously, drinking Alex’s maggot fused blood was disgusting). Already the dynamic for next series is set up and it’s going to be a great one. Alex will ultimately work as a character because like Tom/George and Hal/Mitchell, she’s not replicating Annie. Also when it comes to being a ghost, it’s nice to see that she’s a bit of a quick learner as well and we still have to learn about her own unfinished business too.

Also in “The War Child”

A fifth series was confirmed for the series straight after the episode aired but it will only have six episodes. Still, better than nothing though.

Hal: “Unfinished business tends to be more life affirming than beating someone up.”
Alex: “Not if you’re Scottish.”

Hal wasn't in danger from Tom – in fact he lured Tom into the van after Alex got everyone else out of the building.

Mr Snow (to Cutler): “I was planning just to take the world. I didn’t realise I need you to give it to me.”

Annie: “Who is that?”
Alex (re Hal): “Erm, this is Alex, that drank my blood.”

The prequel for this episode was of Mr Snow with his werewolf ally Milo discussing Annie. I have a feeling we’re going to be seeing Milo again next series. Oh and we got a flash forward to 2022 where an 11 year old Eve escaped from Snow.

Hal: “You really are one of the most remarkable people I’ve ever met.”
Tom: “All right, calm down.”

Alex (to Annie): “Well, you’re just like a bloke really. Well, a bloke with tits or to put it in another way – my dad.”

Annie taught Alex to move stuff and also she managed to Rentaghost Hal out of the building. Well, he isn’t a living thing.

Milo: “It’s simple survival, Tom. You find the biggest kid in the playground and you stand next to them.”

Cutler (to Eve): “So, this is how it ends. This is what it was all for.”

Tom wasn’t building a swimming all along – he was gathering materials for a bomb. That proved to be handy but Honolulu Heights could do with a swimming pool though.

Mr Snow: “Tell me, if you admire humans so much, why do you keep inflicting your failures upon them?”
Hal: “Because one day, I believe I will win.”

Mr Snow (to Hal): “We’ve come to rescue you as you knew we would. Why haven’t I told you to join me? Because I have you already, heart and mind.”

Thank you BBC3 for that lovely four minute tribute to Annie’s last moments and interview with Lenora Crichlow.

Eve: “Go on, they’re expecting you.”
Annie: “Who?”
Eve: “Who do you think?”

Hal: “Then why are you doing this?”
Tom: “Cos you’re my best mate.”

Chronology: From where “Making History” left off and Mr Rook and company retrieved Alex’s body as well.

As a finale went, “The War Child” was a good way to end the series. It’s been an interesting four years but with the entire original cast no longer with us and a new order in the show, I can’t wait to see where things go from here with Tom, Hal and Alex.

Rating: 9 out of 10

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