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Torchwood 2.13 Exit Wounds


Well, I think that was a worthy finale to a distinctly quite good season. I loved it, and it managed the vital trick of making me not care about the plot holes. I was more or less completely unspoiled, so I just have to stop for a quick NOOOOOOOOOOO OWEN AND TOSH NOOOOOOOOOOOO! I like them both for different reasons - Tosh as a character, and Burn as an actor, even though Owen's obviously a twat - but I like that they've (probably) killed off two main characters, and done it well. Not too syrupy, but it was affecting and the others actually grieved for them. They looked so broken. And Tosh's video, waaah! But it fitted in beautifully to the themes of the episode - Jack had spent...an amount of time I'm not even going to try to figure out...feeling guilty about Gray's abduction/"death", and the video was Tosh's attempt to stop them feeling similarly guilty about her death. And heroes' deaths for the both of them, saving Cardiff/Wales/The World from a nuclear explosion, although I think when Jack & co found Tosh still alive they could have done a bit more about it than flail helplessly at her till she died. I mean, I know Owen wasn't there, but...

I thought they'd run out of ideas entirely when they started replicating last year's Doctor Who finale, with the psychotic-but-sexy mortal enemy/ex-boyfriend in a headquarters blasting music, closely followed by the hero in a crucifixion pose in that same headquarters, but it seemed to be just a minor echo. Or possibly homage.

Everyone was acting their little socks off in this. It was great. John Barrowman managed actual emotion. (Sorry, John, it's been a bit patchy lately.) Am I right in thinking the Jack/John/Gray bits of this must have been filmed early on, when Marsters was here, ie before the infamous Botox incident? James Marsters was YAYSPIKESQUEE good, Burn Gorman was bloody excellent, and got a lovely send-off scene, both in story/emotion terms and acting terms. I cried for Naoko's poor stubborn determined Tosh, and was vastly impressed with the amount of feeling and information Gareth got out despite his dozen or so lines. And Gray was effectively scary. I even quite liked Gwen this episode. Hurrahs all round.

Tosh and Ianto's meeting with the Reapers from Dead Like Me was cliched, I guess, but still, YAY FOR GUNS. Scythes and cloaks are much more aesthetically pleasing, generally, but then Ianto inna suit witha gun is pretty aesthetically pleasing all by itself. Rhys and PC Andy's double act was classic, and THEY'RE NOT DEAD. I am astonished, in a good way. (But Tosh! And Owen! Noooo!) Rhys is alive! "Where have they all gone?" "..Abergavenny?"
It's not funny without the delivery. I should really know the name of the guy who plays PC Andy by now, but he's good, anyway. And there was a lot of Tosh's TV Technology this episode. I want a computer that tells me things in huge blue letters in the middle of the screen. Actually, I probably don't. And Owen, I'm sure, was just hitting random buttons at one point in the nuclear power station.

The Least Secret Organization In The World are even less secret now, and the populace have been blown up and seen aliens and everything. I'd like it if they went somewhere interesting with this, but I'm worried they'll handwave it like Doctor Who did after the Battle Of Canary Wharf. Well, they didn't so much handwave it as completely take the piss, but whatever.

We know several more things about Jack, most importantly that his trenchcoat is in fact magic - not only is it entirely intact after 2000 years buried in the soil, it's protected all of his other clothes as well. Perhaps with a forcefield. Did they think nekkidJack would distract the fangirls too much? ..Well, maybe. And this is how Jack ends up in the Torchwood vaults as we saw in season 1. Maybe. Is that what was happening? I'm so confused. Timeline crossing makes my brain hurt - I hope somebody else is going to figure it all out so that I just need to go and read tw_timeline. Has he been in 1941 four times now?

Their explanation of Tosh being at the hospital in Aliens of London was used nicely. A classic example of something from TV Tropes, though I can't remember what. I thought it was Lampshade Hanging, but it isn't. Anyway, they knew they had a plot hole, so they drew attention to it and gave it a silly handwavey explanation, but one which had enough impact for other reasons - continuity squee & heartbreaking death scenes are a potent combination, only lessened slightly by the presence of the term "space pigs" - that it'll be a cherished moment rather than remembered as being a plot hole. I'm not sure the timelines do match up, but nice band-aid.

