Based on that globetrotting, apocalypse-flirting season finale of Torchwood, it’s hard to believe that this series began as just a Doctor Who spinoff on BBC Three about a black ops unit fighting aliens in apparently extraterrestrial-packed Cardiff, Wales. No, it still hasn’t come close to fulfilling its original mandate to give a more “adult” spin to the Who formula. Not by a mile. But what Torchwood still lacks in maturity it almost makes up with sheer expansiveness.
Take Series Four, subtitled “Miracle Day,” which wrapped up last night. It was in some respects a season-long deconstruction of most television series’ biggest conceit: that your main characters are never going to die, or at least have a much, much lower mortality rate than the general population. On the titular Miracle Day, not a single human being on the planet died. But then, none died on the day after, or the day after that, and so on, like some cancerous antipode to Children of Men’s sterility epidemic. After that non-Apocalypse Apocalypse, humanity became an immortal race of gods subjected to an increasingly crowded planet—except for those “Category One” individuals who should have died but haven’t and now linger on in some kind of limbo. READ FULL STORY