Torchwood: Children of Earth – Review & Discussion

Published 6 years ago by

torchwood 00 crop Torchwood: Children of Earth   Review & Discussion

This is a spoiler free discussion

The regular readers of Screen Rant have a pretty good feel for how I look at shows and many of you tend to agree with my opinions in my different reviews.  With that said…

In short, I’ve never been so moved or drawn into a show like this in my life.  In fear of sounding like one of those fawning critics looking for studio media exposure, I have to say that Torchwood: Children of Earth was gripping, compelling and shocking, all at once.  Oh yea, and incredibly entertaining.

Creator, lead writer and executive producer Russell T Davies brings a very good story to the viewers.  When he put this together he said “I wanted to tell a story in which civilization snaps, in which we turn on ourselves, in which nothing is safe.”

He hit the target dead on.

torchwood 02 Torchwood: Children of Earth   Review & Discussion

The children of Earth are used like tools.  All around the planet, each child stops in their tracks and then as one, they speak to the people of Earth, saying “We are coming.”

Captain Jack Harkness (John Barrowman), Gwen Cooper (Eve Myles) and Ianto Jones (Gareth David-Lloyd) return in Torchwood: Children of the Earth where we are brought into a story of global fear and earthly citizen distrust.  Of governments put in harrowing situations and dark deeds that need to be done.  Decisions are made that are morally questionable and yet undeniably necessary.  The emotional conflict created within the show remained with this viewer way beyond the closing credits.

The 5 days that the mini-series covers is a well developed and strong story that draws you in and continued getting stronger with each passing scene.

torchwood 04 Torchwood: Children of Earth   Review & Discussion

Day one is used to introduce many parts of the story, including the Torchwood team.  They weave together a lot of facts and history quickly and efficiently.  If you don’t know anything about Torchwood, it’s OK.  Details will be filled in for you throughout.

I kept waiting for the the tale to plateau out like most shows do as they get past the halfway point.  Then the characters can deal with what has happened.  But it didn’t.  It just kept getting better with every scene as the story developed and revelations are tossed at us throughout, right up until the end.  My damn adrenaline just wouldn’t quit.

The show hit on some themes I’ve never seen before in American television.  Or at least on any of the shows I’ve watched.  It came at us with dark themes, again, like I’ve never seen before.  I was impressed with how they presented some of the story facets.  During other times in the show, there are scenes that drew me completely in and I’ve never had such a strong emotional empathy for a story or the characters within it.

Schedule The Time

If you watch it on TV on BBC America, you won’t budge from your couch and you will probably think it’s cruel and unusual punishment to keep you waiting until the next episode.  If you DVR or buy the DVD / Blu-ray, plan to sit for the entire 5 hours because you won’t want to play one episode and then not put the other ones in.

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Torchwood: Children of Earth will air on BBC America on Monday, July 20th, 9:00 to 10:15 pacific, 8:00 to 9:15 central.

Try to catch it if you haven’t already.  And commentors that may have seen it already, try to be cognizant of the readers who haven’t seen it yet!  Thanks!

TAGS: Torchwood
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  1. Your review of Torchwood was spot on – the program was stunning and SO brave, especially in the ‘cabinet meeting’ style scenes. I thought it may cop out and give a ‘twee’ ending but it went for it 100% and was the most gripping program I have seen for ages. It should win a number of awards for acting, originality etc etc

  2. @Braveheart
    WHAT???!!! The Titanic sank??!! Ohhh, what a world, what a world!! :-)

    I saw days 1 and 2 last night, and I have to admit, this is a good mini-series. The only problem I had was the kiss and the nude scenes, otherwise a great show. Also, they said the S-word a couple of times; since this isn’t from a premium channel, it caught me off guard. Really anticipating 456.

