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Torchwood

Season 3 Episode 2

Children of Earth: Day Two

1
Aired Wednesday 9:00 PM Jul 07, 2009 on BBC Two
SUBMIT REVIEW

Episode Fan Reviews (10)

9.1
out of 10
Average
257 votes
  • Great TV!

    9.0
    This is top notch stuff. The story and the action are first rate, the suspense is continually building and overall it has a very sinister feel.
  • The way Gwen, Andy, and Ianto get Jack out had me in stitches

    9.0
    The way Gwen, Andy, and Ianto get Jack out had me in stitches.



    It was feature film level material. Not episodic TV level material.
  • The team are on the run as the menace of the 456 looms...

    9.5
    So Day Two picks up from exactly where we left it, and immediately we can fully appreciate the consequences of the event. It takes literally a minute before Gwen and Ianto are faced with danger, surrounded by an assassination squad with orders to kill. They're on their own, and there's no telling when they'll be reunited, adding to the tension and disorientation. Gwen really shines in this episode (an action heroine to rival Ripley in the 'Alien' films) and it seems that the writers are gradually setting Rhys up as an honorary member of the team. The tension between he and Gwen adds to the realism and depth of their situation, with both actors giving full commitment and performing brilliantly as a result.

    The series' cinematic vibe, as with last night's instalment, is heightened by the movement to a number of different locations around the UK with different characters. Unlike previous episodes, the events do not focus on one of two places in Cardiff - we see a number of different characters and observe events from numerous perspectives. The series is certainly more 'epic' than the last two series. Nevertheless, events seem more real. Seeing Jack's arm from the perspective of the firemen allows us to view events as ordinary characters do. This is how we as a member of the public (an outsider) would see this, making it all the more disturbing. This seems far more real than previous Doctor Who, Torchwood or SJA episodes. The realism is unnervingly hit home.

    Andy's inclusion is welcome too. His humour and faith are a few small rays of optimism in an otherwise dark and hard story. Hopefully his character will remain in the series for some time to come. The music is another particularly notable element that adds to the dynamic of the revamped show. It's far more orchestrated and sounds more polished, moving away from the edginess of the previous two series.

    The children are still being possessed, reminding us that there are other enemies, ones who are more terrifying and presumably merciless. Clem's possession sets up another thread in the story which will undoubtedly be developed further, and the chant that 'We are coming tomorrow!' naturally builds a sense of dread and foreboding. As for the state of Jack, that's another disturbing element to say the least. The remains of his body in the bag are seen 26 minutes in, a long time for the central character to appear (although it's difficult to call a blooded skeleton a central character). When he finally returns to life, the horrific nature of his predicament is hit home: this is Jack, but he bears no similarity to a human being, let alone the character we know. This is the leader of the team; the man who cannot die. But we now know that he can, indeed, suffer. And his suffering is unbearable. As the soldier observes: "He would have been better off staying dead."

    With the team divided and Jack absolutely helpless, events are spiralling downwards. It remains to be seen how they will escape this situation, but I guess we'll have to keep watching to find out. The big question is, will Lois be filling Toshiko's shoes by the end of the series? And what will happen in that room designed for the 456?
  • The build up continues.

    8.5
    This is pretty much a transitional episode, this episode focuses maninly on gwen and ianto rescuing jack from the govenment. I don't think it comes as any surprise that jack survived the explosion. It is still unclear why exactly the govenment are helping these aliens, maybe they're scared by all the children. The aliens themselves have still yet to make an appearance. This episode seems to be building up to the episode tomorrow which looks like it could be a big one, we might even be seeing the aliens tomorrow. There is also lois who is helping the team from within the govenment, she could possibly be a new team member for season 4 if it happens.
  • New they couldn't get rid

    10
    of captain jack that easy Gwen, and Lanto and Gwen's husband are forced into hiding from the government Basically it is down to Gwen, and Lanto and Gwen's husband to rescue jack from the Government hit squad. Meanwhile, in London, a secretary makes a startling discovery that could offer the trio salvation. Theres nothing to stop them they are still coming.
  • Gwen and Rhys at their best

    9.5
    The adrenaline charged day two starts with the explosion that destroyed the hub, one by one each member of Torchwood is hunted by snipers sent by their own government to eliminate them...as well as anyone connected to them.

