‘Being Human’: Series 3 Episode 4 review

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Having discovered that Nina was pregnant last week, she and George go out to look for the McNairs (Robson Green and Michael Socha’s werewolf father and son team, last seen in Episode 1), in search of answers to the many questions surrounding their pregnancy. Unfortunately for them, McNair is so fiercely protective of his son Tom, that he turns the outsiders away and refuses to help.

Robson Green gives a terrific, commanding performance as the grizzled werewolf, adding an old-fashioned sense of chivalry to his intense character. McNair genuinely cares for Tom, but his over-protectiveness has left him naive and unworldly, chasing a dream of one day finding the safe-haven of “The Pack”, a group of werewolves living together safely in a community. Despite Tom’s naivety, he is good natured, but when he decides to help George and Nina, Mitchell overreacts badly to the presence of an unknown werewolf in his house.

Paranoid about the prophecy of his demise at the hands of a “wolf shaped bullet”, Mitchell is immediately distrustful of the McNairs. After much macho posturing between them, he takes action and gives McNair up to Richard Hargreaves (Mark Lewis Jones) and the dog-fighting ring. Mitchell may be our hero, but even on a good day he is capable of reprehensible things, and when Tom, George and Nina get caught in the crossfire, McNair and Mitchell must put aside their differences to put things right.

What follows is perhaps the most intense and exciting sequence the show has ever done. Directed with frenetic energy by regular helmer Colin Teague, all hell breaks loose, and it’s only heightened by composer Richard Wells’ dramatic score. There is a lot going on, but things never become muddled.

In other matters, the exploration of Mitchell and Annie’s relationship is being development nicely, with John Jackson’s script steering things in a very natural direction. The pair are tentative and unsure of how to approach their relationship, and when Annie’s plan to feel Mitchell vicariously through another woman goes disastrously wrong, the pair take a step back and reevaluate things.

Rather than a passionate, normal romance, what Mitchell and Annie need is the strong human connection that they share – Mitchell needs someone to keep him on the wagon, while Annie needs an anchor to give her after-life meaning. We know that when Mitchell first went clean it was due to his relationship with a good woman in the ‘60s, and now he has a similar arrangement with Annie. The episode emphasises that they don’t need a big whirlwind romance to work as a couple, they simply need the honest and true connection that already exists between them; a different kind of love, perhaps, but one better suited to their characters.

Overall ‘The Pack’ is Series 3’s strongest instalment yet by far, pulling elements from the three previous episodes together to form a busy but surprisingly coherent episode, with a climax so violent, scary and downright thrilling that you’ll want to re-watch it immediately. And, with the unexpected re-emergence of a familiar face in the final moments, the next episode promises to be just as entertaining.

Airs at 9pm on Sunday 13th February 2011 on BBC Three and BBC HD.

> Order the Series 3 DVD on Amazon.