Torchwood season 2 DVD boxset review

Review 23 Jun 2008 - 09:16
Series two hits DVD...

With a few spoilers, Jack checks out the muddled second series of Torchwood, and wonders whether the boxset is worth picking up.

The news that the next series of Torchwood is to consist of just five episodes telling one long story adds further weight to the growing suspicion that its producers have yet to crack exactly what this series is about.  Certainly after watching the most recent run, we’re no closer to finding out what a good episode should look like.  That’s not to say that there haven’t been good Torchwoods, but rather you get a sense that if the writers sat down with the expressed intention of devising a “perfect episode” there would be little consensus.

Before transmission the rumblings were that the criticisms levelled at series one had been listened to.  Gone was the incessant infighting in the ranks, and gone too was the outrageously bad sex that had been bestowed on the show in what seemed like nothing more than a blatant attempt to get a 15 certificate.

Instead we were promised a Torchwood that was less angst ridden and more at ease with itself.  With the arrival in the first few minutes of episode one of a gag that blew a raspberry at the whole show, here was a confident statement of intent that after thirteen episodes in which the show had run not hot and cold, but cold and colder, someone had taken hold of the reins for series two.

But although “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” was a reasonable season opener it wasn’t spectacular, offering instead, as one paper put it, “knockabout fun.” The second show, “Sleeper” seemed to borrow a concept from Doctor Who’s “Human Nature” (that of the protagonist not knowing their true identity), but played with it reasonably well, at least until the third reel.  In fact if there is a consistent criticism that can be levelled at this most inconsistent of shows it’s that it all seems to go a bit mental in the last act.  

The consensus seems to be the best episode series two was JC Wilsher’s “Reset”.  Best known for Between the Lines, this was a robust story in which the slant from reality at which Torchwood presides remained consistent all the way through, not something that's a given in this show.

Of course this was also the episode in which Owen was killed.  Here was one of the major arcs of this series, and in the main it was pretty well developed.  Not in the episode “Dead Man Walking” though, in which Owen took on, and beat, the Grim Reaper.  However, the following episode, “A Day in the Death” was an interesting examination of Owen’s condition, albeit the conceit of Owen talking down a would-be suicide victim wasn’t quite as emotional and heart warming as it was clearly meant to be.  Some complained that after this Owen pretty much returned to normal, but the odd mention of his undead state was well handled, and Burn Gorman turned a character who had previously been Torchwood’s most unsympathetic employee into something – ironically – far more human.

Another big story this year involved Rhys being let in to the whole Torchwood thing.  This allowed lots of opportunities for Eve Myles and Kai Owen to workshop drama school style improvised arguments, but in the main having Rhys run alongside Captain Jack and the rest worked well.  In fact, “Something Borrowed”, in which Gwen and Rhys got hitched was a surprise series highlight.

Conversely “From Out of the Rain”, an episode with a brilliant title and a first class pedigree (its script came from legendary Sapphire and Steel creator PJ Hammond), was a major disappointment.  There have been tales that the production of this series was fraught with difficulties and the cast and crew pushed to breaking point.  If that is true, then here is the episode where the strain most obviously shows.  The premise of acts from a travelling circus stepping out of the cinema screen into the real world is terrific, and the costume and make up excellent, but the execution failed to deliver.  Somehow what should have been chilling came across as flat, rushed and a little bit silly.

Torchwood lacks the care and attention lavished on the parent show’s every shot, and you sense that some of these scripts (for example “Adrift”) would really sing if given the Doctor Who treatment, but here they don’t quite work, whether it's more time, or money that's needed, or both is difficult to say.

The series ended with Captain Jack coming face-to-face with Gray, his long-lost brother.  Barrowman's natural charm is at its very lowest ebb when he has to play emotional scenes, and unfortunately for him this episode was full of them.  Back in 2005, Jack was a smooth conman, whose heart was ultimately to be in the right place.  Unfortunately, neither Jack nor John is built for emoting wildly, and it was difficult to really feel the gravitas of the Captain's family reunion.  Elsewhere in this episode, the cast and crew coped manfully with a storyline that exceeded the production's ambitions, but earned some respect from this viewer for at least having a go.

Torchwood still seems to be a work in progress.  Perhaps a limited run next year will give everyone a bit of time to reflect on exactly what it should be about.  For me, I still think it would make a great out-and-out kids' show.  The introduction in this series of pre-watershed repeats has definitely been a step in the right direction, but that aside, the show's ultimate destination still remains maddeningly unfathomable.

DVD Extras:
Aside from the usual collection of outtakes, missing scenes and  Torchwood De-Classifieds there is a 20 minutes featurette discussing "The Lives & Deaths of Captain Jack", which distinguishes itself by covering his time in Doctor Who.  The Face of Boe anecdote, told jointly by David Tennant and John Barrowman, is a particular highlight.

Series Two: 2 out of 5
Extras: 4 out of 5

2

Disqus - noscript

omg why are you being so harsh about Torchwood???? I love it - it's the best program ever invented... and loads of my friends love it as well so haha

Write your comment here...

u are gay

bet u are an old boring person that wants the good old days 2 come back. or a geek that spends all his time pointing out mistakes on TV programs.