And the stuff on the BBC site for this episode is great - Tosh's video (waaaaah!) and Owen's logout, but then also Owen's Morgue Stocktake. Heh.

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Comments

( 29 comments — Comment )
gaycrow
Apr. 4th, 2008 11:02 pm (UTC)
Good review ... I'm from Down Under, so can't access the BBC site, unfortunately.

I'm also a newbie to the Dr Who and Torchwood fandom, and have seen this mentioned before the infamous Botox incident but don't know anything about it! Can you please explain? :-)

anya_elizabeth
Apr. 4th, 2008 11:42 pm (UTC)
I'm sure some kind soul will sort out the BBC stuff for those non-UKers out there. And as for this botox incident, I must also enquire!
gaycrow
Apr. 5th, 2008 12:46 am (UTC)
I'm sure some kind soul will sort out the BBC stuff for those non-UKers out there.

Yes, it's amazing how kind people are. :-)
pickwick
Apr. 5th, 2008 12:03 am (UTC)
Thanks!

Apparently sometime during filming John had a Botox injection that went wrong and couldn't move his forehead much for a while :) I think round about the Out Of The Rain episode.
gaycrow
Apr. 5th, 2008 12:50 am (UTC)
Aha!
I'd heard mention of the incident a while ago, and I've been religiously checking out John's face ever since. (Which wasn't too hard to do. ;-) ) I didn't realise it was as late as the OotR episode.

So, do the fans approve of JB's botoxing, or do we think he should grow old gracefully?
pickwick
Apr. 5th, 2008 01:05 am (UTC)
Re: Aha!
That was the one where I noticed people commenting on it, anyway, when he tried to do emotion :D

I disapprove of it in theory, but I doubt he'd look so good without it. (James Marsters is looking a bit older, too. Haven't decided whether he suits it yet.)
clancy_s
Apr. 7th, 2008 01:40 am (UTC)
Re: Aha!
I think the botox happened a year or 2 back, he's alluded to it before.

JM came back and did a second lot of filming (and another gig in Cardiff with GDL) for the finale.
gaycrow
Apr. 7th, 2008 04:31 am (UTC)
Re: Aha!
That's interesting. I know I've been studiously studying John's forehead since I heard mention of the word "botox", and it's looked shiny and immovable quite often. :D
shillings
Apr. 5th, 2008 11:51 am (UTC)
Sorry about randomly interrupting (found this post via the torch_wood review post), but if you use this link, you can view all the BBC episodes and messages content outside the UK. Don't know if it's a loophole or deliberate, but... yay? :)
gaycrow
Apr. 5th, 2008 08:34 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
It works! I wish I'd known about it earlier, but it will still be fun to go back through each episode, now that there's no more TW to watch.

Thanks again. :-)
laserboy
Apr. 4th, 2008 11:07 pm (UTC)
Blimey! It sounds like I've missed some good stuff. Tosh, with me admitedly having only seen s1 and the first of this season, was my favourite of the lot of them so I'd be sorry to see her go when the series is seemingly improving.

Must try and catch up with the series now. I'm just glad there doesn't seem to have been a daft magic chewits monster demon this time around. :-)
pickwick
Apr. 5th, 2008 12:05 am (UTC)
It's definitely a lot better than last season. I don't know how good it is objectively; I have a feeling it seems better because I'm so relieved I'm not hooked on a pile of crap any more...

No chewits monster! There have been a couple of bad SFX moments this season, but nothing quite that silly.
san_valentine
Apr. 4th, 2008 11:09 pm (UTC)
Series 2 has been much better than series 1. Sure there's been plotholes, but the stories have been better written, and less emphasis on random sex just to prove how grown-up the show is.

I wasn't too suprised at Owen's death, but was surprised at Tosh going too. A great send off for both of them. I think it's good for the series to have leading characters actually killed now and again. These people are doing a dangerous job, but we stop believing that if they all survive week after week. Good for the Torchwood team for actually killing characters, not just having them quit, or slideslip into some parallel dimension they could miraculously return from later, if necessary.
pickwick
Apr. 5th, 2008 12:08 am (UTC)
I can't even think if we've seen any sex this season.

