Torchwood: Miracle Day - my review

So Torchwood went out last night in the UK, nearly a week after the rest of the world (but that's another matter discussed elsewhere on this site!), but was it any good?

Twitter and Facebook last night was full of opinions and all of them were pretty strong, people weren't happy at all with the show's transition to the USA. This is something we have to accept as from what I have read it was a series of Torchwood in America or no series at all. There was no way the BBC were going to pay for and produce a new series on their own.

My main worry, however, was the choice of network that the BBC chose to make the series with. I have found other "original starz productions" to be quite tacky with the main objective to be to show as much violence and naked ladies as possible. Even the new series of Camelot had Eva Green stripping off for no other reason than a cheap thrill.

Because of this I have been genuinely worried that Torchwood: Miracle Day would head in that direction... after one episode though I am feeling a bit better about the whole thing. Episode One was not bad at all.

It was great seeing Gwen and Rhys settled down as a family and I appreciated the idea that Gwen no longer appeared to want to go back to her previous life in Cardiff as her experiences with the 456 were nothing less than traumatic. The concept of the "Miracle Day" is also a very good one and I liked the fact that while nobody was dying Jack was becoming battered and bruised (only what John Barrowman deserves!).

Making the series a ten parter as well is extremely ambitious, it gives the show time to explore the story properly and not rush it to a conclusion after 45 minutes. I particularly liked the scenes on the hospital slab when a surgeon decided to cut a bomb survivor's head off just to see if he would live. That scene was very well done and genuinely scary.

The first episode wasn't without it faults though. Mekhi Phifer's performance was frankly awful and was far too over the top to be believable, he was given a couple of rotton lines to say as well. Wales is like New Jersey? Where the hell did that come from? Plus, why did he fly to Heathrow "UK" when Cardiff has a perfectly serviceable airport? (ok I know that's being incredibly picky!)

As Torchwood is now going to be made by Americans we have all assumed that the show will have a bigger budget. To be honest I never saw this, I thought a couple of effects were really fake and CGI was being used when it wasn't really necessary. Would it not have been easier to use actual fire rather than adding the CGI effect afterwards?

So far its OK, I would give it about six out of ten and no more, but its only episode one and this story looks like it will be a slow burner in a few weeks time I could very well be raving about how good its getting! I'm still not happy with the crappy job the BBC schedulers are doing though...

  • Comment from: bluejovanka
    18/07/11 @ 06:02:36 pm

    The second episode is a big improvement, this is a good sign for the rest of the series!

  • Comment from: bluejovanka
    25/08/11 @ 04:09:58 pm

    well I did say:

    “in a few weeks time I could very well be raving about how good its getting!”

    Only three episodes left now [starz pace] and, overlooking a couple of dodgy anglo/american moments, it has genuinely turned into a great series.

    Episode 7 has been the best so far, easily up there with the best of the first three series. I think the pay off for sticking with it for ten weeks is going to be a big one!

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