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Torchwood: Two for the price of one - Eldritch Lacemaking and other Randomness

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February 14th, 2008


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05:33 pm - Torchwood: Two for the price of one
And I quite liked both of them. I mean after Adam I sort of came to the conclusion that Cath Treggena hasn't quite managed to live up to her beginner's luck in S1 (I think she's the only person whose S1 contributions I like more than in S2), but Reset was nifty - and not just for the Marthaness of it all. It was very spy thriller/sort of X-Files-ish with conspiracies going on. And an awesomesauce finish.

More spoilery comments will be behind the cuts. I shall try to leave a little space in between the two.


Adam was so totally about Adam's Torchwood fanfic, right?

I mean, it had the guy creating it self-insert as a Gary-Stu, down to being the lead's confidant and having the girl he liked fall in love with him.

It had Gwen being OOC because he hadn't done his research properly.

It had characters being ridiculed (Owen) and demonised (Ianto) just because the "writer" didn't like them or they got in the way of what he wanted the plot to be.

It had dramatic revelations of mystery to the Gary Stu, plot holes even the characters could see through.

And the ending was completely what happens when the characters get sick of the Stu interfering with their story: The forget him, and he ceased to exist.

On more relevant notes, though Adam was a nasty, smarmy arse, I find my self fascinated by the concept of his race/species/whatever. They only exist when you remember them. There could be some nice sci-fi plottage with that sort of being.

Also, Duane Dibbley!Owen (as he seems to have become known) was really terribly sweet. Mildly stalkerish, but sweet.

As for Jack's backstory, far too much was given away in the trailer. And I shall forevermore think of Boeshane as being the Whoniverse equivalent of Tattoinne. The fact young!Jack looked rather like young!Anakin didn't help in that respect, either. The sand at the end was nifty, though.

The Gwen/Rhys stuff was rather lovely, actually. Oh, and when he was being interrogated, Ianto looked creepy as fuck.

Some great visual effects, though.

I do wonder how everything is going to end up being explained away, though.













Martha! Oh, how I missed you so. I shall have to rewatch both these episode, because I was looking forward to you too much to pay proper attention the first time round.

I'll admit I squeed when I saw her name on the titles, though. (She's the "With". Like ASH used to be on Buffy, IIRC)

So, Torchwood S2 has totally become the show they use to try and fix big honking mistakes they made in the past, hasn't it?

Don't pay attention to fandom, my arse.

Yeah, there was a bit of over-compensation for the "What, people think we don't like Martha?" reaction the production team had at the end of last year. That said, I expect it'll settle in the next few episodes. Also, it's nice to not have any bitch-fights about the new person. And it was nice to hear someone acknowledge the whole world-saving bit. I think the fact that Jack also referenced the Doctor and Master as well made it sit better, don't you think?

Also, it's a fairly well-worn trope in itself: The new guest star joins the team/club/class whatever, seems far too good to be true for most of the episode. And then, near the end, they screw up or need help and we realise they are only human after all, yada yada.

...I'm trying to think of examples of this, and all that comes to mind is Hating Alison Ashley. I know there are more, though.

But the Doctor (we think) got Martha a job at UNIT, eh? I wonder what else he got up to while he was there?

Oh and the mysteriously wonderful immune system explains Sarah Jane's uncanny youthfulness.

It was also nice to see that, as far as I am aware, the intro to Martha didn't seem to cut down on the main characters time - except Gwen, maybe. I think it helped that most of her time was interacting directly with at least one of the Torchwood regulars. But Jack had quite a bit of Time, Ianto had some cute bits of snark and relationshippy chat, Tosh and Owen had actual relationship progress - and continuity from a past episode, shock horror! - and I even started shipping them.

Despite being spoiled for the ending. I am truly a fool. But now you see what I was LOLing about in that comment you made, puipui. Tosh = black widow.

(Speaking of, that was so totally a Joss set-up. Just when the crazy kids have gotten things worked out and are happy with their relationship, BANG!)

Owen and Martha were actually a fun double-team. I don't think I shipped them, but I rather liked the flirty interplay, if that makes sense? Friends who flirt, maybe. And it was also quite neat to get to see Martha doing a lot of medically stuff. We never really saw that much of that on Doctor Who.

