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Being Human: Pie and Prejudice Review

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“I believe you would corrupt Keith Richards” Hal to Alex.

As this episode begins, we see Hal promoted to the post of Acting Manager of the hotel he and Tom both work for following the disappearance of the manager.

Tom is jealous of Hal’s success and, continuing the theme of their ongoing rivalry as stirred up by the mysterious Captain, this leads to more friction between the two of them. Desperate to gain greater success and improve himself, Tom turns to Larry, a celebrity weatherman turned werewolf, who offers to mentor him in ‘how to become successful’.

In the meantime, Hal visits Lady Mary, the 250 year old ghost of one of his victims. Alex, typically not taking no for an answer, follows him on this visit and the resultant fallout of that meeting causes some serious soul searching for all involved.

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This is mostly a slow burning, character building episode which stands in severe contrast to the previous episodes, each of which built up the tension of the arc plot.

Here we have a more relaxed storyline, lacking the sinister presence of ‘The Captain’ nor much of any of the darkness this series has led viewers to expect. Instead we get a more light-hearted tale that examines some deeper levels of the characters, delving into their desires and expectations with some humorous asides.

We have the image of Tom in an ill-fitting suit, the arms folded back to fit, spouting a bunch of management-speak platitudes in an attempt to be ‘more successful’ as well as the amusing contrast between the soft spoken, elegant woman that Hal believes Lady Mary to be and the person she has become since her death centuries ago.

Her very modern response to the inappropriate advances of misogynistic bastard Larry is a prime example of this contrast.

Overall it is a well crafted and excellently performed episode but there is the sense that it is essentially filler – the arc plot is not advanced significantly and with only a few episodes left before the final ever one it has to be asked if there is any value in fleshing out the characterizations any more than already achieved in the past.

Like episode one, which examined the metaphysics of Vampires through the embrace of Ian Cram, this episode manages to look at werewolves in much the same way in the interactions between Larry and Tom.

being human series five uk group pie and prejdice hal tom

Larry’s story is an exploration into the reasons as to why previously intelligent and successful people like MacNair (who used to be a stockbroker) and George (an intelligent linguist) seem to drop out of society after the change. Putting Larry’s story in contrast to Tom’s – who has never been part of society due to being bitten as a baby – highlights this perfectly.

The idea that werewolves acquire instincts and urges that humans do not have has been hinted at in the past but here we see how those instincts might change someone’s reactions to day to day life rather than just on the full moon.

In the past we have seen George developing Tourette’s like symptoms when he tried to suppress his werewolf urges but Larry seems to suggest that the change is deeper than that and most werewolves have some form of anger management issues to contend with. From a purely world building point of view, I find this fascinating.

To say the episode is light-hearted is not to say there is no darkness here. Larry is a deeply scarred and flawed person who essentially tries to corrupt Tom to be more like him and use him to achieve his own goals with the humour only lightly sugaring this. Mary’s plot line takes us to the heart of Tom and Alex’s dilemma over Hal and the final scenes are hinting at a pending menace which our heroes will have to face at some point.

However, if you are looking for any answers as to what is going on with The Captain or the covert government agency (which is seen here undergoing the after effects of last episodes ‘budget cuts’) this is not where you will find them.

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Misfits Series Four: New Details

The Misfits has become a show that like BBC’s Being Human, has so far defied the usual television stigma of being doomed for the axe every time it loses one of the cast. Now, with the fourth series of the hit show rolling towards our screens at a rapid pace, the show will be faced with it’s biggest challenge yet after some of the series biggest stars, Simon (Iwan Rheon), Alisha (Antonia Thomas) and Kelly (Lauren Socha) left after the third series concluded.

But series creator Howard Overman and producer Matt Strevens think that the show will continue to find success, as Overman’s strong words quickly reveal:

“Nobody likes it when their favourite characters leave a show, but EastEnders survived without Rolly the poodle, and so will we.”

Of course, fans eyes are set on the additions of new Misfits Jess (Karla Crome) and Finn (Nathan McMullen). Strevens gave little hints as to what the new guys are like:

“So we have Jess and Finn [who] are on community service and we meet them in episode one. Then we have Alex, who is not in orange but is key to the series story arc. And finally Abby who the gang meet at a party later in the series but you will have to see if she joins the main gang or not.

As when Rudy replaced Nathan we’re not trying to replace like with like .The new gang are very different and the dynamic feels totally new – but still Misfits”

Overman told us what else we might expect in series four:

“killer rabbits and the four horsemen of the apocalypse and a puppy [that] meets a very tragic demise. In some ways this series is a lot like Pet Rescue, only with super powers and swearing.

Probation workers are never safe in Misfits…although the new one is a scary bastard.”

Also a hot topic is what new powers we might see and Strevens gave a tease of what we are getting:

“I can do you telekinesis, x-ray vision, a very bad memory, and the power to be pussy whipped.”

Misfits series Four will appear on our screens sometime later this year.

(Via SFX)

 

 

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Skyfall Teaser Trailer Screen caps!

After months of waiting, tons of speculation and quite a bit of excitement, the first trailer for the new James Bond film, Skyfall, has finally arrived!

The trailer, which we posted here a bit earlier shows numerous images at a breakneck pace.

However from what we can see it would appear that Skyfall may prove to be one of the better modern Bond films, with numerous locales and little bits of eye candy that seem to pop right off the screen.

There looks to be lots of possible ‘iconic’ shots in this one, and it may even be a Bond fan’s dream come true. Certainly this looks to be a huge visual feast, possibly on the scale of Thunderball or Moonraker:

Amazing pictures just from a short teaser trailer. What do you guys think of the pictures above and what are your thoughts on the new James Bond film?

Skyfall will finally land in the cinemas on the 26th of October of this year.

 

 

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Merlin and Morgana: High Fashion!

 

Colin Morgan and Katie McGrath might be better known to today’s fantasy fans as Merlin and Morgana, the opposite ends of the battles taking place in the lands of Camelot, but that does not mean that starring in BBC’s Merlin is the only time they get to dress up.

Recently both stars were part of a photo shoot by Lady Magazine and we just thought we had better share the pics of the two wearing some…’magical’ ensembles:

 

(Via Lady magazine)

Being Human: Puppy Love Review

“Don’t tell me you’re still on MySpace.”

“We’re more Ceefax people…”

So went one of the best lines of this week’s episode of Being Human and a line which, apparently, got the word ‘Ceefax’ trending on Twitter – thus completing the cycle of alpha and omega in interactive social media.

Well, maybe not. Let’s not entertain any pretensions here. Still, it is good to see that the old Warhorse that is Ceefax still has some oomph against today’s upstart social media hotshots.

Puppy Love continued the trend of the last few episodes of series four by being an entertaining standalone episode which explores the interactions between the characters and the minutiae of the supernatural world rather than focusing on the dramatic arc plot. Here we see Hal begin to come to terms with his desires by demonstrating a greater degree of trust in Tom and facing the challenge of going on a date with a woman, the very modern and forward Alex, and not killing her.

Tom, by comparison, has his first ‘proper’ normal relationship with geeky werewolf student, Allison. In both situations, the two men act like nervous virgins – Hal because he is afraid of hurting his intended by returning to the predatory bloodsucker he once was and Tom because he actually is a nervous virgin.

The juxtaposition of the two relationships is interesting to see and the ending of one is reminiscent of a certain Bogart classic, while the other is turning into a potentially interesting ongoing plot. This latter point is good to see in a series which has so far been full of ‘one hit wonders’ in terms of female characters.

Alex’s assumption that Hal is religious because of his combination of happiness and sexual repression is a spot on comment about the character and hopefully more of that will be seen. Allison, played by Ellie Kendrick, is an interesting character through all this too. Though sometimes she (or maybe the script) overdoes the geeky elements of her character, making them more like a caricature than a truly rounded whole.

This is another ongoing trend in this series which may be a major flaw in the writing. Several characters (Allison, episode three’s Michaela, episode five’s Yvonne) seem to have been written in broad strokes with no subtlety. The writers may need to learn to trust the audience to get that a character is a geek, a goth or a prim school Mistress without such blatant clues.

The third relationship in this episode is possibly the odd one out. Annie’s attempts to help the ghost of elderly man, Emrys, find his unfinished business feels like a B plot as it seems to have little to do with either the arc plot or the main plot.

While the story of the cantankerous old coot is entertaining and amusing it feels as if Annie, the one remaining original cast member, has been sidelined and reduced to nothing more than a babysitter with a bit of a side plot thrown at her to keep her occupied. Thankfully, hints about the next episode shown in the ‘next week’ segment suggest that she will have a more active role in the next episode.

With regards to the Arc plot, this is thankfully an episode with lots and lots of my favourite character, Cutler. Here he may have met his match in terms of ‘UK Operations Manager’, Golda, who is amply played by Amanda Abbington and accompanied by her two comedy thugs.

While Cutler loses out this episode in terms of his trademark killer one liners, there are plenty of opportunities for him to show his devious side and the fact that he is playing a very subtle game between werewolves and Vampires and has a specific plan involving Tom becomes even more obvious here. Tom’s growing trust in Cutler, fuelled no doubt by his increasing trust in Hal, is likely to set things up for a heart wrenching betrayal in the future.

Even more so with the clues mounting that Hal is the ‘nemesis with the burnt arm’ and next week’s episode potentially seeing Hal and Cutler encounter each other and having a past together.

Overall a good episode which sets things up nicely for the final two which will between them see the finale of this story arc.

The Graveyard Shift Review


Ever wondered whether Vampires have Ghosts? We’ve seen in those final moments the victims of vampiric blood lust being shuffled towards an unassuming door but what about the pointy teethed ones themselves?

Is the transformation so horrific that the human is completely purged away? Or are their human spirits forced to watch their former packaging tearing the throat out of a sad sack bus driver? What kind of moral compass could you be to yourself in that situation? Could your human soul save you now there’s nothing human left to empathize with?

Up until now, in the case of Hal – the hermetically sealed vampire replacement for the departed Mitchell – its been difficult to pinpoint what kind of human he once was.

His manner points to a character older than the 1955 garb but up until tonight’s Hal centric episode The Graveyard Shift he’s been little more than a convenient plot device – like Mitchell he seems to be admired for his appetite in humans but unlike him, there’s been a subtle shift in what he, and Being Human is about – its no longer humans coping with being monsters, its monsters struggling to be human.

Forced to work together Tom and Hal’s hesitant, testing relationship is an absolute joy – coming from two very different backgrounds; a regal, haughty old world gentleman forced to deal with the living hell that is the service industry and a practical, no nonsense, raised in a van, street kid who occasionally backs up this philosophy with the odd stake to the heart – its great to see the little connections between the two form as ultimately Hal decides who’s side he’ll take.

Their entire friendship is based on mutual distrust and most of the comedy comes from neither one of them willing to concede anything. After Hal double crosses and then stakes Fergus, you get the feeling that Hal has earned the right to sit down for a cup of tea in front of the Antiques Roadshow with Tom.

Its not quite the same dynamic – and, yes the episode was a pretty shameless trip through all the traits that make Being Human what it is (the wit, the clash of styles, the brilliant guest stars) but its one that’s slowly becoming more intriguing.

Caught in the middle of all this alpha male bonding is Michaela, an over the top parody of ‘deep and meaningful’ Emo types who unwittingly but ultimately utterly willing entrant into the supernatural world – Laura Patch easily fits into that category of great Being Human guest spots and her eventual salvation hopefully leaves the door open for her character to return.

Annie however seems to be taking her ‘we shall not be moved’ stances as a sign to take leave of her common sense. Twice she takes baby Eve out in a public place even after she had been warned by the sadly departed Fergus about doing just that.

Fergus’s warning forces Annie to doubt her choice to stay which thankfully gives us a little more time with the excellent Mark Williams playing the Vampire Recorder, Regus, who in a delightfully sleazy scene gets to relive Annie’s first time, albeit from Annie’s point of view.

Regus’ reasoning for betraying his kind doesn’t really make sense but if it gets Williams a little more screen time then its a fair compromise. Despite the occasional misstep, so far this season has written out three of its stars, introduced the end of Vampires as a race and, now with tonight’s episode, seamlessly ushered in a brand new, completely involving line up.

