SEASON ONE: EPISODE 1: “Everything Changes”

A brutal murder leads WPC Gwen Cooper to Torchwood, a journey that will change her life forever.

This is definitely Gwen Cooper’s episode, all the way. Essentially it’s the story of an ordinary police officer who accidently stumbles into the world of Torchwood, and by the end of the episode proves she has the right stuff to join the team. I watched this episode with an eye toward how well it stands on its own: quite nicely, I think. Although technically a spin-off of Doctor Who, I think of it as more of a “parallel” series, such as CBS’s various CSI shows. That is, they occupy the same universe and may occasionally cross over, but remain independent of each other.

That’s not to say the Doctor Who references aren’t there, merely that they’re not integral to the enjoyment of the show. For example, the Doctor’s hand (from “The Christmas Invasion”) is seen in the Torchwood headquarters, but it’s no more necessary to know the story behind it in order to follow the story at hand (no pun intended) than it is to know the history of a trophy seen in the background of the Batcave to enjoy a Batman story. The story differentiates four different versions of Torchwood, and unless I haven’t been paying close enough attention to Doctor Who (always a possibility), more than one of these versions have yet to be fully explained.

While still told from Gwen Cooper’s point of view, about midway through the first episode the spotlight of attention is thrown on Jack Harkness, a character with a mysterious two-year gap in his history which I look forward to seeing revealed. Gwen learns the secret of his longevity in this episode, but apparently his teammates remain unaware at this point. The next episode is titled “Day One,” which makes me glad “Everything Changes” isn’t listed as “episode zero.”

Perhaps I read too many comics books.

BIG FINISH AUDIOS:

ALIENS AMONG US - Part 1
   1.1 Changes Everything - p14
   1.2 Aliens & Sex & Chips & Gravy - p14
   1.3 Orr - p14
   1.3 Superiority Complex - p15

ALIENS AMONG US - Part 2
   2.1 Love Rat - p15
   2.2 A Kill to a View - p15
   2.3 Zero Hour - p15
   2.3 The Empty Hand - p15

ALIENS AMONG US - Part 3
   3.1 Poker Face - p15
   3.2 Tagged - p15
   3.3 Escape Room - p15
   3.3 Herald of the Dawn - p15

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And here's the lyrics.
Figserello said:
And I'm only going by memory here, but I seem to recall that the Torchwood people weren't all that successful with the wee folk in the garden. Didn't some people die horribly before they got their act together?
her gag was expertly applied and it was very tight
I can't remember how explicit they made it in the show, but this episode owes a lot to The Stolen Child, a beautiful poem by WB Yeats. (A personal fave, too)

Gotta love Celtic Twilight references in Welsh TV shows...
Yeah - because the fairies thought they were threatening their friend....

Thos was probably my favourite of the first series. WRitten by P J Hammond, with sly nods to Captaon Jack;s past and Conan Doyle...
I was speaking kind of tongue-in-cheek when I said that “Small Worlds” “resolved itself into a happy ending.” The little girl, the “Chosen”, got her wish and became a “fairy” (and who’s to say she’s not happier than she would have been with her parents) and the end of the Earth was averted (although I’m not certain Jack convinced anyone else that letting the fairies have the girl was absolutely necessary. And yes, Jack’s WWII era lover met an undeserved end.

Thanks for the link to the Yeats poem. I was unfamiliar with that one.

SEASON ONE: EPISODE 6: “Countrycide”

Torchwood investigates a series of gruesome deaths in the Brecon Beacons, only to confront a terrifying enemy.

“Countrycide.” Heh.

I suspected early on that this episode’s grisly murders might be the work of something less “otherworldly” than is usual for Torchwood… which, of course, makes this episode all the more disturbing. Toshiko and Owen are beginning to coalesce as characters for me… particularly, in this episode, Owen. Owen reminds me of a “Dr. McCoy” type: abrasive but very human… perhaps not as likeable. I’m a little surprised at Gwen’s behavior in this episode… not for her affair with Owen but for letting that guy Evan whisper in her ear. There are three guys I wouldn’t let anywhere close to my ear: Hannibal Lecter, Mike Tyson and that guy Evan!

“The Rift” is becoming more and more like Sunnydale’s “Hellmouth.” (That’d be a good crossover!) My dad was stationed in Wales, and my high school pen-pal’s mum commented that he must’ve been bored out of his mind. Not if it’s anything like in Torchwood!
I never liked Owen...but that's probably because I saw the actor first as Mr. Guppy in Bleak House and was kinda creeped out by him.
I don't find him admirable, necessarily, but rather grey, complex... and human.
SEASON ONE: EPISODE 7: “Greeks Bearing Gifts”

Toshiko is given an alien pendant which enables her to hear other people’s thoughts.

I’ve been waiting for an episode to spotlight Toshiko, and this was it. I now feel as if I have a connection to all five of the main characters. Toshiko’s use of the thought-reading pendant parallels Gwen continuing affair with Owen. Both women were aware they were heading down a bad road, yet each felt helpless to stop.

Unlike some series I have to “warm up to,” I liked Torchwood from the get-go, and much more than I expected to. I’d like to publicly thank Alan for continually nudging me in this direction.
SEASON ONE: EPISODE 8: “They Keep Killing Suzie”

When the word Torchwood is daubed in blood at a murder scene, the investigation leads to a familiar face.

