The third series of Being Human kicked off last weekend with a fantastic, chilling first episode. The BBC Three supernatural drama seems to be better than ever, retaining everything that made it good while gaining confidence and looking more slick than before. The Being Human franchise is growing, with a faithfully scripted Canadian remake recently launching to mixed reviews (those unfamiliar with the original loved it while die-hard fans complained it was nowhere near as good) and this weekend a new online spin-off will launch. I’ve had a quick peek at this new web series, Becoming Human.
The series revolves around Adam, the 46 year-old vampire in a 16 year-old’s body who will be introduced in Sunday night’s episode of Being Human. The web series shows us what he does next, as he tries to keep out of trouble and goes back to school as a sixth former. He meets a couple of similarly strange young folk and things soon settle down into the familiar vampire/werewolf/ghost triumvirate, but with an interesting and very different dynamic to the regular series. That might be absorbing enough but, before long, things really get going when they realise that they have a mystery to solve.
The series starts with a 13-minute episode before settling in to weekly five-minute chunks but there will be much more to it than just that, with lots of additional interactive bits and pieces, as Sarah Clay, BBC Multiplatform Drama Commissioner, explains: “The Becoming Human online extension doesn’t just consist of nine episodes, the narrative extends beyond that with daily clues in the form of press cuttings, anonymous tips, CCTV footage, mobile phone clips…giving the online audience the chance to follow the mystery on the blog as it unfolds.”
If you’re a fan of Being Human (and if not, why not?), then it’s definitely worth giving this a look. It retains the humour and creepiness of the main series while introducing a separate intriguing story of its own. The young cast is excellent, with Craig Roberts as Adam standing out, very convincing as a middle-aged man in a teenager’s body, with his constant 1980s references falling flat with his 1990s-born peers. Leila Mimmack as reluctant and aloof werewolf Christa and Josh Brown as the unfortunate Matt (sometimes coming across as a young Johnny Vegas) were also both very good.
Becoming Human will launch online at www.bbc.co.uk/beinghuman straight after episode 2 of Being Human on Sunday night and will also appear on the BBC’s Red Button service on digital television, while the additional clues will be appearing at www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/becominghuman