Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Being Human (US) Season 4, Episode 2: That Time of the Month

Sad music montage: Aidan hugs Suzanna on the doorstep because she can’t come in even when he invites her – she burns when she tries. Sally expositions her new shiny powers to Josh the wolf (pyro thing and extra-dimensional child murder witnessing. Not the greatest skill set). Josh gets all agitated  that she’s there and Nora comes running to calm him down.

She asks Sally not to hang around the wolf cage because when Josh gets excited he hurts himself on the silver cage; Nora also shifts to despair, they’ve been trying to bring Josh back for three months and have achieved nothing. Sally thinks she can help Josh but Nora has little hope and a whole lot of fear. But, as Sally points out, what alternative do they have?

Aidan and Suzanna talk and try to adapt – firstly to both of them in modern clothes (I like this touch – if she’s been remembering him in 18th century clothes, it’s a jarring mental image to see him in a leather jacket and jeans. Or her in trousers). But why is Suzanna not dead? Flashback time to her drowning – only this time she’s pulled out of the water by Bishop. Yes, the vampire who made Aidan also made Suzanna – and she wasn’t especially thrilled by this, especially since her experience with Aidan showed how much he loathed what he was. She’s also not eager to feed. Bishop, you sure can pick ‘em

Sally has another vision, of a ruined house (Donna’s I believe) she explores while we keep cutting to her as she would appear to someone else (who could see ghosts), miming her actions on an empty green lawn. She finds a grimoire, the writing only appearing when she touches it – and yes, she can touch and lift it.

In the present, Aidan has some angst for Suzanna because he abandoned their child – but at least she looked him up; he died a grandfather which causes Aidan to have to sit down in shock at his offspring’s fertility. At this less than ideal moment, Sally arrives to show off her book-holding skills and mocking Suzanna before she realises she can see Aidan. Aidan only introduces her as a friend – to which Sally instantly dismisses her and teleports to the woods, expecting Aidan to follow.

He does and he’s very very wary of Sally leaping into magic with so little experience and so much confidence (but that’s kind of Sally’s thing – she is extremely confident, she does leap in without checking and she’s not even slightly cautious). Aidan is pretty scathing of Sally’s talents (and the comments about the hair and teeth were unnecessary. The comments about Sally biting his stomach of is much more to the point). They both appeal to Nora to make the decision: Sally again pointing out that they don’t have much choice while Aidan very much afraid of the side effects. Nora sides with Sally.

Much snark and bickering as they prepare the ritual, gather what they need and Sally reveals they need menstrual blood (quickly driving Aidan from the scene. Aidan, you drink blood, you cannot possibly be squeamish about periods). Next awkward moment – Aidan knows Nora’s on her time of the month because he can actually smell it much to just about everyone’s mutual horror and embarrassment (it has to be noted that their happy share calendar we saw last week did include Nora’s notes of when her period was) and the realisation that Aidan has ALWAYS known. Aidan walks off just chanting “no no no no no” while Nora takes care of that business.

Time for the actual ritual which produces shiny fire – and conjures a knife that Sally can hold. She teleports to Josh and explains the part she didn’t mention before – the dagger has to go into Josh’s heart. Nora goes into the cage, relying on Josh’s trust to be able to place the dagger – then she throws it aside when Josh growls (I don’t think this is cowardice so much as showing suddenly angry wolf Josh that she’s not a threat), she runs to the back of the cage, Josh turns and Aidan comes up behind him and grabs the knife – and stabs him.

And Josh falls. Apparently dead. Nora and Aidan are horrified – but Sally disappears to her parallel dimension again. This time to their house, seven hours after Josh and Aidan moved in with Aidan and Josh snarking perfectly about cleaning (they do snark so well together); her past self watching from the stairs. Sally realises she’s time travelling (because the hints are so subtle).

Back in the present, Aidan gears up for a Hootie moment – when a hand pushes out of Josh-wolf’s mouth. That’s enough to freak out even a vampire. They cut the wolf open and pull out a bloodstained and rather traumatised Josh.

