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[personal profile] fairyd123

My god that was nerve shredding - I'm so tense and on edge after that I feel like I could snap! Day Three didn't feature anywhere near enough of Team Torchwood for my liking and it is increasingly becoming clear that the series will play so much better when viewed as a whole rather than independently but that was quite the master class in tension building.

Peter Capaldi is rather running away with this series. He truly is superb. I'm not quite sure how the hell he's making me feel for him every single step of the way considering that he's had Jack killed 4 times so far, tried to assassinate Gwen and Ianto, is weasly enough to encourage an alien race to lie about the fact that it's been to Britain before and is now holding Jack's daughter and grandson hostage. But he's managing it quite effortlessly!

I've never seen anyone look quite as terrified as Frobisher did talking to the 456 in his first sequence with them. That scene just worked so well. Starting with the 456's OTT method of arrival with the camera then panning to Frobisher looking so small and weasel like in that huge, magisterial tiled room, practically shaking with fear, with him having to build up the courage to speak and move towards them and the build up to the first time the 456 spoke - really really brilliantly done. Great acting, great directing, killer set design - excellent work from everyone involved.

And that moment when he walked out of the meeting with them and just slid to the floor shaking - very powerful. The whole scene was just superb - tense beyond breaking point and really genuinely menacing. I'm not the type to be scared by things - horror movies rarely make me even blink and its difficult to make a large tank full of dry ice and what did unfortunately look like a couple of left over Slitheen arms coated in vaseline look scary. But they managed it. The voice of the 456 is seriously creepy - devoid of emotion, dead in all senses of the word and just plain frightening. And it isn't easy to do a voice like that and inspire dread in your audience - more often than not you just inspire unintentional hilarity instead but whoever is doing the voice has seriously nailed it.

I do rather hope we don't get to see the 456. They're much more frightening as a disembodied voice emerging out of smoke. I rather suspect that if we see them unveiled in all their glory they will inevitably look a bit daft and about as threatening as a rubber chicken.

I kind of wish our country was run by the group of Machiavellian creeps that are running Torchwood's world. Somehow I feel we wouldn't quite be in the mess we are now if Nicholas Farrell's spectacularly weasly Prime Minister was running the country. The cold hearted way that he put Frobisher in harms way while equally ensuring that he couldn't enter Floor 13 and be anywhere near the deadly alien was quite awe inspiring. Nasty little creep.

I'm warming to Jack's daughter. Calling the police to try and find Jack was a daft thing to do but we'll give her a pass as she was obviously getting increasingly distressed at her failure to get hold of her father following the bombing in the Bay (the scenes of her trying not to cry and just continually calling his voicemail so she could hear his voice yesterday were rather affecting) and she was canny enough to use someone else's phone to do it. I still have issues with her being magicked into existence (it makes Jack's desperate desire to leave everything to be with the Doctor in series 1 Torchwood unconscionably selfish if by doing so he knew he would be abandoning his own daughter and grandson - estranged though they may be) but at least she proved to be every inch her father's daughter. I loved that Alice was alert enough to instantly realise that something was wrong because the street was so quiet and that she had no qualms grabbing a weapon and knocking that guy out with her cutting board (ha!) and grabbing his gun to protect herself. Jack would be proud!

Clem has unfortunately rapidly become a little grating. I do think that Paul Copley is playing his childlike demeanor very well but my tolerance level for the twitching and "isn't it, isn't it" stuff is woefully low. I do hope he does turn out to have a proper role to play in the next two episodes. And what was with the "Who's the queer?" stuff? Was that meant to be funny? I know that Rusty has a very odd sense of humour (the infamous date rape spray in Everything Changes for example) but that was just a bizarre line. And what's with putting labels on Ianto? Strange for a show that prides itself on having characters that defy labels and neat categories.

Very brief glimpse of Ianto's family this time but I still love them with a passion - especially the brother in law's entrepreneurial spirit charging the parents of the kids on the estate a tenner a kid for his wife to look after them.

Johnson is still a caricature (although a foxy one - I am beginning to find her rather attractive!) and I'm not sure I see that changing. The actress playing Bridget Spears is rather running with her limited screentime however. Poor Bridget, utterly devoted to Frobisher and destined to be the one forever watching while he commits infidelities with pretty girls who come and go. Her poisonous but wounded delivery of "don't go thinking you're the only one" to Lois after she (not very convincingly) implied she was sleeping with Frobisher was wonderful.

And yay for Lois stepping up again and proving to be a very capable field agent (making me fear even more for Ianto's longevity - she's a pa, she's a field agent, she can make coffee...) Nice to see the continuity with Reset reusing the camera lenses (and I loved Gwen, Ianto and Rhys cackling away like a bunch of schoolgirls about their "fun" with them ). Whilst pretending she was sleeping with Frobisher was a bit of a weak gambit it worked and she was brave enough to move in the 456 meeting room so that Team Torchwood could see what Frobisher was saying. If we get another series (the ratings so far have been great but it does rather depend what they do with the cast over the next 2 two days) I think Lois will be a great addition.