I think you guys are being way to harsh on this dude, he obviously knows more about this than you do, but just happens to also possess the ability to air his opinions in a less offensive way than you people. That said, I also think he's wrong. For Torchwood to become an 'out and out kid’s show' would be a massive sell-out to its original following. The kids have got the sarah-jayne bollocks to watch and obviously Dr Who, Torchwood for me and most other fans offers a grittier and darker monster show to fill the void left by shows like Buffy and Angel (R.I.P). They can stand to lose some of the sex but take away the blood and swearing (& with the absence of a good doctor) and you've got nothing but a poor imitation of shows like Sliders! (and there's no point trying to improve on the perfection of Sliders).
If this move to BBC1 is followed by an un-edited pre-watershed timeslot and a Saturday morning CBBC repeat, they will make a lot more money and lose a lot of integrity. Mellowing out would be giving up on the original idea and sitting back into PC, mild, unimaginative television.
I’d give series 2. a 5star rating personally, but that’s just because it was a personal favourite of mine, as a piece of work, the series is made up of a mix of 3 to 5 star episodes (with the exception of the one 2 — (I agree the circus episode was disappointing compared to its thrilling build up).
Gutted they killed of Burn Gorman, he was the most promising actor on the show. In the future, I wouldn't mind seeing a darker Mickey join the cast, but I don't think I could stomach the hollow performances of Martha Jones on a regular basis on the show.

5 star u gaybo

omg why are you being so harsh about Torchwood???? I love it - it's the best program ever invented... and loads of my friends love it as well so haha

Write your comment here...

u are gay

5 star u gaybo

bet u are an old boring person that wants the good old days 2 come back. or a geek that spends all his time pointing out mistakes on TV programs.

I think you guys are being way to harsh on this dude, he obviously knows more about this than you do, but just happens to also possess the ability to air his opinions in a less offensive way than you people. That said, I also think he's wrong. For Torchwood to become an 'out and out kid’s show' would be a massive sell-out to its original following. The kids have got the sarah-jayne bollocks to watch and obviously Dr Who, Torchwood for me and most other fans offers a grittier and darker monster show to fill the void left by shows like Buffy and Angel (R.I.P). They can stand to lose some of the sex but take away the blood and swearing (& with the absence of a good doctor) and you've got nothing but a poor imitation of shows like Sliders! (and there's no point trying to improve on the perfection of Sliders).
If this move to BBC1 is followed by an un-edited pre-watershed timeslot and a Saturday morning CBBC repeat, they will make a lot more money and lose a lot of integrity. Mellowing out would be giving up on the original idea and sitting back into PC, mild, unimaginative television.
I’d give series 2. a 5star rating personally, but that’s just because it was a personal favourite of mine, as a piece of work, the series is made up of a mix of 3 to 5 star episodes (with the exception of the one 2 — (I agree the circus episode was disappointing compared to its thrilling build up).
Gutted they killed of Burn Gorman, he was the most promising actor on the show. In the future, I wouldn't mind seeing a darker Mickey join the cast, but I don't think I could stomach the hollow performances of Martha Jones on a regular basis on the show.

شات الخليج
شات الحب
شات السعودية
شات
دردشه
دردشة
دردشة بنات
دردشة السعودية
دردشة عربية
شات صوتي
مكياج 2009
أزياء سهرة 2009
شات جده
شات الاحساء
شات الدمام
شات الرياض

دردشة صوتية
دردشة الكويت
دردشة الامارات
دردشة عمان
دردشة قطر
دردشة البحرين
دردشة العراق
دردشة اليمن
دردشة سعودية
دردشة كتابية
شات كتابي
عروس 2009

بنات
ترافيان
الرياض
فيديو
حواء
الخليج
افلام
وزارة التربية والتعليم
ماسنجر
قصص
ترجمة
الود
الشله
video
اليوتيوب
راشد الماجد

عكاظ
بلياردو
العربية
توبيكات ملونه
توبيكات 2009
توبكات
توبيكات 2009
توبيكات للبنات
توبيكات بنات
توبيكات رمضان
كورة
الوطن
قوقل
جريدة الرياض
اليوم
اغاني
سعودي

شات سعودي
سعودي
خليجي
عربي
منتديات السعودية
منتديات الكويت
منتديات الامارات
منتديات عمان
منتديات قطر
منتديات البحرين
منتديات العراق
منتديات اليمن
منتدى بنات
خدمات
مسجات
منتديات
منتدى
عالم حواء

العاب بنات
العاب فلاش
العاب
دليل
موقع
يوتيوب
جوال
الجامعات
YouTube
Business
online
Roro 44
برامج
حب
قصات شعر 2009

الحياة الزوجية
ياسر القحطاني
Mobile
university
Tourism
Travel
صور
ستار اكاديمي 6
online games
Internet
Directory
Free Download
Games

<font face="Akhbar MT"><font size="4">منتديات</font><font size="4"> | شات | اللوبي العام | اسلاميات | النقاشات الجاده | ملتقي الاعضاء | الترحيب | المنتدى المميز | الاخبار | عالم حواء | مطبخ حواء | ازياء وموضه | مكياج | الامومه والطفوله | العروسه | الديكور | الصحة والطب | المنتدى التعليمي | منتدى الشباب | الشعر والقصائد | النثر والخواطر | قصص | روايات | محاولات الاعضاء | منتدى الصرقعه | الالعاب والمسابقات | الرياضه | دراجات ناريه | سيارات | دروس تصاميم | الابداع | تحميل برامج | تعريب البرامج | برامج مشروحه | برامج ماسنجر | طلبات برامج | صور | الجوال | العاب كمبيوتر | طلبات برامج | طلبات برامج | مواقع شات | دليل | مركز تحميل | مواقع شات صوتي | عالم الرومانسيه | لحن الخيال |
</font> <font size="4">شات الخليج</font></font>

Read More About:

Sponsored Links