Monday, February 04, 2013

My Review of Being Human's 5x01: "The Trinity"

Written by Toby Whithouse
Directed by Philip John

Captain Hatch (to Patsy): “Oh you carry on, my love. In fact, I haven’t felt this good in years.”

Trios are a deadly thing and when it comes to giving us a trio of new villains to contend with, then the fifth series of this show has definitely hit the ground running with a selection of three very distinct adversaries for our new supernatural trinity.

The first baddie – Old Nick himself, otherwise known as Captain Hatch. Superbly played by Phil Davis, Hatch was the character who got the least amount of screen time in this episode but still managed to be the most dangerous of the bunch with the little he was given as well.

Hal, Lady Catherine and Emil royally cocked up by putting the essence of the Devil into the body of a mad man and the fact that he’s spent over ninety years hiding in plain sight has been rather interesting too. The Devil is pretty clichéd as villains go but credit given to this show in it’s softly, softly approach to dealing with him.

His bad tempered, racist banter aside, Phil Davis really managed to make Hatch into a terrifying presence by the way he whispered into Sophie’s ear and got her to scribe ‘He Will Rise’ in her own blood. It’s that type of subtlety that has worked with the villains of this show in the past and the very one that will seemingly work again with Hatch too. Already I’m finding myself compelled and horrified by the man but as I was saying, Hatch is only one of three villains the show is contending with this year.

The second batch of villains are the Men In Grey, lead the enigmatic Dominic Rook and unlike Kemp from the second series, this episode nicely went out of it’s way to prove they’re not complete fanatics. While Rook recognises the dangers with the supernatural community, he’s flexible enough to extend an olive branch to Hal as well.

I’m not entirely sure how I feel about Hal refusing to Rook’s proposition of keeping the vampires in line. In some respects, he probably made the right decision but at the same time, Rook was right to point out how chaotic vampires seem to be without some form of structure. Even Hal himself is a great example of that, hence his rotas and routines that have mostly kept him dry for the last half a century.

Of course, while Hal managed to get away from Rook unscathed, Rook himself did show a ruthless streak with the inventive murder of an uncooperative Martin and the fact that he’s currently holding our third villain of this series in captivity is proof that perhaps Hal, Tom and Alex might want to watch their step when dealing with Rook. He might not be the Devil but he’s definitely formidable in his own right, that’s for sure.

Last but not least on the baddie front – there’s Ian “Crumb” Cram, an insurance worker who Hal recklessly made into a vampire out of guilt but out of all three villains, he might the most polarising of the bunch. He’s certainly not awful and the whole “victim who gets superpowers” back story they have for Crumb is interesting but there were times in the episode where he could be a bit too broad comedy for my liking.

Hal keeping Crumb bound and gagged in the basement might have worked had Alex not been manipulated by Crumb into releasing him but at the same time, Crumb really could go either way as a threat. He’s the least threatening of the three (despite killing a co-worker of his) but he’s clearly also being designed as the most sympathetic of the bunch as well, given the plethora of detail we were given about him as well.

As for the rest of the trinity themes in this episode – Hal really does like his vampire/werewolf/ghost dynamics, doesn’t he? His partnerships with ghost Emil Parsons and werewolf leader, Lady Catherine Glass ended horribly when they tried to stop the Devil from feeding on the vampire/werewolf conflict and his current dynamic with Tom and Alex, while excellent is still not without it’s problems.

Both Tom and Alex had reasons to be wary and actually mad at Hal, what with him turning Crumb and his “tangential” involvement in the latter’s death as well. However, with the lads both working in the Barry Grand Hotel (this year’s main location and Hatch’s current residence) and Alex sticking around in spite of her family getting her body back, I don’t see why this current trio can’t be as successful as our previous. They’re certainly every bit as interesting and believable as the previous lot at the very least.

Also in “The Trinity”

BBC3 for some reason have decided to air this at the slightly later time of 10pm, though that might so it doesn’t conflict with current hit, Ripper Street on BBC1.

Hal (to Lady Catherine): “Obviously there’s nothing we enjoy more than a good rough and tumble.”

Did anyone else think the manageress (Patsy) hot for Hal was a bit of a meta commentary on how audiences in general have taken to the character?

Mr Rook: “Malevolence and greed are hard wired into your DNA.”
Hetty: “Yeah, and your mum is so fat, her blood type is Ragu.”

Alex (to Tom/Hal, re her father): “I’m not letting a good man die of grief just to protect the fucking Twilight franchise.”

Hetty gave information about Hal to Rook, Eve was mentioned in this episode and we learned that Alex’s surname was Millar, her father was called Brendan and that the Men In Grey made it look like she drowned.

Hal: “I don’t need blood anymore. I’ve been dry for over sixty years.”
Mr Rook: “You’re sweating, Hal. Your hands are shaking.”

Lady Catherine: “If this is a trick, I shall plunge this into your calcified heart.”
Hal: “And you wonder why you’re single.”

Toby Whithouse made a cameo in this episode as a Home Secretary telling Mr Rook that his funds were going to be cut.

Crumb: “You’re going to bum me now.”
Hal: “Ian, I have no intention of bumming you.”

Mr Rook (to Alistair): “This isn’t about my career, these are monsters. You can’t just let them run wild without supervision, without restraint. They’re time bombs.”

Hal explained a lot to Crumb about the vampire’s history with the Devil but it does make me wonder a bit more about werewolves’ origins now too.

Alex (to Mr Rook): “You stole my death. You’re in my sights now, pal. One day, I’m gonna watch you die.”

Crumb (to Mr Rook): “I’m the world’s worst nightmare – the victim who gets superpowers.”

Chronology: A month since the events of “The War Child” as well as 1918, Northern France for the Hal/Emil/Catherine flashbacks.

Is it me or was “The Trinity” the most busiest of episodes we’ve ever had on this show? I’m not knocking it but I’m struggling to remember any other episode that had this much going on, almost all at once. On the plus side, at least there wasn’t a single boring plot and at times, this was scary, touching, funny and character driven. An excellent return for the show and proof that the complete loss of the original cast hasn’t hurt the series one bit.

Rating: 9 out of 10

No comments: