Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Review: Being Human (USA) "All Out of Blood"

Non Spoiler Review:
Things get messy for Aidan, Josh and Sally as events pick up nearly a month later coming up on a second full moon. Nora begins to rebel at the notion that she's a dangerous animal that needs to be caged, Sally finds a potential exit in the form of a nurse who can see dead people, and Aidan has struck up a relationship with Julia while learning that his bagged blood supply has suddenly been cut off.

There were a lot of interesting character and relationship dramas going on, but the writing wasn't up to snuff. Sally was back to being a whining bitch, to put it mildly. Her continuous snarky comments to Josh and Aidan's particular dilemmas made for zero sympathy for her own situation. The new character, Zoe, was nothing but sarcasm, and the actress who played her wasn't up to the task of making her remotely likable.

It definitely didn't work. Little plot advanced otherwise, and it was all overshadowed by this atmosphere of bitterness that made a lot of scenes unpleasant to watch. By the end I thought all three should just move out on their own.

Spoilers Now!
A month later Josh brings Nina to two storage lockers he's rented where they can both change and be locked up tight (with Sally's help). She's not enthused about being caged, but for Josh, it's also about research as he brought a video camera to record the transformation and perhaps learn more about their condition.

Aidan's sleeping with Julia. She apparently did get the job at the hospital. Between her and his duties for Suren he hasn't been home very much, so at the hospital Sally and Josh ask him what's going on with his life. Unfortunately for Aidan, hospital security has suddenly been beefed up because they suspect someone's been stealing blood from the blood bank. Which he has, of course. So Aidan has his supply cut off.

Sally wanders by the nursery and finds an odd sight—ghosts lined up to wait to see a particular nurse, Zoe, who is letting them see the newborns. She learns that she's the reincarnation nurse (still human, but one who can see ghosts), who has a talent to match up ghosts with a particular kind of child, a sickly one who could use their energy to boost their own. It all sounds rather horrific for the child. But Zoe has the final say of who can reincarnate, and she tells Sally to get to the back of the line.

The household is getting crowded. Aidan's down to his last bag of blood and is having difficulty controlling his urges when having sex with Julia (who is staying over). Nina's beginning to experience her heightened sense of smell the night before the change. At breakfast when everyone is together Sally announces she's moving out given she's decided to be reincarnated. Everyone pretty much brushes it off as a silly idea (or maybe, like me, they just don't care about her anymore). Julia comes downstairs and Josh recognizes her as his Julia, his ex. Awkward. And what a coincidence.

Josh walks with her alone and apologize for leaving her the way he did. Julia is extremely bitter and doesn't want to hear his explanation given he just ran away from her. She leaves, so Josh confronts Aidan about his urges and how he doesn't approve at all of him seeing his ex. Aidan promises he'll end it.

Sally visits Zoe again at the hospital. She learns Zoe was a baby when a ghost came to her and tried to possess her. She scared him away and ever since she's been able to see them. They chat together and Sally explains she could be a good pairing for an infant. Zoe is extremely dismissive and suggests she wait on her door, but Sally replies she passed it up in order to save her friends. The nurse decides to come over to meet her roommates to see if Sally is a good soul. Zoe, however, thinks Josh and Aidan are just normal humans who can speak to the dead. The visit doesn't go well, as Zoe learns about Sally's murder and her own attempt to kill her fiance, finding Sally dishonest in general.

Sally returns to the nursery when Zoe isn't there, seeing if she can find a baby. But the dark shadow appears. She tells it to leave the baby alone and it seems to go. Angry Zoe shows up. Sally admits she was right and suggests the thing would have just followed her if she went into a baby. Zoe finds some sympathy in her cold heart and decides she'll listen to her problem and try to help figure something out.

Aidan breaks up with Julia and dismisses what they had as just sex. Craving blood, he goes to see a human who prostitutes herself out for vampires to feed on. When he finds himself unable to stop, her bodyguard pulls him off.

Nora abruptly refuses to get locked up in the storage locker. Josh tries to reason with her but finally has to say she's a killer and can't be allowed to run amok on the full moon. Then Julia meets Nora at the hospital. Despite Nora's assurances that Josh had a good reason for leaving, Julia warns her that it's only a matter of time before he leaves her too. This gets Nora's dander up, coupled with her own wolf instincts that are growing more intense every minute. Nora ends up stalking her, but comes to her senses and realizes how dangerous she is. She joins Josh at the locker where Sally locks them both up.

The Verdict:
After a promising start this season, Sally's plot seemed thrown away into a ridiculous I see dead people nurse managing a reincarnation game at the hospital. Despite the abilities Sally's been able to manifest, she is apparently unable to get passed a human nurse at the hospital.

And baby reincarnation? Why not call it for what it is—possession? We're told a ghost can bond with a week baby to make it stronger, and this is a good thing? It doesn't sound very nice for the victim—er, baby—who is now a composite soul.

The Julia revelation was an interesting twist. Quite coincidental, so one wonders if she was brought in specifically for Aidan by the powers that be. It's hard to believe it's all just happenstance. If it's purely coincidence, it does feel contrived as a ploy to create additional conflict between Josh and Aidan. This household doesn't need more drama right now. It needs to actually address last season's lingering issues which I don't believe have been talked about very much at all (especially given we're now two months passed them).

I left this episode wondering why these three are together anymore. At best, Aidan seems to be using Sally and Josh as his last tether to humanity. Josh is completely engaged trying to salvage his relationship, and Sally just wants to depart to the hereafter. After this, I would really love to see her go. Again, I fall back to comparing her to Annie, who actually contributes in the UK version and despite her flaws is someone to root for. Sally's bitterness (which I'm assuming is mostly due to how she's written, though the actress' delivery of some of those lines doesn't help either) has ruined the whole character for me.

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