From Out Of The Rain

TorchwoodOne of Cardiff’s oldest movie houses reopens its doors and celebrates by showing reels of nostalgic silent film discovered in the basement. Gwen, Ianto and Owen visit the first showing, but when the projector won’t shut off – and they see Jack in the film, billed as “the man who can’t die” at a traveling carnival and shooting himself – the silent movie quickly becomes a Torchwood matter. Soon after the film is shown, people begin turning up in a catatonic state near the theater, no longer breathing but still alive. One of the film reels is confiscated and taken back to the Torchwood hub, where Ianto notices that there are people missing from scenes – namely the carnival barker and his main attraction, the mermaid woman. But when the team returns to the theater, they find that not only are these two people there in the flesh, but they’re helping the rest of their carnival emerge from film and into reality – to help them claim more victims.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodewritten by P.J. Hammond
directed by Jonathan Fox Bassett
music by Ben Foster

Guest Cast: Julian Bleach (The Ghostmaker), Camilla Power (Pearl), Craig Gallivan (Jonathan), Gerard Carey (Greg), Steven Marzella (Dave Penn), Hazel Wyn Williams (Faith Penn), Lowri Sian Jones (Nettie), Eileen Essell (Christina), Anwen Carlisle (Restaurant Owner), Yasmin Wilde (Senior Nurse), Caroline Sheen (A&E Nurse), Alastair Sill (Young Dad), Catherine Olding (Young Mum)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Adrift

TorchwoodOne of Gwen’s old friends in the Cardiff Police asks her to help with a missing persons case, and is disappointed by her apparent lack of interest – until she sees the surveillance video of the disappearance, which has two extraordinary features – a bright light, just out of the camera’s range, at the moment of the disappearance…and the presence of Jack Harkness in the very next frame. Gwen immediately confronts Jack about his whereabouts at the time, and finds his answer evasive. Despite a direct order from Jack to not waste Torchwood’s time with a missing persons case better suited to the police, Gwen pursues the investigation in her spare time, discovering that many more people have gone missing under similar circumstances – and she risks everything to confirm her gut feeling that Jack is involved.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodewritten by Chris Chibnall
directed by Mark Everest
music by Ben Foster

Guest Cast: Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), Tom Price (PC Andy), Ruth Jones (Nikki), Robert Pugh (Jonah), Lorna Gayle (Helen), Oliver Ferriman (young Jonah)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Fragments

TorchwoodThe late 1800s: After his death and miraculous resurrection are witnessed numerous times in Cardiff, Captain Jack Harkness – laying low in the city after his return from the 51st century, as he waits for the TARDIS to appear and refuel from the rift – is captured by Torchwood. They experiment on him, killing him numerous times, and decide that, like the Doctor, he is an unnatural threat that Torchwood must deal with – unless he pledges his allegiance to them and works for them. Distrustful at first, Jack decides to take Torchwood up on its offer, and begins working to evolve the alien-hunting agency beyond its original mandate.

2002: Toshiko Sato, an IT expert with high security clearances, uses her position to obtain classified plans for a top-secret weapon, which she builds and hands over to the people who are holding her mother hostage. But she hasn’t covered her tracks well enough, because UNIT troops mount a raid during the handover. Toshiko is arrested and held in close confinement with no contact with the outside world, until Captain Jack Harkness arrives, offering her a job with a top-secret agency…

2005: Dr. Owen Harper is baffled when his fiancee begins experiencing the earliest onset of Alzheimer’s Disease in recorded medical history. Owen insists on new MRI scans, which detect an unusual, fast-growing tumor. But Owen’s future bride dies in the operating room, and Owen witnesses the arrival of a man named Captain Jack, who claims that his fiancee has been the victim of an alien parasite. Jack later offers Owen a job with his top-secret agency, saying he needs a medical expert.

2006: While hunting a Weevil solo, Jack is cornered until a young man comes to his aid, clubbing the Weevil and allowing Jack to subdue him. When the stranger casually remarks that the creature looks like a Weevil, Jack rushes away. Jack finds this young man, one Ianto Jones, waiting for him outside of Torchwood’s Cardiff headquarters the next day. Ianto, jobless after the destruction of Torchwood One at Canary Wharf, is looking for a job – and he looks good in a suit. After he proves his worth, Jack may just have one for him.

2008: Minus Gwen, who has overslept, Jack and the rest of the Torchwood team investigate odd readings indicating alien activity. But instead they find bombs mere seconds away from detonating. An old enemy of Jack’s has returned, and the rest of Jack’s team may regret the day they signed up.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodewritten by Chris Chibnall
directed by Jonathan Fox Bassett
music by Ben Foster

Guest Cast: Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), Amy Manson (Alice Guppy), Heather Carney (Emily Holroyd), Paul Kasey (Blowfish / Weevil), Skye Bennett (Little Girl), Julian Lewis Jones (Alex), Simon Shackleton (Bob), Gareth Jones (Security Guard), Claire Clifford (Milton), Noriko Aida (Toshiko’s Mother), Andrea Lowe (Katie), Richard Lloyd-King (Doctor), Catherine Morris (Nurse), Selva Rasalingam (Psychiatrist), James Marsters (Captain John Hart), Lachlan Nieboer (Gray)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Exit Wounds

TorchwoodAfter escaping the bomb blast, Torchwood is helpless in the face of a promise of revenge from Captain John Hart. And Captain John has another ace up his sleeve: he’s found Jack’s brother Grey, alive and grown up. When Jack returns to the Torchwood hub, John kidnaps him and forces him to watch as he sets off a devastating series of huge explosions throughout Cardiff…and then John takes Jack back in time through the rift to Cardiff in 27 A.D., where Grey is waiting. Driven mad by the torment he endured after his older brother lost track of him, Grey is now seeking revenge, and buries Jack alive. Gwen mobilizes the rest of Torchwood and finds herself having to tell the city’s police what to do – as best she can. One of the explosions has cut off external power to the Turnmill nuclear power station, and Owen races to prevent a meltdown as the rest of the team returns to the hub. They find Captain John there, who explains that he was forced to do Grey’s bidding, and claims that he can locate Jack for them. But Grey isn’t finished with the rest of the team: he shoots Toshiko at point blank range and traps Gwen, Ianto and John in the underground cells normally reserved for Weevils. Without Toshiko’s technical advice, Owen finds himself trapped at the nuclear station with a radioactive disaster imminent. Whether or not Jack can be found and can save the day, his team will never be the same – nor will his relationship with his brother.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodewritten by Chris Chibnall
directed by Ashley Way
music by Murray Gold and Ben Foster