    That's how mother-to-be Gwen Cooper ends up going back home in order to take her spouse as far away as possible as she multitasks shooting the people sent after them and picking baby names while trying to uncover a major conspiracy that wants them dead. The more the reasons to like Rhys as he adapts to every situation whether it's to hold's her bag for support cuz Gwen needs her trigger finger free or to offer a most touching reaction to the news that he's about to become a father.

    The contrast to Ianto's sister is palpable and yet, to her defense, she has barely known her brother is dating another man, she doesn't know exactly who that man is and what he does for a living, a fact that literally hits her front door as police breaks her home at gun point in the middle of the night, however disturbing, family comes first and even Ianto's niece and nephew rally to help him out of this one.

    In the end family - and a few loyal allies such as PC Andy and Lois Habiba - is all what Torchwood needs to go on, find Jack and free him from what's at least 2 of the most gruesome deaths to date.
  • "They Keep Killing Captain Jack" CHILDREN OF EARTH: DAY TWO, Hits the ground running!

    10
    Day Two, this time written by newbee to torchwood ( but not to BBC television) John Fay! Seamlessly picking up were Russell Davies left off on day one. With the explosive ( ouch ) ending to Day one, Gwen Cooper (Eve Myles) and Ianto Jones (Gareth David-Lloyed) Find themselves seperated and on the run from a hit sqaud they know nothing about! Aided by Rhys Williams Gwens husband (Kai Owen) and a unexpeted helper from London, they must find Jack ( ouch again ) and figure out what the heck is going on, and How its ties into the strange behavour of the kids all over the world!

    And a appearance from PC Andy! Another great episode, that had me glued to my seat. Good Stuff! Samuraikuroi USA
  • This episode had a much creepier and mysterious feel. *Spoilers*

    9.5
    It worked well with whatever they are building on the top floor of MI5. I am now even more curious what the government is up to. If they didnt get the instructions to build until recently, what is it in their past that they are trying to hide? What is the 456? Why kill Torchwood? There is so much more going on. The very last scene was very creepy, with the old man hissing at the poison chamber. It made me shiver.

    There was much more of Lois, making it even more likely that she will stick around. Gwen even told her to come to her if she is looking for a job. I enjoy her, she could be a good addition. Rhys is also pretty good in Children of Earth so far. He used to whine a lot and could be a bit annoying. But being on the run with Gwen, he is quite helpful and has been doing good to keep up with the professionals. I'm glad he's there.

    I knew Jack would survive the bomb, obviously, but I didnt know how. Seeing him simply grow back was pretty crazy and emotional. So was when they buried him in cement. I cant imagine what it felt like for Ianto to watch them do that to him, but it was pretty awful even for me. I was really really scared they were gonna end the episode with Gwen and Rhys cornered, but thankfully they didnt. So far they have done an excellent job know when to end the episode. The last scene was amazing, again. When I saw Ianto rip the entire cement slab out of the side of the building with the tractor, I was literally bouncing in my seat and laughing with excitement. And I am also really glad they didnt waste time getting Jack out of the cement. I am so glad he's back!
  • These aliens need to hurry up and get here

    8.0
    I thought this episode was a little lackluster compared to the amazing premiere still there was some really great action. Gwen and Ianto are on the run and it's not clear whether Jack has survived the bombing his body parts are retrived by the govenment agents... it soon becomes apparent that they are growing back... it was pretty damn gross he is a goey fleshy skeleton for quite some time. As he can't be killed the female agent decides that he must be contained and has his holding cell filled with cement.
    The govenment aide Lois begins to have a bigger role and helps Gwen and her husband plan a daring rescue attempt of Jack.
    The best moment in the show was when Ianto broke the concrete bloke containing Jack from his cell with a fork lift truck. He then dropped the block from the side of a pit smashing Jack free in the process.
    I really like Jack and Ianto together I think they are cute... I've a feeling I am going to end up shipping them.
    These aliens are gonna be here tommorrow I can't wait!
  • On The Second Day Written by John Fay Directed by Euros Lyn

    8.0
    Johnson (re Gwen): "Now do you believe she's a terrorist?"
    Andy: "She shot your wheels. What kind of terrorist shoots your wheels?"
    Johnson: "A clever one."