I do hope they're properly dead and not just skiffy dead, yeah. Burn Gorman was joking around in the Confidential saying that you didn't see Owen's body so he could have escaped into the sewers to live as the Weevil King, which paradoxically reassured me that he is really dead!
heatherbelles
Apr. 4th, 2008 11:47 pm (UTC)
"Where have they all gone?" "..Abergavenny?"
It's not funny without the delivery
It is when half the family comes from the next town over, so I have a familiarity with the place. I got a chuckle out of that (followed your link from the Torchwood community!)
pickwick
Apr. 5th, 2008 12:08 am (UTC)
Heh, yeah, fair enough! I still want to hear more about Glasgow Torchwood just for that reason.
freeze883
Apr. 4th, 2008 11:51 pm (UTC)
"that it'll be a cherished moment rather than remembered as being a plot hole."

That it will, of course now the term "space pigs" will carry that little bit of sadness with it too
pickwick
Apr. 5th, 2008 12:10 am (UTC)
True. I've just remembered that the actual space pig scene was heartbreaking, too! ..I miss Chris Eccleston.
kniblet
Apr. 5th, 2008 03:54 am (UTC)
Simon just put the Tosh/Aliens of London reference together for me. His comment: Damn, that was so geeky!
pickwick
Apr. 6th, 2008 04:57 pm (UTC)
I probably only got it because I've seen many lengthy discussions on the communities about whether it was the same character and what she was doing there...
kniblet
Apr. 6th, 2008 05:18 pm (UTC)
Yeah, we're not on the comms so much except for Simon's nefarious activities.
call_calliope
Apr. 5th, 2008 06:18 am (UTC)
*wails* Tosh! And Owen! And Tosh!

I was surprised (and relieved) when PC Andy and Rhys didn't die as well.

In regards to Jack's magic trenchcoat- I don't know why they gave use nekkid!Jack on Doctor Who, but won't give it to us in Torchwood.

The Least Secret Organization In The World Actually, my friend and I were just trying to figure out if Torchwood or the Order of the Phoenix was the worst "secret" organisation.

By the way, "Pickwick's Papers" is that a reference from the Thursday Next series?
pickwick
Apr. 6th, 2008 04:59 pm (UTC)
There's actually been remarkably little sex in this series, compared to the first one. Which is good, overall, but...

Hah, yes, the Order aren't great, but at least they have their name on all their possessions. Probably.

And yes! I love the Thursday Next series.


Edited at 2008-04-06 05:00 pm (UTC)
momentsmusicaux
Apr. 5th, 2008 08:01 am (UTC)
Maybe they dug him up nekkid, and gave him a change of clothes before quizzing him in 1901. His face looked like he'd been allowed to clean up.

Tosh mentioned Aliens of London? Must have missed that!

And I vaguely remember seeing Jack in the morgue in S1 ... who saw him and which episode?

1941:
- con artist seen in Are You My Mummy. Leaves with the Doctor
- in normal time, been around since 18something and now working for TW. Avoiding his con artist self.
- zapped back at the end of TW S1
- in normal time and buried underground

Yup, 4 of him. That has yet to beat the number of DeLoreans in 1963.
pickwick
Apr. 6th, 2008 05:01 pm (UTC)
Handy that they had clothes that were identical to what he was wearing when he was buried, then ;)

Yeah, she mentioned dealing with a space pig when she'd had to cover for Owen when he was hungover.
redatt
Apr. 5th, 2008 08:55 am (UTC)
Rhys and PC Andy were fab, fab fabbity fab!

I can't believe that in all that time Jack didn't either dig himself out or get eaten by worms and other wee beasties. And I guess military chic is just really, really hard wearing.
pickwick
Apr. 6th, 2008 05:02 pm (UTC)
Yeah, Spike would have dug himself out in no time! And ew, reconstituting yourself from worm food.
rebel2anything
Apr. 5th, 2008 11:35 am (UTC)
i love this review its one of the few thats not full of fangirly shit.
pickwick
Apr. 6th, 2008 05:03 pm (UTC)
Thank you :D I did all that in a separate post...
( 29 comments — Comment )

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