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Torchwood

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If you're a fan of camp sic-fi, you should try Torchwood, especially the first two seasons. The BBC series was produced by Russell Davies, who also produced and wrote much of Queer as Folk. The main character, Captain Jack Harkness, is an omnisexual human who can't die. Sample dialogue from the episode "Meat," in which members of the Torchwood team search for humans who are butchering an alien spices and selling the meat:

Gwen: "You ever eaten alien meat?"

Jack: "Yeah."

Gwen: "What was it like?"

Jack: "Well, he seemed to enjoy it."

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GREAT show! I just told The Dude about this last weekend -- this is one of the most entertaining series I've seen in years. It's sort of a cross between X Files, The Avengers, and maybe a little Queer as Folk... which figures, since series creator Russell T Davies also created that seminal gay series. Friends had been trying to get me to watch Torchwood for years, but I held back because I had been disappointed by a lot of recent British series, and Dr. Who is not my cup of coffee. But Torchwood is in a class by itself.

I love how casually they'll occasionally throw in a gay element without comment. Lead character Captain Jack Harkness is described as "omnisexual": he'll have a relationship with anything even remotely attractive... human, male, female, alien, whatever. What's also stunning about the show is that they'll veer from light comedy, to whimsy, all the way to throat-ripping violence, and even to grim terror. The storyline from a couple of years ago, Children of Earth, was heartbreaking. I can't even begin to go into the plot, except to say the denoument absolutely blew me away. "They're using the kids for whaaaaaat?"

I give this show my highest recommendation. If you liked X Files, if you like Fringe (which stole a lot from Torchwood, IMHO), watch Torchwood. It's very quirky, the characters are sharply delineated, and the story lines are often completely unpredictable. And the ongoing secrets of Captain Jack -- who is much, much older than he appears -- are quite captivating.

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I'm viewing the first season on my Kindle Fire (though I've stopped until finals are over). Torchwood is definitely worth the viewing time. I agree with everything that The Pecman said about the series based on watching season 1 episodes 1 through 6, and I'm looking forward to the rest of season 1 and what's in the other seasons.

Colin :icon_geek:

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The episode, "Random Shoes," in the first season is as close to X-Files quality as anything I've seen. If you like musical theater, find some of John Barrowman's performances. He doesn't have the greatest vocal range, but he's a more than fair performer.

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I liked seasons 1 and 2 of Torchwood quite a lot, although a couple of things weren't my favorites. Still, the show has dared to do several things other shows haven't. The inclusion of a very openly bisexual major character is only one of those. I didn't much care for the ending of Children of Earth, but still want to watch further. I haven't gotten to watch any of the new Torchwood: Miracle Day series yet.

Yes, I'm a science fiction fan. I also really like Firefly, Farscape, Star Trek, and Doctor Who, and pretty much anything else you can throw at me. But please don't actually throw it at me. LOL.

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Well, over on this side of the big pond, Torchwood has been very much part of the landscape from the word Go. John Barrowman and his husband live in Cardiff where the series is filmed (just across the estuary from where I live) and Russell T Davies and his husband have recently returned to this country from Los Angeles, and Davies has put all his current TV work on hold, because his husband is battling cancer and they're focussing on that. They live close to the best cancer hospital in Europe, apparently. I hope it goes well for them.

Torchwood is a for adults spin-off from Doctor Who (it's an anagram - geddit?). I've always loved the way Torchwood takes sexuality in its stride. Captain Jack's main love interest is Ianto, a member of the Torchwood team and a very beautiful Welshman, and nobody takes a blind bit of notice that he's a he.

The new series Torchwood - Miracle Day has been a little controversial over here. For one thing a lot of it is set in the USA so it's lost its Welsh feel, and for another Barrowman delightedly told fans that the series was going to take the sex scenes further - he promised 'man-sex'. However the version shown here had the best bits cut, apparently (I haven't seen it) although I'm told the version showed Stateside was uncut.

