The Middle Men

Torchwood episode six! This should really be heating up now, right? We’re past the half way point… Well they SHOULD be heating up (oh my: “heating up” – that’s really wrong considering the subject matter, but hey, what can you do?)… It’s getting there.

I think.

So, the plusses for this weeks Torchwood: it seems likes things are getting a bit more serious for the Torchwood team. One of the new key players has died (I’ll spare you who in case you haven’t been following totally yet) and what an odd choice too – one of the best characters. We’ve got the entire team in the thick of it trying to get to the bottom of the mystery of the Miracle and finding out some dark secrets. And there has been no, or little straying from the main story line to satisfy the networks or RTD’s need for some “misplaced” sexual content.

Yet while these dark secrets that the team are investigating are giving them something to do, they still aren’t finding out anything new about the Miracle are they? (That’s aside from Jack, but more on him later) Rex and Gwen have found out about the incinerators for the “Category One” humans but where does that get them? These are just the effects of the Miracle not the cause. They are finding out how us humans will deal with such a horrible situation rather than finding out who or what is the cause.

While they ultimately get to use this information to expose the full horror of the Miracle, nothing is changing higher up.

Now, Jack, he found himself a Phicorp exec (Ghostbusters’ Ernie Hudson) who gave him some good information, which means – if you’re keeping score – Jack is the only one actually working on the issue at hand. Score one for Batman.. er, Jack! The rest of the Torchwood team is just out trying to expose the mean old government for the way they are treating “the dead” or trying to save family members while at the same time exposing themselves to the very people who they are on the run from.

One more sad note for this week story is the lack of Bill Pullman as Oswald Danes (the most engaging of the new characters in this series of Torchwood). Of course he’ll be back, I’m sure they are not done with his story, but his presence is sorely missed.

I know this review is coming off sour, but believe me it’s not because I don’t like Torchwood, I am trying very hard to like this series, after all Children of Earth set the standards so high that I was expecting to love this series. But sadly it is falling short for me. That said, there are good moments. Such as Marc Vann as Colin Maloney – the man in charge of the military base housing the top secret incinerators. Colin is a character we’ve come to expect for a Russell T. Davies drama. He’s just as scared as anyone else in the face of this new world and willing to do what it takes to survive. He shows us that murder can still happen in a world where no one can die and he shows us that sometimes people will do things they never would have thought possible in the face of world shattering events.

Thankfully this week’s episode took a serious tone to the story-telling which really made me feel that this series may finally have found it’s footing and could be on the right track for the rest of the series run. If the Torchwood team can get their act together and find out just what caused the Miracle and prove their worth, then Torchwood: Miracle Day just might prove the same to me.

Brian A Terranova


Doctor Who and me go way back. I first discovered it on my local PBS Station WHYY in the suburbs outside Philadelphia when I was a young kid; though I am uncertain of the exact age.

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