Torchwood Miracle Day Reviews III/III

Chalchiuhtecolotl December 16, 2011 No Comments »

Episode 8 End of the Road:

 

The mystery woman from before is revealed to be Olivia Colasanto, Angelo’s granddaughter. Olivia brings the team to the Colassanto estate and leads them to Angelo’s room. Angelo discovered a way to prolong his life, but not his youth and is now a comatose old man. It is revealed that the “The Families” are responsible for the Miracle. But when Esther looks up the names given to her by Olivia, the search turns up blank… they never existed.

While the team discuss the situation, Brian Friedkin leads a CIA team into the mansion and capture everyone. Friedkin is involved with The Families and attempting to cover up his treason, but Rex lures him into a trap and Friedkin reveals his involvement in front of Allen Shapiro, thier superior. With Rex and Esther cleared, Torchwood and the CIA pool their resources.

Interaction between Jilly and Oswald indicate that government officials are in the process of creating a new that will legalize “Category 0.” Category 0 members are criminals like Oswald and they, like Category 1 members, will be sent to the modules to be burned.  Jilly had been aware of this and was hiding the information from Oswald. Angered, he assaults Jilly and the runs away. Jilly is eventually met by a representative from The Families, and after a single question interview, is taken to meet The Families.

The machines monitoring Angelo’s health go off, indicating his heart stopped. But what Jack quickly comes to realize is that Angelo is not Category 1, but is actually dead. Angelo becomes the first to die… how? Underneath his bed is material scavenged from the remains of the old Torchwood Hub in Cardiff. It is a null field transmitter, which interfere with the morphic field that is behind the Miracle. It is highly likely that Angelo used Jack’s blood to have the transmitter affect him as well. Jack initially chooses not to share this information with the CIA, but the CIA deports Gwen and ends up leaving little choice for Jack who is forced to disable the transmitter so it can be safely transported.

Jack does not want this technology to fall into humanity’s hands, believing that they are not ready for something so advanced. He steals a vital piece of the machine so it can’t be replicated and asks for Esther and Rex’s help in escaping. As they leave, Jack is shot by an agent. While Rex subdues said agent, Esther escapes with an unconscious Jack.

The action is heating up and showing no signs of slowing down. The acting in this episode was terrific; I especially loved seeing Jilly finally blow up at Oswald. Gwen also was a ball of fire.  Hearing her back talk to Shapiro was hysterical.

“End of the Road” managed to tie up some loose ends without being dull about it. It also brought back more of that old Torchwood feel with the alien technology under Angelo’s bed. This episode gets 5/5 wagons

 Episode 9 The Gathering:

 

It has been two months since the previous episode. The world is in severe economic distress with the global recession having turned into a global depression. Countries are becoming more isolated with trade and immigration becoming restricted.

Gwen is at home with her family attempting to hide her still ill father from the authorities. Esther and Jack on in Scotland while Jack recovers.  Esther has been taking samples of Jack’s blood and saving it- storing it in a metal briefcase- believing it could prove useful. Rex is back at the CIA, working on tracking down The Families. Rex also suspects that there may be a mole in the CIA’s ranks.

Oswald Danes travels to Wales and finds his way to Gwen’s home, where he wishes to see Jack, claiming that he has information of vital importance on the Miracle: Jilly has been hired by the families to mistranslate information… but to what end?

Jilly gets sent to Shanghai by The Families, where she is assigned the task to ‘write history.‘ She is taken to The Blessing, which is revealed to be a massive crack going through the earth.

Shanghai then gets connected to Buenos Aires… both cities had blood banks burned down  before the Miracle. In addition, both cities are directly across from each other on the earth… an eerie resemblance to the PhiCorp logo: a circle divided in half by a line, the earth divided by something linking these two cities: The Blessing.

The team splits up, Rex and Esther going to Buenos Aires and Gwen, Jack and Oswald going to Shanghai. It is revealed that Jack is not fully healed and that it got worse arriving at Shanghai. As Gwen changes his dressing, blood falls from the old gauze to the ground where it begins to move across the floor in a peculiar fashion.

All, in all, this episode isn’t bad, but it is lackluster compared to the previous two episodes. It spends much of the time tying up loose ends, but not in the exciting way that Immortal Sins did. It did give us some interesting questions to chew on. Firstly, what history will Jilly be writing for The Families, what exactly is the blessing, what is The Families connections and motivations with it, and what is Jack’s- specificially, Jack’s blood- connection to it all.

Episode 10 Blood Line:

 

Last episode, it was revealed that Jack’s blood is drawn towards The Blessing. The team uses small amounts of the blood to find a way towards the two sites. The CIA is called in to assist in infiltrating the Buenos Aires site, keeping Jack, Gwen, and Oswald’s presence in Shanghai a secret.  While the group is loading up to take the Buenos Aires site, a double agent of The Families detonates a suicide bomb. The Argentinian soldiers that had been called in to assist all become Category 1, and Rex and Esther’s supply of Jack’s blood is destroyed. The Captain of the soldiers survives, however, and Rex and Esther request that he report them dead.

Director Shapiro realizes The Families must have a spy inside his team and decides to run a newly developed trace program. It tracks any recent phone calls made using The Families’ method of avoiding traces. Realizing she is moments from being found out, the mole sets an explosive charge. The resulting explosion takes out Shapiro and the rest of his team and lightly injures Charolette- clearing her of suspicion.

The Shanghai blessing site is successfully infiltrated. The team meets The Mother, Jilly and armed guards. The latter quickly stand down when Oswald exposes his explosive vest. The victory is short lived when the Buenos Aires site reveals that they have captured Rex and Esther. Oswald states that he never expected to leave alive.

After examination of The Blessing, it is deduced that it generates a morphic field linking the human race. Upon questioning, the Mother finally explains how the Miracle was created.

As a finale episode, this is not the worst that Torchwood has seen, nor is it the best.  It did a nice job tying things up. However, one thing that it did that I like a great deal is that is left a few open ends… big open ends.  This is unusual, as Torchwood usually ties things up in a nice, neat little bow. The ending for this episode definitely left room for more Torchwood episodes to come.

Torchwood: Miracle Day as a Series

 

Now, Miracle Day as a whole was not brilliant, but it was certainly above average.  It took a long time for me to get into and lagged in some places, but over all the plot was interesting, character development solid- especially in regards to Esther-. and it took the series in a good direction.

The biggest issue with Miracle Day was the lag. Granted, Miracle Day introduced new characters, new setting, and so on, but progress was still slow.  Torchwood: Children of Earth had only five episodes, but this number worked out perfect. It kept the action going, but it never felt rushed. Miracle Day’s ten episodes could probably have been cut down. There were a lot of great ideas, but the slow progress of the story took away from these.

As a series, Torchwood: Miracle Day gets 4/5 wagons.

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