Sam Witwer, Sam Huntington & Meaghan Rath Talk BEING HUMAN Season Two

     January 29, 2012

The drama series Being Human is back for Season 2 on Syfy, as the three supernatural friends struggle with their double lives, in ways that get darker than ever before. Vampire Aidan (Sam Witwer) is dealing with the fall-out from the death of his vampire maker by having to train the ruthless Vampire Queen’s disgraced daughter (played by Dichen Lachman), werewolf Josh (Sam Huntington) is dealing with the revelation that he scratched his girlfriend Nora (Kristen Hager), and ghost Sally (Meaghan Rath) grows more powerful and independent with the help of some new ghostly friends who send her down a dark and destructive path.

During a recent exclusive interview with Collider, co-stars Sam Witwer, Sam Huntington and Meaghan Rath talked about the individual paths their characters are headed down this season, how the series has really developed into its own thing this season, totally independent from its UK counterpart, how their individual storylines will affect their dynamic as a group, and whether or not they think their characters will get to a point where they’re happy with who they are. Check out what they had to say after the jump:

Question: Where are things headed with your characters, this season?

SAM WITWER: It’s interesting because the first season was about them building the home and trying to reconnect with their humanity. And now, this season is all about the obstacles to maintaining that home and that sanctuary. The more that they try to create this safe unit, the more that the ugly stuff starts getting let in, and it gets pretty dark. Things get pretty complicated.

SAM HUNTINGTON: We ended last season and there were cliffhangers with all of us. Josh had scratched Nora. Sally missed her door, so there are the ramifications of that. Aidan had the possibility of being given Boston. At the same time, the last scene with all of us, in the house, was closure for the season. Obviously, we would have to rebuild the house, but everything could be okay, from that point. But, what we end up rebuilding, in the second season, is a house of horrors. It is a nightmarish scene.

WITWER: There are still light moments and there’s still comedy, but certainly, all three of us are challenged in ways that we were not challenged, in the first season.

MEAGHAN RATH: The themes of this season are temptation and desire, and that’s what we’re all tapping into. It does take us down a path that’s dangerous for ourselves, and for the family we’ve created together.

Obviously, it was important to establish the connection to the original UK series, in order to bring people in initially, but the show is really, totally its own thing now. Has that been important for you guys to have stories now, that are completely separate from that?

RATH: I really like that.

WITWER: We had to.

HUNTINGTON: It’s why we signed on. We were told that we wouldn’t just be remaking the series.

RATH: It’s not a remake. It’s a re-imagining.

HUNTINGTON: Obviously, there were certain storylines that we had to fulfill, in the first season, but we always knew that the second season was just going to be batshit crazy, and sure enough, it is.

WITWER: After all, they’re different characters, so they’re going to make different choices and eventually the stories are going to go in a completely different direction because what George (Russell Tovey on the UK series) would do is not something that Josh would do.

RATH: In the first season, we paid homage to what that series is, and I think we did it respectfully and in a really great way, and put our spin on it. Now, it’s our turn to do our own thing.

When there have been so many remakes and re-imaginings, especially recently, that haven’t connected with viewers, what do you think it is about this particular show that really does connect with people who are fans of the original?

WITWER: I think it’s the fact that it feels like three different people who are dealing with the same types of issues. They’re three different characters. If it had felt like different versions of the same characters, I don’t think it would have worked.

RATH: I love that you say that because, to me, that’s the biggest compliment. Knowing that fans of the British series that were giving us some slack before our first season aired, have now come around and watch our series as something on its own, is the biggest compliment. They were the ones that were the most skeptical, in the beginning.

WITWER: Let it be said, we understand why they were skeptical. We’ve become fans of their show, since we shot our first season. We stayed away from watching it when we were shooting our first season, but when we finished, we all watched it and loved it.

HUNTINGTON: Also, just automatically, if you are in love with a certain film or TV show, you’re going to be skeptical, if they remake it. I was in love with the British The Office, so even though I love Steve Carell, when they were going to remake it, I was like, “This is not going to work. I’m going to completely veto this show. I am not going to watch this show.” But now, I love it. You’re just going to automatically try to hate something like that. I think fans of the original will tune in to see what we’ve changed and altered, and then go, “Oh, they did that. That’s so much different, and so cool.”

How has it been, this season, to have so many storylines keeping you apart? Does it feel more challenging to get you guys all together in scenes?

RATH: Yeah, and that’s the case because we all are on our separate path, this season. That being said, we do have scenes where we come together and try to rebuild.

HUNTINGTON: There are episodes where it’s heavier.

RATH: It comes to a breaking point. Episode 10 is an amazing episode, for the three of us.

WITWER: Yeah because, for the first time in the series, we do an episode where it’s not just a few scenes with the three of us. All three of us are there together, the entire episode, dealing with the same thing, which is really great. Our favorite stuff to shoot is when we’re all together.

