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Fox to develop U.S. version of Torchwood

by Brad Trechak, posted Jan 19th 2010 4:00PM

TorchwoodWe can classify this under "train wrecks waiting to happen." Fox has picked up the rights to produce an American version of the BBC sci-fi spin-off of Doctor Who, Torchwood.

Series creator Russell T. Davies is writing the pilot (and several other former executives of the original are behind the show), so there will likely be many similarities and possibly even nods to Doctor Who continuity. Critics who haven't seen the original will likely pigeonhole the show as The X-Files with more ostentatious sci-fi elements.

The question is, how will the show be handled? Will it be a complete reboot? Will it be an American branch of the institution? Most importantly, will John Barrowman star as Captain Jack Harkness (hey, he's already got the American accent)?

However, keep in mind that this is sci-fi on Fox. Despite similarities to The X-Files, Torchwood is a very different show where the characters actually meet alien races with great frequency. Also, American remakes of British shows rarely do well, but there are exceptions to that rule (The Office, for one).

The article also discusses the possibility of the team rebooting Doctor Who for American audiences. It's been done. It didn't work.

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Argh.... I was this close to going to bed. Thanks to this article, now I am afraid to sleep because of the impending nightmares. Fox needs to leave this alone. They bent over Joss Whedon several times. Now they are gonna mess with Davies and Torchwood?

January 21 2010 at 1:16 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Dave P

Sounds like a Buck Rogers , Jet Jackson , Captain Midnight , X-Files, Time Tunnel type of clone.

January 20 2010 at 2:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Why??? I love Torchwood. Leave it be!!!! They will ruin it along with Life on Mars. Sigh . . .

January 20 2010 at 1:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Why the need for a remake of a Dr Who spin off?
And Fox has a disastrous record of not staying the course with excellent SciFi shows.... Better go for a remake of a Firefly and stay with it for at least 3 season.

January 20 2010 at 11:45 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Here's a positive spin... If you're one of the (probably small) handful of fans who were vaguely disappointed that RTD made the move to the US rather than staying in the UK, take comfort in the fact that developing a show with Fox is likely to induce some serious homesickness.

Perhaps RTD could have a long lunch with Joss Whedon before he makes this partnership official.

January 20 2010 at 11:39 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I guess your main consolation to any possible "reboot" or "remake" of Doctor Who/Torchwood would be that Fox will kill the series off within six months, given that awful channel's past track record.

I've simply come to the decision to not watch anything Fox shows anymore.

January 20 2010 at 2:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Oh no. FOX? They want to put Britain's most gay-friendly, sex-positive action show through an American reboot on FOX?! How the hell is that a good idea?

January 20 2010 at 1:02 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Jen's comment

What does 'being gay' and 'having sex' have to do with a reboot of a British show? Chances are there is someone related to you that is: a) having sex and b) gay or lesbian. Remember, this is 2010 not 1955. Get over it! If we can see people get raped or blown to bits on TV, then why can't we show different types of people expressing their desire for each other?

January 23 2010 at 3:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I love Torchwood, JS. I don't want FOX to kill it. :(

January 26 2010 at 3:31 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I don't know. I feel as if the US already has tons of group shows about hot-looking, sexually active on-the-fringe law enforcement/medical officers who know how to work a group strut. I felt the Dr. Who angle made Torchwood slightly different. Plus, the fact Torchwood carried guns (which veered away from UK law enforcement policies) also made it different. However, considering our TV already tends towards sexual themes (i.e. the Shonda/CSI, etc. spin-offs) and our law officers carry guns, so I don't know if it's needed. I'll watch it, just to see what develops -

January 19 2010 at 11:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Hrm I guess that means Fringe is on the way out then, as it was Fox's current attempt at rekindling the X-Files flame.

January 19 2010 at 10:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'm not against this. It may be a Doctor Who spinoff, but Torchwood has been heavily influenced by American sci-fi/action shows, like X-Files and 24. It feels like an American show, which may be why Torchwood's ratings on BBC America are higher than Doctor Who's. This could work, particularly if the right people are involved.

January 19 2010 at 9:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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