Thursday, January 17, 2008

Torchwood: S2E1: Kiss, kiss, bang, bang

And so Torchwood returns with a bang. Two bangs and two kisses if the title is to be believed. Actually many more of both once you watch the episode...
But was it any good? Well, for the most part I enjoyed it. But once again it did contain (as Marcus put it last time around) "All that I dislike about Russell T writ large."

So, in the 21st century, it appears that all the cool people are sexually ambiguous and are quite prepared to swing either way when flirted with. Even Ianto. Sex and money are the only two reasons for doing anything. And life is cheap. I really disliked the throwaway comment about murder rehab - that tarnished the character of Captain Jack more than almost anything else, in my opinion.

So what's new? Well, it still looks like Angel - even more so now that it has James Masters in it as another 'Captain' - but with a BBC budget, so the car chase scenes looked really cheaply done. The script was written so that all the characters were reintroduced - several times, just in case you missed the first character summary. And everything was bold and in-yer-face. There was no room for subtlety here. But Ianto has a character now and Gwen has stepped out of her 'what's happening Jack?' insecure persona and into a much more confident and, hopefully, interesting character. Actually, the only thing that didn't ring true about Gwen was that she was still with Rhys. The others were much the same as before.

(At one point, when my wife asked something, I referred to Owen as 'the ugly one' as I have always thought he was particularly unattractive and am always surprised when he is given stories where he picks up women with ease. To my surprise, my wife said he was 'normal looking' and actually ranked him as better looking than 'cheekbones' Masters - who I know has a rather large female fanbase. Oh well, it just goes to demonstrate my opinion that men and women have very different ideas of what is attractive to the other sex.)

And so we come to Captain John. Not the most inspired character name they could have chosen, and when he appeared it seemed to me that the Adam Ant style white stripe across his nose was missing.

So he has a history with Captain Jack. They kiss, they fight, its all very macho. Clearly they have a lust/hate relationship and Jack doesn't trust him at all. And yet he does trust him and allows the team to walk straight into a trap because of this. But although he's clearly in some future episodes, I assume at least we've got all the Jack/John snogging over and done with.

Torchwood is back. Hopefully we'll get a wee bit more subtlety in future episodes and characters that aren't just caricatures. But I am interested to see what happens next and what happens when Martha turns up, so I'll be watching.

I'm also intrigued as to how they're going to make that episode child friendly enough for the 7pm showing for younger Doctor Who fans. I'd have thought they'd have to chop a full 10 minutes out of that one...

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At 10:04 am, Blogger Marcus G said...

Chop ten minutes?

I think they'd have to re-shoot massive chunks - which is presumably what they have done, or parts of it will make very little sense indeed.

But it is almost unrecognisably from the team that makes the Sarah Jane Adventures, so one expects they will make a decent fist of it. Who knows, the 7pm version might even be better!

At 10:36 am, Blogger Ricky Carvel said...

Oh. and I forgot to do a rating on this one. I rated all of the last series... So I guess this was 7/10 - worth a second viewing.

The second viewing in question will probably be the 7pm showing (next Wednesday), just so I can see how they manage to make it kid friendly.


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