TV REVIEW Torchwood 2.04 "Meat"

Original UK air date: 6/2/08

Written by: Catherine Tregenna

Directed by: Colin Teague

Rating:

The One Where: Rhys’s haulage firm has been shipping meat harvested from a giant alien. With Rhys as Torchwood’s only link to the creature’s captors, they send him undercover to help save it – despite Gwen’s protests.

Verdict: Four episodes in and the new series of Torchwood has become much-watch TV. Most impressive is the variety, with the romp, thriller and romance plots of previous weeks now followed up with an ingeniously “meaty” premise you’d not see on any other show (with the possible exception of early X-Files). Just to highlight how the series has evolved since last year, the in-fighting and gratuitous swearing have been replaced with slick dialogue that sizzles with humour and drama – not to mention a team that feels like a properly cohesive unit. It’s also refreshing to see the writers giving Rhys a little more to do than sitting around the flat waiting for Gwen to come home.

Character: Now that Rhys knows about Gwen’s day job, theirs is the show’s most believable relationship, rows and all. It’s finally clear why she said “Yes”.

Go Veggie! Jamie Oliver wouldn’t have much trouble getting alien meat banned. The beast may look like a 100-foot poo with eyes, but the screams as its flesh is gouged by power tools are genuinely affecting.

Nitpick: As the head of a top-secret organisation, surely Jack should have pushed a little harder to get Rhys’s memory wiped? At the very least he could have asked him to sign the Official Secrets Act.

Best Line:
Tosh: "If we understood how it works we could feed the world."
Ianto:
"Release a single..."

Richard Edwards

Next Torchwood review: "Adam"
Previous Torchwood review: "To the Last Man"

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