Torchwood 4.8: End of the Road review

Review

End of the Road

(Ep8 of Torchwood Miracle Day)

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There are some great guest stars in this episode.

The CIA

John de Lancie plays the new CIA character Shapiro. Another actor familiar to cult TV fans because of their Star Trek roles, Nana Visitor, plays The Mysterious Woman, who’s actually shown to be Angelo’s granddaughter Olivia Colasanto.

It’s an ep which ties together a lot of the floating plotstrands of the previous episode into one cohesive rope of story guiding us to the the finale (while ignoring other plotstrands. Remember the masked The Soulless cult?)tw

Friedkin (of a few eps ago) appears, only to be confounded by Rex’s overly-convoluted plan to show to Shapiro why Rex and Esther shouldn’t be exiled from the CIA.

The Villains

When Friedkin leaves the season he takes Olivia Colasanto with him, but not before she explains who the real puppet masters of the Miracle Day are – “the Families”, the three mob families we saw in the previous episode set in the 1920s. She also confirms Jack’s blood (harvested by them decades ago) is in some way connected to the Miracle.

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Again the Miracle Day episode title gives a preview of the themes, with “End of the Road” alluding to the closing chapter of the commercial relationship between Oswald Danes and Jilly Kitzinger – it’s the end of as them as a duo as PhiCorp has no further use for Danes.

The whole idea of Danes as a cult figure sputtered out across this season really, it made for a fascinating cliffhanger for episode 5, but after two episodes of no Danes…

Torchwood

There’s a weird connection to the Torchwood Hub of previous seasons when the “null field transmitter” is shown to be sourced from there – in a way though Angelo waiting for Jack across a century is an interesting parallel to Jack waiting for the Doctor. It’s the “End of the Road” though for their century-spanning relationship as, curiously, Angelo becomes the first man to die of old age since the Miracle Day.tw

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There’s a feeling though of this episode being very much a way of positioning the players on the stage for the final act rather than one with a compelling story to tell like the previous episode.

Quantity-ratings (click here for guide to rating system):

Wordbuilding  World-mapWorld-mapWorld-map

Gore                Weevil-chompWeevil-chompWeevil-chomp

Dancing           Carys

Angst               Tear-stained-pizzaTear-stained-pizzaTear-stained-pizza

Aliens             Philoctetes

Episode Quality-rating: GrinGrinGrin3/5

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The Top 10 Doctor Who monsters countdown continues on this weekend with number 2, and the Torchwood reviews conclude next week (Tuesday and Thursday).
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(End of the Road on bbc.co.uk/programmes/)

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