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Torchwood: Children of Earth, Day 2

Lois: "I didn't sign the official secrets act to cover up murder. And I didn't take the job to commit treason on my second day."

What a fabulous kick butt rescue-Jack-at-all-costs episode.

Poor Jack. Not dying, ever, under any circumstances, is an unsettling concept. Torchwood already did some good stuff on that theme in season two, first with undead Owen, and later with Jack and his very long dirt nap. But what happened here took it even further. Blown to bits, and those were actual bits. Reconstructing in absolute agony. Drowning in cement. Horrible.

Jack isn't like, say, the immortals in Highlander. He doesn't just live a long time and regenerate. It's more like he's permanently stuck physically in that moment when he was resurrected by Rose, if I understand it correctly. For the immortals on Highlander, decapitation is the end. Not for Jack. For Jack, there is no end. Horrible.

Gwen, Rhys, and Ianto were at their absolute best. The opening sequences with Gwen and the ambulance were action heroine goodness all over the place. Gwen and Rhys on the run together were fun and surprisingly sweet, especially when she told him her news. And Rhys again proved that he's good at this stuff. He's even comfortable letting Gwen take command. What a gent.

Lois Habiba was a big stroke of good luck. They did enough set-up that what she did, telling Gwen and Rhys the truth, made sense. Lois needs to make an ungodly amount of money working for Torchwood. But it just feels like she's been set up as this great character we could like, so that we'll feel bad when they kill her off. I hope I'm wrong.

Ianto the former coffee boy put them all in the shade. When the bad guys were pouring cement into that room, I could see from Ianto's face that he knew exactly what was happening and was trying to keep from falling apart. And his forklift wall-crashing rescue was great fun. It's not easy to get away from the bad guys while carrying a huge block of cement. And he managed to rescue Gwen and Rhys at the same time.

The 456 stuff was pretty much secondary to Jack's rescue. The instructions for building the chamber reminded me of Contact, only creepy. How harmful can the 456 be if they must be confined to a sealed container, though?

Bits and pieces:

-- When the bomb went off, all I could think of was Big Ben getting destroyed on Doctor Who. Landmarks have a rough time of it in this 'verse.

-- Ianto's sister and brother-in-law had some great moments, too, with the screaming about a police state, and the way he covered her getaway. We got a major clue that Ianto was either abused or neglected when he was a child. He's got a great sister, though.

-- Clem got to do the "They're coming" scene right out of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. (The soldier that flirted with Gwen called Rhys a body snatcher, too.) I'm thinking Clem is important. I bet he's going to have the answer to defeating the 456 without knowing it.

-- Andy was back. And unfortunately, he may have gotten himself in serious trouble while trying to defend Gwen's good name. I rather wish he'd lied to what's'her face, Auntie Terrorist.

-- I still haven't gotten an answer to my question about toddlers and teenagers.

-- Alice was very worried about Jack. She does care. Well, he's her father.

-- Jack died in this episode. Did he ever. I'm sort of keeping track.

-- The BBC America version of this episode was slightly censored. There was a dust cloud covering Jack's posterior. And one of the lines Paul recorded in his "Day One" review (which I have now read) wasn't in the "Day One" episode that aired here, either. I checked. Guess that makes my decision to get the DVD a lot easier.


Frobisher's daughters: (in a monotone) "We want a pony. We want a pony. We want a pony."

Prime Minister: "All I've done is put you on the front line. That's what the front line's for, John. First to fall." Poor Frobisher. You can just tell he's completely screwed, no matter what he does.

Rhys: "How are you, love?"
Gwen: "My best friend's belly had a bomb go off in it last night. Someone's been trying to kill us ever since. I'm traveling at seventy miles per hour on top of a bed of potatoes, and I think I'm going to be sick."

Rhys: "Hang on. The bomb, the guns, the car chase, the hiding from the law... God, what am I like, letting you do all that in your condition?"
Gwen: "Well, you carried my bag."

The 456: "We are coming. Tomorrow."

This was a fast-moving, exciting episode full of wonderful (and super creepy) moments. Like "Day One," it just flew by and was over too quickly,

Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.


  1. Hmmm... it puzzles me that BBC America would censor the show. Why sensor it there and not here? It's not as though HBO aren't knocking out all sorts of explicit stuff. This episode was actually pretty tame in comparison. I was watching an episode of Carnivale a few weeks ago and one of the characters did a handstand, legs spread, with no pants on at all! Getting a glimpse of Jack's cheekolas must surely pale in comparison.

    Oh well, you've seen one arse, you've presumably seen 'em all.

  2. In the U.S., what airs on HBO/Showtime has ratings and pretty much anything goes, because it's subscription. Carnivale aired on HBO. It's different with broadcast TV, though. BBC America did leave the occasional "shit", but I'm certain they have to conform to a certain standard to air shows in the U.S. It's so utterly ridiculous. Censorship infuriates me.

    I must disagree, too. This is John Barrowman's that we're talking about. :)

  3. And John Barrowman is a no holds barrel type of bloke.

    Day 2 wasn't as good as Day 1 but it kept the action going and Frobisher's kids were funny.

    Gwen really quite is the action woman, isn't she?

    I love her and Rhys's moments together and Ianto's brother in law went from zero to hero as well.

  4. Ah, that explain why they cut it, then. Well, at least you'll have something to look forwards to when the DVD comes out. And there's always that zoom button ;o)

  5. Great rescue by Ianto. :) So now we can concentrate on the aliens.


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