Sunday, 31 July 2011

TV Snark - Torchwood Miracle Day Episode Three

The third episode has been and gone, but what happened? Don't worry, I'm here to remind you or inform you depending on whether you watched the episode or not. I don't know either way because I'm not in your house watching your every move. Honest.

The episode begins with yet another Oswald Danes TV interview, he's spouting conspiracy theories and claiming he can say what he wants because the government couldn't kill him. It's blissfully short as we cut to Rex interrogating his boss, Friedkin (or Newman from Seinfeld if you prefer). Rex wants to know why Friedkin framed him and Esther and had them thrown out of the CIA. Rex threatens to shoot Friedkin in the brain and Friedkin cracks and gives up his mysterious red mobile phone. Rex then thanks Friedkin by blowing out his eardrums with his pistol. What a bastard. He also uses the line, "Don't go deaf." That is awful action movie speak.

After the opening titles, Gwen comes back from the shopping (that used to be Ianto's job *sniff*) and bumps into a parade of The Soulless cult. They wear masks with sad emoticon faces. They don't do much else. Esther then explains that Americans use different words for things like crisps, lorries, mobiles, and petrol. Gwen is grateful for this advice as she apparently has never ever seen an American TV show or film. Also it seems that people are panic buying food, the food shortage subplot will now be ignored for the rest of the episode.

Colon + Open Bracket for Vendetta

Jack notices Oswald Danes on TV and decides to investigate him along with anyone else making a profit from the current situation. That will be a lot people, Jack.Jack tries to Google 'morphic fields' and gets 10 million results, he then gives up on looking for any info and leaves it for Esther to do as she said her job was to read blogs all day (her and most office workers, I reckon). I don't think Jack has used Google before. Esther doesn't bother with the Google thing and instead digs up a mention of a warehouse in Friedkin's secret files so the crew head off to investigate.

Gwen steals a car and drives on the wrong side of the road, hahahaha, she doesn't know ANYTHING about America. It's like she has a ridiculous gap in her knowledge for humour value, hahahaha. The team break into the warehouse and find that it's full of painkillers produced by PhiCorp. Gwen has heard of PhiCorp and exposits clumsily about how it's a multi national corporation and Rex adds some handy information about how well the painkillers work. They then discover the warehouse is "bigger on the inside" for a gratuitous Dr Who reference. Looks like PhiCorp knew about Miracle Day in advance (or they produce a lot of painkillers, being that they're a pharmaceutical company).

Dr Juarez attends the think tank where no-one knows anything apart from her. The subject of abortion is brought up and some pretty horrific imagery is discussed, but this is mainly a set up for a big dis on a Catholic doctor from Dr Juarez, which I guess the writer of this episode really wanted to fit in. Jilly Kitzinger is present at the think tank and is still an annoying and overacted character. She convinces Juarez to attend a PhiCorp symposium, I think Juarez agrees to shut Jilly up.

Back at the Torchwood... apartment, Rex is desperate to go public with the flimsy PhiCorp evidence that he's accumulated. He wants to bring in a former ally to help expose the truth to the public and arranges to meet his friend in the Freeville Hotel. He then says the name of the hotel again at the end of the sentence then the camera cuts to a shot of a building with Freeville Hotel on it, just in case we forgot what the hotel was called in the few milliseconds it took to change shots. Freeville Hotel.

Rex's friend is arrested at the hotel (can't remember its name) so he has a tantrum and drives off and leaves the rest of Torchwood in street. Jack then decides to go to a gay bar because... uh, he's bored I guess? This leaves Esther and Gwen alone to walk down the street and act sad about their families.

In the gay club Jack finds a bowl of sobriety chips at the bar, because apparently if you can live forever then you're going to say hell to getting sober and well, and instead relapse into alcoholism. It's such a ridiculous and ignorant moment that I'm speechless. Someone on the writing staff needs to actually read up on what alcoholism involves.

Rex can see us! RUN!
Rex breaks into Dr Juarez's apartment and demands she redress his wounds, then they have sex. Jack takes the barman from the gay club home and they have sex. We don't see any of the sex other than a shot of some bums, pre-sexy time as the BBC cut it out. I imagine the scenes were cut because they are ridiculously gratuitous - they don't occur naturally as a result of good storytelling and they're not there to further the plot.

Oswald Danes sneaks out of custody at a nearby motel and visits a diner. This bothers me because the diner is open and not closed or full of people looking to buy food. This is because I remember the food shortage subplot that the writers have forgotten. In the diner Danes is recognised by a couple of customers and chased off as they want to beat the evil paedo to a pulp. Danes is rescued by a couple of nice police offers who drive him to a nice quiet alleyway and beat him to a pulp.

chat, Rex finds out that Juarez is invited to the PhiCorp meeting and he asks her to infiltrate it for Torchwood. Juarez is not happy with this and kicks Rex out. Then Jack drunk calls Gwen and starts babbling about her and him and Ianto, but she ignores him to chat on Skype with Rhys.

Danes is dropped off by the nice policemen and Jilly is waiting for him. She offers the services of PhiCorp and invites him to the meeting.

Dr Juarez agrees to spy for Torchwood and Gwen shows Rex the magic contact lenses from series two and three. For those of you who don't know the lenses work like cameras and allow the Torchwood team to text instructions to the wearer that will appear in his/her line of vision. The lenses can also lipread. Gwen lies to Rex and tells him that the lenses will only work for her so she will be the one to infiltrate the PhiCorp meeting. Dr Juarez lets Gwen into the PhiCorp building and the espionage mission is on.

Jack notices that Danes is in the building and Danes does indeed meet with some shadowy PhiCorp executives. It seems that the evil corporation is so evil that they want to hire a paedophile as their spokesperson. I don't think this plan is going to work without making my brain explode.

In the meeting, PhiCorp announce that all drugs will be available without prescription. I don't know how they managed to convince the government to allow this but it's probably all part of the EVIL CONSPIRACY. So yeah, any drugs without prescription. I'm sure that won't cause more problems than it solves.

Gwen breaks into Jilly's office and downloads some of her files onto a flash drive. Then Friedkin's evil red phone rings, Rex answers but no-one speaks on the other end of the line. Esther cannot trace the call but reasons that the EVIL CONSPIRACY can so they flee the run down apartment that they've been working out of.

Jack goes to the PhiCorp building and encounters Danes. He threatens Danes in an attempt to find out what he's up to. Jack asks if PhiCorp have mentioned him but Danes didn't know who he was until now. Danes then admits to Jack that he doesn't feel sorry for murdering the school girl - he was pretending MWAHAHAHAHAHA! It also turns out that Danes has been hired by PhiCorp to be their new drugs spokesman (of evil). Danes then summons some guards who beat the crap out of Jack. Jack Harkness is not Jack Bauer.

NEXT EPISODE: It's a 1970s BBC TV Christmas special as Torchwood go on holiday to Spain! (It's probably California.)


Mark Clapham said...

Gwen's lie about the contact lenses being coded to her is the same lie the Doctor uses to Sutekh about the TARDIS controls, so it's another cack-handed Who reference.

Aaron said...

Ah yes of course, the isomorphic controls reference. I'm sure there'll be more references to come.