Suzie? Who’s “Suzie”? Oh, that Suzie!

Now that there has been at least one episode spotlighting each of the Torchwood personnel, it’s only “natural” (for a show of this “nature”) to swing the spotlight to one of its dead former members, the one killed in the first episode. This episode had a few good twists (if you want to avoid SPOILERS now would be a good time to stop reading), chief among them that the whole murder mystery was Suzie’s contingency plan to bring herself back from the dead should her plans not pan out. The killing of her father was also surprising, but it came completely out of left field, one of many problems peppering this episode’s plot.

I liked this episode well enough, but I doubt it will hold up well to subsequent viewings because it is so rife with plot holes, logical inconsistencies and writer’s fiats. For one thing, not only did her plan rely on timing far beyond her ability to control (her dupe’s chanting of the Dickenson poem to trigger lockdown at the exact moment of her escape), but also on the sympathy and complicity of Gwen, a woman she hadn’t even met at the time she laid the groundwork to put the plan in action.

Furthermore, the plot called for the Torchwood HQ to be in lockdown long enough for Suzie to get away with Gwen and get a head start, but not long enough that Jack and crew couldn’t catch up with them in the end, and the incredible… no, unbelievable… leap of intuition that caused Toshiko to pull out of her arse that the ISBN from a book of Emily Dickenson’s poetry would break the lockdown is writer’s fiat of the worst kind. Also, with Gwen’s life at stake, the police could have headed them off at their destination rather than making fun of the Torchwood crew for being locked in their own headquarters.

I would also like to go on record as saying that “resurrection gauntlet” is a far cooler name than “risen mitten”, and, finally, the line about gloves coming in pairs seemed pointlessly tacked on. If the “mitten” does have a mate, it likely does something else entirely (such as kills, I’m thinking), as the counterpart to the bit of alien tech that read the past did.

The good bits were very good, but unfortunately outweighed by the bad.
Jeff of Earth-J said:
SEASON ONE: EPISODE 8: “They Keep Killing Suzie”

When the word Torchwood is daubed in blood at a murder scene, the investigation leads to a familiar face.

Suzie? Who’s “Suzie”? Oh, that Suzie!

Now that there has been at least one episode spotlighting each of the Torchwood personnel, it’s only “natural” (for a show of this “nature”) to swing the spotlight to one of its dead former members, the one killed in the first episode. This episode had a few good twists (if you want to avoid SPOILERS now would be a good time to stop reading), chief among them that the whole murder mystery was Suzie’s contingency plan to bring herself back from the dead should her plans not pan out. The killing of her father was also surprising, but it came completely out of left field, one of many problems peppering this episode’s plot.

I liked this episode well enough, but I doubt it will hold up well to subsequent viewings because it is so rife with plot holes, logical inconsistencies and writer’s fiats. For one thing, not only did her plan rely on timing far beyond her ability to control (her dupe’s chanting of the Dickenson poem to trigger lockdown at the exact moment of her escape), but also on the sympathy and complicity of Gwen, a woman she hadn’t even met at the time she laid the groundwork to put the plan in action.

Furthermore, the plot called for the Torchwood HQ to be in lockdown long enough for Suzie to get away with Gwen and get a head start, but not long enough that Jack and crew couldn’t catch up with them in the end, and the incredible… no, unbelievable… leap of intuition that caused Toshiko to pull out of her arse that the ISBN from a book of Emily Dickenson’s poetry would break the lockdown is writer’s fiat of the worst kind. Also, with Gwen’s life at stake, the police could have headed them off at their destination rather than making fun of the Torchwood crew for being locked in their own headquarters.

I would also like to go on record as saying that “resurrection gauntlet” is a far cooler name than “risen mitten”, and, finally, the line about gloves coming in pairs seemed pointlessly tacked on. If the “mitten” does have a mate, it likely does something else entirely (such as kills, I’m thinking), as the counterpart to the bit of alien tech that read the past did.

The good bits were very good, but unfortunately outweighed by the bad.

You've seen Doctor Who - The End of Time - part 2, right?

While not my fave episode, it does have my favorite title.
You've seen Doctor Who - The End of Time - part 2, right?

I have. (You're referring to characters returning from the dead...?)

While not my fave episode, it does have my favorite title.

Oh, yeah, I'll concede that point: it's a great title!
Doc Beechler said:
I never liked Owen...but that's probably because I saw the actor first as Mr. Guppy in Bleak House and was kinda creeped out by him.

Now, see, we liked him because he was Mr. Guppy. :P

And I think Doc was referring to the "gloves coming in pairs" line in regards to wondering if you'd seen "End of Time, Part 2" - cuz we finally see the other glove.
Oh, was THAT the other glove!?

Gloriosky, I didn't even pick up on that (even after Doc all but told me)!

Tonight I'll get to tell Tracy, ""Hey, honey! Guess what I figured out?"

Thanks! (heh, heh, heh,,,)
Is this something to do with the Infinity Gauntlet a certain founder of a cilivlization was wearing, which was apparently useless against a 60 year old service pistol?

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