Highlights from This Week’s Being Human Panel at the Paley Center For Media

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On Wednesday, The Paley Center for Media held a panel discussing Syfy’s Being Human. If you’re not familiar with the show, feel free to check out MLD’s previous primer on the series. I should preface all of this by saying that I’m not fully caught up on Being Human, but that has more to do with only seeing the few episodes that Syfy offers online than anything to do with the show. What I have seen of the show I’ve liked, and after seeing this panel, I’m hooked.

I’ve always had a soft spot for shows where it’s clear that the cast is having fun making the show and enjoys the subject matter, and it’s clear that Being Human is one of those shows. Watching the cast interact together and describe the show, I can honestly say they love it as much as the fans.

They started the night by airing next week’s episode, and I won’t spoil it, but wow. I’m not sure if they waited to have this panel just so they could preview this episode, but $#*! goes down. There were a good number of gasps and cheering by the end, and, if the cast is to be believed, the story for the rest of the season only goes on from there.

Again, no spoilers, but you’ll want to watch next Monday. All three of characters have a major revelation.

After the episode came a panel discussion which included Sam Witwer (Aidan), Meaghan Rath (Sally), Sam Huntington (Josh), Mark Stern (President of Original Content for Syfy), and special guest, Sarah Allen (Rebecca). Well, she was a sort of special guest. As Meaghan sat down she looked out to Sarah Allen, who was sitting in the first row, and thanked her for her work. This caused the moderator, Nadira Hira, to joke that Sarah being there was supposed to be a surprise, but that we might as well give her a round of applause now.

A few points from the panel, and the Q&A afterword:

• Sam Witwer seems to have a real nerdy streak in him. He was was even rocking a Last Exit To Nowhere “Off World Colonies” shirt.
• Both Stern and Witwer were quick to dismiss the series based on the premise when they first heard about it. They were persuaded to give it a second look, however, and fell in love with the material.
• Watching them sit and interact together, it’s clear they have a lot of chemistry. They were joking and laughing the entire time.
• Huntington was so nervous at the audition that he couldn’t stop talking while he was waiting to go in and read. So much so that the secretary eventually moved a “Quiet Please” sign right next to him.
• When asked what other scifi shows they were into, there was a lot of love for Battlestar Galactica. Except for Witwer, who professed his love for Star Trek: The Original Series.
• Rath is oddly good at Mario Kart character impressions. Much to the chagrin of her fellow cast mates.
• The cast shied away from watching the BBC series, and are now just starting to catch up. They didn’t want the BBC series to have an influence on their portrayals, but feel that they have established their characters enough that they can finally see the original.
• A surprising amount of planning went into Sally’s wardrobe. Since she is forced to wear the same thing throughout the entire series, they needed something versatile enough that the one outfit could be worn many ways.
• The writers feel that season 2 will be where the US storyline will make it’s break from the UK storyline, and go off in it’s own direction.
• Witwer was tapped on the shoulder while eating dinner one night by someone saying he was a huge fan. He turned around to see Alice Cooper standing there. Apparently Cooper was a fan of the BBC series, and is now a fan of the US version as well.

All told I can say that the show has a new fan in me, if for no other reason than I want to support these actors in making something they clearly love to do.

Oh, and seriously, get ready for next week. Damn.

Side notes:

1. They banned the use of cameras, hence my lack of pictures. However, the cast DID stick around afterword for pictures with fans, and looked more than happy to do so. In fact Meghan stood in the lobby and kept thanking everyone for coming. Perhaps if I wasn’t such a cub reporter, I could have stuck around to at least get a picture of Sam Huntington. And yes, that WAS a Jimmy Olsen joke.

2. Since I didn’t get any pictures, you’ll have to take my word that, yes, the cast is as good looking as you would think they would be. Personally Meaghan and Sarah especially so, but I will admit that Sam and Sam are two handsome gentlemen.

3. The panel was moderated by Nadira Hira, who we were told at the beginning of the night, is working on a “Generation Y” book, which I found hilarious, having missed a discussion with Douglas Copland to be there that night. And if you get that joke, you are my new best friend.

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spends his days fixing other people’s computers and navigating the wilds of New York City. He’s an amateur photographer, loves almost anything with a space ship in it, keeps a Sonic Screwdriver on his desk, and freely admits to liking Robin more than Batman. He also wanted to wear glasses since the age of 10, JUST so he would look more like Egon, and that probably tells you more than you need to know.

  • DaveM said,

    Watched this week’s episode…. intense stuff indeed. I think there are only two left this season, so hopefully things continue to be this good.

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