I’m probably in the minority on this, but I like that there turned out to be no psychopathic alien influence at work here. I like that ‘Torchwood’ isn’t pretending that you have to leave the planet or import creatures from outer space in order to find terrible things.
Maybe it seems silly, at first glance, to be discussing the David Tennant episodes in reverse order of season — I’ve just wrapped up the “Harold Saxon” arc, and here we are back in the “Torchwood” arc, Tennant’s first season and Billie Piper’s last. But I’m glad I did it this way, because if I’d done it the other way around…
It’s funny, but as much as I really like ‘Torchwood,’ rewatching it is not quite as much fun as rewatching ‘Doctor Who.’ I never get tired of ‘Doctor Who,’ and I constantly find new stuff to hash over in those episodes — these, not so much. They’re fun, and I’m certainly not saying that I dislike the show, but it’s not as rich in material as ‘Who’ is.
With this episode, for the first time, I compared the British broadcast with the version that aired on Sci Fi, and I’m furious! Sci Fi cut out some really vital stuff, vital to plot and theme and character and color.
See, this is what happens when you treat the tea boy like, well, he’s the tea boy. On the other hand, when your girlfriend gets mutated into a sexy-metal-bikini-wearing alien cyborg, sometimes you just have to let her go.
“The Master is Prime Minister of Great Britain… the Master and his wife?” Lucy is such a wonderful conundrum. She clearly knows her husband is up to a whole bunch of No Good, and is cool with that, but does she know the real deal with him? Does she know he’s an alien? Or does she lie in bed with him at night and wonder about that strange echo in his heartbeat?
I’m nearly done watching all of the first season of ‘Torchwood’ — just one more episode to go — and when I look back at this episode, it feels to me like the show is still treading water here while it tries to figure out what it’s got on its hands. Compared to what’s to come later in the season, this is nothin’.
Why am I being tormented so? I was fine. I was comfortable. I was resigned to the fact that I was going to have to live my life here on boring old Earth at the tedious pace of 60 minutes to the hour, seven days to the week, 365 days to the year, ten years to the decade.
Tons of spoilers! Don’t read if you haven’t seen the episode!
(intro to my Who blogging, please read before commenting / previous: Episode 9: “The Family of Blood”) Apart from the obvious issue of there not being enough David Tennant this time around, this has got to be one of the single most brilliant episodes of any TV science fiction show ever. It’s mind-bending even grading … more…