Being Human has heart – Series Finale Recap

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It’s only been a few days since I finished the fourth and final season of SyFy’s Being Human. I didn’t catch it when it first returned earlier this year so like I’ve done with countless shows before, I recorded the rest of the season, patiently waited for a marathon to catch the first couple I missed, and then binge watched once I had every episode.

That was last week.

It’s a  new week, and I’m still a melancholy mess.

It’s like GoT’s “Red Wedding” all over. Except happier.

To say I’m having a hard time letting go is a bit of an understatement. The last season was just that good and I can’t believe it’s over. Maybe if I had watched over the course of thirteen weeks, it would be easier to say goodbye to the little SyFy hit that captured my heart. But no, I power watched. I lived season 4 in only a few hours and I didn’t have each week to process what was happening. So sigh…I have to do it here, before my heart runs astray and I’m stuck in La La Land for another week.

What can I say about this last season other than it was absolutely incredible – full of solid writing, standup acting from the series’ stars Sam Witwer, Meaghan Rath, Sam Huntington, and Kristen Hager, and chalk full of surprises, clever twists, and stunningly beautiful story wrap ups for its characters. It was so much more than I thought it was capable of. They really pulled out all the stops and the last season with many scenes that took my breath in powerful, unexpected ways. Unlike many series finales over the years, I’m not left wondering what could have been had the show continued for another season or two because it went out on top with sublimely perfect moments for the show’s couples Josh and Nora, and Aidan and Sally. And from what I understand, this is exactly what the cast wanted for this last season, ever since it was announced early last year that this season would be its last.

When Being Human began its run in 2011, its unique storyline resonated with audiences. Based on the British show of the same name airing on the BBC 2008– 13, the show explored the friendship among three supernatural roommates – Josh (a werewolf), Aidan (a vampire) and Sally (a ghost), and later Nora (Josh’s finance then wife, also a werewolf), as the four tried to explore the notion of hanging onto their humanity in a supernatural world. It was by far a clever twist on the plethora of supernatural shows hitting around the same time, and after its freshman season, the show proved that yeah, it was an interesting concept worthy of a watch.

I missed a few episodes in the first two seasons, but watched religiously in seasons 3 and 4 as the show delved deeper into exploring the simple question – what is it to be human – as we learned more about Aidan’s past life, the family he lost; Josh and Nora’s try at a normal relationship and then, marriage; and Sally’s return from the other side, only to be cast back again with the ability to travel through time and live at different moments in time, including the one where she was human again – giving her the chance to be with Aidan in every way possible.

Gah! Aidan and Sally. What can you say about them? I love them separately – Meaghan Rath delivering most of the season’s best lines – and I love them together. I loved every episode of season 4 truly, but Episode 8 “Rewind, Rewind” was one of my absolutely favorites. The way it was shot. The storyline. And the scenes between Aidan and Sally were so damn good! Not to mention, there were some really lovely moments between the two couples.

Here, let me just pause and give kudos to the group that scored the last season. The playlist is absolutely incredible; many of the season’s best scenes anchored by incredible music like this gem from Stumbleine, “Beat My Heart Skips (ft. Coma)” featured at the end of Episode 10 when Nora tells Aidan that Sally is in love with him. Or, the scene where Aidan gets his door (one of the most significant moments of the entire series in my opinion) at the end of the penultimate episode featuring “I’m Not Falling Asleep,” by Andy Shauf. And the lovely, lovely end scene backed by Royal Wood’s sublime “You Can’t Go Back.”

What else is there to say about Being Human, the little SyFy show that could, but this: werewolves Josh and Nora were infuriating at times, vampire Aidan self destructive and emo beyond believe at others, and ghost Sally, whose attempts to help always, always backfired! Each had their flaws. Each was forced to live with their supernatural-ness, even though it was not of their own design. Yet despite all of this, I was never annoyed. I never waned. It was a perfect little show and it spoke to my heart in a funny, aching way. The simple silly premise, this SyFy show about four supernaturals, with its modest budget and eclectic actors, turned out to be a wonderful surprise that regardless of story rooted in fiction, reminded us every week at the end of the day, we might not be immortal. We may might not change when the moon is full. We might not become best friends with a ghost. But we live and love and lose, just as Josh, Nora, Aidan and Sally, and that as simple as it sounds, is what it means to be human.

So, let’s end this on a high note. From my episode 9, “Too Far, Fast Forward” – “We Are the Wild Ones,” by Nina.

‘The Originals’ Season Finale Recap: Life, Love, Loyalty and Hope

A few weeks ago I said I was quitting my blog.

I tried.

It lasted a few weeks.

I’m back.

I don’t like quitting.

So, if you like what I have to say and how I say it, you can thank CW’s show The Originals because they’re the inspiration for my return. How you say? Well, if you watch the show then you know it was incredible – so much so there was no other outlet I could think of to share just how much I loved it than here, and with you, my lovely readers.

