Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Being Human (US) Does it compare to the UK version?

I've just watched the first episode of the US remake of BEING HUMAN. It features Aidan the vampire (weird the character's name is the actor's name who plays Mitchel in the UK; coincidence I'm sure), Sally the ghost, and Josh the werewolf. The episode ends on a cliff-hanger, with Josh and his sister trapped in a room while Josh is quickly shifting to werewolf shape and his sister's life is in danger because of it.

I'm not compelled to watch episode two.  I know it's only one episode, but I'm just not feeling the love for this version that I do for the original. I ADORE the UK show. (Yes, even obnoxiously giddy Annie.) I think the character that bugs me the most in this new one is Aidan.  I feel as though the actor is trying to mimic the brooding, dark charisma that Aidan Turner naturally exudes in the role. The UK vampire oozes danger and charm.  The US vampire just looks likes he's trying too hard.

The werewolf Josh works fine for me, and I do appreciate that his shifting screams are not so girlie as the UK werewolf.  I think he can handle the role with ease and embue it with the dark, awkward humor it requires.  Sally the ghost is sort of meh for me.  I like her a little; I guess I'd have to give her a few more episodes to make a final determination.  Pellegrino as Bishop doesn't work for me, but then I didn't like him in Lost or Supernatural, so that's probably a personal thing.

I also realize that the show will follow the original with its episodes, and that sort of bothered me. I wonder if it work better if they ventured off on their own plots?  Though perhaps they are restricted to certain plotlines since the series are the same?  I don't know.

My reaction to this episode?  A big meh.  No need to watch anymore. Unless someone can convince me that the few episodes get better?  I'd love to hear your thoughts, comparing the two series.  I'd also like to hear from those who have only seen the US version.  Perhaps without the original to sway your thoughts, you might give this one much higher marks than I did.


Anonymous said...

I haven't watched the UK version of Being Human but, I probaly will out of curiousity.
I really do like the show ad can't wait til it comes back on air.

I would recommened watching a few more episodes of the US version before writing it off completly.

Barb P said...

I personally like the UK version better. Although I did start watching it first and therefore thought of the American version as a knockoff.

Mel Teshco said...

Love the UK version. Couldn't get into the US one at all =(

Jet said...

I have seen both the American and UK versions of Being Human, I looove the UK version but I couldn't even sit through one complete episode of the American one; the characters just aren't right to me.

Taliesin_ttlg said...

I wondered why bother with the US version but if you stick with it you'll see that the US one is a different beast altogether and equally as good in its own way.

I take your point with the Aiden character but I do not think he is trying to channel Aiden Turner (and incidentally, whilst really enjoying Turner's performance, I overall prefered the original, original Mitchel, with his Withnail attitude from the UK pilot, as both Annie and Mitchel were played by different actors in that). Rther he is channeling the spirit of Louis/Angel/Edward and that cliche of vampire. That said I think the character development around him is more believable as the show goes on.

The show loses the comedy edge and becomes a drama and nothing wrong with that, anyway my full thoughts are here. (contains spoilers)

prangon @ smutty dirty B said...

Haven't seen the US version and don't plan to. Being Human UK one is just perfect IMO.

Lexie said...

I'm in the minority I think, but I prefer the American version to the UK version. Part of it I think is because I prefer the actors in the American version - the one who plays George annoys me beyond any actor or character I can think of honestly. I do like Annie better then Sally, but I like Aidan better then Mitchell.

Far as I remember the first series of the UK version, the US version does divert from the overall plot progression. The basics are the same, but the UK takes Course A while the US takes Course B even though they arrive at the same conclusions (for the most part). Part of this I think is because the US version has 6 more episode to the first series than the UK version.

When I first began watching the US version I was kind of meh about it as well--the first episode or two are rather cheesy and the acting is hokey, but it picks up afterwards. Also though I'm a fan of Pelligrino (or at least I enjoy watching him on various shows I watch) I kind of wanted to kill him throughout most of the season. Just saying.

