New Cast Member For Broadchurch

Since I’m a Torchwood fan, I find this news from Anglophenia very exciting!:

While all eyes have understandably been on David Tennant in Gracepoint, plans for the second season of the original Broadchurch are already well under way, and ITV have just released some details of the cast.

As you’d expect, given the show’s close ties with the production of Doctor Who—David Tennant, Arthur Darvill, David Bradley and Olivia Colman, for starters, and also director Euros Lyn and writer/creator Chris Chibnall—there’s at least one new crossover, in the form of Torchwood and The Unquiet Dead’s Eve Myles.

She’ll be keeping good company too, as the series also welcomes aboard Marianne Jean-Baptiste (Without A Trace, Private Practice), James D’Arcy (Cloud Atlas, Hitchcock) and relative newcomer Phoebe Waller-Bridge (Blandings, The Café).

In a press-release, Chris said: “As if we didn’t have enough fabulous actresses, it’s a thrill to be joined by Wales’ finest, Eve Myles. Having worked together on Torchwood, it’s a joy to be able to welcome her to Broadchurch.”

Chris continued: “Anyone who’s seen Phoebe Waller-Bridge perform knows she’s already on the way to being a superstar. We’re lucky to have them both on board.

“Marianne is one of Britain’s finest actresses, so it’s an honor and a coup for us. It’s a role written specifically for her and I would’ve wept for months if she’d turned us down. Luckily she didn’t and her character is going to make an indelible impact on the world of Broadchurch.:

Jane Featherstone, executive producer, added: “It’s never easy to tempt actors back from Hollywood, and we feel privileged that James is joining us as a key part of our new story.”

The Death Of Torchwood?

In my personal opinion, Torchwood is long gone.  I pretty much gave up hope when a US network took it over (I firmly believe it should have remained a British show, and that’s coming from a Canadian) and when it didn’t return right away it just sealed the deal for me.  A few days back, John Barrowman (Captain Jack himself) posted a link to this article.  Maybe this is a hint, like Arthur Darvill’s version of Let It Go? 🙂

Torchwood is coming back!

I mean, it might be. It’s almost definitely not, but it might be.

That’s the thought process of every single Torchwood fan, every single time we’re given a new scrap of hope to cling onto regarding the show’s possible resurrection.

Latest said scrap comes courtesy of – yes, you guessed it – John Barrowman, who was asked in an interview with NerdBastards whether he’s said his final farewells to Captain Jack Harkness.

“I go around with Eve [Myles] and people to these conventions…” he responded. “…and we see the humongous following that we have and also the hunger that there is for Torchwood.

“If I’m asked to play Captain Jack Harkness again, I would do it at the drop of a hat. I think there’s a lot more to tell, there’s a lot more out there.”

Encouraging words – and d’you know what? Barrowman is absolutely right. The character of Captain Jack is far from creatively exhausted and there’s definitely the story potential for more Torchwood.

The trouble is, John and his ever-optimistic co-stars have been giving these same answers ever since Miracle Day wrapped in September 2011.

In November of that year, Barrowman described the show as “in limbo” rather than outright canceled, while Eve Myles voiced her desire for “closure” in January 2012 and again in April 2013.

It’s not their fault, of course – asked the same questions, ad infinitum, Barrowman and Myles have no new news to deliver, so in its place comes a pleasant soundbite designed to placate the fans.

So fans, here’s my question for you – is it time we let Torchwood go?

Torchwood had a difficult birth, with an initial 13-episode run that was bold but misguided. With its F-bombs, lesbian snogs and scantily-clad Cyberladies, Torchwood Mark 1 for the most part felt like a 14-year-old boy’s notion of a ‘grown-up’ sci-fi series – and lines like “When was the last time you came so hard and so long you forgot where you are?” didn’t help.

But if Doctor Who post-2005 proved anything, it was that Russell T Davies knows how to revitalise a property and, from series two onwards, Torchwood sporadically regenerated itself – yes, I went there – and had something new and exciting to offer with each relaunch.

Series two was RTD’s attempt to do Buffy in Wales – replicating not only the tongue-in-cheek tone of that show’s early years but also its brutal offing of much-loved characters. The show even cast James Marsters as a swaggering anti-hero – basically Spike in space.

But it’s pretty widely accepted that Torchwood was never better than in 2009 – acclaimed five-parter Children of Earth was epic yet human, intimate yet hugely ambitious. As exciting as it was emotional, this was Torchwood at its absolute peak – even if Ianto fans still haven’t recovered from his untimely exit.

I’m a bit of a Miracle Day apologist – I even liked Rex ‘What is this so-called Torchwood team?!’ Matheson – but even if you had issues with the execution, you can’t fault this iteration’s ambition.

Thanks to investment from US cable network Starz, Torchwood was able to go even bigger (if perhaps not better) than Children of Earth and became an international property – a remarkable journey for a cult BBC series born of Cardiff, Wales.

Russell T Davies and the entire Torchwood team provided us with hours of entertainment, but it’s telling that when RTD next returns to television – following an absence taken for personal reasons – he won’t be writing for Gwen and Captain Jack.

The world feels like it’s moving on – Doctor Who certainly has, with an entirely different creative team in charge since the Torchwood days and Captain Jack notably absent from that show’s 50th anniversary celebrations in November.

Is there still life left in Captain Jack as a character? Certainly. But is there any sort of creative impetus or force pushing for a new Torchwood series? The unfortunate truth is… right now, there just isn’t.

Maybe it’s time to stop asking John Barrowman and Eve Myles questions that they don’t have answers to and accept the difficult truth – Torchwood is gone and it’s probably not coming back.

