Tuesday, November 14, 2006
After last week's B-movie spectacular, this week's Torchwood did a 180 and actually produced an episode which I would consider good by any show's standards. Suspenseful, well-planned, and which, most importantly, actually uses something which people associate with Cardiff/Wales (myths about fairies, in this case) to good effect, rather than trying to pretend Cardiff is Los Angeles. I mean, seriously. Setting a couple of stories in Cardiff worked OK in DW new series 1 (S27, whatever), because in both cases all the characters were aware of the reputation of Cardiff as a backwater and took the mick out of it relentlessly. A similar thing could work quite well in Torchwood: e.g., making the explanation for why they seem capable of getting away with murder the fact that nobody in London cares what goes on in Cardiff (cf Boom Town), or focusing stories on local but relevant issues (unemployment in industry; the media boom; Welsh devolution etc., and if you don't think it can be done well in a sci-fi setting, check out Life on Mars and The Omega Factor). But doing all these Angel-style urban night shots just looks pretentious. Come on, guys, I want to like this series!