The random witterings of Jonathan Morris, writer.

Wednesday, 28 January 2009

Human (Extended version)

I’m not sure if I watched the pilot of Being Human all the way through. It didn’t make a great deal of impression. But everyone else thought it was terrific in a way that nothing else had ever been terrific before, so I tuned in for the series.

Those people who said it was terrific were right. Lenora Crichlow has the most brilliant comic timing; I predict she will be everywhere shortly. Russell Tovey, who already is everywhere, can always be relied upon to give an interesting line reading. And Aiden Turner, well, I can sense ominous undercurrents.

My only almost-a-quibble is that it’s an hour long, which feels... too long. It’s because I’m used to watching US shows, or Saturday evening shows like Doctor Who, or even ITV shows which are an hour-long-including-adverts, but I think there’s something about a continuous hour of narrative which either complicates the act structure (as you need another act or two to fill the time – which is what Spooks does) or means you have a 45-minute act structure stretched out over an hour, and it feels drawn out. Being Human had gone for the latter option. I think the story – which was deliberately low-key – could’ve been told in 45-minutes. If an old fart like me starts clockwatching towards the end, goodness knows what the hip young BBC 3 gunslingers made of it.

But that’s not even a quibble. It’s a terrific show. We shall take to the streets if there isn’t a second series.

In other news – finally got ITV player to work and watched Unforgiven. Show of the year! As brilliant as I knew it would be. Suranne Jones was magnificent, Peter Davison mysteriously vanished in episode three, and Sally Wainwright put together the cleverest, most gripping, most moving story imaginable.

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