'Being Human' exec producer Toby Whithouse talks about 'A Spectre Calls'

BRING-HUMAN

Every ghost can’t be a goodie. Evil people die, too. Hence, Being Human got its first wicked apparition last night: Kirby (James Lance), the ’70s era serial killer. His weapon: mind games. His victims: Annie (Lenora Crichlow), Tom (Michael Socha), and Hal (Damien Molony). His goal: murder Baby Eve. He was eventually thwarted by a raging, terrifying Annie, who made him disappear—but not before he did some serious mental damage and some very impressive disco dancing. And, most importantly, he indirectly caused Tom to get werewolf blood on Hal. Thus, burning the vampire’s arm and making him look a lot like the nemesis that the skin scroll predicts will kill Eve.

Below, Being Human creator and executive producer Toby Whithouse tells us more about Kirby — as well as Annie’s taste in men, Tom’s taste in women, and Hal’s taste for babies.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: When did you come up with Kirby, the unfriendly ghost?
TOBY WHITHOUSE: He was a character I always wanted to do. For years now, we’ve had evil vampires and some werewolves that were a little morally ambiguous. But we’ve never presented a ghost as a clear and present danger. That was something I really wanted to do, because obviously evil people die and according to the mythology we’ve created in our world, evil people must occasionally become ghosts.

Why’d you wait until season 4 to introduce a bad specter?  
What was difficult was that it’s really hard for a ghost to actually be a physical threat. So we had to make the threat more mental and emotional, and be about the corrosive effect he has on the relationships in the house. We wouldn’t have been able to do it any earlier in the series, because Kirby relies on the characters not knowing each other that well. If Kirby tried that stunt halfway through season 3, it wouldn’t have worked because George, Mitchell, Annie, and Nina all knew and trusted one another.

How much should we read into the Girl in Yellow knowing enough details about Nina to help Kirby trick his way into the house?
That’s all going to be answered in episode 7.

At this point, can we assume she is actually Eve?
No, at this stage her identity has been unconfirmed.

Last season, Annie had a breakdown because she killed one vampire. This year, she’s already killed another vampire and one of her own, a ghost — even if it was to save Baby Eve.
As the season draws to an end … in fact, it’s within the last few minutes of the last episode, we’ll realize just what Annie is capable of.

You know how Kirby told Tom that werewolves couldn’t be ghosts? Was he telling the truth? 
Yes.

Darn. Also, when did werewolf blood become toxic to vampires? Did I miss that in an earlier season?
It’s been alluded to as far back as episode 1 of season 1. There’s a moment when Lauren is talking to George when she works out he is a werewolf. She says something like, “Oh my God, I was going to drink your blood. I’d probably need jabs.” Similarly in episode 3 of season 3, Adam says werewolf blood tastes like sh– sauce. So it’s never actually been said, but what we did is expand on an existing rule.

This may be random, but why did Hal’s bed switch from a double in episode 2 to a single in episode 4?
Because there’s only one of him.

But Tom has a double bed.
Does he? Well, a single bed suits Hal’s slightly monastic life more than a double bed. Also, I reckon that Tom is probably a bit of a thrasher, whereas I imagine Hal sleeps very neatly.

He has the strangest way of holding Eve. Is that on purpose or just the weird way Damien Molony holds a baby?
It’s probably the first time in hundreds of years he’s ever held a baby — apart from when he was eating one.

Hal has eaten babies?!
I wouldn’t put anything past Hal.

Ack. If you spend five seconds on YouTube, you’ll find dozens of fan videos devoted to Annie and him having a love affair.    
I think Annie would be very resistant to that.

Speaking of relationships, when the roommates were forced to invent a cover story to explain why Tom was living alone with a baby, he suggested they say he was married to a classy barrister. He is obsessed with female barristers.
[Laughs] Tom really aspires to a very middle class normal life, one of sophistication and civility. A barrister has become a fantasy role in his mind, because it represents the things he can’t really achieve — like a very high standard of education. In his mind, a barrister is probably somebody very refined. He also admires strong women, so somebody like a barrister ticks all those boxes for him.

Speaking of boxes, the Box Tunnel Murders resurfaced last night, when they again became front-page news. Hal nearly had a conniption. Why is he so interested in the case? Mitchell and Daisy committed them, not him.
It’s not so much that he’s interested; it’s that clearly there is something going on. They all know the truth of what happened. At the end of season 3 there was a cover story that established that there was a lone maniac who committed the Box Tunnel atrocity. So there you are, that was sorted, case closed. Even though it had been covered up with a lie, it had nonetheless been covered up and put to bed. Then all of a sudden there’s an article in the newspaper saying that flesh was found in the stomach of the Box Tunnel Murderer. Now, they know that’s not true, so that means somebody is reopening the story and telling lie on top of lie. That gets Hal nervous.

Why?
That means somebody is sniffing around the edges of the supernatural world and stirring up trouble. That sets alarm bells ringing for Hal. That’s why he goes to investigate. And sure enough, he finds out that yes, the story is being manipulated. But even more worrying, it’s being manipulated by some mysterious vampire.

Does he have an inkling that it’s Cutler? And why is Cutler going to such great lengths — like eating the coroner — to expose werewolves in the first place?
Seriously, episode 7 has it. All of your questions will be answered.

Read more:
‘Being Human’ producer Toby Whithouse talks ‘The Graveyard Shift’
‘Being Human’ Q&A: Michael Socha, Lenora Crichlow, and Damien Molony bite into season 4

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