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“The 21st Century is when everything changes. And we’re not ready.”
Torchwood agent Alex in 1999.
It’s the Secret Origin of Team Torchwood!
Well, apart from Gwen whose joining of Torchwood was the first episode of the series. All of the four Worldbuilding mini-stories are either great fun (Jack, Ianto) or, despite the seemingly willfully jarring use of Sci-Fi schlock elements, poignant (Toshiko, Owen). There are also poignant undercurrents to Jack’s and Ianto’s mini-stories too, and Ianto’s even manages to retroactively make sense of the continuity of his “emotional journey” of Season 1.
Jack getting invited to the Torchwood party like it’s 1899 is the best of the four.
That each of the mini-stories feels worthwhile and complete, despite being around 10 minutes each, is quite an achievement. Not one minute of the 50 minutes screentime is wasted. Bravo!