Guest Cast: Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), James Marsters (Captain John Hart), Tom Price (PC Andy), Lachlan Nieboer (Gray), Paul Kasey (Weevil), Golda Rosheuvel (Dr. Angela Connolly), Syreeta Kumar (Nira Docherty), Cornelius Macarthy (Charles Gaskell), Amy Manson (Alice Guppy)

Notes: At last, Toshiko’s presence alongside the ninth Doctor in Aliens Of London is explained – apparently, Owen was to have been sent to investigate the “space pig,” but was hungover and didn’t answer his phone. Toshiko was sent to pose as a medic instead – not exactly her forte – which explains her jumpiness when the Doctor arrived on the scene.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Stolen Earth

Doctor WhoConfronted with the imminent arrival of Rose from the alternate universe, the Doctor and Donna make a quick jump to modern-day Earth, finding that everything is all right and returning to the TARDIS. But a sudden displacement of time and space leaves the TARDIS floating in space – without Earth. The Doctor flies into action to try to track the planet down, even going so far as to pay an unannounced visit to the Shadow Proclamation, an intergalactic law enforcement body, where he talks his way past Judoon guards and discovers that Earth isn’t the only planet missing: the Shadow Proclamation has placed the entire universe on alert. Taking note of the mass and properties of the missing worlds, the Doctor hypothesizes that the planets may have been stolen to become components of a massive engine, generating energy on a scale not seen since the creation of the universe. The representatives of the Shadow Proclamation are prepared to go into battle, but only if the Doctor surrenders his TARDIS; he opts to go it alone instead.

On Earth, chaos has broken out. Night has fallen around the world, and the sky is now teeming with unfamiliar planets. At UNIT HQ in New York City, at Torchwood in Cardiff and at Sarah Jane Smith’s home in Ealing, former companions of the Doctor are among the first to hear a message transmitted from an oncoming barrage of spacecraft: a Dalek voice endlessly repeating the word “exterminate”. The Daleks attack the planet, concentrating their firepower on military installations or entities that have prior knowledge of the Daleks: Torchwood and UNIT are among the first targets. An unlikely ally unites Martha, Torchwood and Sarah, using a technology invented for an emergency in which the Doctor hasn’t arrived to save the day. But the TARDIS does indeed make its way to Earth, finding the stolen planets time-shifted within the Medusa Cascade. The Doctor discovers that Davros, creator of the Daleks, has survived the Time War and bred a new race of Daleks to do his bidding. As the Doctor’s former companions race to join up with him, Torchwood comes under Dalek attack and Gwen and Ianto are left to fend for themselves. Sarah finds herself at the mercy of the Daleks, and even when Rose finds the TARDIS, it may not be enough to save the Doctor when he finds himself in a Dalek’s gunsights.

Order the DVDDownload this episodewritten by Russell T. Davies
directed by Graeme Harper
music by Murray Gold

Guest Cast: Billie Piper (Rose Tyler), Freema Agyeman (Martha Jones), John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Elisabeth Sladen (Sarah Jane Smith), Penelope Wilton (Harriet Jones), Adjoa Andoh (Francine Jones), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Thomas Knight (Luke Smith), Bernard Cribbins (Wilfred Mott), Jacqueline King (Sylvia Noble), Julian Bleach (Davros), Michael Brandon (General Sanchez), Andrea Harris (Suzanne), Lachele Carl (Trinity Wells), Richard Dawkins (himself), Paul O’Grady (himself), Marcus Cunningham (Drunk Man), Jason Mohammad (Newsreader), Paul Kasey (Judoon), Kelly Hunter (Shadow Architect), Amy Beth Hayes (Albino Servant), Gary Milner (Scared Man), Barney Edwards, Nick Pegg, David Hankinson, Anthony Spargo (Dalek Operators), Nicholas Briggs (Dalek voice), Alexander Armstrong (voice of Mr. Smith)

The Stolen EarthNotes: Davros first appeared in 1975’s Genesis Of The Daleks, and returned to terrorize each of the Doctor’s successive incarnations until his final appearance in 1988’s Remembrance Of The Daleks. Even the cancellation of the original series didn’t slow him down, as he returned to do battle twice more with the sixth Doctor, and then with Paul McGann as the eighth Doctor in Terror Firma, and even appeared in his own audio spinoff series, I, Davros. Apparently he’s been missing since a battle during the first year of the Time War, which – just to drive fans crazy – remains unrecorded in either novel or audio form. Actor Julian Bleach becomes the fourth actor to play Davros, having played the Ghost Maker in an episode of Torchwood’s second season. Bernard Cribbins, as Donna’s grandfather, has come up against the Daleks before – 42 years before this episode’s premiere, in the 1966 feature film Daleks: Invasion Earth 2150 A.D. starring Peter Cushing as Doctor Who. Penelope Wilton returns as former Prime Minister Harriet Jones, not seen since the then-newly-regenerated Doctor uttered six fateful words in The Christmas Invasion. Appearing as himself, evolutionary science advocate Richard Dawkins is the husband of former Doctor Who co-star Lalla “Romana” Ward; coincidentally, they were introduced by former Doctor Who writer and script editor – and Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy author – Douglas Adams.

LogBook entry & review by Earl Green […]

Journey’s End

Doctor WhoCaught by a glancing blow from a Dalek weapon, the Doctor’s body is involuntarily beginning the regeneration process – until the Doctor is able to divert the energy into his severed hand, benefitting from the restorative effects without changing his appearance or personality. On Earth, Sarah Jane is saved from the Daleks by Mickey Smith and Jackie Tyler, who have returned from the alternate universe after losing contact with Rose. The Dalek attack on the Torchwood Hub is halted by a defense mechanism that the late Toshiko Sato was developing, locking the Dalek into a moment of frozen time – but also trapping Ianto and Gwen inside, safe but unable to escape. To Mickey’s disgust and Jackie’s horror, Sarah surrenders herself and both of them to the Daleks, reasoning that being taken to the Dalek mothership as hostages will put her closer to the Doctor, and in a better position to help. The TARDIS is brought about the mothership by the Daleks, and the Doctor, Rose and Captain Jack step out to meet their fate – but the TARDIS doors close, trapping Donna inside. Declaring the time machine and anyone who is still inside it a threat, the Dalek Supreme orders the TARDIS dumped into the neutrino core of his own ship, where it will dissolve and surrender its energy to the Dalek war effort. But when Donna reaches for the Doctor’s severed hand, she sets other events into motion which the Daleks can’t possibly have foreseen. Davros is planning the destruction of the entire cosmos, every universe, every alternate universe, and every dimension, to prove himself a god, and nothing the Doctor says can dissuade the mad Dalek creator from his plans. Martha, Sarah, Jack, Mickey and Jackie join forces to put an end to Davros’ plan, but he has anticipated their interference. But he hasn’t anticipated Donna’s next move – and he certainly hasn’t anticipated whose help she has.

