One of my guilty pleasures on television lately has been a new BBC series called “Being Human.” It’s the story of a young vampire (OK, he’s only about 300), a young werewolf and a young ghost sharing an apartment. Despite sounding like the set up to a good joke, it’s no comedy.
The vampire and werewolf both work as orderlies at the local hospital, trying to fit in and be as “human” as possible. The ghost, however, a young woman who was murdered by her boyfriend, refuses to leave the apartment. The reason, she says, is because, “there are monsters out there,” referring, of course, to us humans.
She’s right. With Halloween approaching I got to thinking about what really scares us these days and it’s not creatures or things that go bump in the night, it’s ourselves and the horrible things we do to each other. No monster or creature of the supernatural could ever match man’s inhumanity to man.
So when I came up with the idea of making an animated Halloween greeting for some friends I started thinking about “Being Human,” which basically turns the tables on the old monster stories and makes the monsters the good guys and the humans the bad guys. What is it, I asked myself, that seems to scare the bejesus out of a lot of people these days?
What I came up with starts with a wide shot of the stereotypical haunted house at night, complete with rain, lightning and fog. The next shot is a close up of footsteps in the fog, a pair of polished black shoes underneath black pants moving through the mist. Cut to a shot of the back of a man in a black business suit walking up to the door of the haunted house. You can’t see his head or hands, just a shoulder-to-waist shot from behind.
The man knocks on the door of the haunted house. Cut to an interior shot of the house. A werewolf inside hears the knock, goes to the doors and flings them open, growling fiercely as he pokes his head through the doorway. But, suddenly, the expression on the werewolf’s face changes from snarling, drooling rage to one of shock and fear. He backs up a little.
Cut to what’s outside the door. It’s President Barack Obama saying, “Can we talk about health care reform?”
The werewolf slams the doors shut, spins around and leans his back against them, arms outstretched to block the doors. A ghost peeks around the corner and the werewolf waves it back as if to say, “You don’t want to see what’s out there.”
It ends with an overhead shot of Obama walking away from the house, presumably headed to the next one.
Hopefully, I’ll have it finished by Saturday. In any case, have a happy Halloween!
Marty Russell writes a Wednesday column for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at 222 Farley Hall, University MS 38677 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Marty Russell/NEMS Daily Journal