Michele Hauf said...

Love hearing the different reactions to the shows! I think one can't help but be influenced by the 1st show if you've already watched the UK version. Very hard to set that aside and view the US one without comparing. I will give it another look. I guess I do need to know what becomes of Josh's sister. ;-)

Mina Lobo said...

I really dig the UK version and remember being peeved when I heard that a US version was being produced - why a remake, huh? Why, why, why??? But now, I quite like it.

I also wasn't too jazzed by the first episode, but it grew on me. As Lexie wrote, it follows the UK story, but takes a somewhat modified (and accelerated, it seemed to me) path. Now, I like them equally - as an American, there's something about the writing, and the pacing of the dialogue, which appeals to me as being uniquely US. I look forward to more, more, more of both!

readinrobin said...

When the US version first started, I considered watching it, but I would much rather see the original UK version. It irritates me that instead of getting to see all these great UK shows, we get inferior remakes here in the US. One reason I love Netflix...

Cylver said...

What I love about the UK Being Human is how the characters all go against type: Annie, despite being the ghost of a murder victim, remains giddy and exuberant, George, the Big Bad Wolf, is such a kind, gentle soul when the moon isn't full, and Mitchell, the reluctant vampire, who wants to live a good, moral life, but knows it's only a matter of time until he kills again. The casting of Jason Watkins as Herrick is especially good: Seeming so trustworthy in his police uniform, nobody would hesitate to approach him - until he flashes his fangs!

I found the SyFy version to be far more predictable, with the depressed ghost and the vampire who is way to - well, vampirey to take seriously. Bishop just looks like the villain he is, police uniform notwithstanding. Only Josh, in my opinion, retains some of George's personality quirks.

I watched the first two or three episodes of the SyFy version, but lost interest when I realized I'd already seen the same thing done better. To be fair, I understand that there were some major plot differences that began to surface later on, but for me it was too little, too late.

Marta said...

I tried watching the US version, but, ugh. Why not just do a different story, instead of weaker interpretations of the characters? I thought casting someone who looked like a runway model as Annie was wrong, and even calling the vampire Aidan was too cutesy.

Mark Pellegrino has never read dangerous to me. Jason Watkins as the original Herrick was chilling because he looks so banal -- and that's the genius of British casting -- good shows chose actors who can play the heck out of a role, not who are the prettiest.

Roxanne Rhoads said...

It gets better and does eventually move away from the UK plot lines and changes to its own versions of them then into completely new territory

After the UK version was horribly changed and in my eyes ruined the last season I was ready for something different

***spolilers ahead for those who didn't watch the UK version****

I realize they had to write off Mitchell since the actor was leaving but they way they did it undid all the previous chemistry and unity the characters had created over the seasons- it undid everything they had done and ruined it all for me

I don't even know if I'll watch the upcoming season of UK version now that Mitchel's gone.

So I watch the US version- the vampire is not nearly as sexy or brooding, the werewolf is dorky in an awkward and uncomfortable way and the ghost is...well she's OK I guess.

It's something to watch to take my mind off everything else so it's on my DVR

WhiteTigerAX said...

I've only watched the US one - the UK one doesn't appeal to me, not sure why...
What I think of it so far (I'm on series or season 2 episode... 10? Or was it 11? Meh) and the plot is... Ok.
The first series seemed really good to me - especially the part where he has the reaction to garlic XD I must've watched that part about 10 times now :D
It seems to be a bit kind of... All over the place at the moment.
Series 1 was good and stuck to the plot whereas series 2, one minute it's about Aidan and what's-her-face then it's all about Sally :/
Josh is definitely the best character out of them all.
Then Aidan.
Then Sally.
I think they went OTT with the blood bank places or whatever they call them. In the second series I swear the first 5 or 6 episodes had around 5 mins of Aidan half naked and drinking blood from a load of girls - the first series had some of it but no where near as much :/
ANYWAY. That turned out to be a bit of a rant. Geezo this blog is over a year old O.o