Order the DVDDownload this episodewritten by Russell T. Davies
directed by Graeme Harper
music by Murray Gold

Guest Cast: Billie Piper (Rose Tyler), Freema Agyeman (Martha Jones), John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Elisabeth Sladen (Sarah Jane Smith), Camille Coduri (Jackie Tyler), Noel Clarke (Mickey Smith), Adjoa Andoh (Francine Jones), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Thomas Knight (Luke Smith), Bernard Cribbins (Wilfred Mott), Jacqueline King (Sylvia Noble), Julian Bleach (Davros), Valda Aviks (German Woman), Shobu Kapoor (Scared Woman), Elizabeth Tan (Chinese Woman), Michael Price (Liberian Man), Barney Edwards, Nick Pegg, David Hankinson, Anthony Spargo (Dalek Operators), Nicholas Briggs (Dalek voice), John Leeson (voice of K-9), Alexander Armstrong (voice of Mr. Smith)

LogBook entry & review by Earl Green […]

Lost Souls

Torchwood: Lost SoulsTorchwood leaves Cardiff behind for a flight to Switzerland after a call from Martha Jones. Serving as part of the UNIT contingent at the soon-to-be-activated Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland, Martha says that strange occurrences and even unexplained disappearances among personnel are taking place – followed by a cover-up which UNIT doesn’t seem to be able to penetrate. Torchwood gains access to the collider by passing Ianto off as the Welsh ambassador, and Martha gives them a first-hand look at what’s been happening to some of the people who enter the colliider tunnel. But when Gwen and Ianto enter the tunnel for themselves, Ianto’s certain he can hear the voices of the dead – even voices claiming to be Owen, Toshiko and Lisa – while Gwen tries to fight off the same sensation. Unknown to them, however, someone else on site has already been hearing those same “voices of the dead” – and is doing their bidding, regardless of the consequences to the collider experiment or its personnel.

Order the CDwritten by Joseph Lidster
directed by Kate McAll
music by Ben Foster and Murray Gold

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Freema Agyeman (Martha Jones), Lucy Montgomery (Professor Johnson), Stephen Crichlow (Dr. Oliver Harrington), Mark Meadows (Leon Foiret)

Notes: This first made-for-audio Torchwood adventure was produced by BBC Radio 4 for broadcast on September 10th, 2008, to mark the occasion of the real-life CERN Large Hadron Collider being fully switched on for the first time. Writer Joseph Lidster, who also penned the Torchwood TV episode A Day In The Death, got his started writing audio dramas based on the series from which Torchwood spun off, Doctor Who. In a way, Lost Souls brings Doctor Who-related audio drama back to its very beginnings – the first Doctor Who audio story, Exploration Earth: The Time Machine, was an educational program starring Tom Baker and Elisabeth Sladen during their TV heyday.

Timeline: As the funerals of Owen and Toshiko (both of whom died in the second season finale Exit Wounds) are mentioned as a recent event, and they’re also the last time that the surviving Torchwood members saw Martha, presumably Lost Souls takes place between Exit Wounds and the Doctor Who fourth season finale The Stolen Earth / Journey’s End, which saw Torchwood and Martha working together again.

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green

Review: Devised as a semi-educational part of BBC Radio 4’s “Big Bang Day,” celebrating the inauguration of the Large Hadron Collider operating beneath the border of France and Switzerland, Lost Souls actually falls just a little bit short in both its educational remit and as a Torchwood adventure.

Though the story, via dialogue, gets across the basic news soundbite explanation of the LHC, oversimplifying things a bit, but it gets what information is needed for the purposes of the plot across – that’s okay. What I’m not too crazy about is that we then get, by way of Captain Jack, a more mystified version of that information, with Jack claiming at one point that the Higgs Boson particle is “life” itself. (In fact, the theoretical Higgs Boson particle is related to mass, i.e. why everything in the universe has mass.) To characterize the Higgs Boson as “life” is misleading at best, and normally I wouldn’t begrudge anyone in the Doctor Who universe for taking a little bit of dramatic license, except that Lost Souls was commissioned specially for the occasion of a day of talk radio programming aimed at demystifying the LHC.

As far as the Torchwood end of things goes, perhaps due to its afternoon timeslot, the characterizations and script are perhaps a bit watered down from what we’d normally expect from Torchwood – there are a couple of “what the hell”s uttered, and Jack makes one reference to someone’s good looks. Otherwise, it might as well be audio Doctor Who. But then again, I’m not sure that the middle of the afternoon is a reasonable time to expect the usual saucy Torchwood fare. I did, however, find the frequent mentions of Owen and Toshiko’s deaths as a recent event to be interesting. This is an aftermath that we didn’t get to see played out on TV, and it’s interesting – and not completely incidental to the plot either.

It’s not bad – it at least feels like TV Torchwood – but when the thing was conceived as a part of a day meant to enlighten the public about the LHC, I’m not sure it helps to slot real explanations in alongside something that really straddled the fence between science fiction and science fantasy.

Asylum

Torchwood: AsylumA young woman appears out of thin air and plummets into the river; not long afterward, Gwen’s old friend Andy arrests the same young woman for shoplifting, and discovers a strange, futuristic weapon in her possession. Andy calls Gwen and Torchwood in to inspect both the weapon and its bearer. The girl can barely remember her own name, but when her blood tests and other facts come to light, Andy is alarmed that Torchwood wants to take her into custody, despite Gwen’s assurances. Jack and Ianto discover the true use of the “gun” – a device which can jam vehicles, communications and electronics – and Jack is certain that Earth won’t see technology like this for decades at the very least. The girl’s memory gradually returns, and she recovers enough from her ordeal to tell Gwen and Andy about a dystopian future that she barely survived…or perhaps she didn’t survive it after all.

