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> Torchwood: Joseph's rank of every episode, outside the government, beyond the police
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JosephStyles
post Sep 22 2019, 02:21 PM
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So a few years ago, I ranked every episode of modern Doctor Who and posted them on here. Now, I thought I'd do the same for spin-off series Torchwood as I'm currently on the final episode of my full rewatch.

Hopefully you'll enjoy my takes on every episode from all four series (though it's worth noting Children of Earth and Miracle Day are counting collectively as one story each). What do you think will end up on top? ohmy.gif

This won't take quite as long as the Doctor Who one as we've got a total of 28 stories to look at, compared to over 100 for Doctor Who...! I will commence the countdown tonight with the last-placed episode!
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Klaus
post Sep 22 2019, 02:36 PM
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Miracle Day for last place (or Meat)

Children of Earth for winner
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lewistgreen
post Sep 22 2019, 02:41 PM
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Series 2 is just genuinely my fave series of the lot so Iím hoping Exit Wounds makes it high!
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Tones and Iz
post Sep 22 2019, 03:58 PM
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up with series 2

exit wounds and dead man walking are what I'm rooting for
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Chez Wombat
post Sep 22 2019, 04:14 PM
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I'm not sure I watched any of the earlier series, I should change that.

Adored Children of Earth and really didn't like Miracle Day, so those for differing ends of the spectrum x
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Dexton
post Sep 22 2019, 04:52 PM
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I saw "Torchwood" in the TV Show forum and got excited sad.gif
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JosephStyles
post Sep 22 2019, 06:08 PM
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28 Ghost Machine

Series 1, Episode 3
Written by: Helen Raynor
Main characters: Captain Jack Harkness, Gwen Cooper, Owen Harper, Toshiko Sato and Ianto Jones
Threat: Ed Morgan

The third episode of Torchwood saw the team pursuing a young man carrying alien technology, which Gwen presses and discovers is a machine that shows you visions of ghosts. Later, Owen activates it and sees a man raping and murdering a woman. Owen makes it his mission to bring the man, Ed Morgan, to justice. When they track down the ghost machine's owner, Bernie (after a lot of chasing), he reveals he found it and has seen the same vision as Owen, as well as the fact it's only one half of the machine. Later, Bernie confesses to Gwen that the second half showed him a vision of his own death. Pressing it, Gwen sees herself holding a bloody knife, calling Owen's name. In a confrontation between Ed and Bernie, with Ed furious that Bernie is blackmailing him from the visions, Owen manages to disarm the knife Ed is holding. However, when Ed tries to run, he impales himself on the knife and dies - this is Gwen's vision when she picks up the knife, seeing Owen do CPR on Ed's body.

It's a bit of an odd episode to bear the title of my least favourite episode really, because Ghost Machine isn't by any means bad. In fact, on my rewatch, I enjoyed series 1 in particular more than before after previously finding it patchy at best. However, the problem with Ghost Machine is that I ultimately find it quite inessential. Its plotline is pretty forgettable, the ghost machine is a cool idea and has some intriguing mystery surrounding it (the scene where Owen presses it under the tunnel is the most memorable part for sure), but I mostly find that if you took this episode out, very little would change in series 1. Shoutout to the scene of Jack teaching Gwen how to fire a weapon though, especially useful considering how necessary that skill was for episode 4...!
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ElectroBoy
post Sep 22 2019, 07:02 PM
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Oddly started a re-watch of Torchwood the other day; watched Everything Changes and Day One

Can't have watched them for so many years. EC was good... Day One not so much.

Surprised at last place... especially given Miracle Day, Cyberwoman and Day One biggrin.gif


This post has been edited by ElectroBoy: Sep 22 2019, 07:03 PM
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Klaus
post Sep 23 2019, 07:20 PM
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Oops I forgot that even existed so canít really complain, nothing standout.

Miracle Day next x
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JosephStyles
post Sep 23 2019, 07:37 PM
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27 Greeks Bearing Gifts

Series 1, Episode 7
Written by: Toby Whithouse
Main characters: Captain Jack Harkness, Gwen Cooper, Owen Harper, Toshiko Sato and Ianto Jones
Threat: Mary

Shining the spotlight on Toshiko for an episode, Greeks Bearing Gifts was the midway point of series 1. As Toshiko is approached by a girl called Mary, who gives her a pendant that allows her to listen to other people's thoughts, Tosh is conflicted as to how she should use this gift, and while in the street, she overhears a man's thought - a thought about killing his family. She saves his family's life, thinking she could use the pendant for good. Ultimately, she uses it to spy on those at Torchwood, notably Owen and Gwen, learning more about their bubbling affair. However, she also learns their in-the-moment thoughts on her, and how they've found her a burden. Mary reveals herself to Toshiko that she is an alien, and that the artefact currently under examination by Torchwood from a crime scene could help her return home. When Tosh takes Mary to Torchwood, she is outed as a murderer and the artefact is a prison transporter, from which Mary killed her guard. As Mary holds Tosh at knife-point, Jack telepathically commands her to remain still as he makes the trade, and Mary disappears, the device reprogrammed by Jack to transport her to the centre of the sun.

