6 July 2009

Torchwood co-blog: on the first day...

FYI, this is a collaborative blogging effort bought to you by @Captain_Doug and @gingerbreadlady (me). Check out Doug's blog tomorrow for the next installment...

I'm, like, so unprepared for this.

The other day someone casually said, "Isn't Torchwood back on soon?"

As it happens it's on NOW. For five days. In a row.

How did I not know about this?

So this morning I watch the trailer (see below) and it turns out this new series is based around the one thing that freaks me out more than anything else: scary children. Honestly, I still have nightmares about Sixth Sense and, I swear, no one will ever get me to watch The Orphanage, much less The Exorcist. See - I can't even link to them.

Against my better judgement, then, I sit down to watch the first episode with pretentions of writing a science (fiction) communication blog in the same vein as past posts. In reality, it's just an excuse to hide from the scary children behind note-taking.

The premise is this: back in the sixties, a load of kids disappeared. Nobody noticed except for one guy - now a gibbering wreck with an uncanny knack for sniffing out aliens (and ex-police officer turned alien hunter Gwen's unborn child, apparently) - who got left behind. But we don't find out about him until later.

In the present day, every kid in Britain stops dead and starts chanting "We are coming" in the kind of creepy way that is going to have me sitting bolt upright in bed at 3 o'clock tomorrow morning, sweating buckets.

So what does Gwen do? Why, she goes to the amazing super-duper Torchwood computer and types in "children", of course. Thankfully, Torchwood's super-duper computer interprets her request correctly and churns out creepy-children stats for every country in the world. And whadd'ya know? They're all doing it. Dang.

Anyway, cut to the chase. It's aliens. Of course it is. The Government turns a blind eye and issues an (emailed) death warrant for Torchwood-boss Captain Jack, presumably to stop him meddling. (But as @JonathanEx points out: "Who sends death warrants by email? Nowadays I would have thought it'd be a DM [direct message] on Twitter.")

Gwen finds the Guy Who Got Left Behind and spends what seems like half an hour impressing him with flashy gizmos and getting him to tell her his real name. All very well and good, Gwen, but meanwhile Jack is getting killed. Twice. (Yes, we all know he can't die but more to the point, notes @MarkSTaylor, he "must have a hard time sourcing a new coat for every time he gets shot.").

It turns out they put a bomb in Captain Jack's stomach while he was sleeping/dead. KABOOM! Torchwood blows to smithereens whilst tea boy Ianto escapes dramatically but painfully slowly via the lift. Predictably cliffhanger-ish.

What have we learnt from all of this then? You can't trust the Government. Adult hormones interfere with alien transmission signals. So they can't get us - phew. And very little about science. More for us to tear apart tomorrow? Or should I have laid into the alien/pregancy sniffing storyline a bit more? Ah HA-AAA! Gwen's baby IS an alien, perhaps?

And what of the scary children? Well, that was just about as much as I can take. If it gets any worse, I'm going to have to refer to Twitter/Doug's blog posts instead of actually watching it. What is it that makes kids so damn scary?


Captain Doug said...

What scared me most was the extremely calm reaction of everyone (up to the last five minutes).

Why parents weren't rushing children to hospitals in a panic is beyond me. Also how is bringing them home from school a solution? "Ah yes, we had an alien thought ray protection shield installed with the double glazing last year, the kids will be perfectly safe here" Ok, so maybe in houses with thatched roofs.

I liked seeing Jack's daughter, it was a nice, slightly unnecessary at this point, story.

Hayley said...

Yeah, and should have resulted in a media storm under such headlines as "CHAOS as parents storm hospitals with possessed kids". The chaos bit is very important. Especially if you're the Daily Mail, or, increasingly the BBC. (Remember the baggage "chaos" at Heathrow?)

But they swept the media issue under the carpet by politely declining to comment at the Home Office. Move along. Nothing to see here. Just a bunch of kids being possessed by aliens.