Order the CDwritten by Anita Sullivan
directed by Kate McAll
music by Murray Gold

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Tom Price (PC Andy Davidson), Eric Richards (Freda), Dick Bradnum (Dog owner / Radio ad actor), Matthew Gravelle (Security guard), Sara McGaughey (WPC / Cyclist), Isabel Lewis (Girl)

Notes: This made-for-audio Torchwood adventure was produced by BBC Radio 4 for broadcast on July 1st, 2009, days before the premiere of Children Of Earth on BBC TV.

Timeline: After the audio story Lost Souls, but before the Torchwood: Children Of Earth TV miniseries.

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green […]

Golden Age

Torchwood: Golden AgeJack, Gwen and Ianto leave the confines of Cardiff to investigate the disappearance of thousands of people in India. The trail leads to Delhi, where they witness one of the disappearances first-hand, as hapless dockworkers are consumed by some kind of energy net. But even more suspicious is some of the cargo that was being moved – cargo addressed to Captain Jack Harkness. It turns out that Delhi is one of Jack’s old stomping grounds, and the home of Torchwood India, which Jack shut down nearly a century ago. Jack pays a visit to the colonial gentlemen’s club which was once home to the local Torchwood group, and is stunned to find that it’s still in operation – and his old cohort the Duchess is still in charge and hasn’t aged a day. Despite that oddity, nothing immediately links Torchwood India to the mass disappearances in Delhi. But clearly the presence of the team from Cardiff has the Duchess’ staff and servants on edge – their answers are evasive at best. When Gwen and Ianto disappear without a trace, Jack discovers the terrifying truth: the Duchess is so obsessed with clinging to the British Empire’s past that she’ll sacrifice humanity’s future to preserve it.

Order the CDwritten by James Goss
directed by Kate McAll
music by Murray Gold

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Jasmine Hyde (The Duchess), Amerjit Dew (Mr. Daz), Ravin J. Ganatra (Mahajan), Richard Mitchley (Gissing)

Notes: This made-for-audio Torchwood adventure was produced by BBC Radio 4 for broadcast on July 2nd, 2009, days before the premiere of Children Of Earth on BBC TV. Writer James Goss was previously in charge of bbc.co.uk’s FictionLab project, and one of his duties in that job was coordinating with Big Finish for the production of the animated webcast Real Time starring Colin Baker as the sixth Doctor. Torchwood India is said to have retrieved a Yeti sphere from the Himalayas (possibly left over from, or related to, the 1968 Doctor Who story The Abominable Snowmen). At the end of Golden Age, after Torchwood India vanishes, Ianto comments that there’s “nothing at the end of the lane” – an in-joke on the earliest working title for the very first episode of Doctor Who, which was eventually broadcast under the title An Unearthly Child.

Timeline: After the audio story Asylum, and before both the audio story The Dead Line and the Torchwood: Children Of Earth TV miniseries.

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green

Review: A rock-solid Torchwood adventure that would’ve done the TV series proud, Golden Age is a rare Torchwood gem: it exposes some of Jack’s past and actually pays it off within the same story in a way that’s integral to the narrative. It returns to the idea of Torchwood as a corrupted organization, long before the fall of the arrogant modern-day Torchwood at Canary Wharf (or, indeed, in Children Of Earth), and at the same time comments – uncompromisingly – on the subject of British imperial colonialism.

The guest cast is great across the board. At first I was a bit put off at the slightly dizzy reading of the Duchess character, until I finally realized that it was perfectly appropriate – the woman has completely flipped. Despite the fact that this is clearly Jack’s story, Golden Age has interesting moments for both Gwen and Ianto as well; the supporting characters are well fleshed-out too.

If there’s one gigantic glaring flaw to Golden Age, it’s this: the moment you realize the nature of the story’s big threat, you know exactly how it can be, if not defeated, then at least slowed down enough for a solution to be found. The story is resolved in a manner very similar to season 1’s End Of Days; the moment that anything that feeds on life itself is revealed to be the big bad, it’s a given that Captain Jack’s inexhaustible supply of life force will save the day. But aside from the painfully obvious resolution, Golden Age is one of the better Torchwood radio adventures.

The Dead Line

Torchwood: The Dead LineA growing number of people are ending up in Cardiff’s hospitals, trapped in a trancelike comatose state. These victims all have one thing in common: they answered a random phone call on a vintage business phone. While Jack can understand retro chic, he doesn’t understand how the outdated phones could be having this effect. A trace reveals that the same number was responsible for all of the victims to date. Jack calls the number and gets no answer, but when he gets a call back from that number and answers the phone, he joins the ranks of the victims. Ianto and Gwen call on the expertise of an old flame of Jack’s, neurologist Stella Courtney. She’s familiar with Jack and with Torchwood, but hasn’t been involved with either since the 1970s. With Rhys helping out, Gwen tries to track down more information on the phones responsible for the wave of incidents. Ianto stays at Jack’s bedside while Dr. Courtney tries to learn more by watching Jack’s brainwaves. Torchwood needs to work fast, because the effects are soon no longer limited to a specific set of 30-year-old telephones…

Order the CDwritten by Phil Ford
directed by Kate McAll
music by Murray Gold

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Kai Owen (Rhys), Dona Croll (Stella), Eiry Thomas (Jan), Matthew Gravelle (Bob), Brendan Charleson (Tyler)

Notes: This made-for-audio Torchwood adventure was produced by BBC Radio 4 for broadcast on July 3rd, 2009, days before the premiere of Children Of Earth on BBC TV. The Dead Line was written specifically to accomodate an extremely tight recording schedule for John Barrowman, hence Jack’s absence from much of the story. Phil Ford has scripted TV adventures for both Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures.

Timeline: After the audio story Golden Age, and before the Torchwood: Children Of Earth TV miniseries.