HUNTINGTON: It’s a bummer when we don’t get to shoot together, very often.

RATH: It was hard for us on set because we missed each other. When Sam [Witwer] is doing his vampire stuff, we’re not even on set for that. It’s at a completely different location, on a separate day. They do all the vampire stuff, at the same time. We would often go for days or a week without seeing each other, and it was difficult. We missed each other. So, those scenes that we do have together, it’s a genuine, “Yes, I needed this.” It helps to set you back on track.

HUNTINGTON: It’s looser and more fun.

Aidan and Josh fight so hard to get away from what they are, but they’re brought so much deeper into it, this season. How does that affect who they are and their dynamic, as friends?

WITWER: In the first season, we heard a lot that Aidan was this ruthless bad-ass, and we saw glimpses of it. We’ve seen pieces of, “Wow, okay, where did that come from?,” but otherwise, he’s a nice guy. In the first season, he was trying to go clean, so he just stayed away from his drug buddies, or the other vampires. He was trying to stay away from blood and go clean. This season, he can’t stay away from them, so not only is there some back-sliding, in terms of the addiction, but old character elements and personality traits that he’s trying to leave behind start resurfacing. You have to remember that this guy was, for over 200 years, a villain. He was not a very nice guy. It was only the past two years that he’s been kinda cool. And so, he starts falling and devolving, and turning into an older version of himself, which is really a dangerous thing.

HUNTINGTON: And it gets close to home. Josh starts seeing it. Josh is going through some really heady shit too, and Aidan is supposed to be his rock. At the beginning of the season, Aidan is like, “Listen, you’re my rock. I need some help here.”

WITWER: It’s the first time Aidan really admits that. Our show starts with Aidan saying, “Hey, wouldn’t it be cool to have a house because you need help, don’t you Josh?” Really, what Aidan is not saying is, “I need help.” So, in the beginning of the second season, Aidan goes, “Okay, pal, I need help.”

HUNTINGTON: And we’re both leaning on each other so much that we’re eventually both going to topple. We do fall into each other, and it’s really intense and really awesome. It was so fun because we all enjoy working with each other so much.

WITWER: There was this scene that we shot, in this one episode, and it was the culmination of everything that we’re talking about here, and their relationship and how bad things get for these two guys, and we were doing this very unusual thing with block shooting because we were on one set for most of the episode and it had to be shot in various ways. So, we did it like a play, where we set up the cameras and go through the entire episode to get one angle, and then switch the cameras and go through the entire episode again. It was not just a few scenes, but the entire episode. It was like we were performing a play, over and over again. But, there was this one scene that we got to, where Aidan and Josh finally have to deal with all these things that have been happening, and it’s a very intense scene, and we did it once, for the first time, and it was so shocking to everyone that the director said, “Okay, we have to pause right now, and then we have to shoot this scene again, in its entirety. We have to go with this momentum. We can’t lose this.”

HUNTINGTON: It would have been a real drag to have to create that, the next day. You would have been able to tell.

WITWER: Yeah, so we trashed our plan about going through the whole episode, and solely concentrated on that scene, which was really fun.

HUNTINGTON: It was really, really cool. And it’s a fucking scene. It’s hardcore. It happens in Episode 10.

WITWER: Things definitely get intense with these characters, and all three of them get to some pretty dark places, and yet we always still find some way to be funny, every now and then.

Is it fun to have the addition of some new characters this season?

WITWER: It’s always fun to shake it up. This year, we have more characters then we had last year. Last year, the show was smaller. This year, we have characters all over the place.

RATH: All of our worlds have expanded. There are a lot of new people.

HUNTINGTON: I resent the guest stars because they steal my time away from these guys. Aidan goes off with Suren (Dichen Lachman) a lot, so we don’t get to see him. And Sally goes off and does a bunch of stuff with other people, and I don’t get to see her. Meanwhile, Josh is off doing stuff with other people. Honestly, we have really talented people on the show this year.

Because these characters are in such pain over who they are, do you think they can get to a point where they can be happy with who they are now?

WITWER: That is something that we will settle probably in Season 9. That’s a really good question.

RATH: In the series finale, Sally will be like, “Well, I’m good.”

WITWER: Once you see Season 2, that question becomes very complicated. How the hell do you move forward, after what happens in this season?

HUNTINGTON: For all of us. Holy shit, it’s so intense.

RATH: The way the season ends, it’s cliffhangers for each of us, individually. And what that means for us, as a family, you don’t know how we’re going to get back to that.

WITWER: It’s funny ‘cause the network had these notes about the end of the season and said, “You know, they all seem like pyrrhic victories, at the end. Yeah, they’re winning, but bad things happen.” And then, what they came up with, as an alternative, was even more pyrrhic. There’s really tough stuff happening with these guys. It’s crazy!