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'Torchwood' Recap: The Right Mix Of Action, Drama & Humor

February 4th, 2008 9:40am EST
TorchwoodLast week on "Torchwood" we learned that someone named Grey is alive. While we don't learn anything new about this revelation, this episode introduced viewers to a brand new plot thread that I can only assume will unfold throughout this season: alien invasion.

The team investigates the murder of two burglars who made the unfortunate mistake of breaking into the apartment of a young couple. With Torchwood involved you know it isn't a simple homicide, but soon leads to the questioning of Beth, the wife, a woman who has a habit of shorting out lights whenever she becomes emotional.

It turns out Beth is part of a sleeper cell from an alien race sent to Earth to gather information for a coming invasion. Once Beth is made aware of her true purpose, thanks to our gang's mind-probing technology, a good chunk of the episode deals with her reaction to finding out her fate is that of a destroyer of life, as opposed to her own wish of becoming a mother.

Tosh and Owen devise a way to short-circuit the implants that connect Beth to her higher authorities, and they place her in cryogenic sleep until they can find a way to ensure she is not a threat to those around her. This, of course, only works in theory as Beth's programming kicks in, tricks the high-tech computer equipment as well as Ianto, who keeps insisting he knows everything.


Torchwood


The other sleeper agents in the area become activated and go on killing sprees in an attempt to locate nukes to wipe Cardiff off the map. With the help of Beth, who is constantly fighting with her darker side, Jack and Gwen put a stop to the agents and save the day. All is fine and dandy until Beth "convinces" the team to kill her to prevent further harm. Apparently you don't want to hold Gwen hostage, it always ends in being shot (ask Susie from season 1 if you don't believe me).

Alien Invasion?

Yep, from what one of the alien agents said the invasion has already happened... I wonder if they're Skrulls?

Any standout moments?

-Ianto really got a bunch of great lines in the episode, including trying to tell a story about Jack's bedroom manners
-Upon finding out they might be vaporized by nukes Owen suggests they all have sex
-I'm really digging the creation of story arcs
-Whenever the entire team is together the show is at its best
-The actress who played Beth was phenomenal in making us believe she really didn't know what she was.

Any weak moments?

-The fight between the armed guards and the male sleeper agent was more than a little hokey
-I know Jack can't die, so I don't register shock when he gets stabbed through the chest

Overall

If it continues on this momentum "Torchwood" will find a place on my list of all-time favorite shows. They're getting closer to the right mix of action, drama and humor, and as I mentioned before whenever the entire team is onscreen together this show stands above other ensemble shows of the genre. Also, Ianto is fast becoming my favorite character with his obvious lack of tact. I'm not familiar with the budget of the show, but perhaps putting a bit more money into the action sequences might prove a valuable move. I'm looking forward to next week's episode, which seems to focus more on a new love interest for Tosh. We all know how well new lovers work out on "Torchwood!"

Story by Dan Chruscinski
Starpulse contributing writer