William Herrick is a recurring antagonist in the popular BBC Three show Being Human. He is a high-ranking vampire who was affiliated with one of the show's protagonists, Mitchell.
He was portrayed by Jason Watkins, who also played Captain Orchis in Watership Down.
In the fictional universe in which Being Human is set, the world is also inhabited by Vampires, Ghosts and Werewolves, who are also known as Types 1, 2 and 3 respectively. Herrick is killed by George, a main character and werewolf, at the end of the first series. He is later ressurected at the end of the second series. Returning in the third season as an apparent amnesiac, who doesn't know he is a vampire. But this is soon revealed to be a ruse and he is soon back to his evil ways again.
Herrick was born in 1843 in Britain, possibly London. He was well-educated and became a legal clerk. 47 years later in 1890, whilst living in London, he came across Hetty, a young orphan who was left penniless after the death of her father. He considered flogging her but instead brought her to a brothel where he had hoped to sell her to the owner, Madam. When Herrick was left alone with Hetty, she revealed herself to be a vampire and suddenly lashed out at him, biting him on his neck, and so infecting him with the vampire curse. It is unknown what exactly happened to Herrick after this, but somehow he managed to establish himself as the leader of the vampire community within about 25 years.
Sometime during the First World War about 27 years after he was turned, a young Irish soldier by the name of John Mitchell came across Herrick and his fellow vampires searching through bodies on the battlefield, looking for fresh blood to feed on. Herrick agreed to spare the rest of Mitchell's battalion if Mitchell allowed himself to be bitten, thus infecting Mitchell with the vampire curse.
Partnership with Mitchell
Mitchell and Herrick grew close to one another after Mitchell had been recruited. They worked as a team, attracting women to come with them to a private place where they would murder them and feed. This went on for decades, until Mitchell began to reconsider his lifestyle choice. His first sign of weakness came in 1964, when he and Herrick had seduced a young girl into coming with them into an abandoned building. Herrick left Mitchell to finish off the kill, but Mitchell could not bring himself to take another life and let the girl go, telling Herrick that she had escaped. Mitchell subsequently turned his back on the vampires and tried to live a normal life as a human, much to the anger of Herrick.
Herrick is the leader of the vampires based in Bristol, their headquarters being a funeral parlor by the name of 'B. Edwards'. He is leading a vampire style Final Solution, which sees the whole world either turned into vampires, or kept like cattle as food; he even planned to 'give' Mitchell South America. Their motto is 'No one gets left behind'.
He is killed in the sixth episode of series 1, by George in his werewolf form. Throughout the episode, he taunted George, saying he did not have guts to take him down. However, after George transforms and prepares to attack Herrick shows very little fear of him, even egging him on. Even Herrick's last words were taunts to George, shouting "Come on! Do it! Bring it you fucking freak! Do it!” Although Herrick does look afraid when George is coming toward him, seconds later George rips his head off.
Herrick left a large legacy. All vampires over the world heard of his death and George was known as a 'Celebrity' amongst the supernatural community. Many vampires travelled to Bristol, the home of George, Mitchell and Herrick such as Ivan and Daisy. Many stories were spread throughout the world to justify Herrick's death- one of the most notable being that George had begged him to be part of the new world but Herrick refused. All these were fake, but would be remembered to let Herrick be remembered throughout the vampire community as a hero, and not as a weak leader.
At the end of "Episode 2.8", he was resurrected by Kara and Daisy's blood through an unspecified process.
During Season Three, he appeared in the psychiatric area of the hospital George, Nina and Mitchell work at. Clearly disturbed and suffering amnesia, he was brought to their new home in Wales and kept in their attic posing as Nina's uncle Billy.
Mitchell came to him to attempt to figure out how he survived a werewolf attack, so he too could live through the prophecy Lia told him about. Herrick, however, did not remember being a vampire. He found Mitchell's journal of the Box Tunnel 20 massacre and shared this with Nina, and later, a detective who Nina reported Mitchell to. Herrick killed McNair, a werewolf, by stabbing him with a knife, when he tried to kill him in his werewolf state. When the police raided Mitchell's home and arrested him, the detective found McNair's body upstairs shortly before Herrick killed her and massacred a group of armed policeman downstairs.
When Nina returns home, she does not see the bloodbath in the other room, and Herrick appears to her in a policeman's uniform. He has gained his memory again, and after contemplating it, stabs Nina before leaving, back to his old, evil ways.