Then again, that’s what I thought about Heroes.

MegaCon

MegaCon in Orlando is hosting some of our Who-friends.  If you’re in the area (I wish I was!) it will be held at the Orange County Convention Center.  Here are the guests that caught my eye:

John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness) – March 21-23 inclusive.

Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper from Torchwood) – March 22-23.

Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones from Torchwood) – March 21-23

James Marsters (Captain John Hart from Torchwood, but I also know him as Spike from Buffy and Angel) – March 21-23

There’s also others from Buffy, Angel, Torchwood, The Walking Dead…

The Unquiet Dead

There’s a Doctor Who marathon on Space today, so I decided that I could “waste” a little time today revisiting old favorites.

When I turned it on, “The Unquiet Dead” was just starting, which is Season 1 of New-Who, Episode 3.  Within the first couple minutes I saw a very familiar face – Eve Myles from Torchwood!  I’d watched the episode when it originally aired, and didn’t realize she was another recycled actress.  By that (if you don’t already know) I mean that Doctor Who often reuses their actors within the series and spinoffs as entirely new characters.  Like Peter Capaldi!  She plays Gwyneth in this episode, which is really funny if you realize she plays Gwen in Torchwood.

The episode features the 9th Doctor (Christopher Eccleston) and companion Rose Tyler (Billie Piper) with her first venture into history, 1869 to be exact.  This is another one of those episodes in Cardiff, which annoys me to no end.  All of time and space and he spends an awfully lot of time in Cardiff.

Either way, early on there’s signs of trouble in a theatre (a ghost, it appears) and the Doctor comes running.  The locals seem to be more interested in insulting his clothing than asking for help.  Meanwhile, his trusty sidekick manages to get herself kidnapped.  In chasing after her, the Doctor realizes he’s sharing a coach with Charles Dickens.  I love the awkward conversation with the Doctor gushing over Dickens.  It reminds me so much of the Who fangirls out there.  I know, I know, people think I’m one of them.  For the record, I’m not.  I just appear to be.

Rose finds herself in a room with a couple of walking dead (guess zombies have been around a long time), while the Doctor and Dickens arrive just in the nick of time.  In usual form, he talks to the ghost-like creatures, who leave the bodies.  Time for the uncomfortable conversation about what happened and the “dead” folks with Mr. Sneed, the man running the funeral parlor.

Now we’ve got a mystery on our hands.

Gwyneth and Rose have a little chat where they appear to be friendly, which gets weird when Gwyneth seems to see modern day Cardiff through Rose’s eyes and gets frightened by Rose’s future.  This is the first time “Bad Wolf” is mentioned.  Of course the Doctor catches the tail end of it, just in time to question her and suggest a séance.  Oh yes, because this seems like a good idea.

Sure enough, they make contact with the Gelth.  They said that they had bodies prior to the time war, but they lost them and became these unembodied creatures, trapped in a rift.  The Doctor says that Gwyneth can help them bridge the gap with the rift and use the dead bodies until they can go somewhere else.  Since Gwyneth grew up on the rift she has a connection with it.  They determine the weakest part is in the basement (the morgue), so they go there to open it.  Once the process begins, they reveal themselves to be truly evil and it comes out that they’re trying to take over the planet.

Rose and the Doctor find themselves trapped in the basement, while Dickens runs outside.  He realizes they are effected by the gas, so he shuts off the lanterns, turns the gas on full and draws the Gelth out of the corpses.  Gwyneth can’t leave or send them back, so she gets out her matches to blow the building and kill them.  The Doctor realizes that Gwyneth has actually been dead since the rift opened and has somehow remained herself, so he thanks her and runs, allowing her to destroy it all.

Once he’s out, he has to explain to Rose and Dickens what he believed happened.  It’s another one of those moments for Rose… the kind where she has to accept something that just doesn’t seem possible.

To wrap things up, Dickens is inspired to write the “truth”, and says goodbye to the Doctor and Rose.  They jump into the TARDIS and the Doctor explains that he’ll never have time to write his new stories because he’ll die first.  They head off to their next adventure while Dickens has a new outlook on life.

I know in the next episode they return Rose home, where she’s only supposed to have been missing about 12 hours.  Wouldn’t you just love to have that option?  To leave, have a marvellous adventure, and to return 12 hours later?  Now in reality it was an “oopsie” and it was 12 months, but still…

DragonCon

John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness) is at DragonCon 2013!

Also featured are:
Carole E. Barrowman (John’s sister and partner in writing)
non-Who Amy Acker (remember her from “Angel”?)
non-Who Nicholas Brendon (“Buffy The Vampire Slayer)
Noel Clarke (Mickey)
non-Who James Cosmo (“Highlander”)
Peter Davison (yes, the 5th Doctor!)
non-Who Scott Wilson (“The Walking Dead”)
non-Who Steven Yeun (“The Walking Dead”)
John Levene (Sergeant Benton of UNIT)
Sylvester McCoy (yes, the 7th Doctor!)
Burn Gorman (Owen on “Torchwood”)
Gareth David Lloyd (Ianto on “Torchwood”)
James Marsters (“Torchwood”, “Buffy The Vampire Slayer”, “Angel”… I love this guy!)
Eve Myles (Gwen on “Torchwood”)
non-Who Eliza Duchku (“Buffy The Vampire Slayer”)

And a TON of others!  I didn’t have time to go through the whole list, but check it out HERE!

Torchwood

The Torchwood crew was a little late, but they got around to it:

TorchwoodAngels