Everyone back to the house (except the time travelling Sally) and Nora aims for normality while Josh stares, traumatised, into space. And Sally re-appears – she’s worried because the spell wasn’t finished, pulling Josh out was a bad idea; she’s now having her own worries while Nora has jumped on the “yay magic” train.

Meanwhile Aidan goes to meet Susanna in her hotel – she invites him in, but hides the giant sharpened wooden cross she’s carrying behind her back. Maybe it was just lying around? Aidan wants to know why Suzanna didn’t try to get in touch: she blames Bishop. He was apparently “brutal” to her (which implies a lot of horror) and that he found Suzanna unworthy for his “son” – while clearly valuing a son far more than a daughter. She came back when Aidan killed Bishop.

Of course, the question is what do they do now (“how many brunches does it take for two people to catch up on two centuries?” - a great line) to which she suggests leaving the past behind them and he should enjoy what he has

So he goes home – and finds Kat in his bed, waiting in lingerie. He seems to jump on her “I love you” from the last episode and say how happy he is with her, how much he loves their ordinary life (remember that the whole premise of Being Human is that these three supernaturals are seeking ordinary) and he tells her he loves her.

Suzanna, at her hotel, gets ready for bed and has her own flashback; hungry, past Suzanna hallucinates Aidan urging her to feed and, unable to stop, she does. In the present, Suzanna unwraps a whip and whips her own back while she remembers her first feed – on Isaac, her own son. Guess he never became a grandfather.

Bishop came to her and refuses to turn Isaac – trapping him as a child would be wrong. He refuses to kill her, believing there is nothing but damnation after death. His plans frustrated, he tells Suzanna to leave – he sees great things in Aidan and would be happy to have them together, but doesn’t think Aidan would deal well learning Suzanna had eaten their child. He demands she keeps it secret for Aidan’s sake.

Everyone prepares for bed and Sally and Josh talk and Sally drawing on her own experiences to say how everyone understands if it takes Josh a little while to get back together. When he’s left alone, it’s clear Josh is having some problems – and his eyes turn wolfy-yellow.

In many ways, Sally and Aidan’s arguments pretty much sum up their characters for the last 3 seasons. Aidan is avoidant with problems. He denies them, he sticks his head in the sand, he pretends they aren’t happening until he’s forced to confront them – usually in a way that prevents him from being actually prepared, having a back up plan or any idea of what to do; it has made him easy to manipulate in the past and very good at problems becoming overwhelming because he simply won’t deal with them (the number of times he’s not fed when he should have alone). While Sally leaps – always leaps. She doesn’t always look and she rarely has a plan, but she has immense confidence in her capabilities, a desire to fix things – anything – and a belief that she CAN fix them.

Though I think both personalities are exaggerated a little here. Aidan’s utter revulsion at magic when clearly only magic will cure Josh is excessive. At the same time, Sally deciding to run off with heart-stabbing and not even tell the others is beyond the recklessness she’s shown before; apart from anything else it shows too little respect for Nora and Aidan.

Aidan visiting Susanna – part of me thinks that obviously his centuries dead wife is now alive, all that guilt and pain he’s carrying can be addressed, of course he’d go see her. But part of me also thinks that Josh has just been rescued from wolfiness – and Aidan is LEAVING at that point?

Suzanna encouraging the past to be put behind them makes a lot of sense though and I like the depth of it, that they don’t just fall into love straight away. They knew each other for, what? 10 years? Over 200 years ago – they must be very very different people now from what they were when they married; they couldn’t pick up where they left off, they’ve lived different lives since then.

Aidan tells Kat he loves her. Hmmm. Ok it’s a great scene and I love the way it draws in to the central premise of the show. But the timing is awful. He says this after going to Suzanna and she, effectively, shutting him down. Alright he considered a platonic relationship with Suzanna not love (though that felt like fishing), but it feels a little like Kat was second choice. Maybe if there had been more space between Suzanna saying no and Aidan coming to terms with the shadow he has been chasing and accepting that, yes, he likes what he has and loves now – it would work. But I think it needed that introspection, that acknowledgement that Suzanna is no longer HIS Suzanna and that he loves his life and Kat in it rather than the suggestion of a consolation prize.

Suzanna promises to be a very complicated character – but with vast hootie potential.