So, Nightstand woke up. It was a short nap.

Now, let’s dive in. The Originals….

Anyone who knows me, knows I love stories of the supernatural. I love the supernatural because it’s not real. And we all need an escape from life sometimes. A break from the tough moments. The moments that break you. The moments that test your strength. The moments that remind you how frail humanity can be.

But those moments also teach you. They teach you about yourself. Your strength. Your ability to persevere, no matter how hard the battle. That humanity is incredibly strong and beautiful. And for that reason, I love the supernatural because often the stories centered in the supernatural world are just that: they’re about strength of character, of love, of life. About family. About the ties that bind us and keep us connected, no matter how crazy the world can be. Stories that are, incredibly human.

So yes, life is tough. But it’s also inescapably humbling, and breathtaking, and completely unexpected and beautiful with the most delightful joy in unexpected places.

I enjoy both aspects. I’m a dichotomy. But then again I never promised to be anything else than what I am. And that is someone that laughs, that cries, that loves. I fall, I get up, I move on. I am if nothing, incredibly human.

That’s why last night’s season one finale of The Originals got to me. It reached into my heart and squeezed tight. There was so much life in that one hour — even though witches were squaring off against vampires and werewolves, and plotting the sacrifice of a newborn hybrid, while turning the city of New Orleans into a supernatural war zone —  that at one point I had to pause everything I had seen so far, and catch my breath for the remainder of it.

You may think I’m crazy but any fan of the show knows, last night’s finale was OFF THE HOOK CRAZY GOOD. It answered so many questions, brought so many relationships and story lines full circle. It connected what I thought were loose ends that were due to kinks being worked out in its freshman season and tied everything together perfectly, showing us that every story line, every episode had tracked to this one hour, setting in motion story lines that would unravel next season and well into future ones. For this finale I have to say to producer Julie Plec… Well done, well mother lovin’ done (and that pun on the “mother” was intentional.) You promised it would be mind blowing and well, consider my mind completely blown. There were so many moments that were palpable I actually found myself holding my breath. That scene with Hayley and Hope…. I can’t. even. take it. It hit me like a ton of bricks in a really, really profound way, sending chills up my spine.

In an hour we got to see a monster who has terrorized just about everyone he has ever known, be brought to his knees by his newborn daughter.  We saw a family bond that had been broken, with little hope of repair, mend with new commitment and loyalty.  We learned  the ties that bind us, have the power to bring us back…sometimes even from the dead.

We were also introduced to new characters, the return of some original ones (catch the pun there?), and a feeling of hope, thanks to the arrival of one sweet baby girl of the same name. The episode was sheer poetry and by far, the best episode of the season not to mention, perhaps the best show of all seasons of the Vampire Diaries (its sister show) and The Originals combined.

Now sadly, we must wait to see how everything unfurls next season and I will be left wondering all summer… will Elijah and Hayley finally get together? Will Esther and her son (presumably Finn) make their way out of the bodies they stole and be put out of their misery so sweet baby Hope can return? Will Rebekah return for good (Claire Holt is divine), or will she head to somewhere close say, Mystic Falls, so we can see her lovely face more often? That scene by the way – with Rebekah and Klaus – was sheer magic. Their bond has always been complicated, but the fact he trusts her, above all others to keep his daugher safe, speaks volumes about the soul that lies in the heart of Klaus, reminding you that despite everything they have done, has always, and will always be, for their family.

 

So much to ponder. Let the countdown to next fall begin.

Until then, check out The Originals soundtrack. There’s been some great artists featured this year. Here’s two of my favorites from the finale .

“Open Hands” by Ingrid Michaelson

“Shallows” by Daughter

Saying goodbye to Twilight…a few of my favorite things

When I first saw Twilight in fall of 2008, I had no idea what I was in for. I went thinking it was a serious movie about vampires (alright serious and vampires is a bit of a joke, but you know what I mean). I went thinking it was something different than the screen adaptation of the YA series that had taken the world by storm. Of course at the time I hadn’t read the books yet. That happened a few months after when a friend convinced me I had to read them, after I told her about this weird movie I saw with an awesome soundtrack, but horrible acting and hideous wigs.

It took me two weeks to devour the first three books and when Breaking Dawn hit, the last book in the series, I was in line like millions of others to purchase it, and like millions of others, read it in one sitting (which lasted through the night and a bit of the next morning). So, by the time the film adaptation of New Moon, book two in the series hit theaters in 2009, I was ready – this time as a fan. But sadly, it was as tragic as the first movie – the acting worse, the wigs more scary – and so the books lived on in my heart, while the movies became comic relief.

However, there is a little something of each movie I liked and in honor of the release of Breaking Dawn Part Two (which I of course saw already), I won’t write a review, rather share something from each that I enjoyed.

