As long as Gwen (Eve Myles) has her baby everything's fine © BBC Worldwide Productions/Starz/BBC 2011

All hell is breaking loose, the population is rising inexorably and society is starting to fall apart. Well, no actually. The Overflow centers are going about their business calmly and routinely and the Torchwood team continue to walk around in broad daylight, using their own names…

FBI agent Esther Drummond (Alexa Havins) has to do a bit of self defense. Shock! © BBC Worldwide Productions/Starz/BBC 2011

A bit of a “ticking over” episode here, with much of the action split between the Overflow Center near LA and the one in Wales. We keep being told about the high security of these, yet it still takes some time before Rex is caught, and the simpering Esther manages to wander around, finally bringing the antics of loony Camp Commandant Colin Maloney to a stop. She still hasn’t quite grasped yet that death is not an option. Bless!

But Esther is still not the dumbest one around. That accolade falls squarely on the shoulders of Gwen (Eve Myles), who gets dumber by the minute. I’ve finally realized that’s how she gets away with so much. No one, humans or aliens, can believe how stupid she is. This time she picks an argument with a doctor in the Overlflow Center, trying to convince said person to re-categorize her father so he won’t be put into a module (for cremation). Here is Gwen, trying to sneak in and out of the center, and she almost blows her top.


Then when it finally comes to the rescue of her father, she and hubby have to have a bunch of kisses before he finally escapes – rather easily. I almost laughed out loud at this point when the director did his best to photograph stomper Gwen as some kind of ‘Action Woman’ when she blew up the modules. Or maybe it was just irony?

Now, we have to remember that earlier on in this series, everyone was trying to keep a low profile, to avoid the gaze of whoever is behind all this. So Gwen flies to Wales and back to the US under her own name. And is even paged in the airport!


Captain Jack Harkness (John Barrowman) checks some paperwork © BBC Worldwide Productions/Starz/BBC 2011

And yet she’s still shocked to learn that her family has been kidnapped by the bad guys (or maybe they’re just drama critics?). These kidnappers are also wonderfully over-dramatic. “We have your father. We have your mother,” and so on, rather than just “We have your family”. And then for some reason she staggers back in shock when they say “Bring us Jack” (not “Harkness”, interesting…). So cue a preview of next week’s episode where she’s kidnapped Jack “to save her family”.

Never mind the rest of Mankind. As long as Gwen’s family is OK the world can go to hell.

Meanwhile, Rex’s video has been released and is brushed aside by the authorities. Really? No fuss from Mr and Mrs Public? No outrage on the Internet communities? Hmm…

Perhaps the most interesting part of the episode was from the pre-titles sequence where a PsiCorp executive tries to find out what’s happening in one of the company’s Shanghai buildings, and his operative goes for brain death after finding put. “Oooh…” you might think. what terrible secret has been discovered? I do hope it’s going to live up to expectations.

But I bet it won’t…


[Rating: 1.5]

Jan Vincent-Rudzki

UK editor of Film Review Online More by Jan Vincent-Rudzki