Season 3 Episode 4

Children of Earth: Day Four

Aired Wednesday 9:00 PM Jul 09, 2009 on BBC Two
out of 10
User Rating
285 votes

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Episode Summary


As the Ambassador shows its intent, the Torchwood team discovers the truth of what happened in 1965.

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  • what!? Am i the only sane person who watched this episode? there first mistake, they killed Lanto and he didn't even get a chance to fight for his life. sooo uncool. tsk tsk. Torchwood has disappointed me.moreless

    First of, Lanto was one of the best characters in Torchwood. Second only to Jack, ofcourse. I admit that I am not a fan of Torchwood but, by all that's HOLY!, i am a viewer of its many outstanding episodes. i was ashamed of Torchwood because of this very episode. BOOOOOOOO! First of, Lanto died, and its not the fact because he died, its because of HOW he died. he died doing.. absolutely nothing! he should've went down guns ablazing, running around doing backflips and kicking ass. now that's a way to kill a perfectly good character. second, and probably the most awful thing i have ever seen anyone done in this whole wide world (second only to the creation of My Own Worst Enemy, man that show was awful!) anyways, they killed all the excitement! they barge into MI5, Gwen sounded so cool and confident. and what did they do? they brought a stick in an Intergalactic Alien Warfare. "if you don't stop, we'll show everyone that our officials are greedy and corrupt." WTF! what kind of threat was that? they're taking away 10% of the children?! you think they'd care?! it's like telling a man with a gun on your head, "you better stop! or i'll call your mommy!" WAAA! bad bluff. "you officials sit down and let us torchwood, do our job." (what exactly did they do except for killing one of their own and made things even worst) awful, abysmal and all other words of disgust. Torchwood has disappointed me.moreless
  • i cant belleve russel t davies has done this! you cant kill ianto we love in to much

    i cant belleve russel t davies has done this! you cant kill ianto we love in to much! i cryed sooooooo much! torchwood will never be the same again! you cant kill ianto! you just cant! hi is just so brillient and you cant kill him i love him! my sister dose as well! my whole school loves him! the entier world loves him! they just cant do this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! R.I.P Ianto Jonesmoreless
  • Absolutely brilliant and frightening

    OMG! I can't recall to ever have sat in front of the tv in so much horror, holding my breath and crying so hard like i have during this episode. Right now I think that the discussion at the table of politicians to really sacrifice the children demanded and how to select them might be one of the most brilliant scenes in show tv I've ever seen because it seems to very realistic that if it came down to a situation like this, that would be exactly how decisions would be made. With all humanity gone, nobody seemed to question this sacrifice as long as their beloved ones would be save and that's only just reality in a world in which speaking of "collateral damages" and "acceptal losses" in human lives seems to be like speaking of the weather. I've never seen a seemingly philosophical question cutting down to the very heart of human existence brought up in a more oppressive way. Is saving the lives of 6.7 billion people worth sacrificing any number of lives (of humans not having decided in their own free will and free of ideological or social oppression to stand up and maybe loose it) for it or -- to cut it down to the ultimate question -- to sacrifice one single life? I can't recall what the exact phrase was, Jack and Ianto said. It was something along the line of "the harm done to one is the harm done to all" and that's exactly what I was thinking while watching this negotiaton scene. How could there even be a discussion about something like that? How could not standing up or going down together even be an option? How could something like "expendable human beings" be something to even think about. Shouldn't humanity (and politicians especially) have learnt something from the time between 1933 and 1945? If they won't be giving us a cheap solution tomorrow night, this might be one of the best and most impressive stories i've ever seen on tv, cutting down right to the heart, the mind and the conscience, making people aware of where they stand and of where they want this planet to head ...moreless
  • One of the best hours of telivision ever written.

    This is not only the best episode of torchwood, but also surpasses all the doctor who episodes as well. It was sickening to watch the govenment discuss which children die, I can't help feeling that if this sort of thing happened in real ife, out govenment would do something similar. The final few minutes of the episode were also very painful to watch, with everyone panicking trying to get out the building and ianto's death. This is far more gritty and realistic than most of RTD's other scripts. these aliens are really nasty pieces of work. Even now though there are still unanswered questions, we still don't know why exactly the aliens want the children. Truly a landmark episode tonight, I just hope tomorrow's conclusion dosen't ruin it.moreless
  • The 456 want 35million

    children from the worlds population. The governments hit squad now have Jacks daughter and grandson; the team learn the truth about the events of 1965 and their effect more than 40 years later, and evidence of Britain's collusion almost sees the country declared a rouge state.Its just getting better each episode.
Peter Capaldi