Twlight

Hands down, without a doubt, the thing I loved most about the first movie is the soundtrack. It’s amazing, featuring tracks from Blue Foundation, Mutemath, Linkin Park, Muse and a band I wasn’t aware of until the soundtrack, Paramore (a favorite) among others. In honor of the soundtrack another artist I was pleasantly introduced to in the first movie – Iron & Wine – and their lovely song, “Flightless Bird, American Mouth.”



New Moon

I almost put Taylor Lautner’s abs as the winner of my favorite thing from New Moon but that would have been creepy since I’m old enough to be his mother. So instead, I will say the best thing about the second movie for me was the wolves. So much emphasis was placed on the vampires in movie one, that in movie two, I was pleasantly surprised to find the wolves to be less hokey than the vampires and pretty close to what I had imagined them to be.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eclipse

I hated this movie. I thought it was the worst one yet, but then Breaking Dawn Part One came along and took the spot.  Then again, it was my least favorite book of the series so I shouldn’t have been surprised. The shuttling of Bella between La Push and Edward’s house to keep her safe was silly, and her playing both to satisfy her need to not be the bad guy was as annoying just as in the book.  The only thing I can say I liked about this one is the introduction of Riley and Bree Tanner– a young man turned vampire by Victoria that she feigns love interest in to help her build an army to take down the Cullen’s. And Bree Tanner, a young girl turned vampire who spawned a novella released in between Eclipse and Breaking Dawn, showing us what a day in the life of a new vampire looks like.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Breaking Dawn Part One

There’s actually two things I loved from part one. Bella’s wedding shoes. The beautiful named Swan by Manolo Blahnik.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And the song “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri featured on the soundtrack. The song is lovely and the video is gorgeous.


Breaking Dawn Part Two

While we saw them at the end of Breaking Dawn Part One, Bella’s eyes in the second movie are pretty awesome, emphasized by incredible make up so Bella is of the same perfection as the rest of the Cullen Clan.

 

 

 

 

 

Also, I loved the opening cinematography – it was stunning – and the end scene where Bella drops her shield and gives Edward a look at all the memories she has of the two of them. It was a nice look back at the movies that wasn’t nearly as painful as seeing them in their entirety and was a nice way to wrap the series.

Well, that’s it for Twilight for me. Well, for now, until Meyer decides she wants to revisit the town of Forks, this time years down the road when it’s Jacob and Renesmee (oh come on, you know its coming!)

Countdown to Underworld 4 – 1.20.12

I’m just going to say it. I love stories about vampires. Why? Well, you can thank Anne Rice for that. Before there was Stephenie Meyer, L.J. Smith (Vampire Diaries) and Charlaine Harris (Sookie Stackhouse Novels), Ms. Rice’s vamps were steaming up the pages of literature in a way no one had ever. She made vampires cool. Sexy even. And let’s not forget, absolutely gorgeous. Who wouldn’t love them. They had no problems. Well if you don’t count that whole being dead thing. But aside from that, they were perfect and because of this, I loved them.

We forget that it’s ok to be sexy in this real, non immortal world. Being the free society we claim to be, we are in a lot of ways still a puritanical society.  Vampires buck this trend and put it all right out there in beautifully created packages in the middle of story lines that get our blood (pun intended) boiling.Vampires are sexy and without abandon, and because of this we admire them – as fictional as they may be.

I prefer the dark hair, red lipped, devil-may-care-smirk-wearing kind. You know, the Damon Salvatore’s of the world (one of the lead character’s from the CW’s Vampire Diaries series based on LJ’s popular books of the same name).  Thanks to Ian Somerhalder, those of us who prefer our vamps brooding instead of sparkly now have eye candy, too.

But there is another vampire I admire.

Image from Geek Tyrant

Selene. No, not the one whose heart will go on, but the one whose heart stopped and since that day, started kicking ass as a Death Dealer in one of my favorite series’ ever, Underworld.

Today, a new trailer for Underworld 4 was released on the Facebook Fan Page a day before it is scheduled to hit theaters, showing more of the sequel that many of us have been dying (pun not intended this time) for since Underworld 3 went the prequel route and left us wondering what happened after the end of Underworld 2 when Selene, after having drank Alexander’s blood, stood in the sun without peril. For years the debate has waged – did she turn human again having killed the oldest of them all, or did his blood make her stronger, therefore making her a day walker?

I can’t wait to see what answers Underworld 4 will give us and have 1.20.12 marked on the calendar in big red ink. Thankfully Kate Beckinsale has reprised her role as Selene – she IS Selene. But sadly it looks like her Lycan /paramour Scot Spedman, hasn’t. However SPOILER ALERT — rumor (and ahem, much research of my own in addition to this new trailer) reveals their half vampire, half werewolf daughter is at the core of the story. Hybrids. Lovely.

I can’t wait for this movie. I’m watching the trailer again. Oh, and if the above totally tantalizing discussion of vampires and the Underworld mythology didn’t do it for you, maybe the trailer will. Check it out at Yahoo! movies.