I kind of wish Gwen hadn't been written so truly dismally before because now that she's being written well it requires a huge suspension of disbelief that she's suddenly so warm, funny and capable when previously she was frequently portrayed as self righteous and about as useful as a chocolate teapot. I loved her teaching her boys how to be criminals, the impassioned way she convinced Lois to help them and her sensitivity with Clem (not to mention her mean driving skills getting them out of gridlock and back to the Hub 2!) Gwen is wonderful in this. Arguably she is still getting more screen time than our boys something I'm sure the anti brigade will pick on but personally I'm loving her in this - especially her amused complaining when Ianto was all "Hey Gwen you can get Clem out of police custody can't you? Course you can."

Blink and you'll miss it appearance by Tom Price as PC Andy but at least he was helpful this time rather than leading the killers to Gwen's door. And Kai continues to do sterling work as Rhys (and I absolutely adored his response to being asked to join Torchwood "No bloody chance now fix this so that I can go home eh" - I absolutely love you Rhys Williams! Brilliant.)

Of course it was Ianto that safely bought the team to a new hideout (although I was disappointed that Jack didn't have at least 2 back up Hubs on the go. The man's bloody immortal but doesn't have the foresight to have at least two fully equipped super secret bases set up stocked to the heavens with illicit alien tech? Jack you're bloody useless.) Liked the nods to continuity about his dad being a tailor (I have a good eye) and knowing that Jack won't be happy unless he's clad in a great coat (Jack's diva wailing about his outfit was highly amusing). His banter with Rhys was amusing and I like the sparky friendship that he has with Gwen.

His heart to heart with Jack wasn't quite the lovely nuanced moment that convention reports had suggested it would be. To me it fell ever so slightly flat but if you disregarded the words and let Gareth's face do the talking it was really quite affecting. His deeply pained reaction to Jack admitting that he felt himself being blown up, his very youthful and innocent expression when Jack is talking about his immortality (he looks so incredibly young next to John sometimes) and the pained realisation and nervous gulp when Jack says that he's a fixed point in time and Ianto's immediate acceptance of what that means for them - all lovely stuff. And bad Rhys cockblocking Ianto.

And oh Jack. Jack, Jack, Jack.

Is he a better man than Frobisher? Frobisher didn't hesitate to kill Jack, to try and kill Gwen and Ianto, to have Jack's daughter and grandson held hostage at gun point and Frobisher is right that Jack is a better man than to go back into the house and hurt Frobisher's wife and children. He's not that man and I'm not convinced he ever was. But Jack is ruthlessly pragmatic when he has to be. He gave Jasmine to the Fairies against the wishes of her distraught mother to stop them destroying the word, he killed Lisa in front of Ianto because she was a threat, he would have experimented on his own grandson to find out what was going on with the aliens and then retconned him afterwards and given the choice between the 456 raining down hell from above on the UK or giving them a handful of orphans that noone on earth gave a damn about?

He gave them the children.

And I bet he didn't think twice about it afterwards. Not because he didn't care. But because it simply had to be done.

But the way John Barrowman delivered the line "as a gift" was so chilling. You could just see all of Gwen's cute little fantasies of her knight in shining armour ripped away in that one moment. Ianto looked horrified and confused and she just looked destroyed. The dashing, heroic Captain Jack Harkness isn't meant to hand over children to hostile aliens.

It's an interesting question - if you were in charge would you give up the lives of a few children to save everyone else? If the safety of the many must outweigh the rights of the few how do you decide who is expendable? And when do you stop? How many lives can the government trade away before its too many? In the world of Doctor Who the answer would be that one child is one child too many but Torchwood has always operated in a more realistic and far murkier world with a much more flexible morality.

If Jack gave the 456 the children it must have been because he felt that they couldn't be fought and that in the grand scheme of things the likely deaths of 12 children was outweighed by all the millions who would live in their stead. But that still doesn't make his act anything less than unconscionable. He drove those children to their (probable) deaths. And he can't take that back.

And at the end of Day 3 the 456 are back again, like all good blackmailers, and this time they want 10% of the earth's children.

And so onto day 4 and I have to say I'm actually not really looking forward to days 4 & 5 - there is a press embargo on them for a reason and I can't help but feel that the chances of all of Ianto, Frobisher, Alice and Stephen making it alive to the end of day 5 are slim to none.

Big alien, tank full of poisonous gas, Jack and Ianto - I just don't see that working out well at all. I can easily see the place going into lockdown with the gas escaping and Ianto being trapped inside.

Here's hoping not but the anvils of doom have not been subtle and I fear that they'll be bloodshed before the week is out...

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