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Interview - Being Human, Season 2 Producers
The second season of SyFy’s North American version of “Being Human” is almost upon us--it begins Monday, January 16 at 9 p.m. ET--and executive producers Anna Fricke and Jeremy Carver have told us what to expect from the next episodes of the TV series about supernatural roommates: more original story lines, themes of temptation and humanity, and darker paths for each of the three main characters.
“In trying to become more and more human, they are in actuality being forced to confront their monstrosities more than ever,” Carver said via a press conference call recently. “There’s basically a little bit less of a safety net this year in each other. Basically, what do you do when you’re falling, falling, falling, and your support system isn’t necessarily there for you when you need them?"
Based on the UK series of the same name, “Being Human” began life with its roots in the British version. In fact, some of the first episodes of the SyFy series were very similar to the original, with just minor changes. But, with four new writers this year and demand from fans, it looks like the show’s second season will create original storylines to allow its werewolf, vampire and ghost characters to differentiate themselves from the ones created by the BBC.
“Given that the show obviously has its roots in the British version, there’s always going to be an inevitable crossover, just by virtue of swimming in the same pond. But...yes, there was a great effort to make the series as original as possible this year,” Carver said.
Aidan, played by Sam Witwer, will be confronted with fallout from the fact that he killed his mentor, Bishop (Mark Pellegrino), at the end of last season. Fans will be introduced to another aspect of the vampire heirarchy, which includes a leader known as Mother and her disgraced daughter Izumi (Dichen Lachman)--whom Aidan has known for almost a century. Aidan will also be reunited with his own protege, whom he turned in the early 20th century. Henry (Kyle Schmid) and Izumi will complicate Aidan’s life and bring him to places he’d rather avoid. Bishop will make an appearance “in a certain way,” according to the executive producers, during the season as well.
Meanwhile, Josh (Sam Huntington) and his girlfriend Nora (Kristen Hager) must deal with the ramifications of his having accidentally scratched her during a confrontation in which she discovers his true canine nature. As the season begins, the two await the full moon, not knowing exactly what will happen. Has he turned her? What effect will this have on their relationship? The show's producers say that Nora herself will come into her own in a surprising twist, blossoming both in terms of screen time and storyline. And Josh will encounter people from his past, who will shape the course of his future.
Then there’s Sally (Meaghan Rath). Last season, she chose not to go through her door--the one that leads to the afterlife--because she was busy saving Aidan’s life and getting resolution regarding her death and relationship with ex-boyfriend Danny (Gianpaolo Venuta). She’ll have to deal with the ramifications of that decision, now that she can no longer move on. She learns about a new ghost power, she’ll interact with inanimate objects more. And she’ll meet new ghost characters who will seduce her with spectral temptations as well as people from the past that show up in unexpected ways.
“So everyone is dealing with, not just new and twisty monster sorts of things that come from a natural extensions of being the type of monster they are, but also dealing with people that they dealt with in a previous life, before they were monsters. Except Aidan. Aidan is with mostly people he’s dealt with as a vampire,” said Carver.
In addition to the issues each character must deal with, fans will start to see new creatures on the show. Well, maybe not exactly new. Fricke said, “I think it’s safe to say we see a new form of every monster. We have the new sort of vampires, and we will also see different kinds of ghosts and a different ghost society than we had touched on before--and also a different kind of werewolf. While it may have that same mob structure with the vampires, we do see a greater world and heirarchy in the ghosts and werewolves.”
In fact, Carver notes, we’ll see subspecies of werewolves--one of which will alter Josh’s world. We’ll also see another species of ghost, which Sally may have unwittingly let into the human world through her door.
“It’s tremendously fun, it’s really scary, and we couldn’t be more excited about how we have expanded the reach. It’s pretty ambitious what we set out to do and we’re really excited to share it with everybody,” Carver said.
Ultimately, however, “Being Human” will stick to its core premise and what Carver calls its “beating heart”: three young roommates, thrown together, being something they don’t want to be, and having to deal with the pain of life--er, such as it is.
“It’s the notion of these three as roommates, and having to deal with each other through the good, the bad, the funny, the not funny...That’s the DNA of the show. That’s why the show essentially works. Nothing is more alive than the three of them on the screen together, or some combination thereof....The three of them together in that house is our true North,” he said.
This, the producers believe, is key to making the darkly comic “Being Human” stand out from the pack of other vampire/werewolf/ghost stories out on airwaves today. Fricke said, “What we try to do most, and what we always try to focus on, is the core of the show, which is being human. Keeping everything grounded on an emotional level for these characters, and keeping them in touch with their humanity and trying not to get too caught up in fantastical or arch storytelling.”
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