In terms of the overall series arc The House of the Vampires are down another leader perhaps paving the way for Cutler and his focus group lead outing of the werewolves to usher in the war on mankind.

With the monster temporarily united under one roof and the series back on more assured ground here’s hoping it can maintain the momentum of this episode.

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Red Dwarf YouTube Channel Launches!

With all the excitement of Red Dwarf X coming to Dave, it almost makes you want to forget all else and throw yourself into suspended animation until the Fall arrives so you don’t have to wait one more second before the new series starts.

But before you do, you might want to consider taking a look at the newly launched Red Dwarf You Tube channel, which has plenty of classic Red Dwarf clips to help you pass the time till September. It also contains this exclusive introductory video from the cast of Red Dwarf:

Besides, I have heard that being in suspended animation does not always turn out exactly as planned…

Red Dwarf X will be broadcast sometime in September 2012 on Dave.

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Skyfall Glencoe Shoot Pics

Filming for the twenty third James Bond film, Skyfall, continued on the 9th of February with a location shoot in Glencoe Scotland. Both Daniel Craig and Judi Dench were spotted on location during the shoot.

For the full gallery, head to MI6-hq.com, where you will find lots of pictures of people standing still waiting to make something amazing.

As you can see, there isn’t an *awful* lot happening, but it’s good to see the show back on the road at last!

James Bond: Skyfall Location Pictures

The twenty third James Bond film, Skyfall, resumed filming after a Christmas break and used locations such as Trinity Square and the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich.

Scenes were being filmed for a funeral sequence where eight coffins were draped in the Union Jack. It has been assumed that this scene will appear early in the film.

A teasing picture was posted on the @007 Twitter page, but did not give away too much of the action or any clues to the rest of the film:

 

There was also a mad rush to the apartment buildings at 10 Trinity Square after it was spotted as another Bond filming location, but not much to be seen here besides knowing that there was definitely filming going on there and it was definitely the Skyfall crew:

Meanwhile Bond Site MI6 reported a Judi Dench (who returns as M in the film) sighting, on location shooting what is believed to be a scene set at Whitehall. Roy Kinnear (playing Bill Tanner) can also be seen in the first photo:

 

Images Of The Hobbit

MSN posted an exclusive new photo of the cast of Peter Jackson’s first film in The Hobbit series An Unexpected Journey. It joins two other promotional pics as some of the first official images released of the film and it’s actors.

The new photo shows Aidan Turner (Being Human) and Dean O’Gorman as Fili and Kili, a pair of dwarfs:

Two of the youngest Dwarves, Fili and Kili have been born into the royal line of Durin and raised under the stern guardianship of their uncle, Thorin Oakensheild. Neither has ever travelled far, nor ever seen the fabled Dwarf City of Erebor. For both, the journey to the Lonely Mountain represents adventure and excitement. Skilled fighters, both brothers set off on their adventure armed with the invincible courage of youth, neither being able to imagine the fate which lies before them.

The previous photos released photos were also re-posted with accompanying information.

Jed Brophy as Nori, Adam Brown as Ori and Mark Hadlow as Dori in “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” (Photo by James Fisher)

These three brothers, all sons of the same mother, could not be more different from each other. Dori, the oldest, spends much of his time watching out for Ori, the youngest; making sure he’s not caught a chill or got himself killed by Wargs or Goblins. Nobody quite knows what Nori gets up to most of the time, except that it’s guaranteed to be dodgy and quite probably, illegal. Dori, Nori and Ori are intensely loyal to each other – and whilst they are perfectly happy fighting amongst themselves, woe-betide anyone who means harm to one of these brothers.

John Callen as Oin and Peter Hambleton as Gloin in “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” (Photo by James Fisher)

Distant cousins of Thorin Oakenshield, these two doughty, Northern Dwarves join the Company out of a sense of loyalty to their kin, and also because they have a substantial sum of money invested in the venture. Along with Bombur, Gloin is the only other married Dwarf in the Company (there being a shortage of female dwarves in general). His wife is an acclaimed beauty with a particularly fine beard. Gloin is the proud father of a young son, Gimli, who will go on to become part of the famous Fellowship of the Ring.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey will open in the UK on the 14th of December 2012.

(Via MSN Entertainment)