Davies first became famous for the original UK version of Queer as Folk, which broke so many taboos it virtually rewrote the book of what you could show on national TV, and at the same time gave me and a generation of gay men a new confidence about being who we are. I remember being amazed to learn that he had been given the job of resurrecting the classic children's sci-fi series Doctor Who, but it turns out he was a major Whovian (fan of Doctor Who) and was able to gather a great team around him to make a high production values return for the Doctor which has gone from strength to strength. For me Torchwood is his greatest achievement so far, though.

Barrowman is very good-looking but not everyone's cup of tea. He's a showman, an energetic musical theatre performer and presenter, but he can be a bit over the top. He acts Captain Jack Harkness very well, though.

Here are a couple of Clerihews on the subject:

Captain Jack Harkness

Is frightened of darkness.

But Cardiff Gay Pride

He takes in his stride.

Johnnys, Barrowman and Depp

Fell out, no longer march in step.

Depp snarled "Barrowman, you hack:

Lay off my name: I'm Captain Jack!"

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...Russell T Davies and his husband have recently returned to this country from Los Angeles, and Davies has put all his current TV work on hold, because his husband is battling cancer and they're focussing on that. They live close to the best cancer hospital in Europe, apparently. I hope it goes well for them.

Wow, that's stunning news. I honestly had no idea. I was actually concerned for Davies, because I've noticed in interviews he has a bunch of lumps all over the right side of his face, and they've gotten worse over time.

Torchwood is a for adults spin-off from Doctor Who (it's an anagram - geddit?). I've always loved the way Torchwood takes sexuality in its stride. Captain Jack's main love interest is Ianto, a member of the Torchwood team and a very beautiful Welshman, and nobody takes a blind bit of notice that he's a he.

I dunno about that. The "Captain Jack/Ianto" relationship was a punch-line to quite a few jokes, but I had no problem with the humor. Believe me, the other members of the team definitely noticed, and it was a little bit of a "whoa" moment -- but only in that it was an unexpected office romance. The bigger plot element was that Ianto was straight -- Captain Jack's conquests obviously cannot resist, no matter what their predilections.

The new series Torchwood - Miracle Day has been a little controversial over here. For one thing a lot of it is set in the USA so it's lost its Welsh feel, and for another Barrowman delightedly told fans that the series was going to take the sex scenes further - he promised 'man-sex'. However the version shown here had the best bits cut, apparently (I haven't seen it) although I'm told the version showed Stateside was uncut.

I think "Miracle Day" was a brilliant, very difficult show to pull off, with an impossibly-difficult premise: suddenly, everyone on Earth becomes immortal... only we quickly figure out what a curse this is. Imagine if you're split into 50 parts, or burned to a crisp, only you're still alive! And you feel every bit of the pain, 24 hours a day, forever. Yikes.

As for sex, there was a scene where Captain Jack picked up a guy in a bar in Long Beach (out here in the LA area) and showed them going at it pretty strenuously -- less explicit than Queer as Folk, but pretty explicit for American TV, even cable. "No. You just drank too much. You weren’t impaled." "You didn’t see the other guy!" It makes sense when you see the scene...

TW103_13.jpg

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I dunno about that. The "Captain Jack/Ianto" relationship was a punch-line to quite a few jokes, but I had no problem with the humor. Believe me, the other members of the team definitely noticed, and it was a little bit of a "whoa" moment -- but only in that it was an unexpected office romance. The bigger plot element was that Ianto was straight -- Captain Jack's conquests obviously cannot resist, no matter what their predilections.

Well, yes, I didn't mean the audience didn't take notice that this was a m/m relationship, but that the characters weren't fazed by it. And thanks for reminding me, I'd forgotten that Ianto has had previous straight relationships. In series one his ex-girlfriend turns up, partially turned into a cyberman or something.

Judging by your post and the accompanying pic, I need to watch Miracle Day. I'll order the DVD.

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