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green […]

Children Of Earth: Day One

TorchwoodAt 8:40 one morning, every child on Earth stands absolutely still and begins reciting a message, in unison and in English: “We are coming.” Both Torchwood and UNIT try to track down the meaning behind the message, but in Whitehall, a seemingly innocuous civil servant named John Frobisher understands precisely what the message means. Captain Jack tries to contact Frobisher – Torchwood’s point of contact with the government – to offer help, but Frobisher’s new personal assistant, Lois Habiba, has no idea who Jack is and simply takes a message. Lois is nothing if not inquisitive, however, and manages to look up Torchwood in the government’s files, and what she learns there turns her world upside-down. Another civil servant, Mr. Dekker, pays Frobisher a visit with a simple but ominous warning: the 456 are returning, and they have sent a message in an incredibly compressed data stream that will take time to translate. At regular intervals, the world’s children come to a stop, either to deliver another message or to unleash a piercing, blood-curdling scream. Hoping to understand what’s going on, Jack and Ianto each set out to observe a little bit closer to home. Ianto visits his sister, where his niece and nephew are acting decidedly normal, while Jack visits a daughter, Alice Carter, who he’s never mentioned to any of his teammates. Alice, wary of Jack’s apparent immortality, would rather he stayed away from her and from his own grandson, who knows him as “Uncle Jack.” Gwen visits a man named Clement McDonald in a mental institution, learning that he somehow knows of an alien threat; he claims to have escaped the 456 in 1965. McDonald is the only adult in the world to have repeated the same messages as the children due to his close call with the aliens. As more messages are relayed through the children, John Frobisher puts a top-secret plan into action, calling for the elimination of a list of individuals – including one Captain Jack Harkness – and the entire Torchwood organization. Jack’s immortality is about to be put to the test.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodewritten by Russell T. Davies
directed by Euros Lyn
music by Ben Foster

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), Peter Capaldi (John Frobisher), Paul Copley (Clement McDonald), Nicholas Farrell (Brian Green), Susan Brown (Bridget Spears), Lucy Cohu (Alice Carter), Ian Gelder (Mr. Dekker), Cush Jumbo (Lois Habiba), Liz May Brice (Johnson), Charles Abomeli (Colonel Oduya), Rik Makarem (Rupesh Patanjali), Katy Wix (Rhiannon Davies), Rhodri Lewis (Johnny Davies), Hillary Maclean (Anna Frobisher), Anna Lawson (Nurse), Rachel Ferjani (Parliamentary Secretary), Christopher James (Press Officer), Phylip Harries (Water Taxi man), Ben Lloyd-Holmes (Operative), Luke Perry (David Davies), Aimee Davies (Mica Davies), Bear McCausland (Steven Carter), Julia Joyce (Holly Frobisher), Madeleine Rakic-Platt (Lilly Frobisher), Gregory Ferguson (young Clem), Crisian Emmanuel (Mother), Melanie Barker (Mother 2), Scott Bailey (Father)

Notes: Martha is said to be on her honeymoon and out of touch with Torchwood; in reality, actress Freema Agyeman had accepted a job as one of the regular cast of Law & Order: UK, a British adaptation (also starring Battlestar Galactica’s Jamie Bamber) of the popular American crime drama. Though early drafts of the script included Martha, no contract had been drawn up for Agyeman and she took the other job. As Jack is sizing up Rupesh Patanjali as a new medical expert for Torchwood, it would seem that neither Martha nor Mickey Smith joined Torchwood (which was heavily implied at the end of the Doctor Who episode Journey’s End); presumably Martha remains with UNIT.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Children Of Earth: Day Two

TorchwoodEven as Gwen and Ianto escape from a massive blast that destroys the Torchwood hub – with Jack inside – and most of Roald Dahl Plass with it, snipers and government agents posing as paramedics are waiting to pick them off. Gwen goes home to get Rhys and go underground; Ianto winds up more exposed and less armed. Mr. Dekker pays a visit to Frobisher, with a translation of the compressed message from the 456: it contains detailed specifications for a device of unknown function, and a very short timetable for completing its construction. The government operatives locate Jack’s body – or what’s left of it – in the ruins of the hub, and they gather the pieces. Astonishingly, Jack’s remains reform into a full body and he is resurrected yet again. Gwen tries to call Frobisher’s office, but instead finds herself talking to Lois; Lois arranges a clandestine meeting with Gwen, and warns her that Frobisher himself has ordered Torchwood’s elimination. Gwen and Rhys infiltrate a military complex where the revived Jack has been trapped alive in solid concrete. As it happens, Ianto has also tracked down where Jack has been taken to, and mounts his own rescue attempt just as Gwen and Rhys are trapped, also saving them in the process. The world’s children deliver a new message – “we are coming tomorrow” – as construction of the unknown device is rushed to completion atop the MI-5 building, and Mr. Dekker tests it: an environment chamber for the 456. To the best of anyone’s knowledge, the specifications for this chamber have only been sent to the British government. Without the resources of the hub, and marked for death, Torchwood has less than a day to find out who is coming, why they’re coming – and how to fight back.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodewritten by John Fay
directed by Euros Lyn
music by Ben Foster

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), Peter Capaldi (John Frobisher), Paul Copley (Clement McDonald), Nicholas Farrell (Brian Green), Susan Brown (Bridget Spears), Lucy Cohu (Alice Carter), Ian Gelder (Mr. Dekker), Tom Price (PC Andy), Cush Jumbo (Lois Habiba), Liz May Brice (Johnson), Katy Wix (Rhiannon Davies), Rhodri Lewis (Johnny Davies), Hillary Maclean (Anna Frobisher), Luke Perry (David Davies), Aimee Davies (Mica Davies), Bear McCausland (Steven Carter), Julia Joyce (Holly Frobisher), Madeleine Rakic-Platt (Lilly Frobisher), Gregory Ferguson (young Clem), Simon Poland (456 voice), Ashley Hunt (Recovery worker), Osi Okerafor (Kodak), Emmanuel Ighadaro (Paramedic), Robert Shelly (Sentry), Quill Roberts (Guard), Fay McDonald (Mother), Louise Minchin (Newsreader), Libby Liburd (Barmaid)

Note: This episode depicts the most critical damage that Captain Jack has been seen to endure (prior to this, the record appeared to be held by numerous point-blank blasts from Dalek weapons). He can apparently survive dismemberment, as what’s left of him is said to be “an arm, a shoulder, and part of a head.”

