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April 23, 2014

Torchwood: Out of Time

by Martin Conaghan, posted Dec 19th 2006 1:09PM
Torchwood: Out of Time(S01E10) Imagine this: you suddenly find yourself accidentally transported 50 years into the future with absolutely no hope of getting back to where you belong.

It would be great, wouldn't it? All that new technology, fashion changes, a better lifestyle? A whole new world to explore?

Don't be so stupid.

It would be awful. And this week's episode of Torchwood proved it.
If my review of this week's Robin Hood was somewhat scathing of its dreadful plot, then this week's episode of Torchwood couldn't be further from the boring mess in Sherwood Forrest.

Like last week's episode, 'Random Shoes', 'Out of Time' was another emotionally-charged gem, this time from the pen of Welsh playwright Catherine Tregenna (who will also provide the script for the penultimate episode 'Captain Jack Harkness').

When three people on a flight to Ireland in 1953 landed in modern-day Cardiff in 2006, courtesy of the mysterious 'rift' in space and time, the Torchwood team found themselves facing one of the biggest mysteries they've ever encountered; how to deal with the loneliness of being lost in time.

And this is truly what it must be like to be lonely; a man in his late 40s discovering his aged son in a nursing home suffering from Alzheimer's disease, a female pilot without a 2006 license or a purpose in life -- and a young woman unable to come to terms with modern attitudes to sexuality.

Like some kind of kitchen sink drama, the lives of these people played out and touched three of Torchwood's key members; Owen, who fell in love with the pilot, Jack, who recognised a heartbreaking parallel with his own life -- and Gwen, who unwittingly exposed her ability to lie to her partner about her life and work at Torchwood.

Once again, I found myself with a tear in my eye as these unfortunate characters struggled to come to terms with the almighty curse set upon them by dreadful circumstances; a future with no hope and a past with no memory.

However, I reckon we might see one or two of them again at some point in the future. Or maybe the past.

Torchwood might have been slow out of the blocks in the first few episodes, but recent weeks have set it apart from anything else on UK television right now (except Doctor Who, of course).

It almost seems a shame to look forward to the end.

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dries

Like she'd said to Owen in the beginning: Sex is the next best thing after flying.
I'm sorry, but apart from the little background we got from Jack, i would have loved the episode also having a litte bit of action (besides sex). It's was sure good emonially but could have used a little bit adventure in the story.

December 25 2006 at 6:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Rick

Almost but not quite a classic. Wonderful story that resolves two of the characters appearing out of time. The resolution for the third character is reminiscent of "The Final Countdown" with the rift conveniently reopening to allow her to go away.

Sorry, you cheated and failed to complete the story while achieving a dramatic high in Owen's reaction. If she had simply left, it would have been better than your ending even if emotionally it would not have been the same "high."

It would have been a "10" if the story endided on the dramtic high in a rational matter. At best a "7" in recognition of the other two characters's resolutions.

December 24 2006 at 4:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gene

By ten minutes into this episode, I knew it was a winner. Not an action adventure, no alien threats or machinery, just a character study. Excellent!

December 19 2006 at 1:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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