Speaking of ships, I've never really been much for femslash (girl/girl PWP doesn't interest me, so there needs to be a good character hook to get me to read it) and now there totally is one for Tosh/Martha. Admittedly it's Owen related, what with Martha feeling guilty and Tosh losing her chance, but still, I can actually see it now.

What else... (I do apologise for the all over the place tendency of this review)

It's weird how, despite really liking the main medical conspiracy theory plot, I've hardly commented on it. But I'll just say I really liked it, thought it was clever and different for Torchwood, and leave it at that.

Insane amounts of continuity references. To the Who finale, to early eps this series, to UNIT and their adorable berets...

The Jack and Martha stuff was utterly brilliant. I just loved it, all, every minute of it. Though I imagine the Torchwood guys are going to, if they are ever less than insanely busy, force Jack to sit down and explain things without being so damn cryptic.

But I liked Jack saluting Martha (does she really outrank him?), and this one moment when she looked over her steepled fingers having informed Jack of her job. And just the fact he's so matter-of-fact and proud of her competence. After all, Jack did spend a year in which Martha was his only real hope of fixing things...

Martha so totally ships Jack/Ianto, also. She and Ianto were awesome about it, even if I kept wondering if he knew Adeola at all.

Also, despite being somewhat skeptical of the consolation prize boyfriend in theory, it was so worth it for Martha shooting down Owen. The dodginess of production teams assuming you need a boyriend to have a complete life is almost made up for by the fact that it didn't seem to be a huge part of Martha's character at all. She's confident, competent, generally butt-kicking, and she just happens to also have a boyfriend.

Also, Creative Writing Student = Needs the money = LOLz on my part. Martha so knows Uni peoples (The Student Loans gag is included in their as well)

Also, the ending was freaking awesome. Not just the OMGTHEYKILLEDOWEN! bit, but Jack's rage over the experimenting on aliens, and Torchwood closing things down, and Owen trying to save Martha with the... thingy (It had to work then, it was the third time. Good Ol' Rule of Three) and whole building tension thing...

Seriously good cliffhanger. And seriously good next episode trailer, also.

But I had my Martha back. And so it was all lovely.

ETA: Also, someone was having a laugh. Alias Sam Jones, eh?


In other news, misscam wrote me a mini-ficlet thing. Martha and Bessie! *loves*

This entry may be edited at will as I think of more things (mostly from Reset) to comment on.
Current Mood: enthralledenthralled

(15 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:drakyndra
Date:February 14th, 2008 10:42 am (UTC)
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Actually, according to some on Ye Olde Doctor Who Forums, at least one of the spin-off novels claims that exact same thing (so you haven't been alone in having that thought)
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:drakyndra
Date:February 14th, 2008 08:59 pm (UTC)
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And huzzah for that!
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From:mittendorfer
Date:February 14th, 2008 12:04 pm (UTC)
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*Nod, nods and nods again*

I liked Duane Dibbley!Owen's hair, it looked like his mum had done it.
[User Picture]
From:drakyndra
Date:February 14th, 2008 12:31 pm (UTC)
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In some ways, it was a bit OTT that uncool!Owen was so stereotypically geekish.

In other ways, it was highly amusing.
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From:gryffinclaw
Date:February 14th, 2008 08:13 pm (UTC)
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I was so weirded out by Owen in Adam that I wanted the real, proper Owen back.

Tosh..poor Tosh no breaks for you love.
[User Picture]
From:drakyndra
Date:February 14th, 2008 09:00 pm (UTC)
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I thought he was sweet, but yes, it was terribly weird.

And Tosh is totally jinxed in love. Poor darling.
[User Picture]
From:burntcopper
Date:February 14th, 2008 09:25 pm (UTC)
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Oh, christ, I hadn't thought about how Gary-Stu the entire set-up and manipulation was - but utterly brilliant, now i think of it. i did have a bit of a problem with Owen, but it's probably because I've had a bloke do that to me - and it was *not* nice in the slightest, especially the stalkery aftermath and fixation. Fortunately, owen seemed to have taken it on the chin and backed down. Which ws good. Though yes. Writers. Please stop trying to write JB into big emotional scenes. He keeps reverting to stage acting - project it and be unsubtle as hell. Please to give that kind of thing to everyone else, and give the quiet and hard bastard stuff to Jack, he's much better at that.