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Children Of Earth: Day Three

TorchwoodA curfew is imposed across Britain and the Prime Minister takes to the airwaves to assure everyone that no harm will come to their children. Ianto takes the rest of the team to an abandoned warehouse in south London that had once been used by Torchwood One, and since they’re already on the wanted list, they steal the equipment, vehicles and money they need to continue their efforts to decipher the 456’s mysterious messages; Gwen also springs Clement McDonald from the lockup after he’s arrested for petty theft. Gwen meets with Lois Habiba again, giving her a set of spy camera contact lenses and asking her to help Torchwood by giving them a look inside Frobisher’s operations; at first she’s reluctant, but after the Prime Minister – under fire from both UNIT and the world’s other major governments – names Frobisher as Britain’s pointman in negotiations with the 456, Lois finally wears the contacts to the first diplomatic meeting with the 456. At this meeting, the 456 formally demand 10% of the world’s children as a gift. It’s not the first time that children have been delivered to the 456; Clement McDonald escaped from a previous visit in which he was to be presented as a “gift” in 1965. And he recognizes the man who delivered him and the other children into the 456’s waiting hands: Captain Jack Harkness.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodewritten by Russell T. Davies & James Moran
directed by Euros Lyn
music by Ben Foster

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), Peter Capaldi (John Frobisher), Paul Copley (Clement McDonald), Nicholas Farrell (Brian Green), Susan Brown (Bridget Spears), Lucy Cohu (Alice Carter), Ian Gelder (Mr. Dekker), Colin McFarlane (General Pierce), Tom Price (PC Andy), Cush Jumbo (Lois Habiba), Liz May Brice (Johnson), Charles Abomeli (Colonel Oduya), Katy Wix (Rhiannon Davies), Rhodri Lewis (Johnny Davies), Hillary Maclean (Anna Frobisher), Rachel Ferjani (Parliamentary Secretary), Christopher James (Press Officer), Ben Lloyd-Holmes (Operative), Luke Perry (David Davies), Aimee Davies (Mica Davies), Bear McCausland (Steven Carter), Julia Joyce (Holly Frobisher), Madeleine Rakic-Platt (Lilly Frobisher), Patrick Etienne (Sandwich shop man), Simon Poland (456 voice), Gregory Ferguson (young Clem), Louise Minchin (Newsreader), Anthony Debaeck (French Newsreader), Lachele Carl (Trinity Wells)

Note: According to the government’s records, Alice Carter (Jack’s daughter) was born to a mother of Italian descent who was a Torchwood employee working alongside Jack from the 1960s through the ’70s. The spy contact lenses were last worn by Martha Jones in season two’s Reset, but apparently Gwen and Rhys have been using them for recreational purposes, which will probably remain as classified as anything in Torchwood’s archives.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Children Of Earth: Day Four

TorchwoodThe full extent of Jack’s involvement in the original 1965 contact with the 456, and the resulting abductions, is revealed: he was sent to deliver a dozen children, including young Clement McDonald, to the 456, in exchange for the antidote to a virus with which the 456 had infected humanity. Clement escaped, unsuitable since he was on the cusp of puberty, but was left with a residual psychic link to the 456. Through Lois’ contact lens cameras, the team sees, hears and records deliberations among the Prime Minister and his cabinet, debating not how to save the children, but precisely which children should be handed over to meet the aliens’ demands. It is eventually decided that “lower class” children in “lessser” schools will be sacrificed. Jack vows to fight back, setting a plan into motion: Rhys will go into hiding and stand by for a signal to release the evidence gathered by Lois’ contact lens cameras to the public; since this act would topple the British government, it’s a last-ditch bargaining chip. Gwen and Clement will remain in Torchwood’s London warehouse and wait for the government shock troops to arrive, which they inevitably will after Ianto places a phone call to Gwen. Lois is instructed to deliver Torchwood’s terms to the Prime Minister directly, which she does just as Jack and Ianto arrive to begin a more aggressive form of negotiation with the 456. But while Jack may be able to bring Britain’s government to a stunned stand-still, he may not be persuasive enough to drive the 456 from Earth.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodewritten by John Fay
directed by Euros Lyn
music by Ben Foster

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), Peter Capaldi (John Frobisher), Paul Copley (Clement McDonald), Nicholas Farrell (Brian Green), Susan Brown (Bridget Spears), Lucy Cohu (Alice Carter), Ian Gelder (Mr. Dekker), Cush Jumbo (Lois Habiba), Liz May Brice (Johnson), Colin McFarlane (General Pierce), Deborah Finlay (Denise Riley), Nicholas Briggs (Rick Yates), Patric Naiambana (Defense Secretary), Charles Abomeli (Colonel Oduya), Katy Wix (Rhiannon Davies), Rhodri Lewis (Johnny Davies), Hillary Maclean (Anna Frobisher), Sophie Hunter (Vanessa), Luke Perry (David Davies), Aimee Davies (Mica Davies), Bear McCausland (Steven Carter), Julia Joyce (Holly Frobisher), Madeleine Rakic-Platt (Lilly Frobisher), Simon Poland (456 voice), Gregory Ferguson (young Clem), Ben Loyd Holmes (Operative), Louise Minchin (Newsreader), Anthony Debaeck (French Newsreader), Lachele Carl (Trinity Wells)

Notes: Nicholas Briggs, seen on-screen as Rick Yates, has already provided Dalek, Auton, Cyberman and Judoon voices for the series, but is perhaps better known to Doctor Who fandom as the current producer of audio Doctor Who for Big Finish Productions; prior to that, Briggs was one of the leading figures in a number of fan-made direct-to-video releases in the 1990s. The fan videos and Big Finish may well have been factors in keeping Doctor Who alive for both fandom and the public at large, and arguably may have been vital stepping stones to the show’s return to TV and its swarm of spinoffs, including Torchwood. This is Briggs’ first on-screen appearance “in universe” for the BBC itself. Since Clement McDonald was unsuitable for the 456 due to the approach of adolescence, presumably the young lead characters of The Sarah Jane Adventures were also immune to the 456’s effects during this crisis. The location of the abandoned Torchwood One warehouse is narrowed down to Shoreditch – appropriately enough, a location close to the junkyard at 76 Totter’s Lane in which the TARDIS first landed when the first Doctor and Susan escaped Gallifrey. Given Torchwood’s original mandate – to track the Doctor’s activities – this location may or may not be mere coincidence.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

