Tuesday, May 10, 2011

TV Series Review: Torchwood (season two)

Wow, sorry for disappearing like that, I was just really busy Sunday and had a horrible headache Monday (and I know my reviews are rather crappy when I try to write with a headache) so I just didn't get around to it. And sorry to say that I'm not going to be able to put up reviews every day in May after all, partially because I don't have quite enough stuff for that and also partially because I'm sewing like mad to get stuff ready for a con at the end of the month. But I clearly have a review for today so let's move onto that shall we?


Summary: Torchwood 3, created by Queen Victoria to combat the threat of aliens (ironically, mainly the Doctor from the original show Doctor Who) is based in Cardiff and has their fair share of problems, mainly because of a time-space rift running near the town. So, like it or not, they find themselves in danger, being shot at, nearly being killed and actually dying on a rather regular basis, no wonder the whole city knows about them!

The Good: For those who are less fond of Gwen (the audience surrogate character and one of the more central characters) rejoice, she isn't quite as prominent as she was the previous season. Ianto, Owen, and Tosh all get a chance to flesh out their stories (as well as Jack but his was pretty well known to start with) and Martha from Doctor Who also makes a cameo for a couple of episodes. The plotting of the episodes is stronger in this season (tvtropes sums it up as "the plots were saner and there was less rampant sex) so people who were on the fence about the first season will probably enjoy this one more.

The Bad: While not quite as prevalent as it was in Doctor Who (when they both shared a showrunner, Russel T. Davis) it sometimes feels like the team is saving Cardiff from total destruction each episode and it makes it harder to believe that most people in the city actually don't really know what's going on. The city is supposed to be operating under a masquerade but the strength of that varies from episode to episode (much like Buffy honestly) and it just makes it a bit harder to take the whole show serious (ly enough to enjoy it that is). 

The Music: There were few, if any, new themes in this season but the music still backs up the show and works well. The short opener remains unchanged as well, even the visuals seem the same, but, since nothing really needs to change, everything works fine.

The Visuals: As before, some aliens look more realistic than others (the same can be said of the CGI) but none of it looks really great. The effects say quite loudly "we only have a tv budget and we're making the best of it!" So the historical episodes (which need fewer special effects and more fancy clothes, much easier on the budget) look a bit better than the ones that focus more on aliens but it all balances out in the end.

So, still have to see the ultra-depressing third season of this, Children of Earth but for the moment I'm off to do more sewing. Expect a review as per usual tomorrow however, I should be able to spare the time to talk about an anime that is getting it's long overdue sequel this summer. 

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