I like how this episode shines a light on Tosh, and the dangers of listening in to people's in-the-moment thoughts which are often so much worse than their real opinions, but I think it really shows the worst of some of the characters, notably Gwen and Owen. Both come across as hideously unlikeable even outside of their thoughts (which is rare especially for Gwen who I otherwise adore!!). The concept is quite cool but again it feels kinda inessential in the grand scheme of things.
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Klaus
post Sep 23 2019, 07:54 PM
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nooo, how can any episode giving Tosh a chance to shine be so low mad.gif

also, iconic that an alien was used in both Torchwood and Sarah Jane

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dandy*
post Sep 23 2019, 08:21 PM
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I can't remember these episodes at all!

I did really enjoy the show when it was on but I can't really remember any of series 1 now, will be intrigued to follow this though to see what I can recall.
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Botchia
post Sep 23 2019, 08:25 PM
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Two very forgettable episodes for sure.

Children of Earth to win pls. That was such an event *.*
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JosephStyles
post Sep 23 2019, 08:32 PM
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26 Meat

Series 2, Episode 4
Written by: Catherine Tregenna
Main characters: Captain Jack Harkness, Gwen Cooper, Owen Harper, Toshiko Sato and Ianto Jones
Threat: Employees of meat factory

When alien meat is discovered in Rhys' colleague's lorries and Torchwood are called to investigate, he is shocked to see Gwen arriving at the crime scene. Gwen recognises the company name - Harwood's, aka Rhys' firm. Rhys interrogates Gwen but she denies all knowledge of being at the crash site, so he follows her to work, towards a warehouse where the meat is from. He's spotted by Jack and Gwen when he tries to get inside the warehouse, and they mistake him for being part of the scheme. The employees direct Rhys to their meat source - a giant, living alien, which continues to grow and grow despite chunks being cut out of it. Rhys and Gwen later argue at their flat, but Gwen eventually invites him to the Hub, letting him in on the action to help Torchwood out. He sneaks the team inside in his lorry, but when the team discover the creature, they're caught and Rhys is shot defending Gwen. Owen euthanises the creature, seeing no other option but to put it out of its misery. Later, Jack demands that Gwen gives Rhys a retcon pill, but she refuses.

I was pleased when Rhys was brought into the Torchwood fold, as Gwen's late nights and odd shift hours could surely only have been kept up so long. However, that plot became the primary focus over the alien, whose story wasn't fleshed out (no pun intended...!). It's a slightly horrifying story from the perspective of the creature, but it's quite secondary really and serves only as a plot device to get Rhys involved via the haulage firm. Not a bad episode but not the most exciting either.
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Klaus
post Sep 23 2019, 08:35 PM
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GOOD, not overly exciting - only good for Rhys finally being able to join the fold

Where is Miracle Day
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JosephStyles
post Sep 23 2019, 08:38 PM
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QUOTE(Klaus @ Sep 23 2019, 09:35 PM) *
Where is Miracle Day

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JosephStyles
post Sep 24 2019, 06:01 PM
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25 Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang

Series 2, Episode 1
Written by: Chris Chibnall
Main characters: Captain Jack Harkness, Gwen Cooper, Owen Harper, Toshiko Sato and Ianto Jones
Threat: Captain John Hart

Tracking down a blowfish, the Torchwood team are amazed when Jack reappears after an unexplained period of absence. He quickly learns that the team have functioned well without him, and Gwen has gotten engaged to Rhys. When rift activity is detected in town, Jack comes face-to-face with time agency frenemy Captain John Hart, who insists he wants to help in tracking down three radioactive cluster bombs around Cardiff. The team split up. Gwen and John take the docks, where John paralyses Gwen and locks her in a shipping container. Tosh and Owen go to a warehouse, where John shoots Owen in the hip. Jack and Ianto search an office block, where John pushes Jack off the roof. Ianto finds Owen and Tosh and in the nick of time, they save Gwen and all five of the team find John back at the Hub, where he has found a device from the blowfish that would locate the diamond from a former lover. However, it's a booby trap, and a DNA bomb is attached to her murderer - John himself. Handcuffing himself to Gwen, the team fight to save her before the bomb goes off. Ultimately, they inject John with DNA from the entire team, confusing the bomb and sending it through the rift before it destroys Cardiff.