Children Of Earth: Day Five

TorchwoodTorchwood has been defeated, and Ianto has paid the price with his life. Jack bargains for the release of his daughter and grandson, as well as Gwen, who is reunited with Rhys and goes to inform Ianto’s family of his death – and to warn them to take their children to safety. Despite the Prime Minister’s assurances that children should return to school – in reality, a ploy to herd them together so the military can deliver them to the 456 – many families, including Ianto’s, have kept their children home. The military steps up its use of force, and any remaining pretense of civility crumbles as parents step forward to protect their children; Gwen and Rhys are on the run again. Having been informed that his children will join those being sacrificed as a publicity move to show that even high-level officials are suffering, Frobisher leaves Whitehall, goes home, murders his own family and commits suicide. Having witnessed enough of Whitehall’s dealings with the 456, the government strike team tasked with hunting down Torchwood instead springs Jack from prison to see if he can save the world yet again. Mr. Dekker and his equipment are rounded up and brought in to help Jack, but they can only reach one conclusion: one terrible sacrifice will have to be made, one child’s life to save the rest of the world’s children – and after making that call, Jack decides he’s had enough of Torchwood and enough of Earth.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodewritten by Russell T. Davies
directed by Euros Lyn
music by Ben Foster

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), Peter Capaldi (John Frobisher), Nicholas Farrell (Brian Green), Susan Brown (Bridget Spears), Lucy Cohu (Alice Carter), Ian Gelder (Mr. Dekker), Cush Jumbo (Lois Habiba), Liz May Brice (Johnson), Colin McFarlane (General Pierce), Deborah Finlay (Denise Riley), Charles Abomeli (Colonel Oduya), Katy Wix (Rhiannon Davies), Rhodri Lewis (Johnny Davies), Hillary Maclean (Anna Frobisher), Luke Perry (David Davies), Aimee Davies (Mica Davies), Bear McCausland (Steven Carter), Julia Joyce (Holly Frobisher), Madeleine Rakic-Platt (Lilly Frobisher), Simon Poland (456 voice), Lorna Bennett (Female Teacher), Louise Minchin (Newsreader), Rhiannon Oliver (Mum)

Notes: If one counts Harold Saxon (in reality the Master) and presumes that his brief stint in office directly followed that of Harriet Jones (former MP for Flydale North), then assuming that Brian Green does step down following this story (and assuming that he took office after Saxon), three successive Prime Ministers have fallen in the Doctor Who/Torchwood universe.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The End Of Time – Part 2

Doctor WhoThe Master has twisted the Immortality Gate into his own weapon, projecting himself as a template onto every human on Earth: every human on Earth is now the Master. The two aliens working undercover in Naismith’s operation are unaffected, and Wilfred is unaffected as well, stuck in the Master’s isolation booth. But the only other human not possessed by the Master is Donna Noble, whose adventures with the Doctor are flooding back into her mind. Wilfred urges her to run, but soon the amount of information crowding her human brain causes her to collapse. The Master interrogates the Doctor, demanding to know the whereabouts of the TARDIS, but this grueling interrogation is soon interrupted by the two aliens, who teleport themselves, the Doctor and Wilfred to their ship in orbit.

An alien artifact arrives on Earth, a piece of the extinct world of Gallifrey, and only then does the Master realize what the drumbeat in his head is: the rhythm of a Time Lord’s hearts. The Master uses this piece of Gallifrey to establish a link, and the entire planet of Gallifrey materializes close enough to Earth that tidal forces begin tearing the smaller planet apart. The Time Lords, desperate to escape their imminent doom in the Time War, have broken free by sending their distress signal – the drumbeat – back in time. They created the Master and made him a madman, all to compel him to provide an escape route for Gallifrey. The Lord President and members of the High Council of the Time Lords arrive on Earth, where the Master demands their obedience and just as quickly discovers that the Lord President is ready to eliminate him: the Master has served his purpose where the Time Lords are concerned. The Doctor cuts Gallifrey’s link to Earth as the Master and the Time Lord President do battle; the planet of the Time Lords disappears again, taking the Master with it.

But it is only after the crisis is averted that the Doctor realizes that the prophecy of his own death has nothing to do with the Time Lords or the Master.

Order the DVDDownload this episodewritten by Russell T. Davies
directed by Euros Lyn
music by Murray Gold

Cast: David Tennant (The Doctor), John Simm (The Master), Bernard Cribbins (Wilfred Mott), Timothy Dalton (Lord President), Catherine Tate (Donna Noble), Jacqueline King (Sylvia Noble), Billie Piper (Rose Tyler), Camille Coduri (Jackie Tyler), John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Freema Agyeman (Martha Smith-Jones), Noel Clarke (Mickey Smith), Elisabeth Sladen (Sarah Jane Smith), Jessica Hynes (Verity Newman), June Whitfield (Minnie Hooper), Claire Bloom (The Woman), Thomas Knight (Luke Smith), Russell Tovey (Midshipman Frame), David Harewood (Joshua Naismith), Tracy Ifeachor (Abigail Naismith), Lawry Lewin (Rossiter), Sinead Keenan (Addams), Joe Dixon (The Chancellor), Julie LeGrand (The Partisan), Brid Brennan (The Visionary), Karl Collins (Shaun Temple), Krystal Archer (Nerys), Lachele Carl (Trinity Wells), Paul Kasey (Ood Sigma), Ruari Mears (Elder Ood), Silas Carson (voice of Ood Sigma), Nicholas Briggs (voice of Judoon), Dan Starkey (Sontaran), Matt Smith (The Doctor)

LogBook entry & review by Earl Green […]

End Of The Road

TorchwoodJack is taken to be reunited with his lover from pre-Depression New York, Angelo Colasanto, who left instructions for his family to find Jack. Colasanto’s granddaughter reveals that after Angelo betrayed Jack to the locals, who repeatedly killed him just to watch him resurrect, samples of his blood were collected and sold to a coalition of three powerful families. Colasanto wasn’t a member of any of those families, but the elderly man does have one last trick up his sleeve: after keeping himself in top condition through old age, and then on artificial life support once his health fails, Angelo Colasanto dies. Rex’s CIA supervisor – already on the payroll of the three families – shows up to take charge of the situation, but Rex turns the tables. A top CIA operative named Shapiro arrives and saves Rex, but he’s still not sympathetic to Torchwood, and orders Gwen deported back to Wales. Alien technology is discovered in Colasanto’s house, and Jack believes it helped to shield Colasanto from the effects of the “miracle,” allowing him to remain mortal. Jack also firmly believes that this technology shouldn’t fall into human hands – and especially not into the hands of a covert ops organization. But stealing it from under the CIA’s nose may prove very costly to Torchwood’s leader.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodeteleplay by Ryan Scott and Jane Espenson
story by Ryan Scott
directed by Gwyneth Horder-Payton
music by Murray Gold and Stu Kennedy