Martha : awesome. Reset : Awesome. Balance between cast time : awesome. So many other things : awesome. And all the technobabble was *followable* and reasonable! As was the medical stuff and getting the parasite life-cycle correct! YAY! (I work at a medical publishers, medical wrongness just... :shudder:) As soon as they said mentioned lymphocytes and so on, I started bouncing and going HIVHIVHIV! And Owen : I know it's *so* a sci-fi death, but please to stop taking how to gut-punch your audience notes from Joss, TW writers.
[User Picture]
From:drakyndra
Date:February 14th, 2008 09:49 pm (UTC)
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It's not the first time the plot has been done (see: Superstar on Buffy), but it says a lot about Adam that when all he needed to do to live was be remembered, and he still went about making himself far more important. Ego over survival"

And I agree with you on Barrowman, though I don't feel this was his worst episode - weirdly enough, though, he never felt so stagey on Doctor Who, where he did do some neat emotional seens. I mean, that conversation with the Doctor in Utopia for starters...

Totally agreed on Reset. And the bit with the technobabble - it seemed to make reasonable sense to me, though I'll have to get my housemate to watch and see what she thinks (She's the one who does Anatomy, I'm the Psych student)

Also, I totally go the vibe that the ex-HIV chick who died was a junkie. Got it from sharing needles, perhaps.

I suppose, if you are going to steal, do it from the best in the business. Though I doubt anything will compare to the evilness of the Serenity movie. Oh Joss, you magniicent Bastard.
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:drakyndra
Date:February 15th, 2008 12:49 am (UTC)
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Well, that's Owen for you. He seems to get on the bad side of a lot of people.
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From:koshiroryuu
Date:February 15th, 2008 01:51 am (UTC)
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HAHA I was right! I was right! Although, really, I should've guessed it by the episode titles for the next two eps, if I'd been looking. Still, though, a damn good episode, best I've ever seen out of Torchwood, and it succeeded in making me actually like Owen and everything, and I loved the way they worked as a competent team where everyone has a role and OMG CORPSE-IN-A-CAR and it was full of love. LOVE. Plus the only unintentional LOL in the entire thing was poor Tosh's horrible bad luck with men (four for four!) and that's hardly this episode's fault, so I felt really bad for laughing.

I didn't feel bad at all for laughing at "Adam" though, as the whole episode quite annoyed me. I had a whole rant written and everything while I was waiting for "Reset" and then I was overwhelmed by love, which made me cynically suspect that the only reason they gave us Martha early was because they realized what crap "Adam" was and wanted to keep us all from spending a week bitching about it online.

I was sad, though, because the whole Adam/Tosh rape aspect could've had a lot of echoes for Owen's first episode rape drug thing if that had been allowed to happen, and I would've quite liked to see Owen actually deal with that on screen. Especially since Burn Gorman is a damn fine actor and deserves some decent character development. Same with Naoko Mori, too.

Also, CORPSE-IN-A-CAR! Hee!
[User Picture]
From:drakyndra
Date:February 15th, 2008 10:53 am (UTC)
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See, now you know why that comment of course made me laugh. But I am with you on the good. It was good like They Keep Killing Suzie was good, and that's the sort of good I like from Torchwood. And yes, with the teamness and the actually liking Owen for a brief sweet moment I was all for Tosh/Owen.

I didn't mind Adam, though that was possibly me liking the concept enough to ignore flaws in the execution.

...I'm agreed with the Burn and Naoko bit.

How long until you get a corpse-in-a-car icon, eh?
[User Picture]
From:koshiroryuu
Date:February 17th, 2008 01:53 am (UTC)
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Not long!
[User Picture]
From:koshiroryuu
Date:February 17th, 2008 01:55 am (UTC)
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But I think I like this icon better, though. XD

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