  3. I had watched a bit of Torchwood and found it to be, well, boring. I really don’t care that Jack is bi-sexual. It should not be an issue, but instead it seemed that the show was focusing on it like a school boy would. I kept screaming “get over it”. Now, Children of Earth, started to get some good buzz about it, so I thought I’d give it a go. All I can say is WOW. The writing and acting on these episodes are amazing. Paul Copley’s performance as Clem had me in an instant and kept me engaged in a desire to protect him. The story arc was riviting. I generally don’t gush about TV shows, but this one is one of my all time favorites. If BBC gives the series funding for another season, I will definitely give it another shot. For the actors and crew, I say kudos, and thanks!

  4. I’m with you BlackBlade: I think this is probably the best television I’ve ever watched. When I was done with my marathon viewing of all the episodes, I didn’t want to watch another television show for a few hours. I didn’t want to lose what the show left with me.


  5. I watched days 3 and 4 last night. I was on the edge of my bed…literally! The suspense is incredible! Tonights the final and I hope they come back with more.

  6. I am actually shocked in what happens in night 4 but I am hoping they can repair some of the dammage in night 5. I cannot wait for it and sit with anticipation. I have watched this show from season one and have loved it. I was a Doctor Who fan in the early 70′s as a kid and was thrilled when they created a new show for that with updated special effects. I do however miss K-9 as he was only in 2 episodes of the new one and his quirky bits were fun to listen to.

  7. Yes, I’m anxiously awaiting tonight’s finale. I sincerely hope that the traumatic event at the end of last night’s show can be fixed too, Devilgirl33. I am not a long time fan and yet was very dismayed by the development. I have found that Wikipedia has great entries for both Torchwood and the Children of Earth series, complete with viewship info. Given the comparatively very large numbers for Children of Earth, it looks hopeful that season 4 will get funding. Crossing my fingers and hoping that Davies continues to be involved.

  8. I loved this series. It was television at its finest. While I’m a hardcord sci-fi fantasy fan, I appreciate when a series is so well created that even those outside of its fictional universe can be engrossed in and emotionally touched by the characters and the trials that they face. Children of Earth made my adrenaline rush with fear and anticipation; ripped my heart out and left me stunned in silence; and, I loved every minute of it.

  9. Great series until the end when the writers decided to o away with Jack. Why did they have to go to all the trouble to make the Prime Minister seem such an immoral cretin and then have Jack do exactly the same…. sacrificing his own grandson. It’s only a difference in numbers: all children, 10% or 1. What gave Jack the right to make that decision for another life. He was never like this in the previous 2 years. Why now? Talk about writers pragmatic “let’s-shock-em-itis”. Janto’s death would have been enough to make Jack wander off at the end. Why turn him into a villain? Better the whole human race perish in defense of what is right. I’d like to see what happens to Jack to turn him into the gentle Face of Bo. But I digress. No joy in the ending at all. So un-Torchwoodlike. Great to see the team again, awful to leave us so disillusioned!

    • Allow me to direct you to the first season episode “Small Worlds”. This sort of behaviour is completely consistent for Jack. He has always been willing to make the cold, hard decisions when necessary.

      Torchwood has always been darker than Doctor Who. Its premise has always been: “How do people survive the horrors of the Doctor Who universe when the Doctor isn’t around?”.

  10. Well said, absolutely hit the nail on the head. RTD made a gem here, whew!!

  11. Well said, absolutely hit the nail on the head. RTD made a gem here, whew!!

  12. bjcdrama you hit it spot on. I never watched torchwood until recently and got really into the series though the first two. But well this series began with promise, it ended with a great sense of disillusion in jack sacrificing his own grandson to save the world, that isn’t how jack is meant to do things, and he suddenly has this dark change of character? In previous episodes he would have sacrificed himself to save the world, but here? A very disappointing ending to what could have otherwise been a good series.

  13. OH MY GOSH! CoE is the BEST! I know that at the end it was going to be hard to do series 5 because he sort of dug himself a hole. All I know is MIRACLE DAY SUCKED! It was good for some of the strory line, There are no faults with the actors its just some of the scenes were unnecessary like the scene about esthers sister. It didnt make any sense on why it should be shown. Now russells dug himself out of the whole i hope he writes something as good as Children of Earth, Series 1 and Series 2