    And we're off with the second day of this saga. Following the Hub's total destruction at the end of the first episode, it's more or less confirmed that our Torchwood are alive if still in danger from the government.

    Gwen herself is rounded up by some workers posing as ambulance drivers who make an unsuccessful bid to abduct and kill her. You gotta give Gwen her dues with the way she was quickly able to incapacitate them with a few swift moves. The girl literally has become an action woman within the episode.

    The workers in question didn't reveal who exactly was pursing Gwen but if working in Torchwood is anything to go by, then Gwen was smart enough to realise that whoever her attackers were would also target Rhys within the hour as well. Come on, it would've been a surprise if they hadn't.

    I was hoping that Andy would show up in this episode and luckily he did. Mainly his interactions were kept with Johnson and at first, he did seem eager to flirt with her. Wouldn't bother, Andy – she would definitely eat you for breakfast and spit you out without a second thought.

    Of course Andy's role in this episode wasn't quite as proactive as I'd hoped it would be. Instead he led Johnson to Gwen and Rhys and tried to convince the assassin that Gwen wasn't a terrorist. Andy, the lady doesn't care but it did make for a good line.

    A terrorist might have shot at Johnson's vehicle in a bid to blow it up. All Gwen did was shoot down the tires but still points for effectiveness have to be given out. And it also makes sure that Andy doesn't believe that his former worker is a terrorist. Not that he would.

    Gwen and Rhys trying to escape while keeping their heads low could draw some parallels to the same thing The Doctor, Martha and Jack had to do during The Master's reign on Earth but getting out of Cardiff to London was always going to be a tricky one.

    It's a good job for Gwen that she's married to a man who knows his **** about haulage then. It's not like the writers are even pretending – Rhys basically is joining up Torchwood and it was his bright idea of getting in the back of a haulage truck that got them to London in the first place. I'm also sure that within the next three days that Rhys will probably come up with some more bright ideas as well.

    As for the pregnancy reveal, I think the writer picked the right moment to do. Rhys's reaction was understandably joyous but I was worried for a second that his enthusiasm would end up getting them caught. I guess luck further fell into their favour by not doing so.

    Another stroke of luck was Gwen getting through to Lois instead of Frobisher. You wouldn't have needed Lois's powers of perception to realise that if Gwen had talked to Frobisher, she would've been a dead woman. It also made total sense for Lois to go and meet up with Gwen.

    Gwen's initial frostiness with Lois was something that made sense. Gwen didn't recognise and even Lois was confused as to why Frobisher was so determined to kill off Torchwood when they're the good guys. Now you know how Buffy and her gang must feel in the eighth season comics.

    The interesting part was seeing Lois show off her potential without even trying. I could almost telegraph that Gwen was going to end up making some comment about wanting to hire Lois as a potential employee for Torchwood. Now all Lois has to do is make it to Friday in one piece and she'll be doing some relocating.

    It was also thanks to Lois that Gwen and Rhys were able to pose as undertakers to come and collect Rupesh's body. Okay, so it was Jack they were looking for and while Johnson eventually caught the couple, victory was indeed on Torchwood's side for a bit.

    Getting Jack back was needed for this episode. Both Gwen and Ianto knew it had to be done, both of them knew Jack would survive the blast (even if there was a flicker of doubt at some points) and both were largely separately from the episode in order to carry out their plan.

    I have to give Ianto's family some props. I wrote his brother in law, Johnny as a major dick in the previous episode and wasn't all that sympathetic when he complained about Johnson's men raiding the Evans household but he actually shone in this episode as well.

    It was him who encouraged Rhiannon to help Ianto and it was also him and some local neighbours that caused a distraction long enough so Rhiannon could give Ianto back a laptop. Then again with spies are incompetent as the ones Frobisher sent (or was it Johnson?); maybe Johnny didn't need to bother.

    I liked that Ianto had to tell his sister about Torchwood without having to explain everything. Their relationship does seem distant but she does care about him and she certainly believed him when he told her that he was working with Jack and Gwen to fix the situation with the children as well.

