Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Torchwood: Adrift

The Singing Stone Horizon Guide to Touchwood
written without any permission (or consent) by anyone who would sue me
by Ewen Campion Clarke

DISCLAIMER: This is an unauthorized program guide to the stupendously awful Doctor Who cash-in Angel-rip-off. Neither the guide nor the series is to be taken seriously. Or orally. And if rash occurs – and it probably will – consult the Doctor immediately.

"TOUCHWOOD... Once I had a reason, don’t know what it could be! And the road I must travel, its end I cannot see! Well I sang to myself, 'That I want to be free!' But the road I must travel, its end I cannot see!"

Episode 11: Gwen Cutaway

Our increasingly-repulsive loyalty character, Gwen Cooper, deigns to reply to the police requests for Touchwood assistance – simply so she can demand to know why the fuck a certain PC Andy refused to turn up to her wedding. When he points out that she’s supposed to be elite crime-fighter and actually give a shit about the less fortunate, Gwen grins insanely and tickles Andy. At the crime scene. In front of everyone. Giggling, "Oh, Andeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!"

Yes, it seems like Gwen’s concussed 15-year-old persona has gone completely out of control and she is now utterly insane. She buys Andy a coffee and tells him that the police will from now on do exactly what she says or suffer death by Weevil bites. Around this point, Ianto, Tosh and Owen arrive, sedate Gwen and put her in a straightjacket.

Gwen easily escapes and returns home to her flat, sculls down a whole bottle of hootch, takes Rhys roughly from behind in the shower for around 12 hours of rough, hardcore sex before running out into the night, laughing crazily and whistling "Boys and Girls Come Out To Play", runs back, rapes Rhys again with a coke bottle, and then skips away back to the Hub.

The Touchwood team try once more to catch Gwen with a butterfly net, and she shouts "I DON’T KNOW WHY I BOTHER! YOU’RE SO RUUUUUDE!" and bounces away, finds Andrew and screams into his face that she is still working on the missing persons case, she is still nice and cool and all his criticisms are entirely unwarranted, without letting him get a word in edgeways. She then runs off, realizing that this getting all boring and stuff like that and she wants to play in a tree house.

After hurling knives at Rhys for not building her a tree house, Gwen screams she CAN’T let it go, she CAN’T move on, that they’re NOT finished and Owen and Tosh get their own play houses so why can't she IT’S NOT FAIR IT’S NOT FAIR IT’S NOT FAIR!!!!! She then finds the GPS system in her car and believes it is WOTAN XII: Cold Boot THIS! – the next stage of mechanized evolution.

This shitty bit of Japanese navigation crap, which Gwen is convinced is actually an alien artifact and, knocking back boiling coffee like it’s drinking water, the twitching and muttering ex-copper sets off into the night and finally arrives at the Lighthouse on Fang Rock. Now sniggering uncontrollably and no longer in control of her own bowels, paranoid Gwen climbs to the top of the tower and starts making rooster noises at the top of her voice.

Suddenly that bald, pointy-eared goblin guy with the bug eye from The Goonies turns up, picks up Psycho Bitch Cooper and throws her off the lamp gallery, and Gwen flies off into the sunset, making more chicken noises and humming the theme tune "The A-Team".

It turns out that Gwen is still on the sofa at her apartment, drooling and humming "The A-Team" to herself as she stares, glassy-eyed, at the wall with an idiotic grin on her face. The phone rings and Rhys answers it – it’s Ianto, telling Gwen not to come in on Monday. Or ever again.

Trivia Questions
1. Why do fish swim backwards in a North-Easterly direction in Swindon? 2. Is this relevant?

Great Moments - Well, it depends how much you like Eve Myles humming "The A-Team"...

Fashion Crimes
PC Andy’s "BLOODY TOUCHWOOD" T-shirt available from all sci-fi retailers and tragic Welsh nostalgia shops.

Missing Adventures -
There’s presumably some reason for Gwen being crazy. I guess.


Great Lines - Nikki: D’you think I’m mad?
Gwen: No, I think you’d make a great policewoman. As almost as great a policeman as me.
Nikki: So... you DO think I’m mad.
Gwen: Oh yeah. Batshit insane. Hee-hee-hee.

Rhys: You know, sometimes, I fucking hate you. Look at you. Caught up in your little group like nothing else matters. Like being a hero is an end in itself. Well, it’s not. You save this city? Well done. You save the world, whatever... what for? WHY are you doing it? What are you trying to protect? Who are you fighting for? You do it because people can live their lives. And there is NOTHING more important than that. Falling in love, getting married, buying flats, having kids or not, but real life. THAT is what you’re protecting. And if you think that your shit is more important than real life, then we’re not going to last here very long, "love". When you’re with me, you deal with US. OUR lives. If you have a problem at work, you sort it at work. I – don’t - care. NOW PUT THAT FUCKING KNIFE DOWN!!