Peter Capaldi

John Frobisher

Guest Star

Paul Copley

Paul Copley

Clement McDonald

Guest Star

Nicholas Farrell

Nicholas Farrell

Brian Green

Guest Star

Kai Owen

Kai Owen

Rhys Williams

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • At approximately 45 minutes 35 seconds into the episode, Jack and Ianto are going up in an elevator. The LED floor numbers are shown as changing completely, for example, 8, then 9, then 10. However, in the larger shot, the floor numbers change by sliding into the next floor, for example, as 8 disappears, 9 slowly fills.

  • QUOTES (6)

    • Jack: How many children do they want?
      Venessa: Twelve. It's like a sacrifice to the ancient gods. Twelve virgins.
      Jack: Just twelve? Sounds like a good deal. What do they want them for?
      Venessa: They say they'll live forever.
      Jack: Yeah. Sure. Why do you need me?
      Venessa: Well, assuming twelve children can be found, then we need someone to deliver them.
      Jack: What, in case the aliens are hostile? You need someone who can't die?
      Venessa: Actually, we need someone who doesn't care.

    • Alice: I can only assume that you're holding me here as insurance against my father. But let me warn you, if you've angered him, then God help you.
      Johnson: This from the woman who spent her life running away from him.
      Alice: And why do you think I did that? A man who can't die has got nothing to fear. So you watch it and you keep watching.

    • Lois: I know I'm only supposed to be here to take notes, but, um, I am a voter.
      Yates: Listen, love, this isn't a referendum.
      Bridget: Lois, could I have a word outside?
      Lois: No, but it needs saying.
      Frobisher: Lois, seriously, not now.
      Lois: And I'm not just speaking on my own behalf.
      Yates: Just what we need, a revolutionary.
      Lois: If you like, sir, then that's what I am.
      Yates: Oh, yeah? You and whose army?
      Lois: Torchwood.
      Prime Minister: What?
      Frobisher: Don't be ridiculous.
      Gwen: (Watching from Torchwood warehouse) I think she's doing it. Good girl!
      Lois: But Torchwood has been recording all these meetings. And everything that's been said around this table, every single word, spoken by every single one of you, will be made public, unless you do exactly what Torchwood says.

    • (Jack and Ianto walk into the MI5 building holding their guns above their heads)
      Jack: Jack Harkness, Ianto Jones. We're Torchwood.
      (Both set their guns on the counter)

    • Jack: I'm Captain Jack Harkness. I've dealt with you lot before. I'm here to explain why this time you're not getting what you want.
      456: You yielded in the past.
      Jack: And don't I know it. I was there. In 1965, I was part of that trade. And that's why I'm never gonna let it happen again.
      456: Explain.
      Jack: There's a saying here on Earth. A very old, very wise friend of mine taught me it. An injury to one is an injury to all. And when people act according to that philosophy, the human race is the finest species in the universe.
      Ianto: Never mind the philosophy. What he's saying is you're not getting one solitary, single child. The deal is off.
      Jack: Uh, I like the philosophy.
      Ianto: I gathered.
      456: You yielded in the past. You will do so again.
      Jack: In the past, the numbers were so small they could be kept secret, but this time, that is not going to happen. Because we've recorded everything. All the negotiations, everything the politicians said, everything that happened in this room, and those tapes will be released to the public. Unless you leave this planet for good.
      456: You yielded in the past. You will do so again.
      Jack: When people find out the truth, you will have over six billion angry human beings taking up arms to fight you. That might be a fight you think you can win, but at the end of it, the human race, in defense of its children, will fight to the death. And if I have to lead them into battle, then I will.
      Ianto: You've got enough information on this planet. Check your records. His name is Captain Jack Harkness. Go back 150 years and see what you're facing.

    • Jack: It's all my fault.
      Ianto: No, it's not.
      Jack: Don't speak. Save your breath.
      Ianto: I love you, I...
      Jack: Don't. Ianto. Ianto. Ianto, stay with me. Ianto, stay with me, please. Please.
      Ianto: Hey, it was good, yeah?
      Jack: Yeah.
      Ianto: Don't forget me.
      Jack: Never could.
      Ianto: A thousand years' time, you won't remember me.
      Jack: Yes, I will. I promise. I will.

  • NOTES (1)