Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Wood you believe it?

I've done something new.

For the first time ever, I watched Torchwood.

I've always been put off this because I thought it was fanboy sci-fi daftness and that just doesn't appeal to me. It's as much as I can do to watch Doctor Who usually, much as I enjoy it, and only then do I like the stories set on Earth. Anything that goes into outer space loses me at once. Call me devoid of all imagination, but I just don't find fanciful alien things very interesting. I'm far more of a supernatural person. At least it could possibly be real. Alien/space things are always a bit silly and unbelievable.

I never liked Blake's 7 as a child, or Star Trek and I've only ever seen the first Star Wars film when it first came out at the cinema. I don't want to see the Battlestar Galactica reboot, even though everyone I meet tells me how marvellous it is and forces DVDs on me which lie there unwatched and unloved. I just think of the 1970s version and that's enough for me. So Stargate, UFO, Space Precint and anything else not of this planet is out. Don't even mention Iris Wildthyme.

So it came as a relief that Torchwood is set on Earth, albeit on a world where aliens do exist, but the fact that it's essentially an Earthbound story and a bit of a 'what if' makes it all the more exciting. I was surprised. I liked it. I can see it's meant to be adult, but the sex aside, it's no more adult than The Sarah Jane Adventures.

The one big problem I have with it though is of course John Barrowman. I just can't take Mr Saturday Night seriously as an actor, even though he's far less showy in this than I'd expected. But he's so plastic-looking, and such a ham. The sub-plot in which his pie-faced boyfriend can't quite get over the fact that he and Captain Jack are a couple is so Russell T Davies gratuitous. That big screen kiss at the end was shoehorned in so clumsily that it was actually ludicrous. Is this what fans have come to expect/love? I was pleased when he blew up, though clearly he'll be back. Eve Myles looks like a handful too.

But I thought it was quite watchable. Anything with spooky kids is always a must for me - think Village Of The Damned or The Omen or The Bad Seed. I'm there. And will continue to be so for the rest of what I believe they're calling Torchweek.

As for previous series - what have I missed?


Planet Mondo said...

I managed a couple of episodes, but found the built in sexual tension a bit predictable and weary - and the whole thing a bit daft, so gave up after a while.

A Kitten in a Brandy Glass said...

It IS actually rather like the Sarah Jane Adventures, if only because almost every Sarah Jane Adventures storyline involves children being possessed or mind-controlled or similar (I guess it must save money on special effects).

Part of me is pulling a face at you for calling Ianto pie-faced. The other half of me sees the truth of the statement, however.

Chris Hughes said...

What have you missed?

- a demonic version of the Chewits monster stomping all over Cardiff.

- a space whale that was being chopped up and sold off for kebabs in a warehouse.

- Daniela Denby-Ashe as a lesbian space ghost.

- a sexy Cyberwoman.

- a car chase with a blowfish.

Bet you wish you'd watched it from the start, now.

Oh yeah, and Barrowman's VO at the start of each episode: "The 21st century is when everything changes... and you gotta be ready!"

A Kitten in a Brandy Glass said...

Oh, and don't forget Nerys Hughes as Gwen's possessed-by-fanged-aliens mother-in-law...

Chris Hughes said...

Oh yes, that was a good one, that.

Five-Centres said...

Hmmm, perhaps I'll just stick with the five-nighter then.