Gwen: Just because some things we can’t fix, that means we shouldn’t try? Is that what you all think? We are the ONLY ones who know the truth! We CAN help them! We don’t have to be this harsh – it’s not a badge of honour! Is that it? We just sweep it under the carpet?!
Owen: Gwen... baby... where have you BEEN?!

Crap Lines – Gwen: Dah-ta-da-daah, dut-dut-DARR! Dah-da-ta-da-daah, dah du-dah-dah-duuuh! A-TEAM!!! Doo-do-doot-do-do, doot-doot-do-doot-do-do, dah-diddy-de-didi dah-diddy-did-ditty-dee...

Gwen: Why don't you want to have babies? Are you still attracted to me? Do you think the marriage was a mistake? Have I changed since I joined Touchwood? Why does Andy hate you? Do you even have a middle name? Why exactly is the flat covered in TARDIS roundels? Why won't you be honest with me? Why won't you answer my questions? Are you even listening to me? I can’t HEAR you!! Lalalala! Who you gonna call, huh? A-TEAM!! That’s who!

Plot Oversights
- Can the police really remotely tap into the CCTV network or does Andy have a copy of that particular CCTV footage of Gwen’s chicken impressions with him at all times?
- How long could it take for Gwen to fly to Fiji from Mermaid Bay? Does she have a job?
- Why is Andy so shocked about Gwen’s psychosis? Wouldn’t the police have some idea as to how mental their retired officers were at one time?
- How did Ianto find out Gwen was trying to take over the police with her coffee fixation?
- Why is Gwen dismissive of Andy’s desire to help her? Does she LIKE being insane?
- How could Gwen conceivably have any time awake that she’d be coherent if her humming lasted 20 hours every day? Does she sleep ever?

Viewers’ Quotes

"Not the utter disaster I thought it would be and its semi-predictable nature was balanced by the fact Gwen finishes the story in a worse state than when she started. This is the antithesis of a healing episode, and Gwen’s middle name is now "Damaged Goods" and she's as much use to Torchwood as that blonde catatonic chick in Night of the Living Dead. Coz, I may not have mentioned this, she’s cracked in the head, out of the tree, off her trolley and I for one don’t want to watch this deranged harpy with the big teeth any more. Kill her off in the series finale, there's nothing that can be done with her."
- President of the Gwen Cooper Fan Club (2008)

"This is definitely the best story of the year. An episode that will stick in my mind for a long time... what were we talking about again?"
- Sparacus "Flamingo" Jones (2007)

"I don’t care what ANYBODY else says; Gwen Cooper is living proof that the Welsh are genetically doomed!"
- Richard E Grant (2009)

"Is it too much to hope for some more lesbians in this series? There are still SOME straight men watching this show! It’s our right as loyal viewers, dammit! Some hot sweaty Tosh-Martha action would be much better than seeing Jack and Ianto wanking each other off like angry cellists..."
- Nigel Verkoff (2008)

"Angry cellists!! Genius!! But the sad fact is, it’s about porn efficiency (which I’ve written about elsewhere.) If you’re watching people having sex, and a bottom gets in the way, it had better be a the kind of bottom you like. As a sad old straight man, I like naked women and dislike naked men. A video with two men in it would be, at best, a bore. A video with two women wouldn’t be the least bit boring at all. Not deep, not grown up - but true. But never mind all that. Angry cellists!!! That should be the arc phrase for the next series of LESBIAN SPANK INFERNO!!"
- Steven Moffat (2008)

"Oh yes, of course. Gwen Cutaway. That’s the episode we’re talking about. And shouldn’t EVERY episode of Touchwood be as bleak as this one? It’s the show’s true tone, utter pointlessness interspersed with horny Jack/Ianto sex, which what I wanted from the show all along."
- Sparacus "Flamingo" Jones (later that day)

The Author Speaks
"Yeah... sorry, but the character was just too far gone for us to go, 'Oh, she was just having a bad day'. She’s nucking futs, that’s all there is to it. Pretty skillful way of doing the Jack-lite episode, though, huh? Huh? Oh yeah."

Trivia Answers
1. Steven Phil Pod 2. Probably not. Do YOU want to take the risk? Rumors and Facts -

All hope was lost. The enemies were too powerful, and not the mightiest nor the meekest had survived their strike! The end of everything was in sight, and we would be forced to witness it out of sheer sadism for the dark forces that surrounded us. We had raged against the dying of the light, inspired by the actions of one man who had now, for reasons that mean nothing at present, deserted us in the belief we could hold our own. Finally, the best and brightest had tried and they had failed, and there was no way out.

"Did you miss me?" asked Chris Chibnall cheerfully as he returned to the Touchwood fold and produced something less crap than the previous two episodes.

Ruminations –
Typical. Focus on Gwen rather than Tosh. What were the fucking odds?

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