I quite like sections of this episode, especially the DNA bomb part, though I find a lot of it quite slow moving, especially when the teams split up. Ultimately it's a bit too chatty with not enough action, and Captain John isn't the easiest to warm to (even as a villain, though I grew to enjoy his presence more in later episodes). Perhaps a controversial choice to be out so low, but it's never filled me with a lot of excitement I must admit!
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CockDestroyer
post Sep 25 2019, 02:28 PM
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i really need to rewatch everything now damn it
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Calum
post Sep 25 2019, 04:50 PM
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Meat out already? This is over x

Children of Earth to win. Truly one of the best pieces of television. Ever.
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JosephStyles
post Oct 6 2019, 03:34 PM
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24 Miracle Day

Series 4, Episode 1-10
Written by: Russell T Davies, Doris Egan, Jane Espenson, Jim Gray, John Shiban & Ryan Scott
Main characters: Captain Jack Harkness, Gwen Cooper, Rex Matheson, Esther Drummond, Rhys Williams and Oswald Danes
Threat: PhiCorp, CIA, Oswald Danes, Colin Maloney, The Three Families

Here we go. How to summarise 10 episodes in one paragraph? kink.gif When hospitals all around the world stop registering any deaths, the world is put into crisis as Miracle Day begins. Captain Jack is summoned back to Earth just as an attack on Gwen is launched in her new house on the coast in Wales. He arrives at the same time as injured CIA agent Rex Matheson, who tracks down Torchwood after the word is sent to the CIA then mysteriously wiped. Rex takes Gwen and a now-mortal Jack to America, where he and colleague Esther Drummond join Torchwood after the CIA turn on them. Together, they attempt to discover the truth behind the Miracle, leading them to mysterious drug company PhiCorp, who have stockpiles of drugs ready as if they knew it was coming. Meanwhile, murderer and paedophile Oswald Danes becomes a household name after surviving the lethal injection on Miracle Day, and Torchwood suspect he and his new agent Jilly Kitzinger are linked to PhiCorp. Torchwood team up with Dr Vera Juarez when overflow camps are announced and a new category system comes into effect. With Rex, Esther and Vera in an overflow camp in the US and Gwen and Rhys in one in Wales, hoping to save Gwen's father, they soon realise the "category 1" patients (aka those who are essentially dead) are being incinerated. When Vera discovers the truth, the camp boss Colin Maloney incinerates her as Rex watches on. Though Torchwood leak the footage and expose the truth, the camps only pause and eventually restart as the world spirals into crisis mode. On her way back to the US, Gwen's Eye-5 contact lenses are intercepted and she is told to bring Jack somewhere, to people who are linked to an old lover of his - Angelo Colosanto, who dies in front of Jack somehow. As Torchwood attempt to figure out how he dies, learning of the names of three families, Gwen is sent back to Wales and Jack is shot as they escape. Rex stays behind to work with the CIA while Esther looks after Jack. Eventually, they regroup in Wales and learn of two cities where blood banks were burnt down - Buenos Aires and Shanghai, two cities that are completely opposite on the globe. Rex and Esther go to Buenos Aires and Jack, Gwen and Oswald Danes go to Shanghai, each of them seeing the Miracle - a gap through the planet known as the Blessing. With Jack's blood pumping through his body, Rex is able to help Jack from the opposite side of the world as they unleash their mortal blood into the Blessing, resetting the template. Esther dies, alongside Oswald who blows up the Shanghai site.

As I've realised writing that paragraph, the problem with Miracle Day is just how many plot strands are going on and how ultimately so few of them felt relevant. Episode 2 was almost entirely set on the plane, when that could easily have been condensed to a few scenes, while the overflow camp episodes felt redundant when there were ultimately no consequences for what followed. Oswald Danes takes up WAY too much time even though Bill Pullman puts in a horrifyingly brilliant performance, and I would've liked to see some more softer moments from Rex so that we could warm to him better. The conclusion didn't feel overly strong either - how could the Blessing have that effect on humans? And I'd have loved to have seen the greater global impact of the Miracle, much like what RTD managed in Years and Years. Give us news reports etc so we know for sure just how bad it is!

On a positive note, the concept was great and there's some really promising moments throughout - Vera's death was gruesome and horrible but a perfect example of Torchwood tragedy done well, and the tension as Gwen attempts to keep her father a secret at home is very well played. I loved Esther too, it felt harsh that she died from that gunshot wound yet Rex managed to survive losing all that blood and somehow become immortal laugh.gif It's a very mixed series with very little that's overtly BAD, but its messiness and length are its greatest enemies.
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