    The rescuing Jack part of the episode was excellent. I thought when it came to Jack's Lazarus abilities that we had seen everything. I was wrong. In this episode we saw his body ripped to shreds, flayed and then repair itself. I was glad that we only had to see flayed Jack just once. Again, the current issue of Buffy comics I'm reading has made sure that I've more than had my fill of flayed guys.

    Johnson really is a nasty piece of work. Attacks on Gwen and Ianto aside and her callous way of referring to Jack as a thing, she almost made The Master seem more behaved by comparison. Also she seemed more than happy to taunt Jack as she had him covered in cement. So why do I like her again? Oh, right, effective villain played by good actress. Need to keep remembering that one.

    Johnson succeeds where the rest of them stay uncertain. The Prime Minister is still typically spineless while Bridget seems to retain an annoying stiff upper lip quality about her and Decker is suitably creepy.

    Frobisher is the harder one to figure out though. Somewhere along with his determination to keep Torchwood out of the way is a man with a conscience. He asked more sensible questions about the 456 and given that they're supposed to be coming tomorrow (thank you, kids), what kind of a creature can survive/breathe in a tank with so many different kinds of gasses and cyanide?

    As for the gang's reunion, it's pretty brief but I guess after being broken out of a concrete prison, Jack is going to take a while to sort things out. Either way, there's three more days to go. It's just a shame that Alice didn't get all that much to do in this episode apart from trying to call her father. Something which I think will put her in harm's way as well.

    Also in "Children Of Earth: Day Two"

    The Previously On bit had some clips of the first episode of course.

    Frobisher (re Torchwood): "What went wrong?"
    Johnson: "They got lucky but they won't get far."
    Frobisher: "We can't have witnesses."

    We saw Clem outside the street screaming when he realised that the 456 were coming tomorrow. I'm surprised that he hasn't aroused attention from Home Office.

    Gwen: "What are you doing?"
    Rhys: "Packing."
    Gwen: "You aren't gonna have time to read and they can track you with that."

    Frobisher (to the Prime Minister, re the 456): "That's what everyone is asking - when were they here before?"

    Did anyone think that Gwen not shooting Johnson but her tires was slightly Doctor-esque? I'm kind of hoping that he actually shows up in this story given that we know that David Tennant will be in The Sarah Jane Adventures this year.

    Frobisher (to Lois, re Captain Jack): "He told you this over the phone?"
    Bridget: "He always was an arrogant sod."

    Rhiannon (re Ianto): "What's he done? Why is he bringing this to our door?"
    Johnny: "We're the only family he's got."

    Gwen genuinely looked like she was gonna hurl in that truck full of potatoes, even though these episodes were filmed before the actress became pregnant in real life.

    Johnson (re Captain Jack): It was a bag of bits when I brought it in. Get that thing out and cuff it to the wall."

    Gwen: "When have you ever known me to be travel sick?"
    Rhys: "When have you ever had to travel like this?"

    Gwen and Rhys got from Cardiff to London in a very short space of time.

    Rhys (re pregnancy): "This changes everything."
    Gwen: "No it doesn't. We're at the same creek and we need a paddle."

    Rhiannon: "What kind of civil servants are you?"
    Ianto: "Unappreciated ones."

    Ianto seems to have issues with his father pushing him too hard. This is the third time this series Ianto's mentioned his father, so are we going to see him?

    Lois (to Gwen, re Torchwood): "If you're the bad guys, why doesn't say so on your file and if you're the good guys, then who am I working for?"

    Johnson (to Captain Jack): "I will say this. If I can't kill you, I will contain you."

    I should've mentioned in my previous review that Colonel Mace was relocated to Vancouver. Lois: "I'm a PA, this is what I do."
    Gwen: "When this is all over and you want a job, call me."

    Rhys: "We're not gonna get away with this."
    Gwen: "You really shouldn't be here, Rhys."

    I heard the ratings for the first episode were over 5 million viewers, which is the highest for this show and good for a summer drama. Surely a fourth season has to be on the cards?

    Gwen (to Kodak): "I prefer the company of dead people."

    Chronology: The next day after "Children Of Earth: Day One".

    Not as good as the first episode but "Children Of Earth: Day Two" doesn't show signs that this plot has difficulty in sustaining itself. Blasphemy it may be but this episode kind of benefited from the lack of Jack that we got.
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