Column: Gods and Monsters: Recap and Review: Being Human (Syfy) 3.09: Of Mice and Wolfmen

 

[spoilers ahoy]

Recap: Following a full moon night, Nora accidentally encounters an older werewolf, Pete, living in a camper in the woods. Pete is pretty much everything Liam isn’t: laidback, egalitarian, gentle, and nurturing. He doesn’t believe in wolf packs. He does believe in helping younger wolves (and one of the more disturbing things he tells Nora and Josh is that wolves age faster than humans, at least when the human part is in conflict with the wolf part). He visits them later in Boston. Despite it being the worst of times, they let him in and he starts helping them get in touch with their Inner Wolves via meditation, making peace with them. Josh especially struggles with this.

The reason why things are bad in the household is because Sally is falling apart and Aidan is dying. Even as the virus really takes hold, he insists on going back to work, where he tells a stunned Kenny goodbye. The opportunistic Blake moves into the void, making it clear she’ll turn Kenny in Aidan’s absence. There’s nothing Aidan can do about it.

Fortunately, Nora has found out from Josh what Aidan told Liam about Brynn and is enormously grateful, while also feeling guilty about having been such a tool. To make up for it, she brings Kat over. Kat is horrified at Aidan’s condition, not least because Aidan can’t really explain it to her very well. He is having flashbacks to his first, surprisingly understanding wife discovering his vampirism during the Revolutionary War. Even more fortunately (though it doesn’t seem that way at first), Aidan starts convulsing with his friends at his bedside. They think he is dying, but, as we’ve seen in the past, vampires don’t convulse when they die of the virus. They turn to dust.

It happens that this is significant – Aidan wakes up cured. He quickly surmises that drinking werewolf blood from Josh last season (during the Todd Crisis) innoculated him from the virus and accidentally drinking Erin’s blood a couple of episodes ago renewed his immunity. In short, werewolf blood is the cure.

I’m sure you can all see this is going somewhere rather ominous for the Werewolves of Boston.

Near the end of the episode, Aidan meets with Blake and gives her the cure. But first, he has conditions – that she and other vampires stay away from Kenny, Josh and Nora. If she breaks these conditions, he will rip her head off her body (and you know he would). She eagerly agrees. After he tells her, she asks him, stunned, why he did. Doesn’t he hate vampires? He says that he’s learned there needs to be a balance, a “natural order.” Vampires and werewolves keep each other in that balance. Then he walks away, finds Kat, and kisses her.

Later, we see Blake luring one of Liam’s wolves down an alleyway. His predatory glee turns to alarm when an entire mob of vampires – some of them looking pretty rough – emerge from the shadows. Falling upon him, they drain him dry.

Finally, Sally’s bodily deterioration has progressed to accidentally sticking her toothbrush through her cheek and losing teeth. As she rushes to the fridge for more raw hamburger, she sees a live mouse circling a baited trap on the floor (foreshadowing of her own situation?). With a strange and disturbing gleam in her eye, she catches it and eats it, whole and alive. Her sores immediately heal.

Later, she confesses to Nick what she did. She’s shocked when he’s relieved and he ‘fesses up about the cats. More ominously, Zoe also tells her that Nick has bitten her. Aidan postulates that Sally is discovering a growing need for the energy of living things. This gets really ugly at the end when Zoe comes home and catches Nick eating a cat. After an embarrassed moment, he attacks her. The screen goes black and we hear her scream.

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Review: Well, this one sure took a few dark turns down a rabbit hole or three. Aidan’s miracle cure was not entirely unexpected. He’s a regular, so he’s not going anywhere, any time soon. I had wondered if the werewolf blood trope coming back like that would have other purposes than just manufactured drama. And so.

The creepy, Wendigo-meets-Romero-Zombie stuff happening with Sally & Co. was also not entirely unexpected, though it was rather disturbing to see my question about Zoe’s safety regarding dating Nick answered so brutally so late in the day. Not that I’ve ever been a huge fan of Zoe, but…yeesh.

Here’s a thought: We know Donna (who hasn’t appeared in a while) is a witch. And we know she eats souls to make/keep herself young. But what if Donna isn’t human, either? What if she’s a zombie who has long since graduated from animals to humans to human souls? It would explain some things. Like how and why she became a witch, but still works in a soup kitchen.

It was heartening to see Nora finally remember her housemate loyalties. I’m sure she won’t be thrilled to hear about Aidan spreading the news about the cure. On the other hand, I think Aidan’s got a good point about the balance between vampires and werewolves. It’s not as though werewolves are any safer to anything around them (including humans) than vampires. Best they keep each other in check. How the other vampires will now perceive Aidan is a good question, especially since we don’t really know what Blake told them. Still, he is probably by far the oldest vampire in town now – a revered elder, as it were. Maybe that counts for something.

I’m not too sure how Pete factors into all of this. It was a little disturbing that Aidan didn’t include him under his protection, but since I’m not even sure Aidan is aware of the guy’s existence yet (having been busy dying when Pete first showed up), I can’t see why he would.

I want to like Pete, especially since he’s played by Ron Lea, an old-time Canadian actor of whom I’ve always been fond, but it seems a little late in the day to introduce such an apparently uncomplicated character who will turn out to be…you know…genuinely uncomplicated. I expect he’ll either get eaten by sick vamps – thus creating more drama and conflict between Nora and Josh, and Aidan – or turn out to have a dark agenda of his own. The timing of his introduction is just too weird. Plus, I keep thinking of Lea’s stalkery lawyer character on that old 80s Canadian show, Street Legal. When does he ever play uncomplicated nice guys?

Yeah, yeah, I know. I’m a cynic, but hey, it’s not as though Liam turned out to be a nice guy. Right?

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Next Week: For Those About to Rot: Josh gets in touch with his Inner Wolf, Sally gets a craving for human flesh, and Stevie returns from his roadtrip with the same problem as Sally.

You can watch Being Human on Syfy, either Monday nights at 9pm or on the official site.

About Paula R. Stiles

Paula is not at all paranoid about government conspiracies after six years in EMS, two years in Africa for the Peace Corps, a few summers with the Park Service, and ten years studying the Knights Templar. She's seen governments in action. They couldn't cover up a toy picnic table, let alone evidence of alien visitation. Writes about science for fun, history for money, and zombies for the company. You can read her sober-as-a-judge book about Templars in medieval Spain, Templar Convivencia, on Amazon. You can find her homepage at: http://thesnowleopard.net.

Paula R. StilesColumn: Gods and Monsters: Recap and Review: Being Human (Syfy) 3.09: Of Mice and Wolfmen