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Mekhi Phifer (Rex Matheson), Alexa Havins (Esther Drummond), Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), Bill Pullman (Oswald Danes), Lauren Ambrose (Jilly Kitzinger), Candace Brown (Sarah Drummond), Sharon Morgan (Mary Cooper), Marina Benedict (Charlotte Willis), John de Lancie (Shapiro), Wayne Knight (Brian Friedkin), Paul James (Noah Vickers), Teddy Sears (Blue Eyed Man), Nana Visitor (Olivia Colasanto), Megan Duffy (Claire), Constance Wu (Shawnie), David DeSantos (Agent Baylor), Nayo K. Wallace (Wilson)

End Of The RoadNotes: Guest star John de Lancie is another Star Trek veteran, known to fans as the omnipotent, all-powerful Q, whose appearances covered three Star Trek series from the pilot of Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987) to an early Deep Space Nine episode (1993) and the final season of Voyager (2001). He co-starred with future Stargate SG-1 star Richard Dean Anderson in Legend, a short-lived UPN steampunk series, and made appearances in Gene Roddenberry’s Andromeda and numerous other shows both science fiction and otherwise.

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Gathering

TorchwoodTwo months after death ends on a widespread scale, the global economy crashes hard. Rex has returned to the CIA, but Esther and Jack are hiding out in Scotland, while Gwen hides her father – still a category 1 who would normally be on the brink of death – from the authorities and resorts to drugstore smash-and-grabs to obtain the drugs needed to keep him comfortable. But Rex has his suspicions that someone within the CIA is sabotaging his attempts to trace the source of the miracle, or find any sign of the three families. Having shaken off his Phi-Corp PR handler, Oswald Danes unexpectedly turns up in Wales, claiming to know the name of the man who caused the miracle. Jack and Esther join Gwen in Wales to hear Danes’ information, only to find that it’s not the useful piece of information they expected – and yet it may reveal more than they think. Esther alerts Rex to their findings, and the team splits up: Jack and Gwen, reluctantly bringing Oswald Danes with them (mainly so Rhys won’t kill him), follow a lead to Shanghai, while Rex and Esther follow a lead to Buenos Ares. Still wounded from being shot escaping from Angelo Colasanto’s mansion, Jack is bleeding – and his blood is leading Torchwood to the source of the miracle.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodewritten by John Fay
directed by Guy Ferland
music by Murray Gold and Stu Kennedy

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), The GatheringEve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Mekhi Phifer (Rex Matheson), Alexa Havins (Esther Drummond), Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), Bill Pullman (Oswald Danes), Lauren Ambrose (Jilly Kitzinger), Sharon Morgan (Mary Cooper), William Thomas (Geraint Cooper), Marina Benedict (Charlotte Willis), John de Lancie (Shapiro), Paul James (Noah Vickers), Teddy Sears (Blue Eyed Man), Frances Fisher (The Mother), Ian Hughes (Finch), Adam Silver (The Young Man), Willis Chung (Chinese Man), Danny Szam (Surveillance Guy), Jesse Wang (Chinese Worker), Gilbert Wynne (Old Man)

LogBook entry by Earl Green

The Blood Line

TorchwoodFollowing Jack’s blood, the two Torchwood teams close in on the two locations on the surface of the Earth where the Blessing is exposed. Both locations are heavily guarded by members of the three families who obtained Jack’s blood in the early 20th century, and their influence spreads around the world, with agents within the CIA and the Argentine military. Jack reluctantly allows Rex to bring the resources of the CIA in on the operation, but only on the condition that Torchwood’s presence in Shanghai is kept secret, but this only allows the families to have advance warning of Rex and Esther’s presence in South America. Jack and Gwen confront the families in Shanghai and learns the true nature of the Blessing: it’s a life form that exists beneath Earth’s surface, adjusting a morphic field whose presence Jack has been theorizing since the miracle began and gradually extending the average life span of the human race. By deliberately introducing Jack’s immortal blood to the Blessing, the families have altered the nature of life completely. But Jack has a weapon that can restore mortality the human race: now the last mortal man on the planet, he’s willing to shed his own blood to save humanity. Unknown to Jack, Rex has a secret weapon flowing through his veins as well, unwilling to leave anything to chance. But restoring the human race’s ability to die will have a terrible cost.

Order the DVDsDownload this episodewritten by Jane Espenson and Russell T. Davies
story by Russell T. Davies
with thanks to Chris Chibnall
directed by Billy Gierhart
music by Murray Gold and Stu Kennedy

Cast: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Mekhi Phifer (Rex Matheson), Alexa Havins (Esther Drummond), Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), Bill Pullman (Oswald Danes), Lauren Ambrose (Jilly Kitzinger), Candace Brown (Charlotte Willis), Sharon Morgan (Mary Cooper), William Thomas (Geraint Cooper), Marina Benedict (), Paul James (), John de Lancie (Shapiro), Tom Price (Sgt. Andy Davidson), Teddy Sears (), Frances Fisher (The Mother), Benito Martinez (Captain Santos), Chris Butler (The Cousin), McKenzie Applegate (Girl), Veronica Diaz, Noemi del Rio (Sandra Morales), Fernando Fernandez (Young Male Soldier), Cici Lau (Chinese Woman), Laura Waddell (Cat One Nurse)

The Blood LineNotes: Benito Martinez joins Miracle Day’s other Star Trek veterans; he appeared in the premiere episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation’s final season, and appeared in Firefly as well. There are numerous callbacks to Russell T. Davies’ era of Doctor Who here, most obviously the “What? What!? What?!?” catchphrase that was common in David Tennant’s season finales. Jack mentions the Doctor, the Silurians and the Racnoss in connection with the Blessing before admitting that he’s speculating wildly.

LogBook entry by Earl Green