Torchwood (UK) Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 93 Ratings

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  • Starring: Naoko Mori, Naoko Mori, Indira Varma
  • Summary: This spin-off from the producers of the new Doctor Who has Captain Jack Harkness in charge of a secret government organization with the mission to protect the world from alien threats.
  • Genre(s): Drama, Action & Adventure, Science Fiction
  • Creator: Russell T. Davies
  • Show Type: Ended
  • Season 1 premiere date: Oct 22, 2006
  • Episode Length: 50
  • Air Time: 09:00 PM
  • More Details and Credits »
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 13
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 13
  3. Negative: 2 out of 13
  1. There are a fair number of leaps of logic in the light-hearted Torchwood and mysteries abound. The special effects are generally decent and the writing and characterizations leaps and bounds better than in "Flash Gordon," "Eureka" or "The Dresden Files," to name just a few pathetic contemporary sci-fi shows.
  2. Reviewed by: Ari Karpel
    After a riveting pilot, this third episode is more of a run-of-the-mill procedural, but thanks to the charismatic Tom Cruise-y Barrowman, this Captain Jack will get you bi tonight. [21 Sep 2007, p.76]
  3. A new BBC America sci-fi/thriller that's so good and unsettling and creepy that even grumps like myself can't help but be in its thrall.
  4. Torchwood is so much more tricked-out with talent and visual wizardry, moves at such breakneck speed and makes such demands on its viewers that it leaves most American TV shows in its dust.
  5. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    Torchwood, a cheeky and often startlingly adult spin-off.
  6. 80
    The adult show supplies shocking twists. The tone ranges from passionate to campy to scary.
  7. It at times seems like a pornographic parody of "The X-Files."

See all 13 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 46
  2. Negative: 9 out of 46
  1. [Anonymous]
    Mar 28, 2008
    Great show, with the thrills and spills of doctor who with added kick.
  2. Jan 7, 2011
    Terrible show. Torchwood is supposedly a top-secret organization given unlimited resources and authority by UK government, and charged with defending Earth and being custodian of powerful alien artifacts. Yet: none of the personnel know anything about each other or have had background checks; none of the personnel have formal military training; all of the personnel are emotional trainwrecks. Seriously: it seems like each episode, someone breaks down and cries as a result of the normal day-to-day duties of their job. The Earth is defended by incompetent crybabies. On the plus side, Captain Jack is an interesting character portrayed by a skilled actor. They should fire everyone else on the team, and start over. Expand
  3. GilesE.
    Sep 6, 2007
    Excellent series, saw it in the UK. Can't wait for season 2 over here! The last couple of episodes are epic btw :)
  4. Jul 13, 2011
    A thrill ride that actually makes you think.

    Torchwood is a British show that has lived a charmed life over the years but remains to be as
    resilient as its immortal lead character. After the hit and (largely) miss first two seasons the show exploded onto a much bigger, and critically acclaimed, scene with the five-part mini-series 'Children of Earth' in which the British government conspired to surrender 10% of its children to an alien species. Captain Jack Harkness (the immortal hero played by John Barrowman, star of Desperate Housewives among others) was forced to sacrifice his grandson in order to defeat the invaders in a shocking twist in the final episode. Torchwood had finally found its feet and discovered how to create shocking, thrilling, chilling and thoughtful drama and it hasn't looked back since.

    'Miracle Day' starts with Oswald Danes (played by the thoroughly magnificent Independence Day star, Bill Pullman) being dosed with a lethal injection as punishment for the sexual assault and murder of a twelve year old girl but something goes horribly wrong. After a few minutes of writhing agony it becomes clear; he won't die. Mekhi Phifer's CIA character Rex Matheson suffers a similar fate when his is impaled after a freak car accident as it becomes clear that this issue has become a global one. Dark themes are explored here with solders, of whom are blown to bits, remain alive (even after being beheaded by a surgeon in a chilling/funny scene halfway through the premiere). Danes, the now immortal murderer, argues that he has been punished for his crimes and that now should be released; a wish that is granted by a local governor threatened by legal action. The Torchwood team, in ruins after the events of 'Children of Earth' come back into the fold to unravel the mystery in explosive fashion as Captain Jack leaps from a suicide bomber out the top floor of a tower block and Gwen Cooper (Welsh actress Eve Myles) blows up a helicopter with a bazooka, obviously. Torchwood is a mix of fascinating intrigue, sound acting, mind-blowing action sequences, chilling themes and impressive writing (from the likes of Doctor Who's Russell T Davies, House's Doris Egan and Buffy's Jane Espenson). Despite a few questionable moments, Torchwood is unashamedly magnificent madness which you'd be a fool to miss.
  5. JoshF
    Sep 10, 2007
    This show is great - one of my favorite shows right now. It's equally humorous, intense, campy, insightful and action-packed. I was never a Doctor Who fan, and I think most TV Sci-Fi is pretty lame. There's just something about this show, though, and I love the setting (Wales). Can't wait for Season 2 - there better be one! Expand
  6. Sep 7, 2011
    Interesting premise. I want to like the show and am close to doing so but, can the show be about the central plot and a little less about Jack being Gay? Yes, yes, we all get it. He's gay and has been gay for a very long time but, the seemingly forced gay thread woven into every episode is a distraction. I don't really care that Jack likes hot guys. . . what does it have to do with the darn plot? It's almost as if, there's a quota of gay sex & love scenes that needs to be worked into every episode whether or not it has anything to do with the central theme of the story to satisfy some count.

    Producers & Writers episode planning meetings:

    + Gory chest wound on should be dead actor - Check
    + One world government conspiracy subtext - Check
    + Secrete evil society lurking in the shadows pulling the strings - Check
    + Seemingly pointless 5 minute man on man sex scene - Check Throttle it back a bit already. . . . . we get it! And for the most part, don't care. Is the show a science fiction drama or an audition reel for the LOGO network. Make up your mind already. . . .
  7. DuncanL
    Sep 11, 2007
    I watched this when it first came out in the UK, and was bitterly, bitterly disappointed. The characters are appalling and unpleasant, the stories are dreadfull and the acting is abysmal. I gave up entirely after the cyberwoman episode, which was one of the worst hours of TV I've ever witnessed. Expand

See all 46 User Reviews